I. PROPOSITO Ch. I - V (Sec. 1-10)
still. eludet, baffle, i.e. his mad
conduct makes fools of the Roman people, as it were, by continuing to escape the
just punishment that would suppress it. quem ad finem:
almost equivalent to quamdiu, but implying some shock or crisis (finem)
which must follow.
sese iactabit, insolently display
itself. nihil (adverbial acc.) not at all.
Palati: one of the strongest positions in
the city, commanding the Forum, and so most likely to be seized by the conspirators. The Palatium,
an isolated hill, of a rudely quadrangular shape, was the original seat of the city of
Rome, from which the city spread gradually over the other hills. In the last years of the
republic, the Palatine became the fashionable place for residences. Here was Cicero's
house as well as Catiline's. It was because of its nearness to his house, as well as
because of the strength of its position, that Cicero selected this temple for the meeting
of the Senate on this occasion. Under the Empire, the Palatine became the seat of the
imperial residence, and its name, palace, has passed in this sense into most
bonorum: the Senate was surrounded by a
crowd of equites and other citizens (see Sect. 21, below).
locus: the Senate was assembled, not, as
usual, in the Curia Hostilia, but in the Temple of Jupiter Stator, which occupied
a commanding position on the brow of the Palatine Hill and faced the Sacred Way. The ruins
of this temple were discovered some years ago. horum
(with a gesture), i.e. the Senators present. ora, features.
voltus, expression: the phrase is a sort of
hendiadys, almost equivalent to expression of their features (§ 385; G. 698; H.
636, iii, 2).
patere: note the emphatic position. non: observe the abruptness and force given by omitting
the interrogative particle -ne. constrictam . .
. teneri, is held fast bound (§ 292; G. 238; H. 388, 1, N).
proxima, superiore: for what was done on
the night of Nov. 6, see sect. 4; as to proxima, last night, we
meet with nothing but general assertions.
O tempora, etc., what
a time! what a state of things! (mores = customs of the time.)
immo, nay more: immo
here negatives not the fact of the preceding statement (vivit),
but only its form as not being strong enough; nay is similarly used in
English, as in Midsummer Night's Dream, iii. 2. 313: "To strike, to spurn
me, --nay, to kill me too!"
videmur, etc. = think we do enough for
(i.e. fulfill our duty to the state). si . . . vitemus:
in the dir. form, satis facimus si vitamus.
ad mortem: the consuls originally
possessed full powers of judgment in criminal cases, including punishment by death. These
highest powers of the imperium were suspended within the city by laws which gave
the right of appeal to the people (see note, Sect. 28), but the Senate could revive them
in cases of danger by the formula Videant consules ne quid res publica detrimenti
capiat, --a proceeding analogous to the proclamation of martial law. This action the
Senate had taken Oct. 21, nearly three weeks before.
oportebat, apodosis of an implied
condition (§ 311, c; G. 254, R.¹; H. 511, 1, N.³);
the imperfect is used with iam pridem, where in English we might expect
the pluperfect (§ 277, b; G. 234; H. 469, 2). oportebat alone
would mean "you ought [now] to be [but are not]"; with iam pridem
it means "you ought to have been long ago and still ought to be."
iam diu: words in brackets are thought to
be spurious insertions in the text.
an vero (§ 211, b;
G. 457, 1; H. 353, N.4) properly belongs both to interfecit and
perferemus; in English we should connect the two clauses by and.
vir amplissimus, pontifex maximus:
observe how these words strengthen the force of the example.
Ti. Gracchum: Tiberius Sempronius
Gracchus, a young man of high rank and great purity of character, attempted to carry
through some important reforms, particularly touching the tenure of the public lands, B.C.
133. Requiring more time to make his legislation effective, he attempted illegally to
secure his own re-election as tribune, when he was attacked and killed by a mob of
Senators headed by P. Scipio Nasica.
privatus: at the time referred to, Nasica
was only a private of consular rank. He afterwords went into exile, and was made Pontifex
Maximus in his absence. The word privatus is rhetorically opposed to nos
illa, that case, plural for
singular as referring to the circumstances of the case.
