TheDe Amicitia, inscribed, like the De Senectute, to Atticus, was probably written early in the year 44 b.
His father, who was a man of property and belonged to the class of the "Knights," moved to Rome when Cicero was a child; and the future statesman received an elaborate education in rhetoric, law, and philosophy, studying and practising under some of the most noted teachers of the time.
He began his career as an advocate at the age of twenty-five, and almost immediately came to be recognized not only as a man of brilliant talents but also as a courageous upholder of justice in the face of grave political danger.
After two years of practice he left Rome to travel in Greece and Asia, taking all the opportunities that offered to study his art under distinguished masters. He returned to Rome greatly improved in health and in professional skill, and in 76 B.
He was assigned to the province of Lilybaeum in Sicily, and the vigor and justice of his administration earned him the gratitude of the inhabitants. It was at their request that he undertook in 70 B. He became aedile in the same year, in 67 B.
The most important event of the year of his consulship was the conspiracy of Catiline. This notorious criminal of patrician rank had conspired with a number of others, many of them young men of high birth but dissipated character, to seize the chief offices of the state, and to extricate themselves from the pecuniary and other difficulties that had resulted from their excesses, by the wholesale plunder of the city.
The plot was unmasked by the vigilance of Cicero, five of the traitors were summarily executed, and in the overthrow of the army that had been gathered in their support Catiline himself perished.
Cicero regarded himself as the savior of his country, and his country for the moment seemed to give grateful assent. Cicero accusing Catiline in the senate. From the fresco by Professor C. During the existence of the political combination of Pompey, Caesar, and Crassus, known as the first triumvirate, Essay on friendship by cicero.
The same day a law was passed by which he was banished by name, and his property was plundered and destroyed, a temple to Liberty being erected on the site of his house in the city. He drifted from place to place, seeking the protection of officials against assassination, writing letters urging his supporters to agitate for his recall, sometimes accusing them of lukewarmness and even treachery, bemoaning the ingratitude of his country or regretting the course of action that had led to his outlawry, and suffering from extreme depression over his separation from his wife and children and the wreck of his political ambitions.
Finally, in August, 57 B. Meantime, Cicero was also devoting much time to literary composition, and his letters show great dejection over the political situation, and a somewhat wavering attitude towards the various parties in the state. He returned to Italy at the end of the following year, and he was publicly thanked by the senate for his services, but disappointed in his hopes for a triumph.
The war for supremacy between Caesar and Pompey, which had for some time been gradually growing more certain, broke out in 49 B. Cicero returned to Italy, where Caesar treated him magnanimously, and for some time he devoted himself to philosophical and rhetorical writing.
Caesar, who had now become supreme in Rome, was assassinated in 44 B. In the confusion which followed he supported the cause of the conspirators against Antony; and when finally the triumvirate of Antony, Octavius, and Lepidus was established, Cicero was included among the proscribed, and on December 7, 43 B.
His head and hand were cut off and exhibited at Rome. The most important orations of the last months of his life were the fourteen "Philippics" delivered against Antony, and the price of this enmity he paid with his life. To his contemporaries Cicero was primarily the great forensic and political orator of his time, and the fifty-eight speeches which have come down to us bear testimony to the skill, wit, eloquence, and passion which gave him his preeminence.
But these speeches of necessity deal with the minute details of the occasions which called them forth, and so require for their appreciation a full knowledge of the history, political and personal, of the time.
The letters, on the other hand, are less elaborate both in style and in the handling of current events, while they serve to reveal his personality, and to throw light upon Roman life in the last days of the Republic in an extremely vivid fashion.
Cicero as a man, in spite of his self-importance, the vacillation of his political conduct in desperate crises, and the whining despondency of his times of adversity, stands out as at bottom a patriotic Roman of substantial honesty, who gave his life to check the inevitable fall of the commonwealth to which he was devoted.
The evils which were undermining the Republic bear so many striking resemblances to those which threaten the civic and national life of America today that the interest of the period is by no means merely historical.
Much of this writing is thus of secondary interest to us in comparison with his originals, but in the fields of religious theory and of the application of philosophy to life he made important first-hand contributions.
From these works has been selected the following treatise, On Friendship, which has proved of most permanent and widespread interest to posterity, and which gives a clear impression of the way in which a high-minded Roman thought about some of the main problems of human life.
Part I The augur Quintus Mucius Scaevola used to recount a number of stories about his father-in-law, Gaius Laelius, accurately remembered and charmingly told; and whenever he talked about him always gave him the title of "the wise" without any hesitation.
The consequence was that I committed to memory many disquisitions of his, as well as many short pointed apophthegms, and, in short, took as much advantage of his wisdom as I could. When he died, I attached myself to Scaevola the Pontifex, whom I may venture to call quite the most distinguished of our countrymen for ability and uprightness.
But of this latter I shall take other occasions to speak. To return to Scaevola the augur: Among many other occasions I particularly remember one. You must remember, Atticus, for you were very intimate with Publius Sulpicius, what expressions of astonishment, or even indignation, were called forth by his mortal quarrel, as tribune, with the consul Quintus Pompeius, with whom he had formerly lived on terms of the closest intimacy and affection.
The points of that discussion I committed to memory, and have arranged them in this book at my own discretion. For I have brought the speakers, as it were, personally on to my stage to prevent the constant "said I" and "said he" of a narrative, and to give the discourse the air of being orally delivered in our hearing.
Accordingly I was quite ready to benefit the public at your request. As to the dramatis personae:Cicero: on Friendship Analysis Essay More about Essay on Cicero. Influence of the Roman Theater on Cicero’s Oration Pro Caelia By Words | 12 Pages;. Source: Introduction to Cicero De Amicitia (On Friendship) and Scipio’s Dream, translated with an Introduction and Notes by Andrew P.
Peabody (Boston: Little, Brown, and Co., ). In this work I am especially impressed by Cicero’s dramatic power. But for the mediocrity of his poetic genius, he.
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“Laelius: On Friendship” Marcus Tullius Cicero was the greatest and most prolific prose-writer of the Romans. Cicero’s writing On Friendship is one of his greatest.
All four writers, Aristotle, Cicero, Montaigne, and Emerson discuss the importance of male friendship, and all four characters make statements about the superiority of friendship above other associations. However, the tone, the interpretation of friendship, and manner of rhetoric is influenced by.