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[25] And these dissensions, O Romans, were such as concerned not the destruction of the republic, but only a change in the constitution. They did not wish that there should be no republic, but that they themselves should be the chief men in that which existed; nor did they desire that the city should be burnt, but that they themselves should flourish in it. And yet all those dissensions, none of which aimed at the destruction of the republic, were such that they were to be terminated not by a reconciliation and concord, but only by internecine war among the citizens. But in this war alone, the greatest and most cruel in the memory of man,—a war such as even the countries of the barbarians have never waged with their own tribes,—a war in which this law was laid down by Lentulus, and Catiline, and Cassius and Cethegus that every one, who could live in safety as long as the city remained in safety, should be considered as an enemy, in this war I have so managed matters, O Romans that you should all be preserved in safety; and though your enemies had thought that only such a number of the citizens would be left as had held out against an interminable massacre and only so much of the city as the flames could not devour, I have preserved both the city and the citizens unhurt and undiminished.


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load focus Notes (J. B. Greenough, G. L. Kittredge)
load focus Latin (Albert Clark, Albert Curtis Clark, 1908)
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