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Then the Roman legate spoke as follows: "The Macedonians and then the Athenians have compelled me to alter entirely the address I was going to make.  I came to protest against Philip's wrongful action against all those cities of our allies, but the Macedonians by the charges they have brought against Rome have made me a defendant rather than an accuser.  The Athenians, again, by their recital of his impious and inhuman crimes against the gods above and those below, have left nothing more for me or for any one else to bring up against him.  Consider that the same things have been said by the inhabitants of Chios and Abydos, by the Aeneans, the Maronites, the Thasians, by the natives of Paros and Samos, of Larissa and Messene, and by the people over there in Achaia, and that those upon whom he was able to inflict most injury have made the gravest and most serious charges.  As to those actions which he has brought up against us as crimes, I frankly admit that if they do not deserve praise they cannot be defended.  He mentioned, as instances, Regium, Capua and Syracuse. In the case of Regium, the inhabitants themselves begged us during the war with Pyrrhus to send a legion for their protection, and the soldiers, forming a criminal conspiracy, took forcible possession of the town which they were sent to defend.  Did we therefore approve their action? Did we not on the contrary take military measures against the criminals, and when we had them within our power did we not compel them to make satisfaction to our allies by scourgings and executions, and then did we not restore to the Regians their city, their lands and all their possessions, together with their liberty and their laws?  As to Syracuse, when it was oppressed by foreign tyrants-a still greater indignity-we came to its help and spent three weary years in making attacks by sea and land upon its almost impregnable fortifications.  And though the Syracusans themselves would rather have remained under that servile tyranny than let their city be taken by us, we captured it, and the same arms which effected its capture won and secured its freedom. At the same time we do not deny that Sicily is one of our provinces, and the communities which took the side of the Carthaginians and in full sympathy with them urged war against us are now tributary, and pay us the tenth of all their produce.  We do not deny this; on the contrary we with you and the whole world know that each has been treated in accordance with its deserts. It was the same with Capua. Do you suppose that we regret the punishment meted out to the Capuans, a punishment which they themselves cannot make a ground of complaint?  It was on their behalf that we remained at war with the Samnites for nearly seventy years, during which time we suffered severe defeats; we were united with them by treaty, then by intermarriage, and at last by common citizenship.  And yet these men were the first of all the Italian nationalities to take advantage of our difficulties and revolt to Hannibal after massacring our garrison, and then in revenge for our besieging them sent him to attack Rome.  If neither their city nor a single inhabitant had survived, who could feel any indignation at their fate or charge us with having adopted harsher measures than they deserved?  Those whom a consciousness of guilt drove to suicide were more numerous than those who were punished by us, and though we deprived the survivors of their city and territory we gave them land and a place to dwell in.  The city itself had not injured us, and we left it standing uninjured, so much so that any one who sees it today would find no trace of its having been stormed and captured. But why do I speak of Capua when even to conquered Carthage we have given peace and liberty?  The danger is rather that by showing too much leniency to the conquered we should incite them all the more to try the fortune of war against us.  So much in defence of our conduct. With respect to the charges against Philip-the bloodshed in his own family, the murders of his kinsmen and friends, his lust almost more inhuman than his cruelty-you who live nearest to Macedonia know most about them.  As regards you Aetolians, it was on your behalf that we undertook war against him; you made peace with him without any reference to us.  Perhaps you will say that as we were fully occupied with the Punic War, you were compelled to accept terms of peace from the man whose power was at that time in the ascendant, to which we should reply that it was only after you had laid aside hostilities that we too abandoned them, as greater matters claimed our attention.  Now, however, that through the favour of the gods the Punic War is over, we have thrown our whole strength on Macedonia and the opportunity offers itself for you to regain our friendship and support, unless indeed you prefer to perish with Philip rather than conquer with the Romans."
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