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13.

But there are two especial counts in the indictment. There is a charge respecting gold, and one respecting poison. And in both of them one person is concerned. Gold is said to have been taken from Clodia; poison is said to have been sought for, for the purpose of being given to Clodia. All the other statements are not charges, but are rather pieces of abuse prompted by a petulant quarrel, than adduced as a part of a criminal investigation. To call a man an adulterer, an immodest man, a pimp, is abuse, not accusation. For there is no foundation for such charges; they have nothing to rest upon; they are mere abusive expressions poured forth by an accuser in a passion, without any authority. [31] Of these two charges I see the source, I see the author, I see the certain originator and mainspring. Gold was wanted; he received it from Clodia; he received it without any witness; he had it as long as he wanted it. I see here a great proof of some very extraordinary intimacy. Again, he wanted to kill her; he sought for poison; he tampered with every one with whom he could; he prepared it; he arranged a place; he brought it. Again, I see that a violent quarrel has sprung up between them, and engendered a furious hatred. Our whole business in this part of the case, O judges, is with Clodia, a woman not only of high rank, but also notorious; of whom I will say nothing except for the sake of repelling some accusation. [32] But you are aware, O Cnaeus Domitius, as a man of your eminent wisdom must be, that we have in this matter to deal with no one but her; for if she does not say that she lent the money to Caelius, if she does not accuse him and say that poison was prepared by him for her, then we are acting wantonly and groundlessly, in mentioning the name of a mother of a family in a way so different from what is due to a Roman matron. But if, if you only take away that woman, there is no longer any charge against Caelius, nor have the accusers any longer any resources by which to attack him, then what is our duty as the advocates of his cause, except to repel those who pursue him? And, indeed, I would do so still more vigorously, if I had not a quarrel with that woman's husband—brother, I meant to say; I am always making this mistake. At present I will proceed with moderation, and go no further than my own duty to my client and the nature of the cause which I am pleading compels me. For I have never thought it my duty to engage in quarrels with any woman, especially with one whom all men have always considered everybody's friend rather than any one's enemy.


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