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[2] It has generally been laid down that an argument to be effective must be based on certainty; for it is obviously impossible to prove what is doubtful by what is no less doubtful. Still some things which are adduced as proof require proof themselves. “You killed your husband, for you were an adulteress.”1 Adultery must first be proved: once that is certain it can be used as an argument to prove what is uncertain. “Your javelin was found in the body of the murdered man.” He denies that it was his. If this point is to serve as a proof, it must itself be proved. It is,

1 cp. v. xi. 39.

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load focus Latin (Harold Edgeworth Butler, 1921)
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