Abbildungen der Seite

selves with so much eloquence, in the first sallies of their grief or anger, except it is because those sensations are not studied or fictitious, but drawn from truth and nature itself?

[m] An Athenian having intreated Demosthenes to plead for him against a citizen, from whom he pretended to have received a great affront; and as he was giving a relation of his pretended ill usage with a cold and sedate tone of voice, without passion or warmth: not a word of this is true, says Demosthenes; vou have not been ill treated, as you say you were. How ! replies the other, raising his voice, and seeming in a great passion : Have not I been ill treated, have not I been injured ? Upon hearing this tone of voice, Demosthenes perceived the truth, and undertook the cause. [n] Cicero relates something like this, of an orator named Callidius, against whom he pleaded: What! says he, if it were true that a design was formed against your life, as you pretend, would you speak of an attempt of this kind with such a languid careless air, which, so far from moving the passions of your auditors, is fit only to lullthein asleep? Is that the language of grief and indignation, which put lively and animated complaints into the mouths even of children? These two examples shew, that we must be moved ourselves, if we would move others, and feel the same emotions in our breasts, with which we would inspire others. [0] Si ris me flere, dolendum est primùm ipsi tibi.

[p] The peroration is the proper place for the passions. It is there the orator displays all that is powerful, tender, and moving in eloquence, according to the importance and nature of the affair, in order to

[mn] Plut. in yit. Demosth. let! Nulla perturbatio animi, nulla

[n] Hoc ipsum posuit pro argu- corporis. .. Itaque tantum abfuit mento, quòd ille tam solutè egisset, ut inflammares nostros animos : tam leniter, tam oscitanter. Tu ist somnum isto loco vix tenebamus. huc, M. Callidi, nisi fingeres, sic Brut. n. 277, 278. ageres? ... Ubi dolor ? ubi ardor

[0] Horat. aniini, qui etiam ex infantium in

0] Quint. 1. 6. c. 1. geniis elicere voces & querelas so

complete complete his conquest over the hearts of the auditors, and to extort their consent.

Sometimes he does not stay till the conclusion, to raise the passions in this manner; but places them after every narrative, when the cause comprehends several of them ; or after every part of the narrative, when it is too long; or, lastly, after the proof of every fact, and it is that we call amplification. The invectives against Verres furnish a great many examples of this kind.

The orator likewise moves the passions in the other parts of the oration, [9] but more concisely, and with much greater caution and reserve. [r] Omnes hos affectusaliæ quoque partes recipiunt, sed breviores. And this is what Antony observed with such success in his fine oration for Norbanus : [s] Ut tu illa omnia odio, invidiâ, misericordia miscuisti! says Sulpicius, after he had run through and pointed out the whole series, and all the several parts of the oration.

[t] I wonder at those, says Quintilian, who pre“ tend that the passions are not to be raised in narra“tion" If they mean only by this, that we are not to dwell long upon them, as is practised in the

peroration, they are in the right; for there we must avoid prolixity. But I do not see the reason why endeavours should not be used to affect the judges

while the orator is informing them of the state of " the case, since, if we have then been able to inspire " them with sentiments of anger or compassion, they " will be much better disposed to receive and relish * the proofs. [u] Cicero used this method in de

scribing the punishment of a [x] Roman citizen, and

in relating, in another place, the cruelty of Verres " to Philodainus” Quid ? Philodami cusum nonne per totam expositionem incendit invidia? (words that shew the whole narration is moving and pathetic.)


[9) Degustanda hæc (miseratio) proæmio, non consumenda. Quint.

(0) Ibid.

4. C. I.

[s] Cic. lib. de Orat. 1. 203,
[1] Quint. l. 4. C. 2.
() Verr. 7. n. 171.
[*] Ver. 3. n. 76.


“ Indeed, [y] to wait till the end of the oration, in “ order to draw compassion for things which we had “ related with dry eyes, is a little too late.” A relation of grave and moving subjects would be very imperfect, if it were not lively and passionate.

[-] The passage relating to Gavius's punishment in the last invective against Verres, would alone be sufficient to justify the rules we have now laid down. [a] After Cicero had prepared for the fact by a kind of exordium, which is very vehement, [1] and related the manner of, and the reason why, Gavius was carried to Messina before [c] Verres, he comes to the description of the punishment. He insists at first upon these two circumstances, viz. whipping a Roman citizen in the middle of the forum at Messina, and fising him on a cross. These circumstances are not related coldly, or without passion, but after a very lively and moving manner : Cædebatur virgis in medio foro Alessance civis Romanus, judices, cum interea nulIus gemitus, nulla vox alia illius miseri inter dolorem crepitumque plagarum audiebatur, nisi hæc : Civis Romanus suin. Hac se commemoratione civitatis omnia verbera depulsurum, cruciatumque à corpore dejecturum arbitrabatur. Is non modò hoc non perfecit, ut virgarum vim deprecaretur : sed, cùm imploraret sæpius, usurparetque nomen civitatis, crur, crur inquam, infelici & ærumnoso, quinunquam istam potestatem viderat comparabatur.“ In the midst of

the forum, of the city of Messina, a Roman citizen

was beaten with rods. During this cruel ceremony, “ during all the smacks of the scourge, no groan

was heard, nor no other sound escaped the unhappy

victim, but that of, I am a citizen of Rome. By “the bare mentioning of that name, he supposed he “ could mitigate the severity of his punishment, and “keep off the tormenting whip. But so far was he “ from averting the torture that was inflicting, that “on the contrary, after often imploring and using [y] Serum est advocare his rebus

[a] N. 157, 158. atfectum, quas securus narraveris.

