LINEBURG


<< . .

 5
( 30)



. . >>

˜˜best™™ or whether they have simply arrogated that term to themselves. In
Roman political language, the negative equivalent for optimates was factio
“ which is the term that Cicero uses to designate ˜˜oligarchy.™™ In real life,

xl
Text and Translation

the two could refer to the same people or groups from opposite points of
view, while in On the Commonwealth they refer to the good and bad forms
of government by the few. Cicero himself, both here and even more in
the speech for Sestius of µ , attempted to portray his supporters (and
the supporters of the traditional Roman government) as ˜˜the best™™ “
either optimates or optimus quisque, ˜˜each best person™™ “ whether they
were optimates in the traditional sense or members of other social classes.
The use of these words is tendentious; it should be noted that Cicero
himself is as tendentious in their use as the advocates in On the Common-
wealth of various political positions.


Otium (peace, peace and quiet, calm, ease, leisure, relaxation,
tranquillity, free time)
Otium has two meanings, one personal and one social. In personal terms,
it is the opposite of negotium, ˜˜business, busyness™™; as such it can
connote either a well-deserved holiday and relaxation (as for the speakers
of On the Commonwealth) or simple laziness and the failure to take part in
the public world (as in Cicero™s view of the Epicureans). In social terms,
it denotes ˜˜domestic tranquillity™™ or ˜˜law and order,™™ to be contrasted
with civil upheaval and disorder on the one hand, and with pax (the
absence of external disturbance and war) on the other. One of Cicero™s
political slogans in the mid µ°s was otium cum dignitate, ˜˜calm with
honor,™™ which, like all slogans, has numerous meanings, depending on
which meaning of otium one chooses.




xli
Synopsis

On the Commonwealth
Book ±
Fr. ±“± °  ¦  
[missing] Address to Cicero™s brother Quintus
fr. ±“fr.  Obligations to one™s country
fr. “± Importance of both theoretical learning and practical
service
“± Refutation of arguments against taking part in public
life
± Cicero™s quali¬cations: experience and learning

±“·   © ® §  ®¤ ©®   ¤µ       ®   ©  ®
±“± Gathering of participants; the portent of the double sun
±“ The value of discussing celestial phenomena; practical
uses of astronomy
“° Two views of philosophy: as a perspective on human
a¬airs (“) and as preparation for practical life (°)
±“· The choice of a subject: the best form of commonwealth

“·±      ¦  ® ©  µ ©  ®
“ Preliminary de¬nitions: the origins of society and the
basic forms of commonwealth
“µ The drawbacks of the simple forms and the advantage
of a mixed constitution
 Laelius™ request for elaboration

xlii
Synopsis

·“µ° The argument for democracy
µ±“µ The argument for aristocracy
µ“µµ The virtues of the three forms; Scipio™s preference for
monarchy
µ“ Arguments for monarchy: the government of the gods
and the universe (µ“µ·); historical evidence (µ); the
structure of the mind (µ“°); the analogy of the house-
hold (±); the need for unitary control in crisis (“);
the love for a good king ()
µ“ The instability of the simple forms; their corruption;
the virtues of a mixed constitution
·°“·± Conclusion: Rome as the best form of government;
transition to Book 


Book 
±“ ° ¦   :  °  ©   ® ¦     §  «
®  © µ  © ® ® ¤ °¬  


“°   µ ¬µ 
 Birth and early life
“ Choosing the site for a city
±°“±± Foundation of Rome
±“± Rape of the Sabines; joint rule with Titus Tatius
±“± Romulus™ institutions: senate and auspices
±·“° Dei¬cation of Romulus; excursus on Romulus and
Greek chronology


±“   µ µ   ®    ¤: ° ¬  ,   ° © °   © , ® ¤
 ©° ©


“° ®µ 
“ Interregnum; elective and hereditary monarchy
µ Election of Numa
“· Numa™s reign
“° Numa and Pythagoras

xliii
Synopsis

±“  µ¬ ¬µ     © ¬© µ 

 ® µ    © µ 

“   ± µ© ® © µ ° ©  µ :     © ¬  ¦ §  « µ ¬ µ  

·“   © µ   µ¬ ¬©µ 
·“ Assumption of power and formal accession
“° The Servian constitution
“ Imbalance and decline of the monarchic constitution

“µ   ± µ© ® © µ µ °  µ   ®¤    ® ®
“ Reign and expulsion
·“µ Monarchy and tyranny: the tyrant and the statesman

µb“±    ¬   ° µ  ¬ © :  ©    
µb“µ The ¬rst consuls and senatorial rule
µ·“° Problems of debt; the tribunate and attempted coups

