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Cicero Life and Career Revision
Transcript of Cicero Life and Career Revision
Revision 1. Cicero's Background and Family 2. Cicero's Early
Career 1 3. Cicero's Early Career 2 4. Cicero's Mid Career 1 5. Cicero's Mid Career 2 6. Cicero's Late Career 1 7. Cicero's Late Career 2 8. Cicero and Caesar 9. Cicero and Pompey 10. Cicero and Octavian 11. Cicero and Marc Antony 12. Cicero and the Senate 13. Cicero and Politics 14. Cicero and the fall
of the Republic Which party did Cicero belong to?
Who were his allies in the Senate?
Was Cicero popular?
What made him popular/unpopular?
What did he most hate about the Senate and his fellow senators?
What reforms and changes did he call for?
How does he regard the republican institutions?
How does his background help and hinder Cicero?
Roscius Case Details
In 80 BC Cicero defended Sextus Roscius who had been accused of parricide
Roscius the Elder, a wealthy man was murdered near the Pallacianian Baths.
A long standing feud had existed between the elder Roscius and two relitives (Titus Capito + Titus Magnus)
Cicero aims to bring suspition onto these men. Cicero tells us that news of the death was brought to Capito and not to the son. Within 4 days Chrysogonus, a favorite of Sulla, formed a conspiracy with the two Rocsii to defraud Roscius the younger of his estate.
Roscius the elder's name was put onto the proscription list after his death resulting in the public sale of his estate.
.Chrysogonus bought the property, worth 6,000,000, for 2000 sesterces.
.This event caused uproar in Ameria and wanted to restore Roscius of his estate.
Afer finding out Roscius wasn't on the best terms with his father before his death Chrosogonus decided to put the blame of the murder onto him. Roscius fled Rome.
Cicero was finally persuaded to take the case.
Importance of the defence of Roscius for Cicero
and his Career - This was Cicero's first case so it was the make or
break moment of his career. It was well publicised as it was the first murder trial since
Sulla's proscriptions. Cicero was really in the public eye. It gives Cicero the chance to prove himself
in the law courts. It shows that Cicero can make changes by being couragious [he stood up to Sulla indirectly] The fact he won such a corrupt case shows both his oratory skill
and that the system can change. Cicero's Defence
.Firstly Cicero had to refute the accusations on which Erucius (prosecuting
lawyer) has attempted to base his charge of parricide
.Then Cicero moved from defence to attack, implicating Capito and Magnus for the crime.
.In the third part he directly attacks Chrysogonus
"Why was the property of a patriotic citizen confiscated and sold so cheaply afterthe proscriptions had ceased?" Past Papers Essay Questions: Specimen Paper (2009)
In the period 67 to 61 BC, to what extent do you think Cicero showed himself to be a man of principle or an opportunist? Give reasons for your answer.
To what extent AND for what reasons did the relationship between Cicero and Caesar change between 60 and 44 BC? January 2009
What do you find to praise and what do you find to criticise in Cicero's career between 61 and 50 BC? Give reasons for your views.
How effective a part did Cicero play in Roman politics from the outbreak of the Civil War in 49 BC to his death in 43BC? Give the reasons for your views. June 2008
How far did Cicero's rejection of Caesar's offers contribute to his exile in 58 BC AND how important were other factors? Give the reasons for your views.
How strong was Cicero's commitment to 'abolishing tyranny' from the start of the Civil War until the death of Caesar? Give the reasons for your views.
How significant were the hight points in Cicero's career due to his skills as an orator AND how important were other factors. Give the reasons for your views. June 2007
To what extent do you think Cicero was an 'utter fool' in the period 62 BC (Pompey's return from Asia Minor) to 56BC (conference at Luca). Give the reasons for your views.
'What a disgrace'. How far to you think that Cicero himself acted disgracefully in the period from the outbreak of the Civil War in 49 BC to Caesar's murder in 44 BC. Give the reasons for your views.
'Between the death of Caesar in 44 BC and Cicero's own death in 43BC, his leadership of the senate was as energetic as it had been in his consulship in 63 BC.' To what extent do you agree with this statement. Give the reasons for your views.
To what extent to you think Cicero deserves congratualations for his career between the trial of Roscius in 78 BC and his election in 64 BC to the consulship? Give the reasons for your views.?
How close was Cicero's relationship with Pompey AND Caesar after his return from exile in 57BC until the outbreak of Civil War in 49BC? Give the reasons for your views.
•Cicero was prosecuting Verres because he wanted to protest the dignitas of the senators and his reputation.
•Verres was being prosecuted for many things e.g. stealing funds from his governor (Gnaeus Papirius Carbo), stealing from temples in Rome and Asia. He also abandoned his governor to side with Sulla in the war. His final charge was the mis-government of Sicily, he extorted and stole whatever he could from Sicily.
Overview of the Prosecution of Verres.
•Motivation – formal request from his protégés, case could win support in other provinces, and for his upcoming Aedile election as well as increasing his Dignitas.
•Reveals corruption in senate of Nobles supporting each other, bribery and nepotism.
•He beats Hortensius, increasing his Dignitas and fame.
•Manner of victory is against the odds and corruption. Makes him the best orator in Rome
•Sulla Stripped tribunes of power leading to prejudiced judges and bribed jurors and easily manipulated courts. Cicero truly despised Verres and calls him an “appalling disgrace for our country, because Verres was corrupting and destroying Rome’s oldest province, Sicily.
