17.  And did you not even then, my great Paullus,1 dare to send expresses to Rome crowned with laurel? Yes, says he, I sent them. Did you? Who ever read them? who ever demanded to have them read? For it makes no difference, as far as my argument is concerned, whether you, being overwhelmed by the consciousness of your wicked actions, never dared to write any letters to that body which you had treated with contempt, which you had ill-treated, which you had sought to destroy, or whether your friends concealed your letters, and by their silence expressed their condemnation of your rashness and audacity. And I do not know whether I should not prefer that you should appear so utterly destitute of all shame as to have sent the letters, and that your friends should appear to have had more modesty and more sense than yourself, rather than that you should seem to have had some little modesty, and that your conduct should not have been condemned by the judgment of your friends.  But even if you had not shut the senate-house against yourself for ever by your nefarious insults to this order, still, what exploit was ever performed or achieved by you in that province, concerning which it would have been becoming for you to have written to the senate in the war of congratulation? Was it the way in which Macedonia was harassed? or the shameful loss of the towns? or the manner in which the allies were plundered? or the devastation of the lands? or the fortifying of Thessalonica? or the occupation of our military road? or the destruction of our army by sword and famine, and cold and pestilence? But you who did not write any account of anything to the senate, as in the city you were discovered to be more worthless than Gabinius, so in your province you turned out somewhat more inactive than even he.  For that gulf of all things—that glutton, born for his own belly, not for glory or renown,—when he had deprived the Roman knights in his province; when be had deprived the farmers of the revenue, men united to us by mutual goodwill and in dignity;—when he had deprived, I say, all of them of their fortunes, many of them of their franchises and of their lives; when with that mighty army he had done nothing except plunder the cities, lay waste the lands, and drain the private houses of his province, dared (for what will he not dare?) to send letters at last to the senate to demand a supplication!
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THE SPEECH OF M. T. CICERO AGAINST PUBLIUS VATINIUS; CALLED ALSO, THE EXAMINATION OF PUBLIUS VATINIUS.
THE ORATION OF M. T. CICERO AGAINST LUCIUS CALPURNIUS PISO.
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