Chapter

Inklings of Conspiracy

Edited by Luciano Canfora and Julian Stringer

in Julius Caesar

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print February 2007 | ISBN: 9780748619368
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748670734 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3366/edinburgh/9780748619368.003.0029
Inklings of Conspiracy

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In his Defence of Marcellus (late summer of 46 bc) Cicero had urged the senators he was addressing to be on the alert and protect Caesar from possible conspiracies. And he talked at length about the ‘madness’ of those who would conceive or plan an attempt on Caesar's life, even — he specifies, turning directly to Caesar — ‘among the ranks of your own’. It is strange that he felt the need to point out this possibility to the Senate and, above all, to Caesar himself. The insistence with which Cicero stresses that there are no more enemies suggests a wish to signal that some such wild scheme could arise only among the Caesarians. That he has something definite in mind may be deduced from the fact that, after a brilliant demonstration that there could not be any potential conspirators, he nevertheless arrives at the conclusion that the minds of men are such that vigilance must be stepped up.

Keywords: Julius Caesar; Cicero; senators; conspiracies; Senate

Chapter.  2578 words. 

Subjects: Greek and Roman Archaeology

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