Tools
    • 161 A. Hirtius
    • 162 M. Caelius Rufus
    • 163 L. Herennius Balbus
    • 164 P. Clodius
    • 165 C. Licinius Macer Calvus
    • 166 M. Favonius
    • 167 M. Iuventius Laterensis
    • 168 L. Cassius Longinus
    • 169 Q. Pilius Celer
    • 170 C. Scribonius Curio filius
    • 171 L. Sempronius Atratinus
    • 172 Ap. Claudius Pulcher
    • 173 P. Cornelius Dolabella
    • 174 C. Asinius Pollio
    • 175 Q. Aelius L. f. Tubero
    • 176 M. Valerius Messalla Corvinus
  • INDEX OF ORATORS
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GENERAL INTRODUCTION

GENERAL INTRODUCTION

ORATORY AT ROME

Public speaking must have existed at Rome since at least the beginning of the Republican period: speeches and discussions are an obvious element of organized political interaction. In retrospect, Greek and Roman historians presenting the early history of Rome could not imagine social, political, and military procedures without the involvement of oratory and thus include speeches put into the mouth of Republican heroes in their narratives. A famous example of these early speeches is the oration allegedly given by Agrippa Menenius Lanatus (cos. 503 BC), when he persuaded the plebs to end their secession in 494 BC by telling them the story of the belly and the other parts of the body (Liv. 2.32.8–12; for a similar intervention ascribed to M. Popillius Laenas, see Cic. Brut. 56). For thesame period, Dionysius of Halicarnassus reports a sequence of orations in the Senate in the course of a debate, followed by addresses to the People in the Forum (Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 6.35–45). These texts obviously do not reproduce the authentic words of the respective speakers (even when the delivery of a speech may be attested), and the envisaged procedures have probably been modeled on

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