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Will you dare also to make mention to me of the tenths? Do you, after such wickedness, after such cruelty, after such numerous and serious injuries done to people, when the whole province of Sicily entirely depends on its arable land, and on its rights connected with that land; after the cultivators have been entirely ruined, the fields deserted—after you have left no one in so wealthy and populous a province—not only no property, but no hope even remaining; do you, I say, think that you can acquire any popularity by saying that you have sold the tenths at a better price than the other praetors? As if the Roman people had formed this wish, or the senate had given you this commission, by seizing all the fortunes of the cultivators under the name of tenths, to deprive the Roman people for all future time of that revenue, and of their supply of corn; and, as if after that, by adding some part of your own plunder to the total amount got from the tenths, you could appear to have deserved well of the Roman people. And I say this, as if his injustice was to be reproved in this particular, that, out of a desire for credit to be got by surpassing others in the sum derived from tenths, he had put forth a law rather too severe, and edicts rather too stringent, and rejected the examples of all his predecessors.

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load focus Notes (J. B. Greenough, G. L. Kittredge)
load focus Latin (Albert Clark, William Peterson, 1917)
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