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Stop quoting laws, we carry weapons!

Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus (29 September 106 BC – 29 September 48 BC), generally referred to in English as Pompey the Great, was a Roman general and politician.



Life of Pompey

Quotes of Pompey, as portrayed in Life of Pompey by Plutarch
  • Stop quoting laws, we carry weapons!
    • “Οὐ παύσεσθε,” εἶπεν, “ἡμῖν ὑπεζωσμένοις ξίφη νόμους ἀναγινώσκοντες;” Plutarch, Lives. Pompey 10.3.2. To the Mamertines in Messana, complaining about Pompey's legal jurisdiction after their city was retaken during the civil warfare. Lit.: "'Will you not give up,' he said, 'reading laws to us men girt with swords?'"
  • More people worship the rising than the setting sun.
    • Spoken by a young Pompey to the Dictator Sulla to get Sulla to award him a triumph
  • To sail is necessary, to live is not.
    • The needs of the state (to supply their starving people with grain brought by ship) outweigh the needs of the individual, such as a sailor who would prefer not to risk death by leaving port in a violent storm to pick up a grain shipment.

Quotes about Pompey

Sorted alphabetically by author or source
O you hard hearts, you cruel men of Rome,
Knew you not Pompey? ~ William Shakespeare
  • Great Pompey's shade complains that we are slow,
    And Scipio's ghost walks unavenged amongst us!
  • O you hard hearts, you cruel men of Rome,
    Knew you not Pompey? Many a time and oft
    Have you climb'd up to walls and battlements,
    To towers and windows, yea, to chimney-tops,
    Your infants in your arms, and there have sat
    The livelong day, with patient expectation,
    To see great Pompey pass the streets of Rome:
    And when you saw his chariot but appear,
    Have you not made an universal shout,
    That Tiber trembled underneath her banks,
    To hear the replication of your sounds
    Made in her concave shores?
    And do you now put on your best attire?
    And do you now cull out a holiday?
    And do you now strew flowers in his way
    That comes in triumph over Pompey's blood? Be gone!
    Run to your houses, fall upon your knees,
    Pray to the gods to intermit the plague
    That needs must light on this ingratitude.
  • And besides, he was what? 25? He couldn't stand for a Praetorship even if he wanted to. But like I say, I don't care. I'm fine with it. I'm happy for him. Hooray for Pompey. Pompey the Great.
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