What was ever so unusual, as, when there were two most gallant and most illustrious consuls, for a Roman knight to be sent as proconsul to a most important and formidable war? He was so sent—on which occasion, indeed, when some one in the senate said that a private individual ought not to be sent as proconsul, Lucius Philippus is reported to have answered, that if he had his will he should be sent not for one consul, but for both the consuls. Such great hope was entertained that the affairs of the republic would be prosperously managed by him, that the charge which properly belonged to the two consuls was entrusted to the valour of one young man. What was ever so extraordinary as for a man to be released from all laws by a formal resolution of the senate, and made consul before he was of an age to undertake any other magistracy according to the laws? What could be so incredible, as for a Roman knight to celebrate a second triumph in pursuance of a resolution of the senate? All the unusual circumstances which in the memory of man have ever happened to all other men put together, are not so many as these which we see have occurred in the history of this one man.
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THE SPEECH OF M. T. CICERO IN DEFENCE OF THE PROPOSED MANILIAN LAW.
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