Varus (Publius Quinctilius Varus) vâr´əs [key], d. AD 9, Roman general. In 13 BC he was consul with Tiberius Claudius Nero (later emperor as Tiberius ) and later was governor of Syria. Although unsuited for the position, he was appointed governor of Germany by Augustus . In AD 9, to suppress an uprising, he led three legions across the Rhine into the Teutoburg Forest, where they were massacred by the troops of Arminius . Varus himself committed suicide. This defeat was a major catastrophe for the Romans. It is said that afterward Augustus would start up from sleep, crying,
Varus, Varus, bring me back my legions!
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