[6] N. 159 [] N. 157, 171.

[] N. 160, 161.

o the If] N. 169. N. 168

“the name of citizen, the cross, I say the cross, was " prepared for the miserable man,” &c.

This narrative, which is very pathetic in itself, is followed by the amplification, [d] in which Cicero, with his usual eloquence, displays all the indignity of this ill usage

of Gavius. O nomen dulce libertatis ! Ojus erimium nostra civitatis! "O thou dear name " of liberty! O thou established right of our city!"&c.

[e] He relates one of the late circumstances of the execution, and reproaches Verres with having industriously made choice, for putting a Roman citizen to death, of a place from whence the unhappy wretch might, as he was dying, see Italy from the top of the gallows: Ut ille, qui se civem Romanum diceret, er cruce Italiam cernere, ac domum suum prospicere posset. This thought, which is very moving, though expressed in two lines, is immediately after enlarged and explained. Italiæ conspectus ad eam rem ab isto electus est, ut ille in dolore cruciatuque moriens, perangusto freto divisa servitutis ac libertatis jura cognosceret ; Italia autem alummum suum extremo summoque supplicio affectum videret.

affectum videret. “A place where Italy might be seen, was chosen for that purpose by Verres, that the poor man, who was expiring in pains and torments, might know that the boundaries between liberty and servitude were

very narrow; and that Italy might see one of its “ children ́unjustly dying, with all the severity of

[f] The amplification follows of course, and it represents that circumstance in the most glaring light possible. Facinus est vinciri civem Romanum, fic,

[s] In fine, Cicero concludes all this passage with a figure equally bold and pathetic; and by a last reflection, which affects all the citizens, and seems to be a kind of epilogue, by saying, that if he should speak in a desert, the hardest rocks would be moved with the relation of so unworthy a treatment. How much [d] N. 161, 167.

[ocr errors]

" torture.'

[8] N, 170, 171. VOL. II.



more reason then have the senators and judges to be affected, who, by their conditions and stations, are the protectors of the laws, and defenders of the Roman liberty ? Si in aliqui desertissimá solitudine ad sara & scopulos hæc conqueri fi deplorare vellem, tamen omnia muta atque inanima tantá & tam indigná rerum atrocitate commorerentur, &c. “ If I “ complained and wept of these things, in the midst " of a desert, to the rocks and the stones, yet mute " and inanimate as they are, they would be moved “ at so atrocious, so base a proceeding."

This is a perfect model of the manner how a narration inay be vehement, either in the relation itself, or by the reflections which follow it.

[X] A kind of chance furnished Crassus instantaneously with a very lively and vehement turn of eloquence. Cicero has preserved it in his second book de Oratore. Whilst Crassus was pleading against Brutus, the funeral of a Roman lady, who was related to the latter, came into the forum, where it is known that orators used to harangue. Upon this, he discontinued his oration, and says to Brutus: “What news “ would you have this lady to carry to your father? “What would you have her say to those famous Ro“mans, whose images are carried with this funeral,

to your ancestors; to that Brutus who delivered “ the people from kingly government? What shall “she tell them you are employed in? Upon what ce“ lebrated action, what virtue, on what kind of glory " shall she tell them you value yourself?" And after he had made a long catalogue of all his faults; "Can

you still, says he, after all this, bear the light of

[b] Quas tragedias egit idem vides ? quid majoribus tuis ? quid (Crassus) cum casu in eâdem causâ L. Bruto, qui hunc populum domicum funere efferretur anus Junia! natu regio liberavit? quid te facere ! Proh, Dii immortales, quæ fuit illa, cui rei, cui gloriæ, cui virtuti stuquanta vis ? quam inexpectata ? dere? Patrimonio-ne augendo, &c. quam repentina ? cùın, conjectis Tu lucem aspicere audes ? tu hos oculis, gestu omni imminenti, sum- intueri? Tu in foro, tu in urhe, tu mâ gravitate & celeritate verborum: in civium esse conspectu ? tu illam Brute, quid sedes ? Quid illam anum mortuam, tu imagines ipsas non patri nunciare vis tuo ? quid illis perhorrescis? 2. de Orat. n. 225, omnibus, quorum imagines duci 216.

« ZurückWeiter »