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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cicero Murder Trials
What a fabulous read this is. Anybody wishing to get an idea of Ancient Roman justice in practice should read this. Cicero orates beautifullySelected Works (Classics) if the translations are accurate, in an easy, florid style that has the reader immersed, desperately angry one moment and in stitches the next. 'In Defence of Sextus Roscius' kept me glued. I could wax...
Published on 10 Oct 2009 by Craig Cooper

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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Partial Selection
Cicero perhaps doesn't need introducing. He was a powerful politician of the last decades of the Roman Republic, the 70s to the 40s BC. Originally a lawyer and an orator, he made his name prosecuting corrupt figures of the senatorial establishment, before joining the conservative camp against the populist tribunes and against Caesar. Cicero was consul in 63BC. His...
Published on 28 Sep 2009 by reader 451


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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Partial Selection, 28 Sep 2009
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reader 451 - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Selected Works (Classics) (Paperback)
Cicero perhaps doesn't need introducing. He was a powerful politician of the last decades of the Roman Republic, the 70s to the 40s BC. Originally a lawyer and an orator, he made his name prosecuting corrupt figures of the senatorial establishment, before joining the conservative camp against the populist tribunes and against Caesar. Cicero was consul in 63BC. His writings are massive and are one of the period's key historical sources, even if obviously not unbiased. He also wrote a set of philosophical treatises.

This edition contains only a tiny portion of the 800 or so letters, countless speeches, works on the constitution, on laws, and on moral questions that Cicero produced. The selection, furthermore, is problematic. The editors have labelled the larger section, comprising political texts, 'Against Tyranny' (which they also call, anachronistically, 'totalitarianism'). This section includes the Verrine indictment and speeches in defiance of Marc Antony, glossing over Cicero's switching to the side of Verres' friends in the intervening decades. Moreover, the editors avoid mention of Cicero's contentious role, as consul, in using extra-judicial means to repress the Catilinarian conspiracy. The Catilinarian speeches, perhaps his best known, are essential to an honest portrait of Cicero's politics; they are missing from this edition. The philosophical, second section likewise aims to portray Cicero as a grand old moral figure, comprising only On Duties and On Old Age. It misses fancier but interesting essays such as On Divination (Cicero was also an augur, an official soothsayer) and On the Nature of the Gods. The selection of letters, finally, is interesting, though only for the reader with good basic knowledge of their background (the editors' notes don't quite suffice).

Cicero's style is easy to read. Without necessarily wanting to reach for the multiple tomes of the complete Loeb edition, you may consider browsing for a meatier sample of Cicero's political writings, perhaps the Oxford Classics, and a separate selection of the treatises and letters.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lacklustre, 12 Jan 2011
This review is from: Selected Works (Classics) (Paperback)
Cicero was one of the greatest of Roman orators and one of the joys of reading him should be to bask in his superb writing style and use of language. For non Latin readers like me that will of course depend on the skill of the translator. I bet Michael Grant did a fine job but I did not much enjoy reading this translation even though I have long wanted to read two of the chapters: Cicero's spectacular prosecution of the corrupt ex-governor Verres and the famous Phillipic Against {Mark} Anthony. I got no tingling sensation. There is a chapter here including selected letters but there's a whole book of them published by Oxford World Classics and translated by P.G. Walsh which I enjoyed far more and which I found to be far more vibrant. The one chapter here that I enjoyed very much was the essay "On Old Age", a fictional conversation between Cato and friends inquiring of him what it is like to be old. This is very very good.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cicero Murder Trials, 10 Oct 2009
This review is from: Selected Works (Classics) (Paperback)
What a fabulous read this is. Anybody wishing to get an idea of Ancient Roman justice in practice should read this. Cicero orates beautifullySelected Works (Classics) if the translations are accurate, in an easy, florid style that has the reader immersed, desperately angry one moment and in stitches the next. 'In Defence of Sextus Roscius' kept me glued. I could wax lyrical for an age if I had the talent! Buy this and enjoy! I followed on reading Cicero's 'Selected Works'
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4.0 out of 5 stars Cicero, 30 Dec 2013
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Dr. Cd Perko (uk) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Selected Works (Classics) (Paperback)
Good translation with comments keeping the gist of ciceronian spirit and yet accesable to the present day reader. Book physical form does not give justice to its content also it would be so good to retain some of the Latin text to give reader with some Latin knowledge better insight into ciceronian mind!
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4.0 out of 5 stars A good read, 27 Sep 2013
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Dr. Derek Smith (Malvern, Worcs., UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Selected Works (Classics) (Paperback)
A reminder that people's basic character remains unchanged through the ages. Racey translation which remains true to the spirit of the text.
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4.0 out of 5 stars One of the Ledgends, 19 Aug 2013
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D. Rogers "it'er" (berlin) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Selected Works (Classics) (Paperback)
Difficult to rate this work, Cicero is one is of fundamental thinkers of the ancient world, though not as such a philosopher. With a tendency to the verbose it can sometimes be difficult to pick out the thread of his arguments. In contrast to reading say, Plato. Nevertheless, his infulence on what we call modern thinking cannot be underestimated. An essential read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Splendid work, 5 Oct 2012
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This review is from: Selected Works (Classics) (Paperback)
hroughly enjoyed this book work,my first dip into this and other Roman historical journals. Can be for a newcomer to this a little dry in places but well worth the effort.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Read!, 6 Dec 2012
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This review is from: Selected Works (Classics) (Paperback)
Well worth buying this book for hardcore fans of Roman history like me or for beginners to the subject.
Easy read considering its nearly 2000 year old text
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16 of 46 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Some things never change, 29 Jun 2005
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Dr. D. Crowther "Damian" (Cambridge, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Selected Works (Classics) (Paperback)
Cicero was a name that kept cropping up in books about Julius Caesar, the Christian Meier book is good. He seemed to be a good man - he supported democracy (in as much as the elite should be able to vote) and believed in helping one's fellow man (he was even nice to his slaves!?!). This book is a selection of writings that gives a flavour to the man. He was a thinker but not profoundly original. He writes a moving letter to his son (who he never saw again before he died) - the tender encouragments that he gives would be quite at home in the 21st century. He describes the depravity of Mark Anthony in hilarious detail (vomiting in the Senate etc). He writes on the benefits of old age (he was old when he wrote it and me thinks he protests too much!).
This is a book that is worth reading. You will come away with a better feel for a great name from ancient times.
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Selected Works (Classics)
Selected Works (Classics) by Cicero (Paperback - 26 Aug 2004)
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