±“   ¤   ©   :  ¬ © §   

“  µ  

“  ® ¬ § ©  ¦  §  ®  ® :   © ® ¤  ®¤  
  µ 

“·°   ® ¬µ © ® :    ®   ®¤ µ ©  


Book 
±a“· ° ¦  
±a“ The powers of the human mind
“· The wisdom of the statesman

“ ° ©¬ µ :    § µ  ®   § © ®  µ  © 
“± Preliminary conversation and summaries
±“± There are no constant or consistent laws
±“µ We do not observe distributive justice; justice is in fact
based on utility

xliv
Synopsis

“a We are not always just through fear of consequences:
people cheat and kill if they can get away with it
·“ Conclusion: the disadvantages of being just


b“± ¬  ¬© µ :     §µ  ® ¦  µ  ©  
b“a Introductory conversation
a“b Human a¬ections are natural, and hence so is morality
°b“ inc. µ The soul is immortal; the rewards of virtue are not
material
 True law is right reason and is eternal and universal
.±c“·a To be unjust is to cease being human; the rule of the just
over the unjust is as natural as the rule of mind over
body and reason over passion
a“± Unjust rule and unjust war are fatal to a state; the unjust
actions of Tiberius Gracchus endanger Rome™s survival


“  ©° © : µ  §  ®  ®
 Praise of Laelius
“µ Unjust governments are not true commonwealths
“ Examples of just forms of simple constitutions
[missing] Even the good forms of simple constitution do not
distribute rights and responsibilities justly; the only
true commonwealth is the mixed constitution of Rome


Book 
±a“±f °  ¦  :   ¤  ®¤  ©®¤


   °  ° ©    ¦   ¤   ¦    ®    ©  


a“±   ®   © ¬ ©®  ©  µ © ®
a“ The regulation of the young
“µc Criticism of Plato
c“f The regulation of women
a“·a The censorship; proper behavior of adult males
a“± The theater and music
a“f The function of law in society

xlv
Synopsis

Book µ
±“b ° ¦   :   ¬©  , © ®  ©µ © ® ,  ®¤   
    ®

“±±d      ©  ©  ¦        ®
 The statesman as lawgiver
“µ The statesman as a person of general understanding
“b The statesman as moral arbiter and guide
“±±d The virtues of the statesman

Book 
±a“e   ¤©©® ® ¤    µ    ® ;    ¤  § § µ

“   ©° © ™  ¤  
 The rewards of the statesman: Scipio Nasica
“ Contrast between Scipio™s dream and the Myth of Er in
Plato
“±° Scipio and Masinissa
±±“± Prophecy of Scipio™s life and death
±“± The afterlife of statesmen; the duty of human souls
±·“± The structure of the cosmos
°“µ The limits of earthly glory; celestial rewards
“ The immortality of the soul
 Service to the commonwealth is the noblest way of life

On the Laws
Book ±
±“± ©®  ¤µ    ®    ©  ®
±“µ Poetic truth and historical truth
µ“±° Proposal that Cicero write history; weaknesses of Ro-
man historiography
±°“± Cicero as a legal expert
±“± Choice of a subject: the laws for the best common-
wealth, modeled on Plato™s Laws

±·“µ    ©   ¦ ¬ · ©® ®  µ 
±·“± Universal law and civil law

xlvi
Synopsis

±“° Origins of law in nature; law as right reason
±“· The community of gods and men through shared rea-
son and law; nature™s gifts to humans
“µ The similarity of all humans for good and ill; the uni-
versality of reason and law; friendship

“µ·  µ  ©  ® ¤ ©  µ 
“ The idea of the good in post-Aristotelian philosophy
°“ Fear of punishment, utility, and human law are not the
basis of justice
“ The standard of justice and of all virtue is nature and is
universal
· Disagreements on justice and virtue result from human
failings
“µ Justice and the other virtues are desirable on their own
account
µ“µ· Digression: philosophical disputes about the highest
good are primarily verbal, not substantive

µ“   ® ¬µ ©  ® :   °  ©   ¦ ° © ¬    ° 


Book 
±“· © ®  ¤ µ      ®    ©  ® : ¤ µ ¬   ©©  ® © °

“±   µ  ¦ °  © µ  ¤©  µ  ©  ®: ® µ  ¬ ¬ ·  ® ¤
 µ ® ¬ ·

±“± © ®  ¤µ © ®    ¬ ·  ¤ :   °  ©  ¦ ¬ ·

±“  ©   ™  ¬ ·   ¤, °   ©:  ¬ © §© µ  ¬ · 
± How, where, and what gods to worship
±“° Rituals and the calendar
°“± Priestly functions
±“ O¬enses against religion
 Rituals for the dead and burial regulations

“    ®   ®   ¬ ·
“ Introduction

xlvii
Synopsis

“ Worship and gods
 Ritual calendar
“ Priestly functions
µ“µ O¬enses against religion
µ“ Rituals for the dead and burial regulations

