Cicero, In Catilinam, I.1-3.
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read in the restored pronunciation of classical Latin
by Robert P. Sonkowsky, University of Minnesota.
(Text followed by translation.)
When, O Catiline, do you mean to cease abusing
our patience? How long is that madness of
yours still to mock us? When is there to be
an end of that unbridled audacity of yours, swaggering
about as it does now? Do not the mighty guards placed
on the Palatine Hill do not the watches posted throughout the city does not the alarm of the people, and the
union of all good men does not the precaution taken of
assembling the senate in this most defensible place do
not the looks and countenances of this venerable body here
present, have any effect upon you? Do you not feel that
your plans are detected? Do you not see that your conspiracy is already arrested and rendered powerless by the
knowledge which every one here possesses of it? What is
there that you did last night, what the night before where
is it that you were who was there that you summoned to
meet you what design was there which was adopted by
you with which you think that any one of us is unacquainted?
Shame on the age and on its principles! The senate is
aware of these things; the consul sees them; and yet this
man lives. Lives! ay, he comes even into the senate. He
takes a part in the public deliberations; he is watching and
marking down and checking off for slaughter every individual among us. And we, gallant men that we are, think
that we are doing our duty to the republic if we keep out of
the way of his frenzied attacks.
You ought, O Catiline, long ago to have been led to execution by command of the counsel. That destruction which
you have been long plotting against us ought to have already fallen on your own head.
What? Did not that most illustrious man, Publius
Scipio, the Pontifex Maximus, in his capacity of a private
citizen, put to death Tiberius Gracchus, though but slightly
undermining the constitution? And shall we, who are the
consuls, tolerate Catiline, openly desirous to destroy the
whole world with fire and slaughter? For I pass over
older instances, such as how Caius Servilius Ahala with his own hand slew Spurius Mælius when plotting a revolution in the state. There was there was once such virtue in this republic that brave men would repress mischievous citizens with severer chastisement than the most bitter
enemy. For we have a resolution of the senate, a formidable and authoritative decree against you, O Catiline;
the wisdom of the republic is not at fault, nor the dignity of this senatorial body. We, we alone I say it openly we, the consuls, are wanting in our duty.
trans. J.C. Tichenor