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.
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.