The Orations of Marcus Tullius Cicero, Volume 4 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 784 pages of information about The Orations of Marcus Tullius Cicero, Volume 4.

The whole then of the contest, O Romans, which is now before the Roman people, the conqueror of all nations, is with an assassin, a robber, a Spartacus.[31] For as to his habitual boast of being like Catilina, he is equal to him in wickedness, but inferior in energy.  He, though he had no army, rapidly levied one.  This man has lost that very army which he had.  As, therefore, by my diligence, and the authority of the senate, and your own zeal and valour, you crushed Catilina, so you will very soon hear that this infamous piratical enterprise of Antonius has been put down by your own perfect and unexampled harmony with the senate, and by the good fortune and valour of your armies and generals.  I, for my part, as far as I am able to labour, and to effect anything by my care, and exertions, and vigilance, and authority, and counsel, will omit nothing which I may think serviceable to your liberty.  Nor could I omit it without wickedness after all your most ample and honourable kindness to me.  However, on this day, encouraged by the motion of a most gallant man, and one most firmly attached to you, Marcus Servilius, whom you see before you, and his colleagues also, most distinguished men, and most virtuous citizens; and partly, too, by my advice and my example, we have, for the first time after a long interval, fired up again with a hope of liberty.


Otherwise called the fifth Philippic.

* * * * *

The argument.

The new consuls Hirtius and Pansa were much attached to Cicero, had consulted him a great deal, and professed great respect for his opinion; but they were also under great obligations to Julius Caesar and, consequently, connected to some extent with his party and with Antonius, on which account they wished, if possible, to employ moderate measures only against him.

As soon as they had entered on their office, they convoked the senate to meet for the purpose of deliberating on the general welfare of the republic.  They both spoke themselves with great firmness, promising to be the leaders in defending the liberties of Rome, and exhorting the senate to act with courage.  And then they called on Quintus Fufius Calenus, who had been consul A.U.C. 707, and who was Pansa’s father-in-law, to deliver his opinion first.  He was known to be a firm friend of Antonius.  Cicero wished to declare Antonius a public enemy at once, but Calenus proposed that before they proceeded to acts of open hostility against him, they should send an embassy to him to admonish him to desist from his attempts upon Gaul, and to submit to the authority of the senate.  Piso and others supported this motion, on the ground that it was cruel and unjust to condemn a man without giving him a fair chance of submitting, and without hearing what he had to

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