Verres committed various atrocities, such as murdering and torturing Roman citizens, and attempting to further himself and his family over that of the Republic and Rome, causing distrust between Rome and her allies.
Cicero drew the judges attention to Verres outright disrespect for the senate and the republic system by not attempting to cover up his crimes.
Verres knew that Cicero would lead to him being prosecuted so he attempted to bribe the judges.
Cicero had many obstacles in his course for prosecution of Verres, namely Verres’ defender Hortensius being elected to Consul, the most powerful position in Rome.
Cicero attacks Rome’s political system and the oligarchy of power, by questioning why a rich man has his friends elected to powerful position to help him get acquitted, and quotes Curio who prematurely congratulated Verres on his acquittal after Hortensius was elected to Consul.
This trial led to some of the senators becoming anxious about Verres and the way he was attempting to monopolize the power between him, his family and his friends.
This trial led to some of the senators becoming anxious about Verres and the way he was attempting to monopolize the power between him, his family and his friends.
Verres then attempts to ruin Cicero’s political career by trying to bribe the tribes and get them to stop them voting for him so that he couldn’t become an Aedile.
Cicero gained support from the citizens by praising the way that they blocked Verres’ plans to control the elections with money through their common sense and not allowing Verres’ money to undermine the Republican system.
•Cicero openly tells Quintus Metellus that he is corrupt for trying to force any Sicilian witnesses to support Verres.
•By naming those Verres didn’t want to have as judges Cicero is flattering those judges that are there, asserting that these judges are too good so Verres didn’t want them. Also he takes it as proof of Verres’ guilt because if he was innocent he wouldn’t have minded what judges he had.
•The presence of Hortensius would have persuaded Cicero to take the case because Hortensius was one of the best lawyers in Rome and Cicero must have felt some competition, and if he won he would have great fame.
•Cicero plans to reform the courts because he wants to do away with all the bribery and corruption where senators are getting off extremely lightly for fairly serious crimes.
•Verres desperately wanted to postpone the trial because there was a festival near when the judges would change over and the judges that were likely to be next he thought to be easy to bribe.
VERRES III Verres did all that he could to avoid prosecution, he put his brothers in places of power, set up a rival prosecutor Hortensius against Cicero and attempted to delay the trial so there would be judges that were easier to bribe, “his hopes of salvation were based on his money and his money only”
•Cicero blocked the bribing of the judges and went to Sicily for 50 days to gather evidence.
•Verres posed a great threat to the republic in that he gave the senatorial order a bad reputation and unpopularity, the people were losing faith and if that happened the republic wouldn’t work. VERRES II
•Cicero wants the court system to be reformed to stop the corruption.
•Cicero wants the knights to be given control of the courts because they were never suspected of corruption whilst they were in charge.
•Cicero said that Verres planned to take a year’s profit for himself, a second for his protectors and counsel and the third for the judges who were to prosecute him.
•Cicero indirectly threatened the senators and judges by saying that they will be placing a verdict on Rome and answering the question “will a court of Senators convict a guilty man if he is rich?”
•Cicero also changed the way he brought his witnesses forward by having everyone state their case then making his point of what crime he would be examining and bringing forward witnesses to those particular crimes within the relating speeches.
VERRES I - OVERVIEW
Cicero was wary of Octavian emulating his adoptive father by raising an army made up of remaining veterans from Caesar’s legions and from the cancelled expedition to Parthia. However, this small force of a few legions was useful in helping the consular lead legions to oppose Antony during the Battle of Mutina. Octavian went with the consuls but was very much the junior. The consuls Hirtius and Pansa were killed which left Octavian as the only general to survive the battle. This victory vindicates Cicero’s attack on Antony as an enemy. Cicero saw this battle as a decisive victory over possible tyrannical rule, and a step forward towards the vain hope of a restoration of the old republic.
Octavian Saviour of the Republic Cicero as Mentor
After Mutina, Octavian with a much larger army at his disposal asked Cicero if he could persuade the senate to elect him consul after the deaths of both current consuls. Cicero saw an opportunity to create a partnership with the youngster who would, he believed, do Cicero’s bidding. At last Cicero had the prospect of having more than words as weapons and so he agreed with this, providing that Octavian follow his council and guidance. However, Octavian was one step ahead and chose to use Cicero to get himself elected consul, and once he had legitimate imperium he was not going to waste it with obedience to Cicero’s advice and guidance. He quickly declares Brutus and Cassius murderers and enemies of the state and is now in a position to avenge his adopted father’s murder.
In the first few months after the Ides of March, Octavian was against Antony as he needed the senate on his side to become consul. Siding with Antony at such an early stage would bring opposition to Octavian from the senate, as well as Brutus and Cassius themselves. Although both on the same political party (Caesarian (or populist) Party), neither would let the other rule supreme over the other. Cicero was naturally against Antony due to his populist views, his friendship to Caesar (so he would want vengeance), his popularity with the legions, and his tyrannical and bullying attitude towards the senate.
As written in his letters, Cicero clearly praises Octavian, while showing his great disregard for Antony. He says ‘Octavian is an excellent boy, of whom I personally have high hopes for the future’ He also goes on to say ‘If Octavian had not mobilised the ex-servicemen, and if two legions of Antony’s army had not transferred themselves to his command, Antony would have committed every sort of crime and cruelty’ As seen here, Cicero is thankful towards Octavian for his actions, and relates back to Cicero’s view that Octavian is a saviour to the republic.
