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discharge of his duties in the camp. He became timid, inefficient, and 

remiss, and almost every thing that he undertook ended disastrously. The 

army, who understood perfectly well the reason of their commander's 

remissness and consequent ill fortune, were extremely indignant at his 

conduct, and the camp was filled with suppressed murmurs and complaints. 

Antony, however, like other persons in his situation, was blind to all 

these indications of dissatisfaction; probably he would have disregarded 

them if he had observed them. At length, finding that he could bear his 

absence from his mistress no longer, he set out to march across the 

country, in the depth of the winter, to the sea-shore, to a point where 

he had sent for Cleopatra to come to join him. The army endured 

incredible hardships and exposures in this march. When Antony had once 

commenced the journey, he was so impatient to get forward that he 

compelled his troops to advance with a rapidity greater than their 

strength would bear. They were, besides, not provided with proper tents 

or with proper supplies of provisions. They were often obliged, 

therefore, after a long and fatiguing march during the day, to bivouac 

at night in the open air among the mountains, with scanty means of 

appeasing their hunger, and very little shelter from the cold rain, or 

from the storms of driving snow. Eight thousand men died on this march, 

from cold, fatigue, and exposure; a greater sacrifice, perhaps, than had 

ever been made before to the mere ardor and impatience of a lover. 


When Antony reached the shore, he advanced to a certain sea-port, near 

Sidon, where Cleopatra was to land. At the time of his arrival but a 

very small part of his army was left, and the few men that survived were 

in a miserably destitute condition. Antony's eagerness to see Cleopatra 

became more and more excited as the time drew nigh. She did not come so 

soon as he had expected, and during the delay he seemed to pine away 

under the influence of love and sorrow. He was silent, absent-minded, 

and sad. He had no thoughts for any thing but the coming of Cleopatra, 

and felt no interest in any other plans. He watched for her incessantly, 

and would sometimes leave his place at the table, in the midst of the 

supper, and go down alone to the shore, where he would stand gazing out 

upon the sea, and saying mournfully to himself, "Why does not she come?" 

The animosity and the ridicule which these things awakened against him, 

on the part of the army, were extreme; but he was so utterly infatuated 

that he disregarded all the manifestations of public sentiment around 

him, and continued to allow his mind to be wholly engrossed with the 

single idea of Cleopatra's coming. 


She arrived at last. She brought a great supply of clothes and other 

necessaries for the use of Antony's army, so that her coming not only 

gratified his love, but afforded him, also, a very essential relief, in 

respect to the military difficulties in which he was involved. 


After some time spent in the enjoyment of the pleasure which being thus 

reunited to Cleopatra afforded him, Antony began again to think of the 

affairs of his government, which every month more and more imperiously 

demanded his attention. He began to receive urgent calls from various 

quarters, rousing him to action. In the mean time, Octavia--who had been 

all this while waiting in distress and anxiety at Rome, hearing 

continually the most gloomy accounts of her husband's affairs, and the 

most humiliating tidings in respect to his infatuated devotion to 

Cleopatra--resolved to make one more effort to save him. She interceded 

with her brother to allow her to raise troops and to collect supplies, 

and then proceed to the eastward to re-enforce him. Octavius consented 

to this. He, in fact, assisted Octavia in making her preparations. It is 

said, however, that he was influenced in this plan by his confident 

belief that this noble attempt of his sister to reclaim her husband 

would fail, and that, by the failure of it, Antony would be put in the 

wrong, in the estimation of the Roman people, more absolutely and 

hopelessly than ever, and that the way would thus be prepared for his 

complete and final destruction. 


Octavia was rejoiced to obtain her brother's aid to her undertaking, 

whatever the motive might be which induced him to afford it. She 

accordingly levied a considerable body of troops, raised a large sum of 

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