Ahala: the magister equitum of
the famous Cincinnatus; he killed without legal process the eques Maelius, on
suspicion that the latter was aiming at royal power (B.C. 439). novis
rebus (the classic expression for a violent change of government), revolution:
dative after studentem.
fuit (emphatic), there was, etc.,
implying that it is so no longer (§ 344, d, 3); cf. fuit Ilium,
Æneid, ii. 325.
habemus (emphatic), i.e. it is not that we
lack, etc. senatus consultum: i.e. the decree
conferring dictatorial power on the consuls (see note in sect. 2,
above), ut videant consules, etc.
vehemens, severe, as regards
Catiline; grave, carrying weight, and so
justifying the consuls in any extreme measures. non deest,
etc., it is not that the state lacks wise counsels, etc., but that the consuls
are remiss in executing them.
decrevit: translate, to
preserve the emphasis, there was one a decree, etc. ut
. . . videret, subst. clause of purp., obj. of decrevit (§ 331;
G. 546; H. 498). Opimius: Lucius Opimius was consul
B.C. 121, when Caius Gracchus, the younger brother of Tiberius, was attempting to carry
through a series of measures far more revolutionary than those of his brother. The Senate
took alarm, and entrusted the consul with absolute power. In the tumult that ensued, some
3,000 are said to have lost their lives, including Gracchus and his leading associate
ne . . . caperet, obj. of videret.
interfectus est (emphatic), i.e. in that
case death was promptly inflicted.
patre: Tiberius Gracchus, the elder, was
one of the most eminent statesmen of his day. avo: Scipio Africanus, the
conqueror of Hannibal.
Mario (dat. after permissa):
this was in Marius' sixth consulship (B.C. 100). He was secretly in league with the
revolutionists, Saturninus and Servilius Glaucia, corrupt demogogues, unworthy imitators
of the noble Gracchi. When it came to the point, however, the courage of Marius failed
him: he deserted his accomplices, and joined the Senate in crushing the revolt.
rei publicae, poss. gen., the punishment
being looked on as something belonging to the party revenged, and exacted from the other
party as a payment due.
remorata est (governing Saturninum,
etc.) keep Saturninus and Servilius waiting, i.e. did they have to wait one day,
etc. vicesimum: strictly speaking, it was now (Nov. 6)
the 19th day by Roman reckoning from Oct. 21 (cf. § 259, c; G. 336, R.¹).
patimur: for tense, see § 276, a; G. 230; H.
horum, i.e. the Senate.
huiusce (§ 101, footnote; G. 104, 1, N.¹;
H. 186, 1) modi, i.e. like those just mentioned. tabulis,
brazen tablets, on which the laws, etc., were inscribed. The edict is said to be shut
up in them (until put in force), like a sword hidden in its scabbard.
interfectum esse: § 288, d; G.
280, 2. convenit, perf. (§ 311, c; G. 254, R.¹;
H. 511, 1, N.³).
ad deponendam, etc.: § 300; G. 432; H.
542, iii, 544, 1.
cupio (emphatic), I am anxious: a
concession, opposed by sed, below. me esse:
§ 311, b, N.; G. 532, R.²; H. 535, ii.
ipse: Latin in such cases emphasizes the
subject; English, the object (§ 195, l; G. 311, 2; H. 452, 1).
inertiae: § 220; G. 378; H. 409, ii.
castra sunt, etc.: an
enumeration of the circumstances which make a mild policy no longer possible.
faucibus, narrow pass, leading
north from Etruria, through the Apennines. conlocata:
§ 291, b; G. 250, R.²; H. 471, 6, N.¹
iam, at once.
erit verendum, etc., I shall have to
fear, I suppose (ironical), that all good citizens will fail to say
(lit. will not say) that I have acted too late rather than that anybody will
say that I have acted too cruelly, i.e. I shall have to fear that I shall be accused
of cruelty rather than slackness. ne non . . . dicat:
§ 331, f; G. 550, 2; H. 498, iii, N.². boni
(sc. dicant): here, as usual, the well-intentioned, i.e. those
who held the speaker's views.
