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

12 - The outcome and sequel

from Introduction


The success of C.’s speech and of the defense case generally is shown by the fact that Caelius was not forced into exile but remained in Rome to pursue his prosecution of Bestia, who was probably convicted (TLRR 269), and continue his political career, attaining the tribunate of the plebs of 52, the curule aedileship of 50 and serving as praetor peregrinus in 48. Enmity with the Clodii persisted, however, as is reported by C. in a letter to Quintus of 14 February 54. Not surprising, then, that when P. Clodius was killed in an apparently chance encounter with Milo and his entourage on the Via Appia near Bovillae on 18 January 52, as tribune, Caelius was among Milo's staunchest supporters and gave him opportunity to relate his version of events at a contio (Asc. 33C); he also joined with C. and others in one of the two successful defenses de ui of Milo's henchman M. Saufeius, who led the attack on the inn where the wounded Clodius had taken refuge (TLRR 313); and he continued to watch over Milo's interests during the latter's exile (Fam. 8.3[79].2). In view of his firm stand against the Clodiani, C. commends in general Caelius’ assembly speeches as tribune as graues; his election as curule aedile followed cum summa uoluntate bonorum (Brut. 273). But his own departure for Cilicia and consequently waning influence were, according to C., the cause of his friend's downfall: nescio quomodo discessu meo discessit a sese ceciditque, posteaquam eos imitari coepit quos ipse peruerterat (ibid.).