Pacuvium certe et Accium non solum tragoediis sed etiam orationibus suis expressit; adeo durus et siccus est.On King Pyrrhus in the Senate (F4–11)
In 280 BC, when, after the Battle of Heraclea, the Senate debated whether to make peace with King Pyrrhus of Epirus, Appius, already old and blind, made an effective
F 4 Cic. Sen. 16
[Cato:] ad Appi Claudi senectutem accedebat etiam ut caecus esset; tamen is cum sententia senatus inclinaret ad pacem cum Pyrrho foedusque faciendum, non dubitavit dicere illa quae versibus persecutus est Ennius [Enn. Ann. 199–200 Sk. = 6 Ann. F 15 FRL]: “quo vobis mentes, rectae quae stare solebant / antehac, dementes sese flexere †via1?” ceteraque gravissime; notum enim vobis carmen est, et tamen ipsius Appi exstat oratio.
F 5 Cic. Brut. 55
[Cicero:] possumus Appium Claudium suspicari disertum, quia senatum iamiam inclinatum a Pyrrhi pace revocaverit ...
F 6 Cic. Brut. 61
[Cicero:] nec vero habeo quemquam antiquiorem, cuius quidem scripta proferenda putem, nisi quem Appi Caeci
Menenius Lanatus, cos. 503 BC] and Appius. At any rate he modeled his expression upon Pacuvius and Accius not only in his tragedies, but also in his speeches: so stiff and dry is he.On King Pyrrhus in the Senate (F 4–11)
speech and prevented a peace deal (e.g., Val. Max. 8.13.5; Suet. Tib. 2.1; Cic. Phil. 1.11; Ov. Fast. 6.203–4; Flor. 1.13.20; Vir. ill. 34.9; Pompon. Dig. 18.104.22.168).
F 4 Cicero, On Old Age
[Cato:] There was also added to the old age of Appius Claudius the fact that he was blind. Nevertheless, when opinion in the Senate was inclining toward peace with Pyrrhus and making a treaty, he did not hesitate to say what Ennius has captured in verse [Enn. Ann. 199–200 Sk. = 6 Ann. F 15 FRL]: “where have your senses, which before used to stand upright, wandered off senseless and bent down [?]?”, and the rest, most impressively. For the poem is known to you, and, after all, the speech of Appius himself is extant.
F 5 Cicero, Brutus
[Cicero:] We may assume that Appius Claudius was a skilled speaker, since he recalled the Senate, already inclining toward it, from peace with Pyrrhus ...
F 6 Cicero, Brutus
[Cicero:] Still, I do not have anyone earlier whose writings I believe should be brought up [than M. Porcius Cato