Cicero, On Pompey's Command (De Imperio), 27-49

Cicero, On Pompey's Command (De Imperio), 27-49: Latin Text, Study Aids with Vocabulary, Commentary, and Translation

Ingo Gildenhard
Louise Hodgson
Volume: 4
Copyright Date: 2014
Published by: Open Book Publishers
Pages: 292
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  • Book Info
    Cicero, On Pompey's Command (De Imperio), 27-49
    Book Description:

    In republican times, one of Rome's deadliest enemies was King Mithridates of Pontus. In 66 BCE, after decades of inconclusive struggle, the tribune Manilius proposed a bill that would give supreme command in the war against Mithridates to Pompey the Great, who had just swept the Mediterranean clean of another menace: the pirates. While powerful aristocrats objected to the proposal, which would endow Pompey with unprecedented powers, the bill proved hugely popular among the people, and one of the praetors, Marcus Tullius Cicero, also hastened to lend it his support. In his first ever political speech, variously entitled pro lege Manilia or de imperio Gnaei Pompei, Cicero argues that the war against Mithridates requires the appointment of a perfect general and that the only man to live up to such lofty standards is Pompey. In the section under consideration here, Cicero defines the most important hallmarks of the ideal military commander and tries to demonstrate that Pompey is his living embodiment. This course book offers a portion of the original Latin text, study aids with vocabulary, and a commentary. Designed to stretch and stimulate readers, the incisive commentary will be of particular interest to students of Latin at both AS and undergraduate level. It extends beyond detailed linguistic analysis and historical background to encourage critical engagement with Cicero's prose and discussion of the most recent scholarly thought.

    eISBN: 978-1-78374-079-6
    Subjects: Language & Literature, History

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. 1. Preface and Acknowledgements
    (pp. 1-4)
    Ingo Gildenhard
  4. 2. Introduction: why does the set text matter?
    (pp. 5-30)

    Born in 106 BC, Cicero reached his political maturity during a nasty period in Roman history: the reign of Sulla (82-79 BC).¹ The dictator introduced a new practice into Roman politics: the mass-slaughter of Roman citizens by Roman citizens – and not just on the battlefield. Once Sulla had crushed armed resistance in the first full-blown civil war that Rome experienced (it proved trend-setting...), he proceeded to ‘proscriptions’ – the drafting of lists that contained the names of alleged enemies of theres publica, who then could be killed on sight. (Mutatis mutandis, such ‘hit lists’ seem to have remained in fashion...

  5. 3. Latin text with study questions and vocabulary aid
    (pp. 31-80)

    Satis mihi multa verba fecisse videor, qua re esset hoc bellum genere ipso necessarium, magnitudine periculosum. Restat ut de imperatore ad id bellum deligendo ac tantis rebus praeficiendo dicendum esse videatur. Utinam, Quirites, virorum fortium atque innocentium copiam tantam haberetis, ut haec vobis deliberatio difficilis esset, quemnam potissimum tantis rebus ac tanto bello praeficiendum putaretis! Nunc vero – cum sit unus Cn. Pompeius, qui non modo eorum hominum qui nunc sunt gloriam, sed etiam antiquitatis memoriam virtute superarit – quae res est quae cuiusquam animum in hac causa dubium facere possit?

    What type of clause doesqua reintroduce? Why isesset...

  6. 4. Commentary
    (pp. 81-224)

    At the end of the opening section of the speech (§§ 1-6), Cicero offers his audience a blueprint of the first half (§§ 6-49), outlining the three topics he feels he ought to cover (§ 6):

    primum videtur de genere belli,deinde de magnitudine,tum de imperatore deligendo esse dicendum.

    [‘I think it best to dealfirstwith the nature of the war,nextwith its scope, andfinallywith the general to be chosen’.]

    He then follows his blueprint to the letter. §§ 6-19 focus on the nature of the war (genus belli), §§ 20-26 on its extraordinary scale...

  7. 5. Further resources
    • Chronological table: the parallel lives of Pompey and Cicero
      (pp. 227-228)
    • The speech in summary, or: what a Roman citizen may have heard in the forum
      (pp. 229-234)
    • Translation of §§ 27-49
      (pp. 235-242)

      [27] I think I have covered at sufficient length why this war is both inevitable given its kind and perilous given its immense scope. What remains to be covered is that one ought to speak, it seems, about the general to be chosen for this war and to be put in charge of such important matters. Citizens, if only you had such abundance of brave and upright men as to make difficult your deliberation over who above all ought, in your opinion, to be put in charge of such important matters and so great a war! But in fact – given...

    • The Protagonists
      (pp. 243-254)
    • The Historical Context
      (pp. 255-267)
    • List of rhetorical terms
      (pp. 268-274)
  8. 6. Bibliography
    (pp. 275-284)
  9. Back Matter
    (pp. 285-287)