See, I entreat you in the name of the immortal gods, what a law you are proceeding to establish for us,—what a condition for yourselves, and what a code for the whole state. In injuries of this kind there is one form of proceeding established, the one which we have adopted, that by interdict. If that is of no avail, or has no reference to this matter, what can be imagined more careless or more stupid than our ancestors, who either omitted to institute any form of proceeding, in so atrocious a business, or else did institute one which fails to embrace in proper language either the fact, or the principle of law applicable to the case. It is a dangerous thing for this interdict to be dissolved. It is a perilous thing for all men, that there should be any case of such a nature that, when deeds of violence have been committed in it, the injustice should not be able to be repaired by law. But this is the most disgraceful thing of all, that most prudent men should be convicted of such egregious folly, as they would be if you were to decide that such a case as this, and such a form of legal proceeding as is requisite, never once occurred to the minds of our ancestors.
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THE ORATION OF M. T. CICERO IN BEHALF OF AULUS CAECINA.
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