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[16] I do assert to you, O Romans, that by this beautiful agrarian law, by this law calculated solely for the good of the people, nothing whatever is given to you, everything is sacrificed to a few particular men; that lands are displayed before the eyes of the Roman people, liberty is taken away from them; that the fortunes of some private individuals are increased, the public wealth is exhausted; and lastly, which is the most scandalous thing of all, that by means of a tribune of the people, whom our ancestors designed to be the protector and guardian of liberty, kings are being established in the city. And when I have shown to you all the grounds for this statement, if they appear to you to be erroneous, I will yield to your authority, I will abandon my own opinion, but if you become aware that plots are laid against your liberty, under a pretence of liberality, then do not hesitate, now that you have a consul to assist you, to defend that liberty which was earned by the sweat and blood of your ancestors, and handed down to you, without any trouble on your part.


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