ego, opposed to omnes boni
(above). factum esse: § 288, d; G. 280, R.³,
a; H. 511, 1, N.³.
denique, i.e. then, and not before.
iam, at length.
fateatur: for mood, see § 319, 2; G. 631,
1; H. 500, i.
ita ut vivis, just as
you are [now] living.
ne . . . possis, purpose (not result).
etiam, besides the forces on
speculabuntur, probably referring to the
spies in the interest of the government, who were in the very heart of the conspiracy.
quid, etc., what is there for you to
wait for more? quod. . .exspectes, rel. clause of
inlustrantur, opposed to obscurare;
erumpunt, to continere.
recognoscas, review (with licet;
ut omitted: see § 331, f. R.; G. 553, R.¹;
dicere: for tense, see § 336 A, N.¹;
G. 281, 2, N; H. 537, 1.
futurus esset, subord. clause in ind.
num, etc., was I mistaken in, etc.
(lit. did the fact escape me).
idem (nom.) has the force of also.
optimatium, i.e. of the Senatorial party. in ante diem: § 259, e ;G. p. 491 ; H. 642, 4.
sui conservandi . . . causa ( § 298 a,
c ; G. 428, R.¹ and R.²; H. 542. N.¹):
this passage is neatly turned so as to save their self-respect by attributing their flight
to that discretion which is the better part of valor.
cum . . . dicebas: we should expect diceres;
the imperf. indic. is probably an archaic survival (Cf. § 277, e, and N.).
tamen: opposed to discessu
("though the rest were gone, yet," etc.).
Praeneste (Palestrina), an
important town of Latium, about twenty miles from Rome, in a very commanding situation.
Its possession would have given Catiline a valuable military post. Praeneste had been a
chief stronghold of the Marian party in the Civil War, and Sulla had punished it by
establishing a military colony there (hence coloniam).
sensistine, did you not find? -ne
here = nonne (§ 210, d, and N.; G. 454, N.5).
praesidiis, the garrison manning
the walls; custodiis, sentinels at the gates; vigiliis, watchmen (i.e. night-guard). agis, etc.: notice the climax.
noctem illam superiorem, that night, -
night before last, i.e. Nov. 6; priore (line below)
refers to the same night.
quam te: § 336, a, 1, R.;
H. 524, I¹.
inter falcarios, i.e. to the street of the
scythe-makers. non agam obscure, i.e. I will speak out
and be more definite. in domum: § 258, b, N.¹; G. 337, R.³.
eodem, at the same place (lit. to
the same place, according to the Latin idiom).
gentium: § 216, a, 4; G. 372, N.³;
H. 397, 4.
quam rem publicam, what sort of state?
hic, hic, here, right here. patres [et] conscripti: the formal
designation of the Senators; patres were the patrician members of the Senate, conscripti
were the plebeians enrolled in that originally patrician body. The conjunction is
regularly omitted (as often in such combinations). Observe that the stock English
translation conscript fathers is inexact.
qui : the antecedent is the understood
subject of sunt. atque adeo, and in fact.
cogitent: § 320 a; G. 631, 2;
H. 503, i.
oportebat: see sect. 2
and note. voce volnero : the alliteration is
intentional and may easily be imitated in English, wound with a word. igitur (resumptive), then (i.e. as I said).
quemque, each (of the
conspirators). placeret, indir. quest.
delib. subj. in an indir. quest. ( § 334, b; G. 265; H. 484, v).
morae, partitive genitive. viverem,
subj. in subord. clause in indir. disc.
equites: these were C. Cornelius and L.
omnia . . . comperi: Cicero's
contemporaries made sport of him for using this phrase so often in the case of the
salutatum, supine ( § 302; G. 435; H.
546). All prominent citizens were accustomed to hold a kind of morning reception (cf.
