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Making Sure

AnimalAnecdotes Home

During the war between Augustus Caesar and Marc Antony, when all the world
stood wondering and uncertain which way Fortune would incline herself, a
poor man at Rome, in order to be prepared for making, in either event, a
bold hit for his own advancement, had recourse to the following ingenious
expedient. He applied himself to the training of two crows with such
diligence, that he brought them the length of pronouncing with great
distinctness, the one a salutation to Caesar, and the other a salutation to
Antony. When Augustus returned conqueror, the man went out to meet him
with the crow suited to the occasion perched on his fist, and every now
and then it kept exclaiming, "Salve, Caesar, Victor Imperator!" "Hail,
Caesar, Conqueror and Emperor!" Augustus, greatly struck and delighted with
so novel a circumstance, purchased the bird of the man for a sum which
immediately raised him into opulence.

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