In the end the realisation that the forces raised by Brutus and Cassius were much greater than those of either Octavian or Antony reunites the Julian legions under a common cause. To destroy the liberators. To survive they had to unite or face being wiped out one by one. They also needed money to raise and fund their own army and so began a series of proscriptions that were notorious as the main agenda was greed and fund-raising. The most famous victim was Cicero. For Antony, if Cicero was to be spared this would be a deal breaker and despite the protests of Octavian he gets his way. Many years later as the Emperor Augustus Octavian expresses deep regret that he had not done more to protect Cicero which reveals the level of respect, admiration and perhaps debt of gratitude that he owed personally to Cicero. Opposition to Antony Cicero praises Octavian
Cicero abandoned by Octavian His ultimate goal and aim was to achieve Concordia Ordinum which was an alliance between the senators and the equites and an overall harmony between the social classes where everyone knew their place. This is particularly interesting considering that were Cicero’s ultimate goal achieved, a Novus homo such as himself would be expected to know his place, and would struggle even more than Cicero did to climb the cursus honorum. He realised that fundamental changes to the organization and distribution of power within the republic was needed to secure its future. He envisioned a ‘selfless nobility of successful individuals” where the provinces were not exploited and bribery was eradicated.
Cicero was a famous orator and achieved the highest possible position at the youngest possible age. He was quaestor by the age of 31, aedile by the age of 37, praetor at 40 and consul at 43.
Initially Cicero was an optimate, although at one stage he was allied with the populares his sentiments always lay with the optimates. Despite their rejection of him due to his Novus homo status, he still sought their acceptance fervently. The fact that the optimates faction never truly accepted him undermined his efforts to reform the republic while preserving the constitution. Most of Cicero’s correspondence are written to or received from Atticus, a close friend of his who’s advice and opinion he appreciated. He also shows concern for Turio, his scribe. Cicero held a strong alliance with Pompey and his relatives, he relied on Pompey and supported him, but this may have been because he was a better alternative to Caesar. Cicero also had a lot of respect for Curio who he saw as an ally within the senate and supported him in his aedileship. His other allies include Caelius and Cato, and he also tried to form a bond with Octavian which failed but was close with the liberators. He felt that the oligarchy was failing which was due to the leading patricians like Crassus and Hortensius. He felt that the ruling classes were selfish and realised that widespread reforms weren’t achievable but perhaps to return to a ‘golden age’ of the republic he wanted the civil wars to end and overall peace in Rome and people to sort out their problems politically through oratory work. Athough Cicero and Pompey were allies Cicero lost faith in him after his foolish actions in the war against Caesar, which meant that Caesar no longer acted as a buffer between the two and this led to more conflicts between Cicero and Caesar. Their conflict was due to Cicero’s refusal of Caesar’s offer to join the first triumvirate, and Cicero’s career and dignitas were deeply impacted by Caesar. Clodius was a deep enemy of Cicero’s during their encounter in the Bona Dea scandal. Cicero’s eventual end was due to the foe he created in Anthony who turned Octavian against Cicero who ordered to have him killed. Cicero’s Position Within The Senate Cicero’s Vision For The Senate Cicero’s Issues With The Senate Friends in the Senate Enemies in the Senate His patriotism - which Pompey comments on in a letter to Cicero in 49BC: “your exceptional and unceasing patriotism”. However, it is worth noting that Pompey was likely trying to flatter Cicero, as he was trying to persuade him to take his side against Caesar in the civil war.
•His conservatism – preserving the ways of the forefathers, also known as mos maiorum, was a fundamental belief of the Roman Republic. It is not difficult to imagine why an aristocratic, patrician oligarchy, would be keen on ideas of preservation. Thus, Cicero’s political beliefs slotted nicely into the Senate. It is unfortunate that this same belief system impeded his career on numerous occasions, for example when the Senate neglected to assist him against the wrath of Clodius (if indeed, they could stand up to the will of the Triumvirate), leading to Cicero’s exile.
•His rhetoric – Cicero was unsurpassed at oratory in his day, even by Hortensius. This allowed him to forge political alliances within the Senate by utilising his powers of persuasion, but also earned him the respect of his peers.
•His triumphs – Winning an influential and challenging case such as the pro-Roscius or against Verres gained him respect and alliances. The Philippics are also an example of one of Cicero’s triumphs, earning him tremendous admiration and respect, but at the cost of his life.
Why was Cicero so popular Cicero, while popular, was never fully accepted by
the Senate due to being a ‘new man’. Nevertheless, he was
devoted to its principles, seeking to reform it rather than replace it.
These reforms were in the hope of achieving a Concordia Ordinum,
or harmony of the orders. Cicero had allies such as Pompey and
Lucullus, enemies like Antony and Clodius, and those who
came somewhere inbetween: Caesar and Crassus for
instance. It is difficult to classify Cicero’s relationship with
the Senate as positive or negative, as there are innumerable
examples to suggest either way.
