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9. [24]

Which appeared to the citizens of Ameria so scandalous, that there was weeping and lamentation over the whole city. In truth, many things calculated to cause grief were brought at once before their eyes; the most cruel death of a most prosperous man, Sextus Roscius, and the most scandalous distress of his son; to whom that infamous robber had not left out of so rich a patrimony even enough for a road to his father's tomb; the flagitious purchase of his property, the flagitious possession of it; thefts, plunders, largesses. There was no one who would not rather have had it all burnt, than see Titus Roscius acting as owner of and glorying in the property of Sextus Roscius, a most virtuous and honourable man. [25] Therefore a decree of their senate is, immediately passed, that the ten chief men 1 should go to Lucius Sulla, and explain to him what a man Sextus Roscius had been; should complain of the wickedness and outrages of those fellows, should entreat him to see to the preservation both of the character of the dead man, and of the fortunes of his innocent son, And observe, I entreat you, this decree— [here the decree is read] —The deputies come to the camp. It is now seen, O judges, as I said before, that these crimes and atrocities were committed without the knowledge of Lucius Sulla. For immediately Chrysogonus himself comes to them, and sends some men of noble birth to them too, to beg them not to go to Sulla, and to promise them that Chrysogonus, will do everything which they wish. [26] But to such a degree was he alarmed, that he would rather have died than have let Sulla be informed of these things. These old-fashioned men, who judged of others by their own nature, when he pledged himself to have the name of Sextus Roscius removed from the lists of proscription, and to give up the farms unoccupied to his son, and when Titus Roscius Capito, who was one of the ten deputies, added his promise that it should be so, believed him; they returned to Ameria without presenting their petition. And at first those fellows began every day to put the matter off and to procrastinate; then they began to be more indifferent; to do nothing and to trifle with them; at last, as was easily perceived, they began to contrive plots against the life of this Sextus Roscius, and to think that they could no longer keep possession of another man's property while the owner was alive.


1 The decuriones were the senators in a colony. Only a decuric could be a magistrate, and their body possessed whatever power had once belonged to the community. Smith, Dict. Ant. v. Colonia.

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