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1 LII. The rest briefly expressed their assent, etc.] “Cæteri verbo, alius alii, variè assentiebantur. Verbo assentiebantur” signifies that they expressed their assent merely by a word or two, as assentior Silano, assentior Tiberio Neroni, aut Cæsari, the three who had already spoken. Variè, "in support of their different proposals."
2 My feelings, Conscript Fathers, are extremely different, etc.] “Longè mihi alia mens est, P. C.,” etc. The commencement of Cato's speech is evidently copied from the beginning of the third Olynthiac of Demosthenes: ᾿Ουχὶ ταῦτα παρίσταταί μοι γινώσκειν, ὠ ὔνδρεζ ᾿Αθηναῖι, ὅταν τε ἐις τὺ πρύγματα ὐποβλέψω καὶ ὅταν πρὸζ τοὺζ λόγουζ ὁὺζ ὐκούω τοὺζ υὲν γὰρ λόγουζ περὶ τοῦ τιμωρήσασθαι Φίλιππον ὁρὧ γιγνομένουζ, τὺ δὲ πρύγματα ἐιζ τοῦτο προήκοντα ὥστε ὅπωζ μὴ πεισὸμεθα ἀντοὶ πρότερον κακῶζ σκέψασθαι δέον. “"I am by no means affected in the same manner, Athenians, when I review the state of our affairs, and when I attend to those speakers who have now declared their sentiments. They insist that we should punish Philip, but our affairs, situated as they now appear, warn us to guard against the dangers with which we ourselves are threatened."” Leland.
3 Their altars and their homes] “Aris atque focis suis.” "When aræ and foci are joined, beware of supposing that they are to be distinguished as referring the one (aræ) to the public temples, and the other (foci) to private dwellings. * * * Both are to be understood of private houses, in which the ara belonged to the Dii Penates, and was placed in the impluvium in the inner part of the house; the focus was dedicated to the lares, and was in the halt." Ernesti, Clav. Cic., sub. v. Ara. Of the commentators on Sallust, Kritzius is, I believe, the only one who has concurred in this notion of Ernesti; Langius and Dietsch (with Cortius) adhere to the common opinion that aræ are the public altars. Dietsch refers, for a complete refutation of Ernesti, to G. A. B. Hertzberg de Diis Romanorum Penatibus, Halæ, 1840, p. 64; a book which I have not seen. Certainly, in the observation of Cicero ad Att., vii. 11, "Non est respublica in parietibus, sed in aris et focis," aræ must be considered (as Schiller observes) to denote the public altars and national religion. See Schiller's Lex. v. Ara.
6 Yet the republic remained secure; its own strength, etc.] “Tamen respublica firma, opulentia neglegentiam tolerabat.” This is Cortius's reading; some editors, as Havercamp, Kritzius, and Dietsch, insert erat after firma. Whether opulentia is the nominative or ablative, is disputed. "Opulentia," says Allen, "casum sextum intellige, et repete respublica (ad tolerabat)." "Opulentia," says Kritzius, "melius nominativo capiendum videtur; nam que sequuntur verba novam enunciationem efficient." I have preferred to take it as a nominative.
7 We have lost the real names of things, etc.] Imitated from Thuydides, iii. 32: Και τὴν ἐιωθὺιαν ὐξιωσιν τῶν ὀνομάτων ἐζ τὺ ἔργα ἀντήλλαξαν τἧ δικαιώσει. Τόλμα μὲν γὰρ ἀλόγιστος, ἀνσρία φιλέταιρος ἐνομίσθη, μελλμσιζ τε προμηθὴς, σειγια ἐυπρεπὴς τὸ δὲ σὼφρον, τοῦ ανάνδρου πρόσχημα, κὰι τὸ πρὸς ἄπαν συνετὸν, ἐπὶ πἀν ἀργόν. "The ordinary meaning of words was changed by then as they thought proper. For reckless daring was regarded as courage that was true to its friends; prudent delay, as specious cowardice; moderation, as a cloak for unmanliness; being intelligent in every thing, as being useful for nothing." Dale's translation: Bohn's Classical Library.
10 For of allies and citizens, etc.] Imitated from Demosthenes, Philipp tn. 4.
11 I advise you to have mercy upon them] “Misereamini censeo,” i.e., censeo ut misereamini, spoken ironically. Most translators have taken the words in the sense of "You would take pity on them, I suppose," or something similar.
12 Unless this be the second time that he has made war upon his country] “"Cethegus first made war ou his country in conjunction with Marius."” Bernouf. Whether Sallust alludes to this, or intimates (as Gerlach thinks) that he was engaged in the first conspiracy, is doubtful.
13 Is ready to devour us] “Faucibus urget.” Cortius, Kritzius, Gerlach, Burnouf, Allen, and Dietsch, are unanimous in interpreting this as a metaphorical expression, alluding to a wild beast with open jaws ready to spring upon its prey. They support this interpretation by Val. Max., v. 3: "Faucibus apprehensam rempublicam;" Cic. pro. Cluent., 31: "Quum faucibus premetur;" and Plaut. Casin. v. 3, 4, "Manifesto faucibus teneor." Some editors have read in faucibus, and understood the words as referring to the jaws or narrow passes of Etruria, where Catilme was with his army.
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