"the king's levee") to which their friends and dependents came to bid
them good morning and to escort them to the Forum. cum . . .
venissent: best translated by when, etc.
id temporis ( §§ 216, a, 3,
240; G. 336, N.², 369; H. 378, 2, 397, 3) at that very time.
praedixeram: Cicero had thus put on
record, as it were, the fact that he was acquainted with the details of the conspiracy.
desiderant, have been wanting (
§ 276, a; G. 230; H. 467, 2).
si minus (sc. omnes), if
II. HORTATIO Ch. V - X. (Sec. 10 - 27)
Section 10 cont.
murus, i.e. city wall (cf.
parietibus, walls of a house, sect. 6). intersit:
§ 314; G. 573; H. 513, i.
non feram, etc.: the same idea is repeated
for emphasis, but, for variety, different words are used.
particularly. huic, i.e. in whose temple we are
Statori (sto), the one
who causes to stand firm. The temp to Jupiter Stator was vowed by Romulus when
his troops were giving way, and built upon the spot where their flight was stayed.
The remains of this temple have been recently discovered [now over a century ago - Webmaster]
on the Palatine, near the Arch of Titus.
in uno homine, by one man
(Catiline), lit. in the case of one man.
proximis: the consular election was
usually held in July; but in this year, on account of the disturbed condition of things,
it did not take place until Oct. 28. in campo: the comitia
centuriata, in which the higher magistrates were elected, were held in the Campus
Martius, or military parade-ground, north of the city. This is the space covered by the
main part of modern Rome.
competitores: Catiline's successful
conmpetitors were D. Silanus and L. Murena.
copiis, i.e. persons in the employ of his
friends, slaves and hired retainers. nullo . . . concitato,
without exciting (a very common way of expressing this idiom in Latin).
videbam, I saw all along (observe
the force of the imperfect).
nunc iam, now at
huius imperi, i.e. that which I now
possess: namely, that conferred upon the consuls by the special decree of the Senate dent
operam, etc. (see note, Sect. 2). Without this decree they
possessed imperium, it is true, but it was limited (in the city) by special
privileges of Roman citizens.
tu, opposed to comitum.
sentina rei publicae, political rabble;
or, keeping the original figure, we might say, bilge-water of the ship of state.
faciebas, were on the
point of doing ( § 277, c; G. 233; H. 469, 1).
hostem, a public enemy, whom the
consul would have the right to expel from the city. non iubeo:
Cicero avoids the appearance of ordering a citizen to go into exile, since that was
something which the consul had no right to do.
metuat: cf. note on cogitent.
privatarum rerum, in private life,
i.e. intercourse with others out of the family (distinguished from domesticae,
quem . . . inretisses, i.e. after
entangling, etc. (subj. of characteristic). ferrum . . .
facem, i.e. arm him for acts of violence, or inflame him to deeds of lust.
quid vero, and say!
novis nuptiis, etc.: this crime is
mentioned by no other writer, and is perhaps one of the orator's exaggerations.
alio . . . scelere: Sallust mentions, as a
matter of common belief, that Catiline killed his own son, in order to gratify his new
wife Aurelia Orestilla, "a woman praised for nothing but beauty."
ruinas: this charge was undoubtedly
correct. The conspiracy was mainly composed of men of ruined fortunes, who hoped to better
themselves in the general scramble of a revolution.
Idibus: the Calends and Ides -- the
beginning and middle of the month -- were the usual times for the payment of debts.
Catiline's failure in the consular canvass had probably stirred up his creditors to push
him for payment.
cum, causal, but best
translated by when.
prid. Kalendas Ianuarias, etc.: Dec. 31,
B.C. 64. The act here mentioned seems to have been in preparation for a rising that had
been planned by Catiline for the next day, Jan. 1, B.C. 63. On this day the consuls Cotta
and Torquatus entered upon their office, and it was the intention of Catiline to take
advantage of their inauguration to murder them and seize the government. The plot got
whispered about, and its execution was put off to Feb. 5, when it failed again through
Catiline's precipitancy in giving the word.
cum telo (a technical expression) weapon
manum, a band (of assassins). interficiendorum causa: § 298, c; G. 428, R.²
mentem aliquam, some change of mind.
aut . . . aut, etc., either obscure or
non multa, etc., i.e. they were too well
known to need recapitulation, and too numerous to admit of it. commissa,
which you have perpetrated.
petitiones, thrusts, the word
regularly used for the attack of a gladiator. Cicero uses this and similar terms as an
affront to Catiline. ita coniectas, etc., so aimed
that they seemed impossible to be shunned. The Latin has no adj. or
"impossible." [Although The New College Latin & English Dictionary lists impossibilis,
-is, -e, but this may be a Medieval Latin construction of adding the negatory im-
to the Classical Latin's possibilis, -is, -e. -- Webmaster.]
corpore, i.e. dodging with the body (a
common colloquialism, hence ut aiunt).
tibi (dative of
reference), etc., wrested from your hands ( § 235, a; G. 350, 1; H.
