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From ?The Catiline War?

March 9, 2008

 ”… What I have been planning you have already heard individually. My own ardor for action is daily more and more excited when I consider what our lot will be unless we ourselves assert our claims to liberty. Ever since the state has come under the power and jurisdiction of a few, foreign kings and princes have constantly paid them tribute and nations and tribes have paid them taxes. All the rest of us, however brave and worthy, whether noble or plebeian, have been regarded as a mere mob, without influence or authority, and subject to those who in a true state would be afraid of us. Thus all influence, power, honor, and wealth are in their hands or where they choose to bestow them; to us they leave only insults, dangers, persecutions, and poverty. How long, brave comrades, will you submit to such indignities? Is it not better to die in a glorious attempt, than, after having been the sport of other men’s insolence, to lose a miserable and dishonored existence like cowards?” “But success — I call gods and men to witness! — is in our grasp. We are young and our spirit is unbroken, whereas our oppressors are enfeebled by age and wealth. We have only to make a start; the course of events will accomplish the rest.”

THE DECLINE OF THE REPUBLIC, PART II: THE ERA OF MILITARY COMMANDERS, 122-60 B

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