The senate then was in grief, the city wore an appearance of mourning, its garments having been changed in accordance with the public resolution of the senate. There was no municipal town in all Italy, no colony, no prefecture, no company of men concerned in farming the public revenues, no guild or council,—no public body, in short, of any kind whatever,—which had not passed most honourable resolutions concerning my safety, when all on a sudden the two consuls issue an edict that the senators are to return to their former dress. What consul ever prohibited the senate from obeying its own decrees? What tyrant ever forbade men who were miserable to mourn? Is it a small thing, O Piso,—for I will say nothing about Gabinius, that you have deceived men to such a degree as to disregard the authority of the senate? to despise the advice of every virtuous man? to betray the republic? to crush a citizen of consular rank? that you must dare also to issue an edict that men are not to mourn for a disaster affecting me, and themselves, and the republic, and are not to show their grief by changing their garments? Whether that change of garment was assumed as a token of grief, or as a form of solicitation, who ever was so cruel before as to forbid any one mourning for himself, or entreating for others?
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THE SPEECH OF M. T. CICERO IN DEFENCE OF PUBLIUS SESTIUS.
THE SPEECH OF M. T. CICERO AGAINST PUBLIUS VATINIUS; CALLED ALSO, THE EXAMINATION OF PUBLIUS VATINIUS.
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