384, 4, N.²).
quae quidem, etc., I know not by what
rites it has been consecrated and set apart, that you think, etc., (as if Catiline
had solemnly pledge himself to use this dagger on nobody lower than a consul).
nunc vero, but now (indicating a
marked transition). vita, i.e. that you should desire
to prolong it (cf. sect. 15).
quae nulla ( § 216, e; G. 370, R.²),
nothing of which.
necessariis: this word is used of any
close relation, as that of kinsman, client, guest, comrade, member of the same order, etc.
quid quod, what of this, --that,
subsellia, undoubtedly wooden benches
brought in for the occasion.
consulares: these voted as a class, and
probably sat together. Catiline, as a praetorius, no doubt sat in their
ferendum [esse] is the
pred. of the clause quod . . . reliquerunt.
servi, emphatic, and hence
iniuria, unjustly, wrongfully.
carere aspectu, be deprived of the
aliquo concederes, would retire
somewhere. nunc, opposed to the contrary to fact si,
te nihil . . . cogitare, that you
think of nothing (depending on iudicat). iudicat:
for tense see § 276, a; G. 230; H. 467, 2.
auctoritatem, etc.: observe the climax in
both nouns and verbs.
quae (i.e. patria)
. . . agit, she thus pleads with you.
annis: § 256, b; G. 393, R.²;
H. 379, 1.
sociorum, i.e. the allied cities of the
province of Africa, which Catiline had governed as propraetor, B.C. 67.
leges et quaestiones, i.e. in his lawless
career both as praetor in Rome and as propraetor in Africa. neglegendas
implies only evasion; evertendas, violence.
superiora illa, those former crimes of
me . . . esse, etc.: this and the two
following infin. clauses (Catilinam timeri and nullum videri . .
. consilium) are subj. of est ferendum; posse
depends on videri. quicquid increpuerit,
subjunc. of integral part ( § 342; G. 663, 1; H. 529, ii).
abhorreat (subj. of characteristic), is
hunc . . . eripe, rescue me from,
etc., lit. snatch it from me ( § 229; G. 345, R.¹; H. 386, 2).
ne opprimar: § 306, a; G. 595;
H. 508, 4. aliquando, some time or other
etiam si . . . possit: §
313, c; G. 604 and R.²; H. 515, ii.
in custodiam dedisti, i.e. into free
custody, on parole. This appears to have been late in October, when Catiline was
prosecuted on the Lex Plautia de vi. When a respectable Roman was charged with a
crime it was customary for some person to bail him out, as it were, by becoming
responsbile for his appearance. Being thus responsible, the surety kept the accused in a
kind of custody at his house.
ad M'. Lepiud, etc.: ad =
apud. Lepidus was the consul of B.C. 66.
ad me: this was of course intended by
Catiline as a demonstration of his innocence.
domi meae: § 258, e; G. 411, R.4.
parietibus, loc. ablative; moenibus,
ablative of means. Observe the difference of meaning in these words and the emphasis of
the contrast. qui . . . essem: this would subj. (sim)
in direct discourse, as implying the reason ( § 320, e; G. 626, R.;
Metellum: Q. Metellus Celer, consul B.C.
60; he afterwards did good service in the campaign against Catiline.
virum optimum, an excellent man
(ironical, of course).
sagacissimum, keen-scented; fortissimum, energetic and fearless.
videtur debere, does it seem that he
ought to be? Observe that the Latin prefers the personal construction ("does he
seem," etc.), which the English idion with ought does not allow us to
imitate ( § 330, b, 1; G. 528, R.²; H. 534, 1, N.¹).