In conclusion: Letters Past Paper Questions Overview Referring to Cicero as general is a sign of respect
Appears to be comforted in some manner from hearing from Cicero
Claims that they are going to work together, rather than each individual working for personal glory
Pompey has respect for Cicero and feels he could help in their planning’s
Pompey recognises Cicero as a strong ally of the Republican cause
Cicero is attempting to gain Pompey’s favour
Signs that they had corresponded before
Cicero requesting that they become associates
Glorifying them both; Pompey with his military campaign and Cicero with his work against Cataline
No signs of conflict however the feelings maybe one sided as afterwards Pompey in fact did not ally with Cicero as much. For example Cicero did not help him secure the land he wished for his troops Cicero appears to be annoyed with Pompey
He appears to be shifting too much blame onto Pompey for the way the war is going, this is likely not a direct hatred towards Pompey but more a discomfort of the situation
Cicero clearly has not totally grasped the tactical situation, maybe clouding his judgement of Pompey
Cicero feels betrayed by Pompey as if he has left the Republic to die and defend itself
There may be a possible lost of trust/respect, although it is likely frustration at the situation rather than at Pompey himself
From Pompey, proconsul
(20 February 49 BC) To Pompey in Asia Minor
(Summer 62 BC) To Atticus (24 February 49 BC) Cicero is still against the Triumvirate at this point
Pompey may only have called Cicero to stabilise problems within the Triumvirate and against other matters i.e. Clodius
Cicero is in gratitude to Pompey at the present time
Cicero largely out of politics during this period, thus not helping Pompey until civil war
Relationship to Pompey was clearly not as strong as Pompey’s was to Caesar
Valued his own protection over saving Cicero
Possible annoyance from Pompey of Cicero boasting of his achievements (Summer 62BC) Stuck by Pompey through friendship
His political aims were clearly on line with Pompey, or at least more so than with Caesar
Criticisms of Pompey can be taken into account (24 February 49 BC)
To what extent did Cicero deserve to be exiled? How honourable was Cicero from the civil war to Caesars death? How close was Cicero’s relationship with Pompey AND Caesar after his return from exile in 57 BC until the civil war in 49 BC Pompey and Cicero had much in common: they were of similar age; served together in their youth; were instinctively republican; had mutual respect; were natural allies; both vied to be the first; in their respective fields there had few if any peers
Pompey and Cicero appeared to be allied for the majority of their time even though Pompey was complicit in his exile
No open attacks or conflict appeared between the two men however both may have had reasons to feel annoyed or frustrated with each other in private; Pompey for Cicero’s boasting about Cataline and Cicero for Pompey’s plan to leave Rome during the civil war
Ultimately their conservatism and desire to preserve an outdated institution was their downfall and despite their best efforts neither of them protected or restored the Republic from becoming a monarchy
Both were partners of Caesar in some form but neither truly “friends”
In early stages Cicero thought sought a grand alliance with Pompey which could have ended up dominating Rome in the same way the triumvirate did
During Cicero’s year as consul, Vatinius was elected quaestor and Cicero sent him to Puteoli to guard the gold and silver of the city. His extortions were so extravagant that the citizens complained of his conduct to Cicero.
Cicero also accuses him of robbery and extortion when Vatinius was serving as a legatus under Gaius Cosconius.
In 59BC, while in office of tribune of the plebs, he sold his services to Julius Caesar. He obtained several provinces for Caesar such as Cisalpine Gaul and Illyricum.
Vatinius testifies against Milo and Sestius; Cicero’s friends and thus continues the animosity between eachother.
After gaining the office of praetor over Cato, Gaius Licinius Calvus accused him of bribery. Cicero defended him despite his dislike, due to his fear of the Triumvirate and the desire for protection against Clodius.
Vatinius Rullus was a tribune of the people in 63BC and brought forward his agrian law which called for a commision of 10 men to be empowered to purchase land for distribution among the poorer citizens and to found colonies.
It is said that this was a move designed at clearing out a large part of the pauper population of Rome who were said to be a menace to peace.
Cicero opposed the law calling the powers given to the 10 men made them like kings.
The people showed little interest as they Caesar would prefer the dole rather than distant allotments.
In summary the whole thing was probably engineered by Julius Caesar to strengthen his democratic popular standing. The aristocats of Rome would have to face the people’s displeasure at rejecting a popular law which would then leave them more friendly to later bills and laws passed by Julius Caesar.
Rullus and his Agrian Law Gaius Rabirius who in the past had been involved in the death of Lucius Appuleius Saturninus, was accused by Titus Labienus (pushed into it by Caesar) of being implicated in the murder. It is thought that the Last Decree was used to execute Saturninus and his followers.
Cicero defended Rabirius but ultimately he was condemned. Before the people had ratified the decision the military flag was pulled down from Janiculum Hill which essentially dissolved the assembly.
Caesar allowed the matter to drop as his real motive was to express his disdain of the Last Decree and how only the people should be allowed to execute.
Rabirius Lucius Sergius Catalina was the head of a conspiracy designed to overthrow the republic and take control.
Cicero drove Cataline from the city with his Catilinarian Orations and to demoralise his troops gathering out of Rome, he utilised the Last Decree and executed the conspirators who had remained in Rome without trial. It effectively crushed the rebellion.
Caesar opposed the use of the Last Decree favouring imprisonment in remote Italian towns. He swayed many of the Senate from the supporting the extreme measure but Cato rose to support it and the motion went ahead.
The Catilinarian Conspiracy Cicero was a major political player and the Triumvirate realised he would be an obstacle to their plans. Caesar decided to offer Cicero a place on the Triumvirate but thanks to his Republican values he refused. Caesar then had his lapdog Clodius take revenge and exile Cicero for executing Roman citizens without trial.
Conference at Luca
Despite Cicero’s continued efforts to widen the breach between Pompey and Caesar, along with Crassus the three renewed the Triumvirate.
