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FRL III: ORATORY, PART 1

67B L. (AURELIUS) COTTA

L. (Aurelius) Cotta (tr. pl. 103, praet. before 91 BC; RE Aurelius 100) is introduced in Cicero as an example of someone who aspired to be an orator, but was of only

T 1 Cic. Brut. 137

[Cicero:] L. etiam Cotta praetorius in mediocrium oratorum numero, dicendi non ita multum laude processerat, sed de industria cum verbis tum etiam ipso sono quasi subrustico persequebatur atque imitabatur antiquitatem. atque ego et in hoc ipso Cotta et in aliis pluribus intellego me non ita disertos homines et rettulisse in oratorum numerum et relaturum. est enim propositum conligere eos qui hoc munere in civitate functi sint, ut tenerent oratorum locum ...

T 2 Cic. Brut. 259

[Atticus:] Cotta, qui{a}1 se valde dilatandis litteris a similitudine Graecae locutionis abstraxerat sonabatque contrarium Catulo, subagreste quiddam planeque subrusticum, alia quidem quasi inculta et silvestri via ad eandem laudem pervenerat.

T 3 Cic. De or. 3.42, 46

[Crassus:] est autem vitium, quod nonnulli de industria consectantur. rustica vox et agrestis quosdam delectat, quo

492

67B L. (AURELIUS) COTTA

67B L. (AURELIUS) COTTA

moderate ability (T 1). He was particularly known for his rustic pronunciation (T 1–3).

T 1 Cicero, Brutus

[Cicero:] L. Cotta too, the ex-praetor, among the ranks of orators of moderate ability, had not advanced very far in oratorical renown, but in the choice of words and especially also in a somewhat rustic pronunciation he actively pursued and imitated antiquity. And I am aware that in the case of this Cotta and many others I have put into the ranks of orators men who were not particularly eloquent, and I shall continue to do so. For it is my purpose to put together those who have made it their business in civic life to hold a place among the orators ...

T 2 Cicero, Brutus

[Atticus:] Cotta, who, by using broad vowels, had removed himself a great deal from resemblance to Greek pronunciation and, in contrast to Catulus [Q. Lutatius Catulus (63)], pronounced something rural and almost rustic, by another route, by an untended woodland path, as it were, attained the same reputation [of speaking pure Latin].

T 3 Cicero, On the Orator

[Crassus:] But there is a fault that some people deliberately affect. A rustic and countrified pronunciation pleases

493
DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.fragmentary_republican_latin-oratory.2019