Two courses were open to Catiline, -- to leave the city or to
run his chances of being put to death. If he left the city, he could, of course, either
join his accomplice Manlius in the insurgent camp at Faesulae or abandon his projects and
go into voluntary exile. Apparently some of the Senators had privately urged him to adopt
the latter alternative, promising, in that case, that all proceedings should be dropped,
and Catiline, though rejecting their advice, had declared that he would not refuse to obey
a senatus-consulatum decreeing his banishment. Such a decree would, however, have
been favorable to Catiline's plans, for, since he had not been formally brought to trial,
he would have been able to pose as an injured citizen exiled by an arbitrary aristocratic
party. Hence Cicero refuses to put the question to the Senate, though he asserts there
could be no doubt about the result. By taking this course Cicero forced Catiline to make
his intentions plain by the overt act of leaving the city of his own accord and hastening
to the camp of Manlius.
refer ad senatum: the
technical term for the action of the presiding officer (regularly the consul) in bringing
a matter before the Senate for action. si, etc., future
condition in indirect discourse.
placere, (sc. sibi): the
subject is te . . . exsilium.
abhorret, is contrary to: because
the Senate would have no legal power to pronounce such a judgment.
faciam ut, etc. ( § 332; G. 553, 1; H.
498, ii): to make the feelings of the Senate clear, Cicero formally commands Catiline to
leave the city (egredere, etc.); then pauses to allow the Senators a
chance to protest, and then points out that no objections are heard.
ecquid attendis, are you listening?
The adverbial ecquid ("at all") can hardly be idiomatically
rendered, but gives an emphasis to the question. [Although the modern idiom "Are you even
listening?" may be appropriate. -- Webmaster.]
patiuntur, they tolerate this,
i.e. they make no objection to this extreme exercise of authority of my part. quid, etc.: why do you wait for those to express their
opinion in words whose wishes you see clearly by their silence? The Latin idiom is
quite different: why do you wait for the expressed opinion (auctoritatem)
of [those] speaking whose wishes you see [when] silent?
huic, this . . . here:
the demonstrative pronouns are often thus employed in the so-called deictic use,
accompanied by a gesture. Sestio: a member of the
aristocratic party whom Cicero afterwards defended in one of his greatest orations.
M. Marcello: a prominent member of the
aristocracy, consul B.C. 51; not to be confounded with the person of the same name
mentioned in sect. 19. He took a leading part in the civil war against Caesar, and was
afterwards defended by Cicero (Pro M. Marcello).
iam, by this time. consuli,
consul as I am.
in templo, i.e. notwithstanding the
sacredness of the place. vim et manus (hendiadys), violent
cum quiescunt, i.e. by keeping quiet (§
326, a; G. 582; H. 517, 2).
videlicet cara, alluding to his demand to
have the matter submitted to the Senate.
voces, cries (of the crowd
haec (with a gesture, cf. huic,
sect. 21, first note), i.e. all that is round us, the city, etc.
prosequantur, escort. It was the
custom for those who were going into voluntarily exile to be thus accompanied to the gate
by their friends. Cicero sarcastically declares that, if Catiline will depart, the whole
Senate will be so glad to be rid of him as to forget his crimes and pay him this honor.
te ut . . . frangat, i.e.
break down your stubbornness (purpose clause after loquor; though it may
be an exclamatory clause with ut: § 332, c; G. 558; H. 486, ii,
uti nam . . . duint: § 267, b;
G. 261; H. 483, 1; for form see § 128, e²; G. 130, 4; H. 240, 3.
ire: § 271, a; G. 532, and R.²;
H. 498, i, N.
recenti memoria (ablative of time):
translate by a while-clause.
est tanti, it is worth the cost
(§ 252, a; G. 380, 1, R.; H. 405).
sit: § 314; G. 573; H. 513, i.
ut . . . commoveare, etc., subj. of est
postulandum (§ 331, h; G. 546, 1; H. 499, 3).
is es . . . ut: § 319, 1, R.;
G. 552; H. 500, ii.
inimico, a private
enemy, thus attributing to Cicero personal motives of opposition.
