43.  I come now to that golden name of Chrysogonus, 1 under which name the whole confederacy is set up, concerning whom, O judges, I am at a loss both how to speak and how to hold my tongue; for if I say nothing, I leave out a great part of my argument, and if I speak, I fear that not he alone (about whom I am not concerned), but others also may think themselves injured; although the case is such that it does not appear necessary to say much against the common cause of the brokers. For this cause is, in truth, a novel and an extraordinary cause. Chrysogonus is the purchaser of the property of Sextus Roscius.  Let us see this first, on what pretence the property of that man was sold, or how they could be sold. And I will not put this question, O judges, so as to imply that it is a scandalous thing for the property of an innocent man to be sold at all. For if these things are to be freely listened to and freely spoken, Sextus Roscius was not a man of such importance in the state as to make us complain of his fortune more than of that of others. But I ask this, how could they be sold even by that very law which is enacted about prescriptions, whether it be the Valerian 2 or Cornelian law,—for neither know nor understand which it is—but by that very law itself how could the property of Sextus Roscius be sold?  For they say it is written in it, “that the property of those men who have been proscribed is to be sold”; in which number Sextus Roscius is not one: “or of those who have been slain in the garrisons of the opposite party.” While there, were any garrisons, he was in the garrisons of Sulla; after they laid down their arms, returning from supper, he was slain at Rome in a time of perfect peace. If he was slain by law, I admit that his property was sold by law too; but if it is evident that he was slain contrary to all laws, not merely to old laws, but to the new ones also, then I ask by what right, or in what manner, or by what law they were sold?
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THE ORATION FOR SEXTUS ROSCIUS OF AMERIA.
2 Valerius Flaccus had been created Interrex on the death of the two consuls, Marius and Carbo. He appointed Sulla dictator, and passed a law that whatever Sulla had done should be ratified; so that Cicero's meaning here is, that he does not know which was the nominal author of the law he is quoting, Valerius or Sulla.
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