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On Government


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Table of Contents

"Against Verres" (II,5): how not to govern a province; "For Murena" - when to sacrifice a principle; "For Balbus" - the admission of foreigners to citizenship; "On the state" (III) - the ideal form of government; (V,VI) the good statesman; "On Laws" (III) - how to run the ideal government; the "Brutus" - the importance of oratory; the "Philippics" (IV), V, X) - against rule by one man. Appendices some of the arguments used in "For Balbus"; minor orators mentioned in the "Brutus".

About the Author

An accomplished poet, philosopher, rhetorician, and humorist, Marcus Tullius Cicero (106 BC- 43 BC) was also the greatest forensic orator Rome ever produced. To Cicero, service to the res publica (literally, "the public affair") was a Roman citizen's highest duty. At age 26 (in 80 BC), he successfully defended a man prosecuted unjustly by a crony of the bloodthirsty dictator Sulla. In 69 BC, he brought to order the corrupt Sicilian governor Verres. As consul in 63 BC, he put down the Catilinarian conspiracy; later, he was sent into exile for refusing to join the First Triumvirate. Late in life, he led the Senate's gallant but unsuccessful battle against Antony, for which he paid with his life on 7 December 43 BC.

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