recta (sc. via), straightway.
vix feram, etc.: for Catiline's going into voluntary
exile would tend to prove that he was innocent and had been persecuted by the consul (see note at beginning of Section 20 notes).
sin autem, etc.: Catiline's going to
Manlius would prove his guilt and show the wisdom of Cicero's action.
lactrocinio, brigandage, i.e.
partisan warfare, as opposed to a regular war (iustum bellum).
quamquam, and yet
(§ 313, f; G. 605, R.²; H. 515, iii, N.²): cf.
the same use of quamquam, and of tametsi, sect. 22. invitem: § 268; G. 265; H. 486, ii. sciam,
Forum Aurelium: a small place on the Via
Aurelia, about fifty miles from Rome. The Via Aurelia was the road which led
along the sea-coast of Etruria, by which Catiline left the city the following night. praestolarentur, rel. clause of purpose.
aquilam: the silver eagle had been adopted
by Marius as the standard of the legion, and the eagle in question was said to have been
actually used in the army of Marius.
sacrarium: it was customary in Roman
houses to have a little shrine for the worship of the lares and other protecting
divinities. Doubtless Catiline was believed to have placed this eagle in such a shrine as
an object of superstitious worship.
ut possis, exclamatory clause with ut
(see note on frangant, sect. 22).
rapiebat (§ 277, b):
the imperfect is used instead of the present because the action is conceived of as ceasing
at the moment when Cicero discovered the plot.
haec res, i.e. leaving the city as an
enemy and taking up arms.
non modo, to say nothing of (§
209, a, 1; G. 445; H. 553, 2).
atque connects perditis
and derelictis; ab connects fortuna
and spe with derelictis.
conflatam, run together (like
hic, i.e. in this band.
bacchabere, will revel. To a
Roman the word suggested the wild orgies of the frenzied Bacchanals, so that it is much
stronger than our revel, which in course of time has become rather vague: cf.
Aeneid, IV. 301 (and illustrations).
meditati sunt, have been practised;
feruntur, are talked about. labores:
cf. Sallust's Catiline, ch. V.: L. Catiline nobili genere natus fuit, magna
vi et animi et corporis, sed ingenio malo pravoque. Huic ab adulescentia bella intestina
caedes rapinae discordia civilis grata fuere ibique iuventutem suam exercuit. Corpus
patiens inediae algoris vigiliae supra quam cuiquam credibile est.
facinus, deed of violence,
contrasted with stuprum, debauchery; just as bonis
otiosorum, property of peaceful citizens, is with somno
maritorum, the repose of husbands.
ubi ostentes (purpose clause), opportunity
to display (lit. a place where, etc.).
reppuli (§ 323, 1; G.
580; H. 521, i): Cicero here takes credit to himself for using his influence as consul to
defeat the election of Catiline.
exsul, consul: observe the play upon
latrocinium: cf. note
on latrocinio, sect. 23 above.
III. PERORATIO Ch. XI - XIII (Sect. 27 - 33)
Section 27 cont.
querimoniam, i.e. for not
having suppressed the conspiracy more vigorously. detester ac
deprecer (construed with a me, above), remove by protest and
patria: the personified patria is
dramatically introduced as accusing Cicero of remissness in letting Catiline go unharmed.
M. Tulli (voc.): the regular way of formal
address; the use of the family name (Cicero) is more familiar.
evocatorem servorum, a summoner of
slaves, i.e. to enlist under him against the state. To the Romans (as to all peoples
who, having a large slave population, are in constant fear of servile revolts) such an
accusation was the most violent reproach conceivable.
duci, rapi, mactari: § 331, a, N.¹;
G. 546, N.³; H. 535, ii.
rogatae sunt: the
magistrate who proposed a law formally asked the people whether they would accept it;
hence rogo was the word regularly used for this act, and the proposition itself
was called rogatio. The leges in question, Valeria, Porcia, and
Sempronia (of Caius Gracchus), were enacted to protest -- like our laws securing
the habeas corpus and trial by jury -- the life and liberty of citizens against
the arbitrary power of magistrates, which in this case would apparently be used by Cicero.
at nunquam, etc.: as a fact, however, the precedents
here referred to had been really violations of the constitution.
praeclaram . . . gratiam, you show a
noble attitude (cf. habere gratiam and agere gratias).
nulla commendatione maiorum: though by the
Roman constitution the higher offices were open to all citizens, yet it was rare that a
man whose ancestors had not held these offices could succeed in attaining them himself.