Following Luca, Pompey acted as Caesar’s messenger to Cicero and they forced him to submit to the Triumvirate. He was forced to publicly recant his words and views on the Triumvirate; a crushing blow for his pride and dignitas.
He was accused of high treason due to leaving his province to Egypt under Pompey’s orders. The judges were bribed and Cicero was persuaded to say as little as he could by Pompey. Then as a special favour to Pompey he defended him from the charge of extortion during the administraton of his province.
He later joined Caesar in the Civil War but took no active part against his old patron Pompey.
Gabinius Caesar visited Cicero in his villa with a large cohort and Cicero entertained them. Reportedly Caesar had an enjoyable experience although Cicero is noted as saying what a drag it was.
At this point it’s worth examining the relationship between the two politicians. They both had a mutual respect for the other’s ability. Their oratory prowess, the letter writing and their political expertise The Visit
Clodius dressed as a woman infiltrated the Bona Dea festival and Cicero disproved his alibi and thus earned his enmity.
Caesar’s wife Pompeia was at the festival and she was promptly divorced under the words that “even Caesar’s wife must be above suspicion.”
Clodius later takes the office of tribune of the Plebs and allies with Caesar. He uses this position to exile Cicero.
Bona Dea Scandal Caesar is assassinated by the Liberatores and Cicero expresses unqualified admiration of the deed. This approval is tempered by an annoyance at the fact he was excluded from the plot.
While stabbing Caesar in the Senate Brutus cried out Cicero’s name calling for him to restore the Republic.
The Ides of March Sulla was the previous official Dictator of Rome before Caesar. He was the beginning of the end for the Roman republic. By becoming Dictator it showed how powerful it could be and how control over the army meant control over everything. This appealed to people like Caesar or Pompey who seek to further their Dignitas and honour.
Verres embodied all the corruption in Rome and its government. He looted Syracuse and took famous art etc. By putting so much corruption into the Roman government system he had caused unrest amongst the people who eventually got fed up. The reason he got so much freedom is because it was granted to him by Sulla + a large amount of booty.
Catiline was responsible for an attack against the Republic in an attempt to overthrow it. He was unofficially supported by Caesar. By making this attempt against the Republic he revealed how weak it truly was and showed characters such as Caesar how not to do it.
Pompey establishes himself as a military leader and gains great support from the army. Everyone feared him because of this just as Sulla was feared when he was in the same position. With this fear Pompey could undermine the power of the senate if he wished to. He used his army to gain Caesar’s Consulship.
Caesar used his political skills to forge a political alliance between crassus pompey and himself. Together they dominated the poltical arena of rome, passing laws, gaining dignatas and glory for themselves. Caesar conqued gaul, gaining support with the plebeians. However he gained many enemies in the senate, fearing him to be a dictator. With crassus dead after he attacked the parthians and caesars daughter/ pompeys wife dead the triumvirate fell apart.
Caesar marches across the Rubicon. He marches on Rome and seizes it. Pompey and his supporters flee from Italy to the powerhouse in the east were Pompey’s supporters and wealth was unlimited. However after wiping out Pompey’s supporters in Spain Caesar defeats Pompey at the battle of Pharsalus. This was the beginning of the end for the republic. The sword, not the pen now ruled Rome.
After the civil war Caesar appointed in himself in may offices, eventually receiving dictator for life. This contributed to the fall of the republic because people saw it was possible for one man to rule Rome. He improved roads, taxation, and was planning an invasion of Parthia, into India, through china and back onto eastern Germania through Russia. However this never came to pass because of his…
On the ides of March senate members assassinated Caesar. This contributed to the fall of the republic because the people loved Caesar and were enraged by his death, they questioned the actions of the senate and followed Antony and Octavian against Brutus.
An alliance between Octavian, Antony and Lepidus. This alliance is what led to Octavian’s dictatorship and therefore the fall of the republic.
Republic vs the second triumvirate. Republic loses therefore signifying its death and resistance against a coming Empire.
Cicero was the last piece of the republic to go. His death symbolised its true abolishment and Octavian’s victory.
It was this that tied him to the traditional Roman elite.
According to Plutarch, Cicero was an extremely talented student.
He was offered the opportunity to study law under Quintus Mucius Scaevola.
Around the late 90's and early 80's Cicero began studying philosophy.
He fell in love with the philosophical teachings of Plato. He even called Plato his God.
He also studied law, oratory and literature which would go on to serve him well in later life.
Cicero's father was an equestrian with good connections in Rome.
Cicero's farther however was semi- invalid and so could not enter public life, he made up for this by studying extensively.
Not much was know about Cicero's mother, Helvia, but she was described by Cicero's brother Quintus as being a thrifty housewife.
Cicero married Terentia around the age of 27, in 79 BC.
It was a marriage of convenience.
Terentia was of a patrician background and a wealthy heiress.
Terentia tried to offer Cicero consolation after he was exiled.
Cicero's full name was Marcus Tullius Cicero, also known as Tully.
Born in 106 BC in Arpinum, a hill town 60 miles south of Rome.
Cicero was not a "Roman" in the traditional sense and was self- conscious of this for his entire life.
Cicero served in the army at the age of 16 before starting his education in philosophy, law, oratory and literature.
From the years after Cicero was born you needed to speak both Latin and Greek to be considered "Cultured".
So Cicero was educated in the teachings of the ancient Greek rhetoricians.
Cicero used his knowledge of Greek to translate many concepts of Greek philosophy into Latin, making these philosophical works accessible to a wider audience. A B Cicero praises his wife's strength and bravery.
