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FRL III: ORATORY, PART 1

F 10 Cic. De or. 2.165

[Antonius:] si ex vocabulo, ut Carbo: “si consul est qui consulit patriae, quid aliud fecit Opimius?”

F 11 Cic. De or. 2.169

[Antonius:] iam ex contrario: “si Gracchus nefarie, praeclare Opimius.”

36 P. DECIUS

P. Decius (tr. pl. 120, praet. 115 BC; RE Decius 9), when Tribune of the People, charged (F 2–3) L. Opimius (cos. 121 BC) with his action against C. Sempronius Gracchus (48); L. Opimius was defended by C. Papirius Carbo (35 F 8–11), and Decius was unsuccessful (TLRR 27). As prae-

T 1 Cic. Brut. 108

[Cicero:] Flacci autem aemulus P. Decius fuit, non infans ille quidem, sed ut vita sic oratione etiam turbulentus.

206

36 P. DECIUS

F 10 Cicero, On the Orator

[Antonius:] If [the argument turns] on a word, like Carbo: “If he is a consul who looks after the country, what else did Opimius do?”

F 11 Cicero, On the Orator

[Antonius:] Again, [as a deduction] from a contrast: “If Gracchus [acted] wickedly, Opimius [acted] nobly.”1

36 P. DECIUS

tor, Decius clashed with M. Aemilius Scaurus, one of the consuls, again without success (Vir. ill. 72.6).

In Cicero’s works Decius is described as a gifted orator, but undisciplined both in his life and in his oratory (T 1).

T 1 Cicero, Brutus

[Cicero:] And Flaccus’ [M. Fulvius Flaccus (40)] rival was P. Decius: he was certainly not without some eloquence, but as in his life so also in his speech unruly.

207
DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.fragmentary_republican_latin-oratory.2019