Chapter 5.37

Sabīnus quōs in praesentiā tribūnōs mīlitum circum sē habēbat et prīmōrum ōrdinum centuriōnēs sē sequī iubet et, cum propius Ambiorīgem accessisset, iūssus arma abicere imperātum facit suīsque ut idem faciant imperat. Interim, dum dē condiciōnibus inter sē agunt longiorque cōnsultō ab Ambiorīge īnstituitur sermō, paulātim circumventus interficitur. Tum vērō suō mōre vīctōriam conclāmant atque ululātum tollunt impetūque in nostrōs factō ōrdinēs perturbant. Ibī L. Cotta pūgnāns interficitur cum māximā parte mīlitum. Reliquī sē in castra recipiunt unde erant ēgressī. Ex quibus L. Petrosīdius aquilifer, cum māgnā multitūdine hostium premerētur, aquilam intrā vāllum prōiēcit; ipse prō castrīs fortissimē pūgnāns occīditur. Illī aegrē ad noctem oppūgnātiōnem sustinent; noctū ad ūnum omnēs dēspērātā salūte sē ipsī interficiunt. Paucī ex proeliō ēlapsī incertīs itineribus per silvās ad T. Labiēnum lēgātum in hīberna perveniunt atque eum dē rēbus gestīs certiōrem faciunt.

Sabinus parleys with Ambiorix and is killed. The Roman troops annihilated.

in praesentia: 'at the moment' (Gaisser).

de condicionibus…agunt: 'they were discussing terms (of surrender)' (Gaisser).

longiorque consulto: &c. ‘And a discourse longer than ordinary is designedly begun by Ambiorix’ i.e., and the conference is designedly protracted by Ambiorix. (Anthon)

suo more: 'according to their custom' (Gaisser) (A&G 418.a).

ululatum: such a yell of triumph is described by Ammianus (XVI.12,43): ‘It began with a low humming, growing gradually louder and louder, until it was like the thunder of he waves, when they crash on a rocky shore.’ (Allen & Judson)

aquilifer: 'the standard-bearer' of the legion. The legion would have several standards, but its principal one was the 'eagle' (aquila) a silver eagle carried on a long pole. This was a sacred sign of the legion, and its loss was always considered a great disgrace (Gaisser).

ad unum: 'to the last man' (Gaisser) (A&G 221.2).

desperata salute: ablative absolute (Gaisser) (A&G 419).

T. Labienum: Caesar’s ablest and most trusted legatus in Gaul (Gaisser).

certiorem faciunt: < certiorem facio, 'inform' (Gaisser).

praesentĭa, -ae f.: the present, presence

circum: around, about, all around

centǔrǐo, -ōnis m.: commander of a century; centurion

ăbĭcĭo, -ĕre, -iēci, -iectum: throw away, hurl

paulātim: little by little, gradually, by degree

circumvěnǐo, -věnǐre, -vēni, -ventum: to come round, to encircle

conclāmō, -āre, -āvi, -ātum: to cry or call out together

ŭlŭlātŭs, -ūs m.: howling, shouting

perturbō, -āre, -āvi, -ātum: to throw into confusion, confuse, disturb

ǎquǐlǐfer, -fēri m.: an eaglebearer, standard-bearer

ǎquǐla, ae f.: eagle

vallum, i n.: earthworks, ramparts, palisade

prōǐcǐo, prōǐcěre, prōiēci, prōǐēctum: to throw forth, before 

oppugnātĭo, -ōnis f.: storming, assaulting, attack

noctu adv.: by night

dēspērātus, -a, -um: desperate

ēlābor, -i, -lapsus: escape from

incertus, -a, -um: uncertain, unsettled, doubtful

hībernus, -a, -um: referring to winter; hīberna, -ōrum n.: winter quarters

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Christopher Francese, Caesar: Selections from the Gallic War. Carlisle, Pennsylvania: Dickinson College Commentaries, 2011, revised and enlarged 2018. ISBN: 978-1-947822-02-3. http://dcc.dickinson.edu/caesar/book-5/chapter-5-37