This chapter begins with a discussion of why students cannot treat Ciceronian texts as authentic records of history. Cicero's statements about his own lifetime, especially in his speeches, contain bias and misrepresentation, which at times displays downright fantasy. Most accounts of history in his works also have a persuasive element that tends to overshadow his devotion to the truth as he knows it. Two letters are discussed as historical events to stress the importance for Cicero and Atticus of the parts of the letter that historians themselves do not often stress — a redressing of the balance. Two speeches are also examined: a speech of thanks to the senate, Cum Senatui Gratias Egit or Post Reditum in Senatu Habita; and another speech in senate advocating negotiations with Pompey over a bill that would entrust him with managing the corn-supply.
Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.
If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.