Cicero, pro Flacco (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Cic. Flac.].
<<Cic. Flac. 48 Cic. Flac. 53 (Latin) >>Cic. Flac. 59

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51 I come now to Lysanias, of the same city,—your own especial witness, Decianus,—a

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man whom you, as you had known him at Temnos when a youth, since he had pleased you when naked, wished to be always naked. You took him from Temnos to Apollonia. You lent money to him while quite a youth, at great interest, having taken good security for the loan. You say that the securities have been forfeited to you, and to this day you detain them and keep them in your possession. And you have compelled this man to come forward to give evidence as a witness by the hope of recovering his paternal estate. And as he has not yet given his evidence, I am waiting to see what it is that he will state. For I know the sort of men that they are,—I know their habits, I know their licentious ways. Therefore, although I am certain what he is prepared to state, still I will not argue against it before he has stated it; for if I do, he will alter it all and invent something else. Let him, then, keep what he has prepared; and I will keep myself fresh for whatever statements he makes.

ch. 22

52

I come now to that state to which I myself have shown great kindness and done many great services, and which my brother has shown the greatest attachment to and fondness for. And if that city had brought its complaints before you by the month of creditable and respectable men, I should be a little more concerned about it; but now what am I to think? Am I to think that the Trallians entrusted their cause to Maeandrius, a needy, sordid man, without honour, without character, without income? Where were the Pythodori, the Aetideni, the Lepisos, and the other men who are well known among us, and who are of high rank among their own people? where is their splendid and high-spirited display of the respectability of their city? Would they not have been ashamed, if they had been serious about this business, that Maeandrius should be called, I will not say their deputy, but even a Trallian at all? Would they ever have entrusted to this man as their deputy,—to this man as their public witness, Lucius Flaccus the hereditary patron of their city, whose father and ancestors had been so before him, to be ruined by the evidence of their city? This cannot be the fact, O judges; it never can be.

53

I myself lately saw in some trial a Trallian witness of the name of Philodorus, I saw Parrhasius, I saw Archidemus, when this identical man Maeandrius came to me as a sort of attorney, suggesting to me what I might say, if I pleased, against his own fellow-citizens and his own city. For there is nothing more worthless than that fellow,—nothing more needy, nothing more infamous. Wherefore, if the Trallians employ him as the relater of their indignation, and the keeper of their letters, and the witness of their injuries, and the utterer of their complaints, let them lower their high tone for the future, let them restrain their high spirit, let them bridle their arrogance, let them confess that the best representative of their city is to be found in the person of Maeandrius. But if they themselves have always thought this man a man to be buffeted and trampled upon at home, let them cease to think that there is any authority in that evidence which there is no respectable person to father.

ch. 23

But I will explain what the facts of the case really are, that you may know why that city was neither severe in attacking Flaccus, nor very anxious to defend him.

54 The city was offended with him on account of the affair of Castricius; concerning the whole of which Hortensius has made a sufficient reply. Very much against its will, it had paid Castricius some money which had long been due to him. Hence comes all its hatred to Flaccus, and this is his whole offence. And when Laelius had arrived in that city among a set of angry men, and had re-opened their indignation with respect to Castricius by mentioning the subject, the chief men jumped up and left the place, and refused to be present in that assembly, and would not assist in carrying the decree, or in framing the deposition. And to such an extent was that assembly deprived of the presence of the nobles of the city, that Maeandrius was the chief of the chief men present; and it was by his tongue, acting like a sort of fan of sedition, that assembly of needy men was ventilated.

55 Therefore, now learn the justice of the grief and complaints of a city, a moderate city, as I have always considered it, and a worthy one, as the citizens themselves wish it to be thought. They complain that the money which was deposited amongst them, in the name of Flaccus's father,—money which had been collected from different cities,—has been taken away from them. At another time I will inquire of them what power Flaccus had in the matter. At present I only ask the Trallians, whether they say the money, which they complain has been taken from them, was their own,—was a contribution from the other cities for their use. I wish to hear this. We do not

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say so, says he. What then? We say that it was brought to us—entrusted to us in the name of Lucius Flaccus, the father of this man, for the days of festival and the games which were to be celebrated in his honour.

56 What then? “This you had no right to touch.” Presently I will see to that; but first of all I will deal with this. A dignified, a wealthy, a noble city complains that it is not allowed to retain what does not belong to it. It says that it has been plundered, because it has not in its possession what never was its own. What can be said or imagined more shameless than this? A town was selected in which, above all others, the money contributed by all Asia for the honours of Lucius Flaccus should be deposited. All this money was transferred from the purpose of doing him honour, and employed in gainful traffic and usury. Many years afterwards it was recovered.

ch. 24



Cicero, pro Flacco (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Cic. Flac.].
<<Cic. Flac. 48 Cic. Flac. 53 (Latin) >>Cic. Flac. 59

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