Appian, Roman History. Civil Wars

LCL 5: 244-245

Go To Section
Go To Section


ἔτι καὶ στρατηγῶν εἶναι κατάχρεως καὶ τῷ πλήθει δαιμονίως ὑπεραρέσκειν, τῶν δήμων αἰεὶ τοὺς δαψιλεῖς ἐπαινούντων.

2. 4Γάιος δὲ Κατιλίνας, μεγέθει τε δόξης καὶ γένους λαμπρότητι περιώνυμος, ἔμπληκτος ἀνήρ, δόξας ποτὲ καὶ υἱὸν ἀνελεῖν δι᾿ Αὐρηλίας Ὀρεστίλλης ἔρωτα, οὐχ ὑφισταμένης τῆς Ὀρεστίλλης παῖδα ἔχοντι γήμασθαι, Σύλλα φίλος τε καὶ στασιώτης καὶ ζηλωτὴς μάλιστα γεγονώς, ἐκ δὲ φιλοτιμίας καὶ ὅδε ἐς πενίαν ὑπενηνεγμένος καὶ θεραπευόμενος ἔτι πρὸς δυνατῶν ἀνδρῶν τε καὶ γυναικῶν, ἐς ὑπατείαν παρήγγελλεν ὡς τῇδε παροδεύσων ἐς τυραννίδα. 5πάγχυ δ᾿ ἐλπίσας αἱρεθήσεσθαι διὰ τὴν ὑποψίαν τήνδε ἀπεκρούσθη, καὶ Κικέρων μὲν ἦρχεν ἀντ᾿ αὐτοῦ, ἀνὴρ ἥδιστος εἰπεῖν τε καὶ ῥητορεῦσαι, Κατιλίνας δ᾿ αὐτὸν ἐς ὕβριν τῶν ἑλομένων ἐπέσκωπτεν, ἐς μὲν ἀγνωσίαν γένους καινὸν ὀνομάζων (καλοῦσι δ᾿ οὕτω τοὺς ἀφ᾿ ἑαυτῶν, ἀλλ᾿ οὐ τῶν προγόνων γνωρίμους), ἐς δ᾿ ξενίαν τῆς πόλεως ἰγκουϊλῖνον, ᾧ ῥήματι καλοῦσι τοὺς ἐνοικοῦντας ἐν ἀλλοτρίαις οἰκίαις. 6αὐτὸς δὲ πολιτείαν μὲν ὅλως ἔτι ἀπεστρέφετο ἐκ τοῦδε, ὡς οὐδὲν μοναρχίαν



money beyond his means, with the result that while still aedile and praetor he was both in debt and had made himself wonderfully popular with the crowd, the common people always singing the praises of those who spend lavishly.2

2. 4Gaius Catilina was a well known person, as he had a wide reputation and was from a distinguished family, but he was unstable:3 it was believed, for example, that he had once killed his own son because he had fallen in love with Aurelia Orestilla, who refused to marry a man who had fathered a child. He had been a friend and partisan and extremist supporter of Sulla. Although he was another to have been reduced to poverty by ambition, he was still courted by the powerful, both men and women, and he announced his candidature for the consulship with the intention of setting himself up as tyrant by this route.4 5He confidently expected to be elected, but he was defeated because people suspected his intentions, and Cicero, the best informal speaker and public orator of the day, got to hold the office instead. To insult those who voted for Cicero, Catiline made fun of him by calling him a “new man” because his family was unknown (this is what they call those who gain distinction for their own achievements, not those of their ancestors), and, because he was not born in the city, inquilinus, an expression they use for those who lodge in other people’s houses.5 6After this, Catiline turned away from the political process entirely as it offered no

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.appian-roman_history_civil_wars.2020