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Catiline


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Sallust (86—35 bc)

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A Roman tragedy by Jonson, performed 1611, based principally on Sallust's Catiline and Cicero's orations.

The play concerns the events of the year 63 bc, when Catiline organized a conspiracy to overthrow the existing government and to renew with the aid of Sulla's veterans the scenes of bloodshed which Rome had recently seen. Cicero and Antonius were elected consuls, and Catiline, secretly encouraged by Caesar and Crassus, prepared for a rising. Cicero, warned by Fulvia, the mistress of one of the conspirators, of the intention to assassinate him as a first step in the movement, summons the senate and accuses Catiline, who leaves Rome and joins the troops raised by his adherents at Faesulae. Cicero obtains evidence of the guilt of the conspirators through the ambassadors of the Allobroges, and submits it to the senate, which condemns them to death. Catiline falls in the decisive engagement between his troops and those of the government commanded by Petreius.

Subjects: Literature.


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