In the following year he was accused under the Lex Plautia de vi by P. Albinovanus, who was instigated by P. Clodius Pulcher (137) to bring the charge (Cic. Vat. 41; Schol. Bob. ad Cic. Sest. [p.125.15–18 St.]). Defended by many, including Q. Hortensius Hortalus (92 F43–45), M. Licinius Crassus Dives (102 F 11), C. Licinius Macer Calvus (165 F 29), and Cicero (Cic. Sest.), Sestius was acquitted

T 1 Cic. Att. 7.17.2

= 111 T 10.

Against Antius (F2)

Catullus mentions a speech by Sestius against someone described as Antius petitor. The identity and role of Antius (petitor: “candidate” or “plaintiff”) are uncertain; the con-

F 2 Catull. 44.10–21

nam, Sestianus dum volo esse conviva, / orationem in Antium1 petitorem / plenam veneni et pestilentiae legi. / hic me gravedo frigida et frequens tussis / quassavit ... / ... / [18] nec deprecor iam, si nefaria scripta / Sesti recepso, quin gravedinem et tussim / [20] non mi, sed ipsi Sestio ferat frigus, / qui tunc vocat me, cum malum librum legi.



(Cic. Q Fr. 2.4.1) (TLRR 271). In the same year Sestius was charged with ambitus (TLRR 270; Cic. Q Fr. 2.3.5), and again in 52 BC, when he was also defended by Cicero (TLRR 323; Cic. Pro P. Sestio [de ambitu]: Crawford 1984, 222–24).

Cicero does not speak very highly of Sestius’ style (T1).

T 1 Cicero, Letters to Atticus

= 111 T 10.

Against Antius (F 2)

text and the usage of the word petitor (cf. 21 F30; Hor. Carm. 3.1.11) suggest that Antius was a candidate for office. Sestius might have tried to eliminate him.

F 2 Catullus

For, as I wanted to be Sestius’ dining companion, I read his speech against the candidate Antius, full of poison and plague. Thereupon a shivering cold and a constant cough battered me ... [18] Nor do I now complain, if I should ever take up Sestius’ abominable writings again, if a chill brings cold and cough [20] not upon me, but upon Sestius himself, who only invites me when I have read a nasty book.

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.fragmentary_republican_latin-oratory.2019