By Catherine Steel, Henriette van der Blom

Community and conversation: Oratory and Politics in Republican Rome brings jointly nineteen foreign contributions which reconsider the position of public speech within the Roman Republic. Speech used to be a vital part of decision-making in Republican Rome, and oratory was once a part of the schooling of each member of the elite. but no entire speech from the interval via somebody except Cicero survives, and consequently the talk on oratory, and political perform extra largely, is susceptible to be distorted by means of the unique good points of Cicero's oratorical perform.

With cautious cognizance to a variety of old proof, this quantity shines a gentle on orators except Cicero, and considers the oratory of diplomatic exchanges and impromptu heckling and repartee along the extra primary genres of forensic and political speech. In doing so, it demanding situations the concept that Cicero used to be a normative determine, and highlights the diversity of occupation offerings and speech innovations open to Roman politicians. The essays within the quantity additionally reveal how unpredictable the results of oratory have been: politicians may possibly try and regulate occasions by way of cherry-picking their viewers and utilizing attempted equipment of persuasion, yet incompetence, undesirable good fortune, or adverse listeners have been consistent threats.

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Now van der Blom (2010), 119–20, 211–12 on Scipio Nasica as exemplum in Cicero’s speeches; van der Blom (2011a); and generally Jehne (2011a). 53 Rhet. Her. 47. 26 Karl-J. Hölkeskamp Catiline’s ‘castaway band of shipwrecked men’, ‘impoverished’, ‘corrupt’, and beset by all sorts of vices. In the very same context, he swiftly and directly changes to an implicit ‘we’ when conjuring up the whole gamut of traditional Roman virtues, as it were, ‘on our side’—hinc fides, hinc pietas, hinc constantia, hinc honestas, hinc continentia, hinc aequitas, temperantia, fortitudo, prudentia (‘here is trust, here piety, here constancy, here honesty, here selfcontrol, here equanimity, temperance, courage, prudence’).

24 Karl-J. 50 Indeed, the stern pose and concomitant rhetoric of admonition is an interestingly frequent, indeed regular, subtype of the rhetoric of direct address in contione—a subtype which emphasizes the asymmetry of auctoritas. A telling, but not quite untypical example is the scene in 200 bc, vividly described by Livy: when the declaration of war on Philip V and the Macedonians was almost unanimously rejected by the comitia centuriata, although the motion had been submitted ex auctoritate senatus, the consul P.

36 C. Sempronius Gracchus ORF4 48, 26 and 44 (= Gel. 3); Cic. Man. 2, 6–7, 11–12, 14, 19; Agr. 15–16; Rab. Perd. 10; Catil. 1; Red. Pop. 1, 4, 9; Phil. 19; cf. also de Orat. 337; Sal. Jug. 16–7. 37 ORF4 20, 22 (= Schol. Bob. ad Cic. Mil. 16, 118 St). cf. the detailed discussion by Kierdorf (1980), 21–33, with further references. 38 Morstein-Marx (2004), 16, 32 n. 115. 39 cf. on popularis propaganda and its standard claims Meier (1965), 593–9. cf. also Martin (1965), passim; Vanderbroeck (1987), 104–8; Mackie (1992) passim; and now Robb (2010) on populares and optimates in the political discourse of the late Republic.

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