On this, great scruples arose in men's minds, and some doubt as to what had really been done. Then some of the judges, wise men, trained in the old-fashioned principles of the ancient tribunals, as they could: not acquit a most guilty man, and yet, as they did not like at once to condemn a man, in whose case there appeared reason to suspect that bribery had been employed against him, before they were able to ascertain the truth of this suspicion, gave as their decision, “Not proven.” But some severe men, who made up their minds that regard ought to be had to the intention with which a thing was done by any one, although they believed that others had only given a correct decision through the influence of bribery, nevertheless thought that it behoved them to decide consistently with their previous decisions. Accordingly, they condemned him. There were five in all, who, whether they did so out of ignorance, or out of pity, or from being influenced by some secret suspicion, or by some latent ambition, acquitted that innocent Oppianicus of yours altogether.
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THE SPEECH OF M. T. CICERO IN DEFENCE OF AULUS CLUENTIUS HABITUS.
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