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100 + Marcus Tullius Cicero Quotes about life, age and leadership.

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Marcus Tullius Cicero Quotes ability to write in Latin was a model for generations of textbooks and grammars. They learned about Greek philosophy through Cicero’s translations. Many historians say that Petrarch found out about Cicero’s letters in 1345. Enlightenment thinkers like John Locke, David Hume, Montesquieu, and Thomas Jefferson all used Cicero’s ideas and words in their own ideas and words. He said that Cicero was “the name not of a person, but of eloquence itself. “Marcus Tullius cicero quotes are remarkable and inspirational for every generation.

Marcus Tullius Cicero Quotes About Leadership

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  • “To live is to think.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “An unjust peace is better than a just war.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on education
  • “If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on life
  • “The life of the dead is placed in the memory of the living.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Glory follows virtue as if it were its shadow.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on life
  • “The safety of the people shall be the highest law.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on life
  • “Any man can make mistakes, but only an idiot persists in his error.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on friendship
  • “Friendship improves happiness and abates misery, by the doubling of our joy and the dividing of our grief.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Silence is one of the great arts of conversation.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “The enemy is within the gates; it is with our own luxury, our own folly, our own criminality that we have to contend.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “The greatest pleasures are only narrowly separated from disgust.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “The higher we are placed, the more humbly we should walk.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Nothing is more noble, nothing more venerable than fidelity. Faithfulness and truth are the most sacred excellences and endowments of the human mind.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Live as brave men; and if fortune is adverse, front its blows with brave hearts.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Marcus Tullius Cicero Quotes about Wisdom