 ® ¬ µ ©  ® :  ¬ ©§ © ®     ©  ¦   
 ® · ¬ 

Book 
± © ®   ¤µ  © ®

“µ ° ©  ¦   ¬ ·  ®   ®© ®§  §©     

“±±  ©   ™ ¬ ·  ¤ , °  ©© :   § ©     
“ Regular magistracies and the right of appeal
 Extraordinary o¬ces, the tribunate, and service outside
Rome
±° Rights and procedures; the senate
±°“±± The conduct of public business; the protection of the
laws

±“·    ®    ®   ¬ ·
±“±· Cicero™s variations from Roman practice: Greek theor-
ists of government and the need for a mixed constitu-
tion; the ephorate and the tribunate
Commentary on sections “
[missing]
±·“± Foreign commands and embassies
±“ The tribunate
· Procedure and the auspices
·“ The senate
“ The conduct of public business: ballot laws and laws
concerning individuals
“· Authentication and protection of laws; the censorship

“   ® ¬µ © ® :  ® © © °  ©  ®  ¦ ¬ ·   ®  ¦¦ ©© ¬
°  ·   ¦  § ©    

[the remainder is lost]

xlviii
On the Commonwealth

Book ±
Fragments of the preface±
± [.·f Ziegler]. Augustine, Epist. ±.: Take a brief look at that book On
the Commonwealth, from which you drank up that attitude of a patriotic
citizen, that there is for good men no limit or end of looking out for one™s
country.
 [fr. ±a]. Thus, since our country provides more bene¬ts and is a parent
prior to our biological parents, we have a greater obligation to it than to
our parents. ( + Nonius .)
 [fr. ±d]. From which those people call :us9 away. ( + Arusianus
·.µ·.±«).
 [fr. ±b]. Pliny, Natural History, praef. : Cicero is honest: in On the
Commonwealth he announces that he is Plato™s companion.
µ [fr. ±c]. Pliny, Natural History, praef. ·: There is also a kind of public
rejection of the learned. Even Cicero uses it, although his genius is beyond all
doubt; more surprising is that he does so through a spokesman: ˜˜and not for
the very learned: I don™t want Persius to read this, I do want Iunius
Congus to.™™ If Lucilius, the creator of verbal wit, thought that he had to
speak this way, and Cicero thought that he had to borrow it, especially when
±
More than half the preface is lost; the few extant fragments show that C. discussed the
obligation to serve one™s country, referred to Plato™s Republic as his model, and emphasized
the greater importance of experience and action than of philosophical expertise both in
general and in the dialogue itself.
The rest of this quotation will be found at .·f.



The Epicureans.
Lucilius “ Warmington. The text is corrupt, but it is clear that the ¬rst person


named is a very learned person, while Iunius Congus is the ideal (moderately learned)
audience. For the identi¬cation of proper names, see the biographical notes.


±
On the Commonwealth

writing about the commonwealth, how much more do I have a reason to defend
myself from some judge?
 [fr. ±e]. Lactantius, Inst. .±.µ: They do not seek utility but pleasure from
philosophy, as Cicero attests: In fact, although all the writings of these
peopleµ contain the richest sources for virtue and knowledge, if they are
compared to the actions and accomplishments of the others I am afraid
that they seem to have brought less utility to men™s activities than
enjoyment to their leisure.
· [fr. ±f ]. Nor would Carthage have had so much wealth for nearly six
hundred years without judgment and education. ( + Nonius µ.)


[±] :If they had not preferred virtue to pleasure . . .9 would :not9
have freed Rome from the attack :of Pyrrhus9; Gaius Duilius, Aulus
Atilius, and Lucius Metellus would not have freed Rome from the terror
of Carthage. The two Scipios would not have put out with their own
blood the rising ¬‚ames of the Second Punic War; when it ¬‚ared up with
greater force Quintus Fabius Maximus would not have weakened it or
Marcus Marcellus crushed it or Scipio Africanus torn the war from the
gates of Rome and forced it back within the enemy™s walls.· Marcus Cato,
an unknown man of no pedigree “ a man who serves as a model of
industry and virtue to all of us who share his goals “ could have remained
at Tusculum, a healthy spot and not far o¬, enjoying peace and quiet;
but that madman (as some people think), under no compulsion, chose to
be tossed in the waves and storms of public life to an advanced old age
rather than live a happy life in peace and calm. I leave out countless men
who one and all contributed to the safety of this state; I will not mention
those of recent times, so that no one will object that he or someone in his
family was omitted. I make this one assertion: nature has given men such
a need for virtue and such a desire to defend the common safety that this
force has overcome all the enticements of pleasure and ease.
µ
Philosophers in general; ˜˜the others™™ are statesmen. Lactantius does not refer the quota-
tion to a speci¬c work, and it is sometimes ascribed to the lost Hortensius.

<< . .

 5
( 30)



. . >>

Copyright Design by: Sunlight webdesign