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1 Seyffert and Lahmeyer say that this Scipio is probably not Africanus the Younger, the friend of Laelius, as contended by Nauck and others, but P. Cornelius Scipio Nasica Serapis, consul 138 B.C., pontifex maximus, who led the Senators in an attack on Tiberius Gracchus when the latter was killed in 133. Scipio Serapis fled from Rome and died soon after in Pergamum.
2 i.e. on account of the recent killing of Tiberius Gracchus and the consequent excitement of the people.
3 Gaius Gracchus, though in 129 (the time of the dialogue) the leader of the popular party, did not become tribune until 123.
4 Reid translates, “Affairs soon (deinde) move on, for they glide readily down the path of ruin when once they have taken a start.”
5 Introduced voting by ballot and so called from its author, A. Gabinius, plebeian tribune, 139 B.C.
6 The Cassian law extended the ballot to juries in criminal cases; it was passed in 137 and named from its author, L. Cassius Ravilla.
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