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sirous than he ever had been of obtaining the consulship, in order that he might more effectually execute his intention of subverting the republick. He practised the most profound dissimulation; by his address and bribes obtained an acquittal of the many crimes of which he was accused; and made two attempts to be elected consul. But he did not succeed. At the latest election Cicero and Antonius, two of his competitors, were chosen. This continual ill Success made Catiline at last desperate; he immediately prepared to execute his bloody intentions. By all the arts of allurement he possessed, he courted and corrupted the young nobility; with the most consunimate address he attached to himself the most factious, profligate, and abandoned characters in the city; and by various artifices he ingratiated himself into the affections of the most indigent class of citizens, who were ever ready to follow a leader, that promised them great rewards. With his accomplices he held frequent meetings. In one of these, held at the house of Marcus Lecca, it was determined, that an insurrection should be immediately raised through all Italy; that Catiline should take commandof the army which Manlius had collected in Etruria, and bring it to take possession of Rome; that Cassius should inflame the city in several places; that, during the confusion created by the conflagration, Cethegus should murder the senate; that Lentulus, being first in rank, should conduct their councils, and that two Roman Knights, who were then in the assembly, should the next morning in his bed assassinate Cicero, from whom they expected the greatest opposition. But the meeting was no sooner over,than Cicero was informed of all its proceedings. Fulvia, the mistress of Curius, one of the conspirators, had persuaded him to send the consul an account of all their transactions. Cicero guarded his house against the Knights, who came in the morning to execute the commission assigned them; and the next day he summoned the senate to assemble in the temple of Jupiter Stator in the Cap. itol, where they seldom convened except in times of public danger. The designs of Catiline had long been suspected; great rewards had been offered to him, who would discover them. This artful hypocrite, however, so successfully dissembled his intentions, that he persuaded many to believe him innocent, and he constantly asserted, that the suspicions, so prejudicial to his character, arose from the defamatory tales of Cicero, his professed enemy. He even offered to put himself into the custody of whomever the Senate would appoint; but no person would consent to be his guard. Catiline continued nevertheless to practise the arts of hypocrisy, and indeed hal the impudent confidence to come to this meeting of the Senate, which was expressly called to receive information of the discovery of his dangerous conspiracy. The Sen. ators were astonished to see him take his seat among them as usu al, and so abhorred the crimes of which he was accused, that they instantly vacated the benches near which he sat; and Cicero was so enraged by his impudence and audacity, that he did not, as was common, begin business in a methodical manner, but immediately addressed him in the abrupt and severe invective, that follows.
QUOUSQUE tandem abutêre, Catilina, patientiâ
nostrâ? quamdiu etiam furor iste tuus nos eludet? quem ad finem sese effrenata jactabit audacia? nihil-ne te nocturnum praesidium 'Palatii, nihil urbis vigiliae, nihil timor populi, nihil consensus bonorum omnium, nihil hic munitissimus habendi senatûs locus, nihil horum ora vultusque moverunt? patere tua consilia non sentis? constrictam jam omnium horum conscientiâ teneri conjurationem tuam non vides? quid proximâ, quid superiore nocte egeris, ubi fueris, quos convocaveris, quid consilii ceperis, quem nostrum ignorare arbitraris? O tempora! ô mores! Senatus haec intelligit, consul videt : hic tamen vivit; vivit? imo verò etiam in Senatum venit : fit publici consilii particeps: notat et designat oculis ad caedem unumquemque nostrûm. Nos autem, viri fortes, satisfacere reipublicae videmur, si istius furorem ac tela vitemus. Ad mortem te, Catilina, duci jussu consulis jampridem oportebat; in te con
1. Palatii-Palatium, or Palatinus, was one of the seven hills, upon which Rome was built, and such was its commanding situa tion, that in times of public alarm a garrison was stationed upon it to protect the city.
2. Urbis vigiliae-As soon as there was a suspicion that a dangerous conspiracy existed, the Senate ordered the inferior Magistrates of Rome to guard with an armed force the various streets of the city, to prevent the execution of any evil design, that might be formed.
3. Munitissimus-The Senate at this time were convened in the temple of Jupiter in the Capitol, which was the highest part of the city, and was strongly fortified.
4, Jussu consulis-In times of peace and safety, the power of the Consuls was much limited; in all important affairs they were obliged to act under the direction of the Senate. But when there were civil commotions in the city, and when it was supposed that
ferri pestem istam, quam tu in nos omnes jamdiu machinaris. An verò vir amplissimus, P. Scipio, • Pontifex Maximus, Tib. Gracchum mediocriter labefactantem statum reipublicae privatus interfecit: Catilinam verò orbem terrae caede atque incendiis vastare cupientem nos consules perferemus? nam illa nimis antiqua praetereo, quòd Q. Servilius Ahala Sp. Melium novis rebus studentem manu suâ
some great evil endangered the state, the Senate invested them with absolute power, that they might preserve the republic from harm. Upon the first report of the existence of the Catilinarian conspiracy, such authority was conferred on Cicero and Antonius; and it was by virtue of this power, that Cicero says,Catiline should already have been put to death.
5. P.Scipio-Tiberius Gracchus was supposed to be ambitious of making himself king in Rome. P. Scipio Nasica at the head of the Senators, whom Tiberius had offended by passing several popular laws,went in an illegal manner and without any public authority into an assembly of the people, who were then electing Gracchus tribune a second time,attacked him and his friends, and put him to death.
