aut in contentionem veniant contineri putat: sitne, quid sit, quale sit. ... [45] ... tres fecit et M. Antonius his quidem verbis: “paucae res sunt quibus ex rebus omnes orationes nascuntur, factum non factum, ius iniuria, bonum malum.” sed quoniam quod iure dicimur fecisse non hunc solum intellectum habet, ut lege, sed illum quoque, ut iuste fecisse videamur, secuti Antonium apertius voluerunt eosdem status distinguere, itaque dixerunt coniecturalem, legalem, iuridicalem ...


L. Licinius Crassus (140–91 BC; cos. 95, censor 92 BC; RE Licinius 55) was regarded, along with M. Antonius (65), as the outstanding orator of his age (T 1–3, 5–7; Cic. Brut. 145, 148, 186, 189, 215: 65 T 6, 333; De or. 3.16: 65 T 2). He did not leave much in writing (T 12; Cic. De or. 2.8; Orat. 132: 80 T 6); but some of his speeches were published and available in Cicero’s time (F18, 22, 34). Crassus is one of the main speakers in Cicero’s De oratore.

As censor with Cn. Domitius Ahenobarbus (69), Crassus issued an edict forbidding the activity of Latin rhetoricians in the city of Rome (Cic. De or. 3.93; Tac. Dial. 35.1; Gell. NA 15.11.2; Suet. Gram. et rhet. 25.2). As a young



45] and thinks that everything that comes into either dispute or contention is covered thereby: whether it is the case, what it is [i.e., how to define it], what its nature is [i.e., how to assess it].... [45] ... M. Antonius has also assumed three types, indeed in these words: “There are only a few things from which all speeches are born: done or not done, right or wrong, good or bad.”1 But since, when we are said to have done something rightly, this does not only have the meaning that [it was done] legally, but also that we seem to have done it justly, Antonius’ followers wished to distinguish these issues more clearly and therefore spoke of the conjectural, legal, and juridical [issue] ...


man, Crassus trained daily, for instance by reading famous orations and rendering them in his own words and later commenting on Greek orations (Cic. De or. 1.154–55; Quint. Inst. 10.5.2). He attended lectures of the Academic Metrodorus, when he was quaestor in Asia (Cic. De or. 2.365, 3.75), and of various other philosophers in Athens (Cic. De or. 1.45), but he pretended to look down on such studies and to prefer Roman scholars (Cic. De or. 2.4: 65 T 8). Crassus was a friend of the poet Archias (Cic. Arch. 6); he studied law with L. Coelius Antipater, who was also his friend, and was regarded as a legal expert (Cic. De or. 2.54; Brut. 102, 145).

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.fragmentary_republican_latin-oratory.2019