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[9] O ye immortal gods! what great kindness do you appear to have shown me, in making Publius Lentulus consul this year. How much greater still would your bounty bare been, had he been so the preceding year; for I should not have been in want of such medicine as a consul could give, unless I had fallen by a wound inflicted by a consul. I had been often told by one of the wisest of men and one of the most virtuous of citizens, Quintus Catulus, that it was not often that there was one wicked consul, but that there had never been two at the same time since the foundation of Rome, except in that terrible time of Cinna. Wherefore, he used to say that my interest would always be firmly secured, as long as there was even one virtuous consul in the republic. And he would have spoken the truth, if that state of things with respect to consuls could have remained lasting and perpetual, that, as there never had been two bad ones in the republic, so there never should be. But if Quintus Metellus had been at that time consul, who was then my enemy, do you doubt what would have been his feelings with regard to my preservation, when you see that he was a mover and seconder of the measure proposed for my restoration?

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