For you well know that there has been a common
report for the last few days, that the day before the wine feast,1
that is to say,
on this very day, I was intending to come forth with the fasces
as dictator. One would think that this story was invented
against some gladiator, or robber, or Catiline, and not against a man who had
prevented any such step from ever being taken in the republic. Was I, who
defeated and overthrew and crushed Catiline, when he was attempting such
wickedness, a likely man myself all on a sudden to turn out Catiline? Under what
auspices could I, an augur, take those fasces
long should I have been likely to keep them? to whom was I to deliver them as my
successor? The idea of any one having been so wicked as to invent such a tale!
or so mad as to believe it! In what could such a suspicion, or rather such
gossip, have originated?