As far as I myself am concerned. I hardly know which way to turn. Shall I deny that there is any ground for the disgraceful accusation, —that the judges were corrupted at the previous trial? Shall I deny that that matter has been agitated at assemblies of the people? that it has been brought before the courts of justice? that it has been mentioned in the senate? Can I eradicate that belief from men's minds? a belief so deeply implanted in them—so long established. It is out of the power of my abilities to do so. It is a matter requiring your aid, O judges; it becomes you to come to the assistance of the innocence of this man attacked by such a ruinous calumny, as you would in the case of a destructive fire or of a general conflagration.
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THE SPEECH OF M. T. CICERO IN DEFENCE OF AULUS CLUENTIUS HABITUS.
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