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Clodia
When you had married from a noble family into a most distinguished

household, why was Caelius so intimate with you? For he was neither a relative

nor friend of your husband. What therefore was the reason except a certain

recklessness and lust? Indeed the accusers allege flirtations, love affairs,…

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(3) Clodia (Extracts from Cicero, "Pro Caelio" Sections 34-36)

Introduction: Cicero defended Caelius on a charge of attempting to poison his former mistress,
Clodia, a talented society beauty with a notorious reputation. She probably brought the charge
against Caelius out of spite because he had broken off his two-year affair…

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Clodia

cum ex nobili genere in familiam clarissimam nupsisses,

cur tibi Caelius tam coniunctus fuit? neque enim cognatus

fuit neque mariti tui amicus. quid igitur fuit nisi quaedam

temeritas ac libido? accusatores quidem libidines, amores,

5: adulteria, Baias, conviva, cantus, navigia iactant;

affirmantque se nihil te invita dicere. has accusationes,…

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Cicero delivered his speech, the "Pro Caelio" (In Defence of Caelius), on 4th April, 56 B.C. He began
by defending the character and career of Marcus Caelius Rufus against accusations of impropriety
and treasonable activities (including complicity in the conspiracy of Catiline). After hinting that those
who brought the prosecution…

Page 5

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15-17: emisti hortos...legas: The argument is that Clodia has made herself readily available to
young men of leisure, of whom she can (and probably does) have her pick, so why should she
be so vindictive to Caelius?

This passage contains many of the elements of Cicero's rhetorical style, which includes…

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Analysis:


`clarissimam nupsisses' ­ addresses Clodia directly and uses a superlative and

assonance to help build up his campaign against her


`'tam coniunctus fuit?' ­ rhetorical question suggests relationship


`neque...neque' ­ ANAPHORA for emphasis on suggested relationship


`libido' ­ emphatic position and rhetorical question to help emphasise his now explicit…

Page 7

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`saepius videre voluisti' ­ alliteration and short sentence emphasises suggestion of

her lust


`non numquam' ­ alliteration and litotes for effect


`tu' ­ emphatic pronoun direct his accusations to Clodia


`vis' ­ present tense suggests that she continues to want him


`patric parci' ­ alliteration emphasises the frugality of Caelius'…

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Questions on Clodia

1. Clodia married into a most distinguished household, whereas she was from a noble
family.

2. He thinks that it is puzzling that Caelius was intimate with her, whereas he was
neither relative nor friend of her husband.

3. Temeritas ­ recklessness, libido ­ lust

4. Love…

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Pythius

When C. Canius, a Roman knight, had travelled to Syracuse, he began to say

that he wished to buy small parks, to where he could invite his friends and

where he could amuse himself without interrupters. When this became

well-known, a certain Pythius, who ran the bank at Syracuse,…

Page 10

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fishermen are never accustomed to fish here. Therefore yesterday I was

amazed at what happened.' Canius was very angry; but what could he do?


(2) Pythius (Cicero, "De Officiis" III, Section 58)

C. Canius, eques Romanus, cum se Syracusas contulisset,
When Gaius Canius, a Roman knight, had travelled to Syracuse,…

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