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IX. iter ad sepulcrum. 'The Romans frequently built tombs for themselves and their families on their estates, and, if they sold such estates, used to stipulate for the right of free access to the sepulcra. Unless such a stipulation were made in the deed of sale, the seller lost all right of access. So material an encroachment as this on the right of property was named servitus (fundus servit) ; by servitus itineris or simply iter, as here, was meant that the owner conceded to the former owner or to any interested person the right of walking, riding, or being carried over the land to the sepulcrum; viae servitus or via was the right of driving thither, and included the iter. The younger Roscius could not retain even the relic of his patrimonium usually preserved, the iter ad sepulcrum patrium in fundo

alieno.' Osenbrüggel). It was also customary among the Greeks, when land changed owners, to keep the grave as a family possession, and allow free access to relatives.

reliquisset: subjunctive, being what they were thinking; virtually orat. obl.

flagitiosa. It was so, because it depended on the murdered man's name being added to the list of proscribed after the right time.

possessio, seizure, implying violence, in the sense of possidere, to take possession of: cf. § 23.

iactantem, pluming himself; dominantem, playing the proprietor.


decurionum . . . decem primi, Introd. note 31. fit ut proficiscantur, etc. Note the pres. tense, carried graphically into the subordinate clauses : cf. § 110, monet ut provideat, ne . . . agatur; but below, allegat, qui peterent.

scelere: §7, note.

decretum decurionum. Omitted by Cicero in the published edition of the speech.

intellegitur, it can be understood, in English ; sc. from what happened to the embassy.

allegat qui peterent: here the historic present is strictly treated and has a historic tense after it.


autem, but (though he professed such readiness to serve them). antiqui, men of the old stamp. Pl. Ep. 11.9, vir sanctus, anitiquus.

fingerent, formed their ideas of.

vacua, unoccupied; as they would be, if the forcible appropriation were made null and void.

adpromitteret, added his promise to that of Chrysogonus: a ἅπαξ λεγόμενον. re inorata, without getting their case heard; from the old meaning of orare = agere, to plead, whence orator in early Latin = legatus, one who pleaded or transacted an affair for the State.

aliquanto lentius nihil agere: some critics formerly omitted nihil, not appreciating the vigour of the phrase did nothing, trifled, still more indolently. It should be retained. Without nihil, agere= behaved.

[ 27]

de amicorum cogn. sententia. Important family affairs were laid before a consilium cognatorum et amicorum, for their consideration and decision.

Caeciliam: see below, § 147, note.

honoris causa: § 6, note.

usus erat plurimum, sc. familiariter: cf. ad Att. xvi. 5.3, Cn. Lucceius, qui multum utitur Bruto.

etiam nunc, i.e. in these degenerate days, as opposed to antiqui: cf. § 26.

exempli causa, to serve as a pattern; not for instance, which is in Latin ut or velut, or "exempli causa with some such verb as nominare, ponere, afferre." (Richter.)

officii, sense of duty, i.e. conscientiousness, obedience to duty; (sc. duty towards Sex. Roscius, in consideration of her friendship with his father). For the meaning of officii, cf. Tusc. IV. 28.61, Si quis aegre ferat, nihil in se esse officii.

hospiti, because pater ea usus erat plurimum. The hospitium of the father had been transmitted to the son: cf. § 106.

diligentia = cura, vigilantia.

in reos = in reorum album (list); in proscriptos = in proscriptorum tabulas.


ut . . . deferrent: ut epexegetic, namely that they should, etc.; as in §§ 77, 128, 136. Cf. Madvig, § 417, Obs. 2 ad fin.

ad eam rem, for that purpose de ea re, as Mr. Stock shows =about a matter, in qua re in which . . .; omit the second re in English. See § 5, first note.

veterem, trained (cf. § 17, vetus gladiator; § 39, vetus sicarius); i.e. who had often acted as accuser, had had enough practice, and would not scruple as to the evidence he employed.

crimine. by an accusation, i.e. since they had no (real) charge to bring against him.

tempore ipso pugnarent, to use the very circumstances as their weapons: cf. Introd. § 6.

ita loqui homines, the fellows talked thus; the next seven lines tell us how they talked. homines are Magnus, Capito, and Chrysogonus: loqui is historic infin. I follow Prof. Clark in thus interpreting.

patronos: see § 30 sub fin. societate: see § 20 sub fin.


atque adeo =ac potius, as in §§ 100, 113.

jugulandum. Cicero chooses a word implying judicial murder : cf. Verr. 2.2.26, decretis iugulare; pro Mil. § 31, iugulari a vobis (iudicibus). Compare the metaphor for an accused man, laqueis legum constrictus.

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  • Commentary references from this page (16):
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 100
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 106
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 110
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 113
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 128
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 136
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 147
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 17
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 20
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 23
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 26
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 30
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 39
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 5
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 6
    • Cicero, For Sextus Roscius of Ameria, 77
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