Take notice then, O Torquatus, to what extent I shirk the avowal of the actions of my consulship. I speak, and I always will speak, with my loudest voice, in order that all men may be able to hear me: be present all of you with your minds, ye who are present with your bodies, ye in whose numerous attendance I take great pleasure; give me your attention and all your ears, and listen to me while I speak of what he believes to be unpopular topics. I, as consul, when an army of abandoned citizens, got together by clandestine wickedness, had prepared a most cruel and miserable destruction for my country; when Catiline had been appointed to manage the fall and ruin of the republic in the camp, and when Lentulus was the leader among these very temples and houses around us; I, I say, by my labours, at the risk of my own life, by my prudence, without any tumult, without making any extraordinary levies, without arms, without an army, having arrested and executed five men delivered the city from conflagration, the citizens from massacre Italy from devastation, the republic from destruction. I at the price of the punishment of five frantic and ruined men ransomed the lives of all the citizens, the constitution of the whole world, this city the home of all of us, the citadel of foreign kings and foreign nations the light of all people the abode of empire.
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THE ORATION OF M. T. CICERO IN DEFENCE OF PUBLIUS SULLA.
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