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L. Papirius Paetus.

Another group of letters which are attractive in a different way are those addressed to L. PAPIRIUS PAETUS. They are not the less interesting that we know nothing about Paetus beyond what we read in the letters. As in the case of M. Marius in Volume I. (to whom there is also an interesting letter in this volume, p. 78), we are content to regard him simply as a friend of Cicero's, to whom he seems to write with frankness and affection. He lived at Naples and was rich and hospitable, and though his sympathies were Caesarian, politics play a minor part in the correspondence. Light banter, social anecdote, historical, literary and philosophical discussions of a superficial kind fill up a large proportion of the letters. One letter, on decency in language and the Stoic rule of calling a spade a spade (pp. 293 ff.), throws a curious light upon the squeamishness of a society which was far from being over-nice in conduct.

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