GALLUS, C. CORNELIUS, a Roman poet, orator, and politician, was born of humble parents at Forum Julii (Frejus), in Gaul, about the year 66 B.C. At an early age he removed to Rome, where he was taught by the same master as Virgil and Varius. In political life he espoused the cause of Octavianus, and as a reward for his services ,vas made prefect of Egypt. His conduct in this position afterwards brought him into disgrace with Augustus, and dreading the exposure of his arrogance, extortion, and cruelty, he put an end to his life by throwing himself on his sword, in the year 26 B.C. Gallus enjoyed a high reputation among his contemporaries as a man of intellect. He associated on terms of equality with Virgil, Ovid, Varius, Asinius Pollio, and others, and on account of his four books of elegies Ovid claimed for him the first place among the elegiac poets of Rome. His fame as an orator was hardly inferior to his renown as a poet ; but as not a fragment of his composition has descended to our times, we have no means of judging the worth of his literary pretensions, and have to content ourselves with the somewhat partial estimate of his personal friends.
See Ch. C. Volker, Commentatio de C. Galli Vita el Seriphs, part i.. Bonn, 1840 ; part ii.. Elberfeld, 1844.