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And that you may not marvel that so great a multitude has fled, as you find, from the public documents and from the returns of the cultivators, has fled, know that his cruelty and wickedness towards the cultivators was so excessive, (it is an incredible statement to make, O judges, but it is both a fact, and one that is notorious over all Sicily,) that men, on account of the insults and licentiousness of the collectors, actually killed themselves. It is proved that Diocles of Centuripa, a wealthy man, hung himself the very day that it was announced that Apronius had purchased the tenths. A man of high birth, Archonidas of Elorum, said that Dyrrachinus, the first man of his city, slew himself in the same way, when he heard that the collector had made a return, that, according to Verres's edict, he owed him a sum that he could not make good at the expense of all his property.

Now you, though you always were the most dissolute and cruel of all mortals, still you never would have allowed, (because the groanings and lamentations of the province brought danger on your own head,)—you would never, I say, have allowed men to seek refuge from your injustice in hanging and death, if the matter had not tended to your profit and to your own acquisition of booty.

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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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