Volume 50, Issue 4
  • ISSN: 0165-8204
  • E-ISSN: 2667-1573



When Cicero defended Sextus Roscius the Younger against a charge of patricide, the orator not only had to deal with the murder charge but also with two complicating factors: after Sextus Roscius the Elder had been murdered, his name had been entered on the proscription lists and his property had been bought by Chrysogonus, the freedman and favourite of dictator Sulla. Although the proscription was formally not at issue in the trial, Cicero did make good use of it to secure Roscius’ acquittal. Therefore, I argue that Cicero owes much of his success in this case to a consistently balanced combination of a formal plea to the jury and an informal plea to Chrysogonus.


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