It is said that Terentia encouraged Cicero to go against Catiline.
According to Plutarch "she took more interest in her husbands political than she allowed him to take in household affairs".
Cicero often complained to his friends that Terentia had betrayed him, but he never explained how.
Terentia wanted Cicero to be more tolerant.
Cicero was not interested in sex.
They divorced in 45 BC
Cicero had two children, his daughter Tullia and son Marcus.
Cicero had great love for his daughter, however she became ill and died after giving birth to a son in 45 BC.
Cicero hoped Marcus would become a philosopher like him, however he decided to join the army of Pompey in 49 BC.
After Pompey's defeat in 48 BC Marcus was pardoned by Caesar.
Cicero sent him to study as a disciple of the peripatetic philosopher Kratippos in 48 BC, however instead of studying Marcus took this opportunity to drink and party, far away from his father’s judgemental eye.
In 46 BC Cicero married a young girl named Publilia.
It was though that Cicero married Publilia because he needed to money after having to repay dowry of Terentia.
The marriage did not last long. C
Politics played a huge role in Cicero’s life and career. He was a major political figure in the late republic and played a vital role in the events that lead to the downfall of the Republican system. His instinct was conservative and he sought continually to preserve the institutions of the Republic from internal and external threats. He allied himself to various figures and parties during his career yet his political home was closer to the optimates rather than popular causes.
To make a name for himself and to enoble his family could only happen for Cicero through the law courts and ultimately via election as a magistrate and finally as a senior member of the senate. Yet, Cicero also tried to steer a middle way between the two main groupings by promoting a political view called concordia ordinum which embodies his compromising, conservative yet paradoxically at times a progressive approach.
Cicero understood politics and was a master at as can be seen in the events described in his career. Yet he was also at times short sighted, naïve and at times tended to miss the bigger picture the greatest example of which is the emergence of the strong and power-hungry military leaders.
Introduction Cicero appealed for the case of Roscius, a man accused of patricide, but managed to gain his acquittal in the courts using his superb oratory, and also introduced his knowledge for politics by secretly attacking Sulla, by means of blaming the murder upon two of Sulla’s favourite men. This small court case gained Cicero popularity within the senate and with the people of Rome. It also marked out Cicero’s political courage in challenging the corruption of the senate at a time when the Senate was dominant. Also, he did it in way that managed to appeal to their better instincts and so was able to create support for his ideas while minimising those who would be alienated or opposed to him. As a politician he was learning quickly to build an effective system of allies and minimise the number of enemies.
After successfully beating Catiline in the elections for consul, Catiline began a conspiracy to overthrow the senate by use of military force. As consul for that year, Cicero began using speeches to hinder his actions, and to turn the senate against the possible tyranny that was fermenting by Catiline’s motives. Cicero’s speeches at the time managed to sway the popular opinion of the senate away from Catiline and his patrician virtues, to Cicero’s novus homo rank in order to remove Catiline from politics, and also from Rome. During this time, all Cicero’s actions were done lawfully, and was not given any more power than a consul normally has. Although later, and appeal by Clodius will prosecute Cicero for his unlawful murder of Catiline without trial.
Cicero gained this first step in the cursus honorum due to his large support from among the people. This was no mean feat and he had to canvass support among the tribes as well as influential and wealthy patrons. He was a new man and was untested. Politically, the province he was to due to assist in governing, Sicily, became a base for Cicero to further his support by acquiring clients who he would later represent in Rome. He also acquired a reputation of competence by managing this first official role fairly and orderly. Due to his superb handling of finances there, he was asked by the people, his clients (most of who were naturally allied to their fellow ‘knight’) to help prosecute the corrupt governor of Sicily, Verres. In this appeal, Cicero faced the greatest lawyer in Rome, Hortensius, and with one flawless opening speech, managed to successfully prosecute Verres for his actions. The Quaestorship and Verres (75 B.C.) The Trial of Roscius (80 B.C.) The Consulship (63 B.C.) According to a new law passed, Cicero was sent to do his years service in his pro-consulship state of Cilicia. During this time, Cicero was absent from politics and was unable to have any say during the goings on in Rome, and it’s most critical peak in its history (The death of Crassus left just two men in complete power, both of whom were drifting apart month by month). Cicero in Cilicia (51 B.C.) The First Civil war (49–44 B.C.) Upon Cicero’s return, he was able to garner support of Pompey in the war, while also retaining Caesar’s respect and friendship. During this time, he followed Pompey during the battles across Greece, but after the Battle of Pharsalus managed to join Caesar in his restoration of the republic. After the death of Caesar, Cicero was taken aback at the sudden murder committed by Brutus and Cassius. Although supportive of the act, Cicero claimed no partake in the murder even though Brutus cried out Cicero’s name after he had killed Caesar.
