[Favorinus] is given as the name of the orator from whose speech the antiquarian Gellius quotes. An orator of this name is not attested elsewhere, and it is not a typical Roman name. Therefore, an error in Gellius’ text is often assumed, and this orator is frequently identified with M. Favonius (166). It is not impossible, though, that another orator called Favorinus existed.

On Lex Licinia (F1)

F 1 Gell. NA 15.8.1–2

Locus ex oratione Favorini,1 veteris oratoris, de cenarum atque luxuriae obprobratione, qua usus est, cum legem Liciniam de sumptu minuendo suasit.—[1] cum legeremus orationem veterem Favorini,2 non indiserti viri, qua oratione <...>3 totum, ut meminisse possemus odio esse hercle istiusmodi sumptus atque victus, perdidicimus. [2] verba haec, quae adposuimus, Favorini4 sunt: “praefecti popinae atque luxuriae negant cenam lautam esse, nisi, cum lubentissime edis, tum auferatur et alia esca melior atque amplior succenturietur. is nunc flos cenae habetur inter istos, quibus sumptus et fastidium pro facetiis procedit, qui negant ullam avem praeter ficedulam totam comesse oportere; ceterarum avium atque altilium nisi tantum adponatur, ut a cluniculis inferiore parte saturi fiant, convivium putant inopia sordere, superiorem partem




A sumptuary Lex Licinia was proposed apparently shortly before 103 BC (Gell. NA 2.24.7, 20.1.23; Macrob. Sat. 3.17.7–9; Paul. Fest., p.47.5–7 L.; Lex Licinia sumptuaria: LPPR, pp.327–28). [Favorinus] spoke in its support either when it was first proposed or at a later date.

On Lex Licinia (F 1)

F 1 Gellius, Attic Nights

Chapter title: A passage from the oration of Favorinus, an old orator, about criticism of feasts and luxury, which he used when he spoke in support of the Lex Licinia on reducing expenditure.—[1] When we were reading an old speech of Favorinus, not an ineloquent man, in which speech <...> we learned the whole of it by heart, in order to be able to remember that extravagant living of that kind, by Hercules, is hateful. [2] These words, which we have appended, are those of Favorinus: “The leaders in gluttony and luxury declare that a feast is not elegant, unless, at the point when you are eating with the greatest relish, the dish is cleared and another better and richer dainty is supplied. This is now thought the very flower of a feast among those for whom extravagance and fastidiousness come forward in place of elegance, who say that no bird ought to be eaten whole except a fig pecker, who believe that a dinner is soiled by stinginess unless so many of the other birds and fatted fowl are provided that they [the guests] may be satisfied with the rumps and hinder parts,

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.fragmentary_republican_latin-oratory.2019