If, like Cicero, he did so, he was called a novus homo and his descendants
belonged to the nobility. tam mature: Cicero attained
the quaestorship, the praestorship, and the consulship (honorum gradus)
at the earliest age possible in each caes. This was a mark of public confidence which had
never happened to a novus homo before.
invidiae, i.e. the odium which might
attach to the consul's apparently exceeding his constitutional authority. In fact Cicero
was later brought to trial and exiled on this very charge.
num est, pray is
(implying strong negation): § 210, c; G. 464, R.; H. 351, 1, N.³
inertiae, sc. invidia, the
reproach. an belongs with non existimas.
conflagraturum, will be consumed
(lit. will burn up).
idem sentiunt, have the same views.
factu, the rare "latter supine"
(§ 303; G. 436; H. 547 and N.¹).
gladiatori: the gladiators were trained
slaves owned by rich men and were often employed as bullies in political campaigns. Hence
the word came almost to mean ruffian, "bruiser," "thug."
si honestarunt: notice that the simple
condition here expresses cause (§ 306, a, N.).
superiorum, before them.
maxime, ever so much.
ut . . . putarem, result clause explaining
hoc (not a substantive clause). partam
(from pario), acquired (a very common meaning).
non nulli, etc.: it should
be remembered that there were many well-intentioned citizens who either doubted the
existence of a conspiracy or thought Cicero's fear of it greatly exaggerated; and that
even among those who admitted the fact there was considerable variety of partisan feeling.
videant, dissimulent, subjunctive of
characteristic. (not co-ord. with dicerent), expressing the character
of the men referred to, while aluerunt, etc. merely gives additional facts
about them (hence indicative).
regie, despotically: the Roman
idea of a king and kingly government was associated with Tarquinius Superbus. Here the
word also implies the assumption of unlawful power (= tyrannice), as well as its
nunc, as it is. quo
(§ 201, h): the antecedent is in castra.
hoc . . . interfecto, disguised fut.
protasis (§ 310, a; G. 600, 1; H. 507, N.7); the
apodosis posse is future in sense (307, d; G. 248, R.).
eiecerit: for tense, see § 307, c;
G. 244, 2; H. 508, 2.
eodem, to the same place.
adulta, full-grown, as opposed to
stirps, the root (properly the stock from which new
shoots may spring out), and semen, the seed.
iam diu: the conspiracy
was ready to break out B.C. 65 (see note about plan in sect. 15).
versamur, have lived. nescio quo pacto, somehow or other (§ 334, e;
G. 467, N.; H. cf. 455, 2).
veteris (sharply contrasted with nostri),
i.e. the disease is of long standing, but its outbreak has occurred just in my consulship.
visceribus, vitals (properly the
great interior organs, as the heart, lungs, etc.).
aestu febrique, the heat of fever
reliquis vivis, ablative absolute.
round, for the purpose of intimidation: the praetor urbanus had his tribunal
in the Forum.
patefacta, laid bare; inlustrata, set in full light; oppressa,
crushed; vindicata, punished. Observe
What Cicero has just said (the last line of sect. 32) makes the omen under which
Catiline is to depart, -- an omen of good for the state but of evil for him.
Iuppiter: thus the oration closes with a
prayer to Jupiter Stator, in whose temple the Senate was now assembled.
Statorem, the Stay. The name was
apparently first given to Jupiter as the Stayer (sto, sisto) of
flight (see note to sect. 11), but it is here applied to him as the Stay
(supporter) of the Roman state, a meaning which the word may well have from its
arcebis, used as a mild imperative (§
269, f; G. 265¹; H. 487#4).
latrones: cf. latrocinium
in sect. 27.