previous next

[10] I see that of those men who wish to be considered attached to the people one man is absent, that they may not seem forsooth to give a vote about the lives of Roman citizens. He only three days ago gave Roman citizens into custody, and decreed me a supplication, and voted most magnificent rewards to the witnesses only yesterday. It is not now doubtful to any one what he, who voted for the imprisonment of the criminals, congratulation to him who had detected them, and rewards to those who had proved the crime, thinks of the whole matter, and of the cause. But Caius Caesar considers that the Sempronian 1 law was passed about Roman citizens, but that he who is an enemy of the republic can by no means be a citizen; and moreover that the very proposer of the Sempronian law suffered punishment by the command of the people. He also denies that Lentulus, a briber and a spendthrift, after he has formed such cruel and bitter plans about the destruction of the Roman people and the ruin of this city, can be called a friend of the people. Therefore this most gentle and merciful man does not hesitate to commit Publius Lentulus to eternal darkness and imprisonment, and establishes a law to all posterity that no one shall be able to boast of alleviating his punishment or hereafter to appear a friend of the people to the destruction of the Roman people. He adds also the confiscation of their goods, so that want also and beggary may be added to all the torments of mind and body.

1 The Sempronian law was proposed by Caius Gracchus, B.C. 123, and enacted that the people only should decide respecting the life or civil condition of a citizen. It is alluded to also in the oration Pro Rabir. c. 4, where Cicero says, “Caius Gracchus passed a law that no decision should be come to about the life of a Roman citizen without your command,” speaking to the Quirites.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Notes (J. B. Greenough, G. L. Kittredge)
load focus Latin (Albert Clark, Albert Curtis Clark, 1908)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
123 BC (1)
hide References (17 total)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: