On Government

On Government


Translator: Michael Grant
Introduction by: Michael Grant

Format
Paperback
Price
$16.00
 
  • Paperback
  • ISBN 9780140445954
  • 432 Pages
  • Penguin Classics
  • Adult

Overview

Cicero, writes Michael Grant in his Introduction to this superb selection, is ‘by far Rome’s most enlightening polictical thinker, and perhaps its greatest.’

Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43 B.C.) was a key figure in the turbulent closing years of the Roman Republic. The principles he expounded, occasionally compromised, and eventually died for, draw on wide practical experience as well as deep knowledge and reflection.

Against Verres sealed the fate of a corrupt provincial governor and made Cicero’s reputation; the Philippics, a brilliant series of attack on one-man rule, and on Mark Antony in particular, cost him his life. For Murena and For Balbus, by contrast, are examples of expediency in action. All appear here complete or in extract, along with treatises On Laws and On the State, and the Brutus, a masterly survey of Roman oratory in an era when statesmen were above all public speakers. Such works, suggests Michael Grant, reveal Cicero’s pioneering interest in ‘the mechanics, tactics and strategies of government’. They also illuminate the perennial issues of politics to this day.

Table of Contents

Introduction
1. Against Verres (II, 5): How Not to Govern a Province
2. For Murena: When to Sacrifice a Principle
3. For Balbus: The Admission of Foreigners to Citizenship
4. On the State (III): The Ideal Form of Government (V, VI): The Good Statesman
5. On Laws (III): How to Run the Ideal Government
6. The Brutus: The Importance of Oratory
7. The Philippics (IV, V, X): Against Rule by One Man

Appendix I: Some of the Arguments used in For Balbus

Appendix II: Minor Orators Mentioned in the Brutus

Maps
The Roman Empire in 51 B.C.
Italy
Sicily
Eastern Europe
The East
Western Europe and North Africa
Plan of Rome

Further Reading

Index

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