Marcus Tullius Cicero (106-43 BC) does not need an introduction. Fausto Zevi has argued that he and P. Clodius Pulcher built the city walls of Ostia.
|... in ostio Tiberino, quem in locum multis post annis rex Ancus coloniam deduxit.||... on the mouth of the Tiber, where King Ancus planted a colony many years later.|
|(Ancus Marcius) ad ostium Tiberis urbem condidit colonisque firmavit.||(Ancus Marcius) built a city at the mouth of the Tiber, and settled it with colonists.
Translation: Loeb, C.W. Keyes.
|Si nihil conficietur de Transtiberinis, habet in Ostiensi Cotta celeberrimo loco sed pusillum loci, ad hanc rem tamen plus etiam quam satis.||If the properties beyond Tiber prove impracticable, Cotta has something near Ostia in a very well-frequented locality, but with very little ground - enough however and more than enough for this purpose.|
|vel tu illud 'engÍrama,' quem ad modum scripsisti, vel entaphion putato. de illo Ostiensi nihil est cogitandum. si hoc non adsequimur (a Lamia non puto posse), Damasippi experiendum est.||Call it a retreat 'pour ma viellesse', as you did in your letter, or a 'linceul', as you please. We must not think about that place near Ostia. If we don't get this one (I don't think there's anything doing with Lamia), we must try Damasippus.
Translation Penguin, D.R. Shackleton Bailey.
|Nam quid ego Ostiense incommodum atque illam labem atque ignominiam rei publicae querar, cum, prope inspectantibus vobis, classis ea, cui consul populi Romani praepositus esset, a praedonibus capta atque oppressa est?||And a particularly scandalous blot on our reputation was the disastrous raid on Ostia, Yet even this scarcely merits a protesting word, when almost before your own eyes a naval contingent important enough for a consul of Rome to be its commander was captured by the pirates and sunk to the bottom of the sea.
Translation Penguin, M. Grant.
|In eo magistratu cum tibi magno clamore aquaria provincia sorte obtigisset, missus ne sis a me consule Puteolos, ut inde aurum exportari argentumque prohiberes?||In that magistracy, when the province of Ostia, down by the water's edge, had fallen to your lot, raising a great outcry at the time, were you not sent by me, as I was consul, to Puteoli, to prevent gold and silver being exported from thence?|
|Nec mihi erat res cum Saturnino, qui quod a se quaestore Ostiensi per ignominiam ad principem et senatus et civitatis, M. Scaurum, rem frumentariam tralatam sciebat, dolorem suum magna contentione animi persequebatur, ...||Nor had I to contend against Saturninus, who was seeking to satisfy his own indignation with great earnestness of mind, because he knew that the superintendence of the import of provisions had been, as an intentional insult, transferred from him while he was quaestor at Ostia, to the chief man both of the senate and of the city, Marcus Scaurus.|
|Cnidum aut Colophonem aut Samum, nobilissimas urbis, innumerabilisque alias captas esse commemorem, cum vestros portus, atque eos portus quibus vitam ac spiritum ducitis, in praedonum fuisse potestatem sciatis? An vero ignoratis portum Caietae celeberrimum ac plenissimum navium inspectante praetore a praedonibus esse direptum? ex Miseno autem eius ipsius liberos, qui cum praedonibus antea ibi bellum gesserat, a praedonibus esse sublatos? Nam quid ego Ostiense incommodum atque illam labem atque ignominiam rei publicae querar, cum, prope inspectantibus vobis, classis ea, cui consul populi Romani praepositus esset, a praedonibus capta atque oppressa est? Pro di immortales! tantamne unius hominis incredibilis ac divina virtus tam brevi tempore lucem adferre rei publicae potuit, ut vos, qui modo anti ostium Tiberinum classem hostium videbatis, ei nunc nullam intra Oceani ostium praedonum navem esse audiatis?||Need I mention, how Cnidus, and Colophon, and Samos, most noble cities, and others too in countless numbers, were taken by them, when you know that your own harbours, and those harbours too from which you derive, as it were, your very life and breath, were in the power of the pirates? Are you ignorant that the harbour of Caieta, that illustrious harbour, when full of ships, was plundered by the pirates under the very eyes of the praetor? and that from Misenum, the children of the very man who had before that waged war against the pirates in that place, were carried off by the pirates? For why should I complain of the disaster of Ostia, and of that stain and blot on the republic, when almost under your very eyes, that fleet which was under the command of a Roman consul was taken and destroyed by the pirates? O ye immortal gods! could the incredible and godlike virtue of one man in so short a time bring so much light to the republic, that you who had lately been used to see a fleet of the enemy before the mouth of the Tiber, should now hear that there is not one ship belonging to the pirates on this side of the Atlantic?|
|Omittamus igitur de genere dicere cuius est magna in utroque dignitas; videamus cetera. Quaesturam una petiit et sum ego factus prior. Non est respondendum ad omnia. Neque enim vestrum quem quam fugit, cum multi pares dignitate fiant, unus autem primum solus possit obtinere, non eundem esse ordinem dignitatis et renuntiationis, propterea quod renuntiatio gradus habeat, dignitas autem sit persaepe eadem omnium. Sed quaestura utriusque prope modum pari momento sortis fuit. Habuit hic lege Titia provinciam tacitam et quietam, tu illam cui, cum quaestores sortiuntur, etiam adclamari solet, Ostiensem, non tam gratiosam et inlustrem quam negotiosam et molestam. Consedit utriusque nomen in quaestura. Nullum enim vobis sors campum dedit in quo excurrere virtus cognoscique posset.||Let us, therefore, give up saying anything about birth, the dignity of which is great in both the candidates; let us look at the other points. He stood for the quaestorship at the same time with me, and I was appointed first. We need not answer every point; for it cannot escape the observation of any one of you, when many men are appointed equal in dignity, but only one can obtain the first place, that the order of the dignity and of the declaration of it are not the same, because the declaration has degrees, but the dignity of all is usually the same. But the quaestorship of each was given them by almost an equal decision of the lots: the one had by the Titian law a quiet and orderly province; you had that one of Ostia, at the name of which, when the quaestors distribute the provinces by lot, a shout is raised, a province not so much pleasant and illustrious as troublesome and vexatious. The name of each was together in the quaestorship. For the drawing of the lots gave you no field on which your virtue could display itself and make itself known.|