6. Pontifex Maximus-It is the opinion of many that Cicero here applies to Scipio the title, Pontifex Maximus, by anticipation, as he immediately afterwards calls him simply a private person,as Livy expressly opposes Pontifex to privatus, and as Paterculus asserts that Scipio was not Pontifex Maximus at the time this oration was delivered.
7. Q Servilius Ahala-In the three hundred and thirteenth year of Rome, there was a famine in the city, by means of which, Livy says, a private man was near obtaining possession of sovereign power. Minucius was appointed by the Senate and people to procure corn in the adjacent countries, but met with little success. Spurius Melius, the richest private man in the commonwealth, had bought so much of that article in neighbouring provinces, that the agent of the public could not purchase provisions of that kind. The corn, which Melius had purchased, was liberally distributed among the people, and so great was the popularity he acquired by this artifice and munificence, that a conspiracy was formed to change the form of government; Melius aspired to royalty: the people were to take arms in his favour, and the Tribunes consented to sell the publick liberty. Upon the discovery of the conspiracy, T. Q. Cincinnatus was appointed Dictator, who,supposing that nothing but a stroke of authority could destroy so dangerous a plot, immediately sent Servilius Ahala, his General of the horse, to cite Melius to appear before his tribunal. Melius, surprised
occidit. Fuit, fuit ista quondam in hâc republicà virtus, ut viri fortes acrioribus suppliciis civem perniciosum,quam acerbissimum hostem coercerent. Habemus enim 'senatusconsultum in te, Catilina, vehemens et grave non deest reipublicae consilium neque auctoritas hujus ordinis: nos, nos, dico apertè, consules desumus.
II. Decrevit quondam Senatus, ut L. Opimius Cos. videret, ne quid respublica detrimenti caperet: nox nulla intercessit; interfectus est propter quasdam seditionum suspiciones C. Gracchus, clarissį
endeavoured to make his escape: Servilius commanded a L'ctor to arrest him. Melius, imploring the assistance of the people, was rescued by the multitude, and again endeavoured to escape; but Servilius, pursuing him, overtook him, ran him through the body with his sword, and thus preserved the liberties of his country.
8. Senatusconsultum-The decree of the Senate, to which this passage alludes, was that, which, as soon as there was a rumour of Catiline's conspiracy, charged the Consuls to see that the republick received no detriment, and which for that purpose invested them with absolute power.
9. C. Gracchus-Caius Gracchus was a brother of Tiberius Gracchus, and like him was a favourite of the people and opposed to the Senate. In the six hundred and thirtieth year of Rome,he was chosen Tribune, and besides many other acts of popularity, enforced the execution of his brother's Agrarian law, and added to it another clause. Marcus Fulvius Flaccus was one of the commissioners appointed to divide the lands. But, two years afterwards, the Consul Opimius called an assembly of the people to abrogate that law, and during the confusion, which was common in those meetings, Q. Antyllius, one of his Lictors was killed. Opimius excited the Senators to execute immediate vengeance on Gracchus and Fulvius Flaccus, who were supposed to be the authors of the Lictor's death, but a violent shower of rain obliged the parties to separate. On the next day, Gracchus and Fulvius with their friends were assembled on mount Aventine; the Senate conferred unlimited power on Opimus; the Consul immediately attacked the partisans of Gracchus, and slew Fulvius, his sons,and three thousand of his followers. Gracchus sought shelter in a wood consecrated to the Furies, but, perceiving his enemies approach to kill him, ordered a slave to put an end to his existence.
mo patre natus, avis, Majoribus: occisus est cum liberis M. Fulvius, consularis. Simili senatusconsulto, C. Mario et L. Valerio Coss. permissa est respublica ; num unum diem postea L. Saturninum tribunum-plebis et C. Servilium praetorem, mors ac reipub. poena remorata est? At nos vigesimum jam diem patimur hebescere aciem horum auctoritatis; habemus enim hujusmodi senatusconsultum, veruntamen inclusum in tabulis, tanquam gladium in vaginâ reconditum : quo ex-senatusconsulto confestìm interfectum te esse, Catilina, convenit. Vivis, et vivis non ad deponendam, sed ad confirmandam audaciam. Cupio, Patres Conscripti, me esse clementem: cupio in tantis reipublicae periculis me non dissolutum videri: sed jam me ipsum inertiae nequitiaeque condemno. Castra sunt in Italiâ contra rempub. in Etruriae faucibus collocata: crescit in dies singulos hostium numerus eorum autem imperatorem castrorum ducemque hostium intra moenia atque adeò in Senatu videmus, intestinam aliquam quotidie per
1. L. Saturninum....C. Servilium—-On the day of the election of Consuls in the six hundred and fifty-third year of Rome, M. Antonius was elected without opposition: C. Servilius Glaucia, the Praetor, whom Cicero (in Brut. c. lxii) calls the most wicked man that ever lived, and C. Memmius, a man of distinction, were the other candidates. Saturninus, a tribune of the people and a factious demagogue, was eager for the election of Servilius; but, fearing that Memmius would succeed,murdered him in the presence of the people. The Senate immediately charged the Consuls to see the republick received no detriment. Saturninus and Servilius fled to the Capitul: being besieged there by Marius they surrendered themselves upon condition of safety; but the same day,before they were brought to trial, they were slain by the enraged citizens.
2 Vigesimum diem-The decree of the Senate, charging Cicero and Antonius to see that the republick received no harm, was passed twenty days before the delivery of this oration.