The death of Caesar (44 B.C.) – Possibly the most courageous act of Cicero’s career. Cicero used his oratory skills to dethrone Antony during is bully and controlling of Rome’s politics. His speeches caused Antony to expel himself from Rome and then to declare war against Rome. As a result of these speeches, Cicero caused his death when Antony, as part of the Second Triumvirate, ordered his execution. However, these speeches had given the rise to power by Octavian, who used this absence of power to claim it for himself. Cicero’s Philippics (43 B.C.) –
Cicero was elected Consul for the year 63 BC. His co-consul for the year, Gaius Antonius Hybrida, played a minor role. During his year in office he thwarted a conspiracy to overthrow the Roman Republic, led by Lucius Sergius Catilina. Cicero procured a Senatus Consultum de Re Publica Defendenda (a declaration of martial law), and he drove Catiline from the city with four vehement speeches (the Catiline Orations), which to this day remain outstanding examples of his rhetorical style. The Orations listed Catiline and his followers' debaucheries, and denounced Catiline's senatorial sympathizers as roguish and dissolute debtors, clinging to Catiline as a final and desperate hope. Cicero demanded that Catiline and his followers leave the city. At the conclusion of his first speech, Catiline burst from the Temple of Jupiter Stator. In his following speeches Cicero did not directly address Catiline but instead addressed the Senate. By these speeches Cicero wanted to prepare the Senate for the worst possible case; he also delivered more evidence against Catiline.
Catiline fled and left behind his followers to start the revolution from within while Catiline assaulted the city with an army of "moral bankrupts and honest fanatics". Catiline had attempted to involve the Allobroges, a tribe of Transalpine Gaul, in their plot, but Cicero, working with the Gauls, was able to seize letters which incriminated the five conspirators and forced them to confess their crimes in front of the Senate.
The Senate then deliberated upon the conspirators' punishment. As it was the dominant advisory body to the various legislative assemblies rather than a judicial body, there were limits to its power; however, martial law was in effect, and it was feared that simple house arrest or exile — the standard options — would not remove the threat to the state. At first most in the Senate spoke for the "extreme penalty"; many were then swayed by Julius Caesar, who decried the precedent it would set and argued in favor of life imprisonment in various Italian towns. Cato then rose in defense of the death penalty and all the Senate finally agreed on the matter. Cicero had the conspirators taken to the Tullianum, the notorious Roman prison, where they were strangled. Cicero himself accompanied the former consul Publius Cornelius Lentulus Sura, one of the conspirators, to the Tullianum. Cicero received the honorific "Pater Patriae" for his efforts to suppress the conspiracy, but lived thereafter in fear of trial or exile for having put Roman citizens to death without trial.
Overview of Consulship: Each year the Vestal Virgins, together with a select group of patrician ladies, conducted a secret rite to the Bona Dea. By tradition this ceremony was held in the home of the current Pontifex Maximus. In the year 62 BC, following the consulship of Cicero and the destruction of the Catilinarian conspiracy, the office of Pontifex Maximus (more a political than religious office) was held by Julius Caesar. Since all males, even male animals, were excluded from the event, Caesar absented himself for the evening and the ceremony was planned and hosted by his wife Pompeia.
Since Pompeia was not the most stable of women, her mother-in-law Aurelia, Caesar's respected and noble mother was actually in charge of the details. She noticed one woman who was heavily cloaked, tall, and with an affected tone in her voice. Aurelia prided herself on knowing every guest present but she could not recall this individual. She asked a servant girl to keep an eye on the unknown guest, who lost control of her affected voice and was discovered to be in fact a man. He escaped from the house without being definitively identified.
Rumours flew. No one in Rome doubted that the guilty man was Publius Clodius Pulcher: it was not unlike him to play wild pranks -- even with so sacred an event as the Bona Dea ceremony. One story suggested that Clodius and Pompeia were having an affair and that she herself had smuggled him into her house. This was a difficult accusation to squelch. An impiety certainly had occurred and conservative Romans were very upset. In response, Caesar divorced Pompeia, reputedly justifying himself -- in a quote of unknown origins -- by asserting that "Caesar's wife must be above suspicion." There was no proof at all, only gossip and suspicion, of Pompeia's involvement. But for Caesar it may have been a useful way to get rid of a wife whom he had married for political reasons that no longer mattered.
Clodius was actually brought to trial for the sacrilege in 61 BC. He offered an alibi defence, claiming that he had been out of town on the night in question. Cicero spoke against him and with his skilful oratory he demolished Clodius's alibi. Nevertheless, the jury -- thought to have been well bribed by Crassus-- voted to acquit Clodius. Because of his prosecution, Cicero acquired a dangerous and powerful enemy: three years later (in 58 BC) Clodius was chiefly responsible for Cicero's exile from Rome.
The Bona Dea Scandal: First Triumvirate Who?
How? Cicero and the '3' Join us?
Why he rejected the '3'
Impact of the '3' on his career?
Cicero's bitterness towards the senate
Why he ultimately supports the '3'?
Consequences for his future career? Why was Cicero forced to flee Rome?
What motivated Clodius to do this?
Why do his 'friends' and 'allies' not help him?
How and why is he recalled to Rome? Cicero, Clodius and Exile These were a series of speeches against Anthony by Cicero. Cicero was disappointed that Antony hadn’t been killed also by the conspirators and he tried as hard as he could to discredit Antony’s name.
There were 14 speeches in total all of which served different purposes:
-In the first two speeches Cicero likens Antony to his own personal opponents; Cataline and Clodius.
-In the third and fourth speeches he tried to establish a military alliance with Octavian which would eventually lead to the annihilation of Marc Antony and the restoration of the Republic.
-In the 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th speeches Cicero tries to mobilise the senate and Roman people to war against Marc Antony.
-In the tenth and eleventh speech he supports a military strengthening of the republicans.
-In the last 3 speeches Cicero aims to wipe out any doubt against his own war policy.
The Philippics Consequence of the Philippics. Cicero’s plan to drive out Antony failed.
Antony and Octavian reconciled and allied with Lepidus to form the Second Triumvirate.