cicero quotes on wisdom
  • “The wise are instructed by reason, average minds by experience, the stupid by necessity and the brute by instinct.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “A home without books is a body without soul.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “While there’s life, there’s hope.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
Marcus tullius cicero quotes about law
  • “More law, less justice.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on wisdom
  • “When you have no basis for an argument, abuse the plaintiff.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on life
  • “Any man is liable to err, only a fool persists in error.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on life
  • “It is not by muscle, speed, or physical dexterity that great things are achieved, but by reflection, force of character, and judgment.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “It is the peculiar quality of a fool to perceive the faults of others and to forget his own.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “To be ignorant of what occurred before you were born is to remain always a child.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “What then is freedom? The power to live as one wishes.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on wisdom
  • “I prefer tongue-tied knowledge to ignorant loquacity.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Memory is the treasury and guardian of all things.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Brevity is a great charm of eloquence.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on friendship
  • “Love is the attempt to form a friendship inspired by beauty.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Peace is liberty in tranquillity.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
Famous quotes marcus tullius cicero
  • “The function of wisdom is to discriminate between good and evil.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “The countenance is the portrait of the soul, and the eyes mark its intentions.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on wisdom
  • “A man of courage is also full of faith.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “There is nothing so absurd that some philosopher has not already said it.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Nobody can give you wiser advice than yourself.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Cultivation to the mind is as necessary as food to the body.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “A room without books is like a body without a soul.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “A friend is, as it were, a second self.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on life
  • “It is foolish to tear one’s hair in grief, as though sorrow would be made less by baldness.
cicero quotes on life
  • No one can give you better advice than yourself.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on life
  • “I am not ashamed to confess that I am ignorant of what I do not know.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “The precepts of the law are these: to live honestly, to injure no one, and to give everyone else his due.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “The harvest of old age is the recollection and abundance of blessing previously secured.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Justice consists in doing no injury to men; decency in giving them no offense.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “As fire when thrown into water is cooled down and put out, so also a false accusation when brought against a man of the purest and holiest character, boils over and is at once dissipated, and vanishes and threats of heaven and sea, himself standing unmoved.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Never go to excess, but let moderation be your guide.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Laws are silent in time of war.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Just as the soul fills the body, so God fills the world. Just as the soul bears the body, so God endures the world. Just as the soul sees but is not seen, so God sees but is not seen. Just as the soul feeds the body, so God gives food to the world.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “If you pursue good with labor, the labor passes away but the good remains; if you pursue evil with pleasure, the pleasure passes away and the evil remains.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “The greater the difficulty, the greater the glory.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Whatever you do, do with all your might.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “What nobler employment, or more valuable to the state, than that of the man who instructs the rising generation?” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Rashness belongs to youth; prudence to old age.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “It is the nature of every person to error, but only the fool perseveres in error.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Every man can tell how many goats or sheep he possesses, but not how many friends.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “If we are not ashamed to think it, we should not be ashamed to say it.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “What is permissible is not always honorable.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “True nobility is exempt from fear.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “The good of the people is the greatest law.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Orators are most vehement when their cause is weak.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on life
  • “Confidence is that feeling by which the mind embarks in great and honorable courses with a sure hope and trust in itself.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Natural ability without education has more often attained to glory and virtue than education without natural ability.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Thrift is of great revenue.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “The spirit is the true self. The spirit, the will to win, and the will to excel are the things that endure.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “What an ugly beast the ape, and how like us.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Nothing is so unbelievable that oratory cannot make it acceptable.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Nothing is more unreliable than the populace, nothing more obscure than human intentions, nothing more deceptive than the whole electoral system.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “In so far as the mind is stronger than the body, so are the ills contracted by the mind more severe than those contracted by the body.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Take from a man his reputation for probity, and the more shrewd and clever he is, the more hated and mistrusted he becomes.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Time destroys the speculation of men, but it confirms nature.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “What is thine is mine, and all mine is thine”. – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “People do not understand what a great revenue economy is.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “In a disordered mind, as in a disordered body, soundness of health is impossible.
  • Hatred is settled anger.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Next to God we are nothing. To God we are Everything.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on education
  • “In a republic this rule ought to be observed: that the majority should not have the predominant power.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “In everything truth surpasses the imitation and copy.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
marcus tullius cicero quotes about law
  • “Freedom is a man’s natural power of doing what he pleases, so far as he is not prevented by force or law.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “The rule of friendship means there should be mutual sympathy between them, each supplying what the other lacks and trying to benefit the other, always using friendly and sincere words.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “What sweetness is left in life, if you take away friendship? Robbing life of friendship is like robbing the world of the sun. A true friend is more to be esteemed than kinsfolk.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Nature has planted in our minds an insatiable longing to see the truth.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on wisdom
  • “Death is not natural for a state as it is for a human being, for whom death is not only necessary, but frequently even desirable.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “The authority of those who teach is often an obstacle to those who want to learn.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Freedom is a possession of inestimable value.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “The only excuse for war is that we may live in peace unharmed.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “No sane man will dance.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Old age: the crown of life, our play’s last act.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Rather leave the crime of the guilty unpunished than condemn the innocent.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “You will be as much value to others as you have been to yourself.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Nothing is so strongly fortified that it cannot be taken by money.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “The pursuit, even of the best things, ought to be calm and tranquil.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on leadership
  • “Brevity is the best recommendation of speech, whether in a senator or an orator.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on life
  • “Even if you have nothing to write, write and say so.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Thou shouldst eat to live; not live to eat.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “To know the laws is not to memorize their letter but to grasp their full force and meaning.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Let us not listen to those who think we ought to be angry with our enemies, and who believe this to be great and manly. Nothing is so praiseworthy, nothing so clearly shows a great and noble soul, as clemency and readiness to forgive.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “No obligation to do the impossible is binding.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “No one was ever great without some portion of divine inspiration.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “So near is falsehood to truth that a wise man would do well not to trust himself on the narrow edge.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Knowledge which is divorced from justice, may be called cunning rather than wisdom.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
marcus tullius cicero quotes about law
  • “I criticize by creation – not by finding fault.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
marcus tullius cicero quotes government
  • “I never admire another’s fortune so much that I became dissatisfied with my own.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
marcus tullius cicero quotes history
  • “He does not seem to me to be a free man who does not sometimes do nothing.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “As I approve of a youth that has something of the old man in him, so I am no less pleased with an old man that has something of the youth. He that follows this rule may be old in body, but can never be so in mind.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “That last day does not bring extinction to us, but change of place.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Hatred is inveterate anger.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “We forget our pleasures, we remember our sufferings.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Rightly defined philosophy is simply the love of wisdom.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “We are motivated by a keen desire for praise, and the better a man is the more he is inspired by glory. The very philosophers themselves, even in those books which they write in contempt of glory, inscribe their names.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Sweet is the memory of past troubles.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “When you are aspiring to the highest place, it is honorable to reach the second or even the third rank.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “O wretched man, wretched not just because of what you are, but also because you do not know how wretched you are!” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Empire and liberty.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Great is the power of habit. It teaches us to bear fatigue and to despise wounds and pain.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Virtue is a habit of the mind, consistent with nature and moderation and reason.
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  • All pain is either severe or slight, if slight, it is easily endured; if severe, it will without doubt be brief.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “For a tear is quickly dried, especially when shed for the misfortunes of others.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero

Ancient Wisdom Quotes by Marcus Tullius Cicero

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  • “This is the truth: as from a fire aflame thousands of sparks come forth, even so from the Creator an infinity of beings have life and to him return again.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
  • “Nature abhors annihilation.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “A tear dries quickly when it is shed for troubles of others.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “In doubtful cases the more liberal interpretation must always be preferred.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “The nobler a man, the harder it is for him to suspect inferiority in others.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Nothing stands out so conspicuously, or remains so firmly fixed in the memory, as something which you have blundered.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Before beginning, plan carefully.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “The magistrates are the ministers for the laws, the judges their interpreters, the rest of us are servants of the law, that we all may be free.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero last words
  • “Like associates with like.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
marcus tullius cicero quotes empire
  • “Honor is the reward of virtue.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
marcus tullius cicero quotes government
  • “The study and knowledge of the universe would somehow be lame and defective were no practical results to follow.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
marcus tullius cicero philosophy
  • “True glory takes root, and even spreads; all false pretences, like flowers, fall to the ground; nor can any counterfeit last long.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Great is our admiration of the orator who speaks with fluency and discretion.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “The eyes like sentinel occupy the highest place in the body.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “According to the law of nature it is only fair that no one should become richer through damages and injuries suffered by another.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Hatreds not vowed and concealed are to be feared more than those openly declared.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on life
  • “Fear is not a lasting teacher of duty.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “It might be pardonable to refuse to defend some men, but to defend them negligently is nothing short of criminal.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Justice is the set and constant purpose which gives every man his due.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “The long time to come when I shall not exist has more effect on me than this short present time, which nevertheless seems endless.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “One who sees the Supersoul accompanying the individual soul in all bodies and who understands that neither the soul nor the Supersoul is ever destroyed, actually sees.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “The false is nothing but an imitation of the true.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
marcus tullius cicero philosophy
  • “Though silence is not necessarily an admission, it is not a denial, either.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on wisdom
  • “He only employs his passion who can make no use of his reason.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “We should not be so taken up in the search for truth, as to neglect the needful duties of active life; for it is only action that gives a true value and commendation to virtue.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Cannot people realize how large an income is thrift?” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “In honorable dealing you should consider what you intended, not what you said or thought.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “There are more men ennobled by study than by nature.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Not cohabitation but consensus constitutes marriage.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “You must become an old man in good time if you wish to be an old man long.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Those wars are unjust which are undertaken without provocation. For only a war waged for revenge or defense can be just.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “To some extent I liken slavery to death.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “I never heard of an old man forgetting where he had buried his money! Old people remember what interests them: the dates fixed for their lawsuits, and the names of their debtors and creditors.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “What one has, one ought to use: and whatever he does he should do with all his might.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “Every man’s reputation proceeds from those of his own household.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
cicero quotes on life
  • “Advice in old age is foolish; for what can be more absurd than to increase our provisions for the road the nearer we approach to our journey’s end.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “I add this, that rational ability without education has oftener raised man to glory and virtue, than education without natural ability.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “For how many things, which for our own sake we should never do, do we perform for the sake of our friends.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero
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  • “In time of war the laws are silent.” – Marcus Tullius Cicero

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Cicero: Early Life, Education, Entry into Politics

He was born in the hill town of Arpinum, which is about 60 miles southeast of Rome. In Rome and Greece, Cicero and his younger brother learned about philosophy and rhetoric from their wealthy father, who was a member of the equestrian order and had a lot of money. Quintis Mucius Scaevola taught him Roman law after he served in the military for a short time. In 81 B.C., Cicero defended a man who was accused of killing his wife. He won the case.

At the age of 25, Cicero became the youngest person in history to become consul without having a political family. He was quaestor in 75, praetor in 66, and consul in 1963. During his time as consul, he stopped the Catilinian plot to overthrow the Republic. In the end, though, he let the main conspirators be executed quickly, which broke Roman law and made him a target for prosecution. He was sent into exile as a result.

Alliances, Exiles and Death

During his time in exile, Cicero turned down offers from Caesar that could have kept him safe. Instead, he wanted to be politically independent and not be part of the First Triumvirate. Cicero was not in Rome when the civil war between Caesar and Pompey broke out, so he didn’t see it. He sided with Pompey and then went into exile when Caesar won the war. When he came back to Rome, he was very careful because he didn’t want to get caught.

First, defended Mark Antony in front of the Senate, then he called him a public enemy in a series of scathing speeches. Antony planned to make him a public enemy. People say Antony’s troops killed Cicero and cut off his head and right hand to show in Rome. This was Antony’s way of punishing Cicero for his speeches and writings.

Writings and Oratory

It shows how much people love Cicero because so many of his speeches, letters and treatises have been around for a long time now, even though he died a long time ago. Cicero thought that a good orator had to be able to think about things like philosophy. When he was young, he studied three Greek philosophical schools: Stoicism, Epicureanism, and the sceptical approach of Philo of Larissa, who led the New Academy.

These three schools were all based on his own training. Cicero usually sided with the Stoics, who cared about virtue and service, over the Epicureans, who were more interested in having fun. It was because of his training as a New Academic that he could mix and match parts of different philosophical schools to fit a given situation.

Cicero didn’t come up with any new ideas of his own, but he was a great translator. He was able to turn Greek ideas into beautiful Latin. Another thing he did that was unique was write letters. More than 900 of his letters are still around, and they include everything from official dispatches to simple notes to friends and family. Much of what we know about politics and society in Cicero’s time comes from the letters he wrote to other people. Few of Cicero’s letters were made public, so he was able to freely express his joys, fears, and frustrations in his letters to his friends and family.

Cicero was one of the most important people in politics during the time of Julius Caesar, Pompey, Marc Antony, and Octavian. He was a brilliant lawyer and the first member of his family to get a job in the Roman government. Cicero made a series of bad decisions that led him to be exiled and eventually killed. His writings haven’t lost any of their power over the centuries. It was because of him that the thinkers of the Renaissance and Enlightenment found out about the great things in Classical rhetoric and thought.

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