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  • Print publication year: 2013
  • Online publication date: April 2013

9 - The general defense strategy

from Introduction


The way the defense case was divided up among the speakers itself gives some hints about the strategy. Caelius apparently spoke first, attacking Atratinus, the tutor who allegedly wrote Atratinus’ speech for him and Clodia, while trying to present his own character in the best possible light (see above and on §80 fin.). The actual charges were assigned to Crassus and Cicero, the former refuting those de seditionibus Neapolitanis, de Alexandrinorum pulsatione Puteolana and de bonis Pallae, the latter the charges relating to the (attempted) murders of Dio and Clodia (§23). This shows that the charges related to Dio's embassy, the prosecution's major point, were divided up to reduce their impact since the charge de Alexandrinorum pulsatione Puteolana certainly had to do with mistreatment of Dio's embassy, the charge de seditionibus Neapolitanis possibly so (cf. on §23), whereas C. dealt with the murder of Dio on its own; it is unclear how or whether the goods of Palla related to the other charges. As usual, because of his mastery in stirring emotions, C. delivered the last of the set-speeches for the defense (cf. Brut. 190; Orat. 130).