Immagini della pagina
PDF
ePub
[ocr errors][merged small]

THE

text presented in the following Orations is substantially that of Kayser, "ex optimis libris manuscriptis," as exhibited in the joint labors of Baiter and Kayser in the Tauchnitz edition of the works of Cicero. The superior excellence of that text is assured by the fact, that the learned editors had the advantage of collating a larger and richer supply of manuscripts than any of their predecessors in the same line of labor. A resort to selected readings therefore became undesirable, and only in three or four places did the lections of Halm seem preferable.

In the preparation of the Notes, the method adopted in the preceding volumes of the series has been steadily pursued. Naturally, however, the assistance given is not of so elementary a character as that in the Caesar. The student of Cicero is reasonably presumed capable of appreciating nicer distinctions, whether of construction or of style. References are freely made to the grammars most in use in this country, and such translations of difficult words and passages, and explanations of peculiarities of syntax, are given, as the student has a right to expect. Biographical and historical allusions are always explained where necessary; and in particular the subject of antiquities, a knowledge of which throws so much light upon the ancient authors, has received a large share of attention. With the assistance thus rendered, and a faithful use of his grammar and lexicon by the student, he cannot fail to read

with real profit and a lively pleasure the choice productions of the first orator of the Roman world.

The fourteen orations here presented form a larger, and, it is hoped, richer selection from this portion of the works of Cicero than is to be found in any other school edition in this country. This large number, it is believed, cannot fail to be regarded by instructors as a decided advantage, as they will thereby be enabled to vary the reading of successive classes. Seven orations will answer the requisite for admission into most of our colleges.

The Plan of the Forum and its surroundings will prove a valuable commentary on many passages in Cicero, and the List of Consuls during his life will not unfrequently prove a useful note on chronology.

CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL, Philadelphia, January 1, 1869.

G. S.

LIFE OF CICERO.

ARCUS TULLIUS CICERO, the greatest of Roman orators,

ary, B. C. 106. Arpinum had received the full Roman franchise in B. C. 188, so that the inhabitants enjoyed the rights of citizens of the great Republic. With his brother Quintus he was early taken to Rome, that he might receive the benefit of an education which it was impossible to procure in a provincial town. Among the distinguished teachers, who, at various times, contributed to the development of his mind, and the formation of his taste and style, were the poet Archias, Phaedrus and Zeno the Epicureans, Molo the Rhodian, Philo of Athens, Antiochus of Ascalon, Diodotus the Stoic, and Demetrius the Syrian. He also entered upon the study of law under the venerable Q. Mucius Scaevola, the augur, the most learned lawyer of his day. His comprehensive mind thirsted for knowledge of every kind, but philosophy and oratory, with the Greek language and literature, formed the chief objects of his study. At Rome, oratory and arms were almost the only avenues to distinction, and as Cicero's appetite for knowledge was insatiable, and his desire for distinction boundless, he applied himself to his favorite studies with unwonted zeal. He attended the speeches of the different orators and pleaders in the Forum and courts; studied the gesture of the best actors, Æsop and Roscius; and spent a portion of each day in the practice of reading, writing, and declamation. From what he says of himself in this connection, we may gather some idea of his personal appearance. 'Among the crowd who listened to the orators in the Forum, as they thundered from the Rostra, stood a tall, thin youth, with outstretched neck, and eager eyes, gazing with rapt tention on the speak

66

[merged small][merged small][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][merged small][graphic][merged small][subsumed][merged small][merged small][graphic]
« IndietroContinua »