Oration in Defence of Publius Sylla

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Author: Marcus Tullius Cicero  | Date: 63 BC

THE ARGUMENT

Publius Sylla having been elected consul with Publius Autronius four years before, had been impeached for bribery, convicted, and deprived of his consulship. He had then been prosecuted by Torquatus. He was now impeached by the younger Torquatus, the son of his former prosecutor, as having been implicated in both of Catiline’s conspiracies. (Autronius was accused also, and he also applied to Cicero to defend him, but Cicero, being convinced that he was guilty, not only refused to defend him, but appeared as a witness against him.) Torquatus’s real motive appears to have been jealousy of the fame which Cicero had obtained in his consulship; and, in his speech for the prosecution, when he found that Cicero had undertaken Sylla’s cause, he had attacked Cicero himself, and tried to bring him into unpopularity, calling him a king who assumed a power to save or to destroy just as he thought fit; and saying that he was the third foreign king that had reigned in Rome; Numa and Tarquin being the two former. Sylla was acquitted.

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Chicago: Marcus Tullius Cicero, "The Argument," Oration in Defence of Publius Sylla, trans. Charles Duke Yonge, A.B. Original Sources, accessed November 22, 2019, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=FGWZZAAS9N2DDIY.

MLA: Cicero, Marcus Tullius. "The Argument." Oration in Defence of Publius Sylla, translted by Charles Duke Yonge, A.B., Original Sources. 22 Nov. 2019. www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=FGWZZAAS9N2DDIY.

Harvard: Cicero, MT, 'The Argument' in Oration in Defence of Publius Sylla, trans. . Original Sources, retrieved 22 November 2019, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=FGWZZAAS9N2DDIY.