Cicero was added to the list of enemies of the state even though Octavian argued against this for two days.
Cicero was then killed and his hands and head displayed publically.
After the Civil War, Cicero had been subdued under Caesar’s dictatorship, reduced to making the occasional critical remark and little more. He bemoaned the death of liberty and yearned for the old freedom to partake in politics with his peers
However, following the death of Caesar, Cicero’s fortunes began to change. Perhaps the old republican values could be revived. Perhaps also Caesar was unique and no one possible could rise to such control again. Cicero certainly was hopeful and was energized to once more enter the public domain as a political force.
This was evidenced immediately following the event, as Brutus called on Cicero to restore the Republic, the fatal dagger dripping in his hands.
Cicero was delighted at the death of Caesar, seeing it as a chance to reinvigorate the Republican ideals he treasured so deeply: “How I wish you had invited me to that superb banquet on the Ides of March”. Yet, his praise was qualified as the liberators lacked his foresight and left Antony untouched.
Cicero realised the assassins’ folly in not killing Antony as well as Caesar, commenting that the conspirators had brought “the spirits of men, but the foresight of children”.
Cicero now became a force to be reckoned with in Roman politics, standing for the principles of the Republic.
Caesar is Dead – long live the republic? He mentored the young Octavian, Caesar’s appointed heir, seeking to manipulate him against Antony, and in favour of his ultimate goal of restoration of the Republic.
Cicero wanted to use Octavian's control of the remaining republican legions who had defeated Antony. He even acquiesced when Octavian demanded the Consulship despite never having been elected before.
In all this Cicero is guilty of naivety and massively underestimating the intentions and ability of the younger man. In short it was Ocatavian who manipulated Cicero.
At this time Cicero tries to energize the senate and people to rise up against Antony. His main weapon (and most effective) was his oratory and genius with wit and words. Cicero wrote the Philippics against Antony, and had them read aloud in the Senate. They were highly critical, and ultimately led to Cicero’s death.
Antony and Octavian reconciled, forming the Second Triumvirate with Lepidus.
The group drew up proscription lists, and were all required to put someone they would have wanted to keep alive on the list, so as to show dedication to the new alliance. Octavian reluctantly chose Cicero.
Cicero was murdered by bounty hunters at one of his villas, baring his throat to the sword in the gesture of a gladiator: martyred to the Republic.
Rise of Octavian The two main social groups in roman politics were the patricians and the plebeians, at the start this was a sort of social divide between the upper and lower classes, however patrician families fell on hard times and plebeians could ennoble his family by becoming a novus homo “new man”
The voting power in the Republic was dependent on class. Citizens were enrolled in voting “tribes”, but the richer classes had fewer members and voting was done in order of class, in most cases the lower classes did not vote at all
The senate in Rome was made up of 600 magistrates and ex-magistrates who served for life unless expelled. It controlled public finances, foreign affairs and assigned militarily commands and provinces.
The cursus honorum was the political ladder of the Republic, it was open to all freeborn male citizens, everyone started from the lowest position and moved their way up.
At the bottom of the ladder there was 20 quaetors who administered the states finances and treasury. This was open to all, whereas the 10 tribunes next to this offer had to be plebeian who had the power to veto any law.
Above from this was 4 aediles, 2 of these had to be plebeians and supervised public places and public games
Above this were 8 praetors were served primarily as Judges in the law courts
From this you had 2 consuls who were the chief magistrates and the highest office in times of peace in the Republic. From this occasionally a dictator could emerge to rule for 6 months in state emergencies.
These offices could govern provinces and then became “pro____” for example proconsul.
The Political System Civil War Caesar's Dictatorship Cicero's View of Antony Cicero's Attack - Phillipics Antony's Revenge Who was Marc Antony?
Cicero and Antony after Caesar's death?
How does Cicero react to his assumption of power?
What was his view of Antony?
How might Antony be useful to Cicero's career? What were the Phillipics?
What do they reveal about Cicero's politics at this time?
What is his intention in attacking Antony in such a manner?
Is there a precedent for the Phillipics in Cicero's career?
What is unusual or remarkable about them at this particular time?
What does it reveal about the personality of Cicero after Caesar's death?
Is Cicero wise in attacking Antony in this way?
Ultimately, was he successful? Outline the main events of Antony's career after the death of Caesar?
Why did he and the other triumvirs pursue Cicero?
What was the reaction of Octavian to Cicero's death? Sulla Verres Catiline Pompey Caesar and the First triumvirate Civil War Dictatorship: Assassination Second Triumvirate Second Civil war Cicero’s death RIGHT HERE Possible Exam Questions Later Career How courageous do you think Cicero was from the time of Caesar's death to his own death? What do you find to praise and what do you find to criticise in Cicero’s career between 50 and 43 BC? Give the reasons for your views How effective a part did Cicero play in Roman politics from the outbreak of the Civil War in 49 BC to his death in 43 BC? Give the reasons for your views "Between the death of Caesar in 44 B.C. and Cicero's own death in 43 B.C. his leadership of the Senate was as energetic as it had been in his consulship in 63 B.C." To what extent do you agree with this statement? Give the reasons for your views. Cicero and Caesar Cicero and Pompey Mid Career How close had the political relationship between Cicero and Pompey been in the period from Cicero's exile until his governorship of Cilicia. Give reasons for your answer. How strong was Cicero's commitment to 'abolishing tyranny' from the start of the Civil War until the death of Caesar? Give reasons.