What place is there, O judges, what time, what day, what night is there, that I have not been delivered and escaped from their plots and attacks, not only by my own prudence, but much more by the providence of the gods? It was not that they wished to slay me as an individual, but that they wished to get rid of a vigilant consul, and to remove him from the guardianship of the republic; and they would be just as glad, O Cato, to remove you too, if they could by any means contrive to do so; and believe me, that is what they are wishing and planning to do. They see how much courage, how much ability, how much authority, how much protection for the republic there is in you; but they think that, when they have once seen the power of the tribunes stripped of the support which it derives from the authority and assistance of the consuls, they will then find it easier to crush you when you are deprived of your arms and vigour. For they have no fear of another consul being elected in the place of this one; they see that that will depend upon your colleagues; they hope that Silanus, any colleague; and that so will you without any consul; and that so will the republic without any protector.
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THE ORATION OF M. T. CICERO IN DEFENCE OF L. MURENA, PROSECUTED FOR BRIBERY.
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