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Accordingly, about the beginning of June, in the consulship of Lucius Cæsar1 and Caius Figulus, he at first addressed each of his accomplices separately, encouraged some, and sounded others, and informed them of his own resources, of the unprepared condition of the state, and of the great prizes to be expected from the conspiracy. When he had ascertained, to his satisfaction, all that he required, he summoned all whose necessities were the most urgent, and whose spirits were the most daring, to a general conference.

At that meeting there were present, of senatorial rank, Publius Lentulus Sura,2 Publius Autronius,3 Lucius Cassius Longinus,4 Caius Cethegus,5 Publius and Servius Sylla6 the sons of Servius Sylla, Lucius Vargunteius7 Quintus Annius,8 Marcus Porcius Læca,9 Lucius Bestia,10 Quintus Curius;11 and, of the equestrian order, Marcus Fulvius Nobilior,12 Lucius Statilius,13 Publius Gabinius Capito,14 Caius Cornelius ;15 with many from the colonies and municipal towns,16 persons of consequence in their own localities. There were many others, too, among the nobility, concerned in the plot, but less openly; men whom the hope of power, rather than poverty or any other exigence, prompted to join in the affair. But most of the young men, and especially the sons of the nobility, favored the schemes of Catiline; they who had abundant means of living at ease, either splendidly or voluptuously, preferred uncertainties to certainties, war to peace. There were some, also, at that time, who believed that Marcus Licinius Crassus17 was not unacquainted with the conspiracy; because Cneius Pompey, whom he hated, was at the head of a large army, and he was willing that the power of any one whomsoever should raise itself against Pompey's influence; trusting, at the same time, that if the plot should succeed, he would easily place himself at the head of the conspirators.

1 XVII. Lucius Cæsar] He was a relation of Julius Cæsar; and his sister was the wife of M. Antonius, the orator, and mother of Mark Antony, the triumvir.

2 Publius Lentulus Sura] He was of the same family with Sylla, that of the Cornelii. He had filled the office of consul, but his conduct had been afterward so profligate, that the censors expelled him from the senate. To enable him to resume his seat, he had obtained, as a qualification, the office of prætor, which he held at the time of the conspiracy. He was called Sura, because, when he had squandered the public money in his quæstorship, and was called to account by Sylla for his dishonesty, he declined to make any defense, but said, " I present you the calf of my leg (sura) ;" alluding to a custom among boys playing at ball, of inflicting a certain number of strokes on the leg of an unsuccessful player. Plutarch, Life of Cicero, c. 17.

3 Publius Autronius] He had been a companion of Cicero in his boyhood, and his colleague in the quæstorship. He was banished in the year after the conspiracy, together with Cassius, Læca, Vargunteius, Servius Sylla, and Caius Cornelius, under the Plautian law. De Brosses.

4 Lucius Cassius Longinus] He had been a competitor with Cicero for the consulship. Ascon. Ped. in Cic. Orat. in Tog. Cand. His corpulence was such that Cassius's fat (Cassii adeps) became proverbial. Cic. Orat. in Catil., iii. 7.

5 Caius Cethegus] He also was one of the Cornelian family. In the civil wars, says De Brosses, he had first taken the side of Marius, and afterward that of Sylla. Both Cicero (Orat. in Catil., ii. 7) and Sallust describe him as fiery and rash.

6 Publius and Servius Sylla] These were nephews of Sylla the dictator. Publius, though present on this occasion seems not to have joined in the plot, since, when he was afterward accused of having been a conspirator, he was defended by Cicero and acquitted. See Cic. Orat. pro P. Syllâ. He was afterward with Cæsar in the battle of Pharsalia. Cæs. de B. C., iii. 89.

7 Lucius Vargunteius] " Of him or his family little is known. He had been, before this period, accused of bribery, and defended by Hortensius. Cic. pro P. Syllâ, c. 2." Bernouf.

8 Quintus Annius] He is thought by De Brosses to have been the same Annius that cut off the head of M. Antonius the orator, and carried it to Marius. Plutarch, Vit. Marii, c. 44.

9 Marcus Porcius Læca] He was one of the same gens with the Catones, but of a different family.

10 Lucius Bestia] Of the Calpurnian gens. He escaped death on the discovery of the conspiracy, and was afterward ædile, and candidate for the prætorship, but was driven into exile for bribery. Being recalled by Cæsar, he became candidate for the consulship, but was unsuccessful. De Brosses.

11 Quintus Curius] He was a descendant of M. Curius Dentatus, the opponent of Pyrrhus. He was so notorious as a gamester and a profligate, that he was removed from the senate, A.U.C. 683. See c. 23. As he had been the first to give information of the conspiracy to Cicero, public honors were decreed him, but he was deprived of them by the influence of Cæsar, whom he had named as one of the conspirators. Sueton. Cæs. 17; Appian. De Bell. Civ., lib. ii.

12 M. Fulvius Nobilior] " He was not put to death, but exiled, A.U.C. 699. Cic. ad Att. iv., 16." Bernouf;

13 Lucius Statilius] of him nothing more is known than is told by Sallust.

14 Publius Gabinius Capito] Cicero, instead of Capito, calls him Cimber. Orat. in Cat., iii. 3. The family was originally from Gabii.

15 Caius Cornelius) There were two branches of the gens Cornelia, one patrician, the other plebeian, from which sprung this conspirator.

16 Municipal towns] “Municipiis.” The municipia were towns of which the inhabitants were admitted to the rights of Roman citizens, but which were allowed to govern themselves by their own laws, and to choose their own magistrates. See Aul. Gell., xvi. 13; Beaufort, Rep. Rom., vol. v." Bernouf.

17 Marcus Licinius Crassus] The same who, with Pompey and Cæsar, formed the first triumvirate, and who was afterward killed in his expedition against the Parthians. He had, before the time of the conspiracy, held the offices of prætor and consul.

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