Now, then, you cannot deny that violence was offered. The question now is, how he was driven away who was prevented from approaching. For a man who is driven away must manifestly be removed and thrust down from the place which he is occupying. And how can that happen to a man who absolutely never was in the place at all from which he says that he was driven? What shall we say? If he had been there, and if under the influence of fear, he had fled from the place when he saw the armed men, would you then say that he had been driven away? I think so. Will you then, who decide disputes with such care and such subtlety, by expressions and not by equity,—you who interpret laws, not by the common advantage of the citizen, but by their letter,—will you be able to say that a man has been driven away who has never been touched? What! Will you say that he has been thrust down from his place? For that was the word which the praetors used formerly to use in their interdicts. What do you say? Can any one be thrust down who is not touched? Must we not, if we will stick to the strict letter, understand that that man only is thrust down on whom hands are laid? It is quite inevitable, I say, if we wish to make words and facts tally exactly with each other, that no one should be decided to have been thrust down, unless he be understood to have had hands laid on him, and so to have been removed and pushed headlong down by personal violence. But how can any one have been treated so, unless he has been removed from a higher place to a lower one?
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THE ORATION OF M. T. CICERO IN BEHALF OF AULUS CAECINA.
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