Bryn Mawr Classical Review 96.8.13

T. Maslowski (ed.), M. Tullius Cicero, Fasc. 23: Orationes in P. Vatinium testem, Pro Caelio. Stuttgart & Leizig: Teubner, 1995. Pp. 156. DM 89. ISBN 3815411955.

Reviewed by Andrew R. Dyck, University of California, Los Angeles,

This volume contains new editions by T. Maslowski of two Ciceronian speeches from the prior half of the year 56, the interrogation of P. Vatinius and the defense of M. Caelius Rufus (both speeches are cited below by line number in this edition). The former would more logically have been coupled with Pro Sestio, previously edited by M. in this series (1986), since it derives from that judicial process, but no matter: the important thing is that we now have both Pro Sestio and In Vatinium testem from this capable editor.

It has been truly said of the group of speeches to which In Vatinium testem and Pro Caelio belong that "tralatician and selective collations have hampered [their] textual study."1 In this book, his previous Teubner editions of the post reditum speeches (1981) and the Pro Sestio, and related studies, M. is helping to alter this situation.2 Besides the edition of the text, In Vatinium testem is here provided, after A. Klotz, with testimonia (pp. 2-3); Pro Caelio, unfortunately, is not.

The praefatio, written in a clear and forcible Latin, begins with a section entitled "De Cicerone editore," which defends Cicero against modern scholars' predominantly negative view of his work as editor of his speeches for publication on grounds that he mixed in ex tempore remarks without undertaking a thoroughgoing revision. This is not, however, what one would look for in the praefatio to a critical edition, there being no consequence for the editing of texts, since those who have held such views have blamed Ciceronian carelessness rather than interpolation. An article would have been a more apposite vehicle for these remarks, but surely a reference to Stroh's discussion would have sufficed.3

The rest of the praefatio establishes the relations among the witnesses, rates previous editions, and lays down the method of this one. M. has made this tradition his own in previous studies, including the detailed investigation coauthored with Richard Rouse.4 His reconstruction of the archetype, including a refinement of A. Klotz's calculation of the number of lines per page (p. XVII) is convincing, as are, in general, the stages he posits and his evaluation of the relative worth of witnesses.5 Of particular interest are his comments on H (Harl. 4927, s. XII ex.; pp. XXXIV ff.), the evaluation of which has caused great difficulty. M. sees it as the offspring of a manuscript similar to P, so that it would occupy a position between P and the y tradition (reconstructed from G and E). But the correct readings of H that M. cites on pp. XL-XLI are all shared with other witnesses. Everyone agrees that H is a product of contamination and interpolation; it seems unnecessary to posit for it a direct line to the archetype.

Unlike In Vatinium testem, Pro Caelio had the good fortune to be preserved in two separate strands of medieval tradition, one of which involves the famous "vetus Cluniacensis" (C), now thought to have been discovered in 1413 by Jean de Montreuil. M.'s praefatio provides a useful, up-to-date account of the history of this codex and the reconstruction of its readings from French and Italian sources (pp. XLIII ff.). I cannot go into all details of this complex tradition, summarized by the stemma on p. LXXXIII (with stemmata of sub-branches on pp. LXIX and LXXXII). The upshot is a more nuanced view of the tradition than that of Clark, who had thought to reconstruct the Italian branch of C from only two witnesses of the fifteenth century, viz. b (S. Marci 255) and Psi (Laur. [Gadd.] SC sup. 69).6

M. has explored the indirect tradition with no less care. He brings out clearly the strengths and weaknesses of the Bobio scholia (because of shortening, more reliable for single words than entire phrases or clauses) and the position of the papyrus and palimpsest evidence (affiliated with C) and concludes with a defense of the monks of Bobio against the charge of wantonly ruining ancient books (pp. XCI-XCIII); this last part, however, again pads the length of the praefatio without adding to one's understanding of the value or relations of witnesses.

Judicious in assessing the work of his predecessors, M. is justly severe with the lazy and careless but gives credit where it is due, as to Gruter for seeing the merit of C's Praetuttiani at Cael. 5.53, or, in general, to Lambin, A. Klotz, and to Orelli's commentaries.

In evaluating the tradition for Cael. as a whole, M. finds the extent to which the omega family (reconstructed from PGEH) has been contaminated by C understated by Klotz and not confined to P alone (pp.CIII ff.). He believes, however, that omega was free of contamination, which entered only with a copy written in insular script that has left some traces in the tradition (p.CV with pp.XVII-XIX); I would have liked to see this point argued more fully. In any case, M. follows the eclectic procedure recommended by Klotz, with preference for no family or individual codex (p.CVI).

In general, in spite of L.G. Pocock's fairly detailed commentary,7 In Vatinium testem is today probably one of the least studied of Cicero's speeches. It is a specimen of the no-holds-barred invective which Cicero trained on such targets as Catiline, L. Calpurnius Piso Caesoninus, P. Clodius, and Marc Antony and which does not spare even the opponent's physical deformities (cf. §39). The speech is, however, of importance as evidence for Caesar's consular year, in which his ally the tribune P. Vatinius played a role which, while significant, is much exaggerated by Cicero in this speech.

Preserved, as I have said, in a single strand of the ancient tradition, In Vatinium testem is represented by the surviving codices P, G, E, and H (though occasionally the Bobio scholia provide a control). M. tends to follow the oldest of these, P (= Parisinus 7794, s. IX med.), even down to most details of orthography. He states that his policy in orthography is to follow the practice of antiquity in each passage (p. CVI). This leads, however, to some irritating inconsistencies, e.g., collegas in Vat. 202 (cf. Cael. 993) but conlegae in Vat. 217; cum Vat. 424, but quom Vat. 45. There are other oddities, such as the spelling relinquontur (P) at Cael. 406 whereas relinquu- is the reading of the Oxyrhynchus papyrus (1251, s. V), which would seem to be the likely source for the ancient spelling. Surely it would have been preferable to standardize orthography after the model of Merguet's Lexika, as is done, for instance, in Winterbottom's new OCT of De Officiis.

Beneath the text are (1) an apparatus indicating the extent of attestation in fragmentary witnesses (in Pro Caelio only8), (2) an apparatus of testimonies, and (3) the very full critical apparatus, usually positive. In fact, pruning would have made the critical apparatus a more efficient tool: by eliminating orthographical variants and corrections to manuscripts other than P and relegating more of his own argumentation to articles M. would have highlighted the really important information.

Some critical editions dazzle by the brilliance of the editor's own interventions. This is not one of those, though at l. 215 M. is able to set in the text his own supplement contemptis auspiciis, which is of the required length and sense. M.'s edition impresses by the quieter virtues of evidence carefully recorded and judiciously weighed in light of Cicero's well documented stylistic practices, including use of clausulae. I cannot list here all passages where I find his text an improvement over that of predecessors, but I single out the treatment of ll. 205-6, where M. shows that the accusative/infinitive construction must depend on vides and can hardly be exclamatory, as Peterson and Cremona had supposed.

Inevitably, no edition, even one as carefully prepared as this, will satisfy all readers at every point; the following list of disagreements shows that M.'s edition can and should serve as a starting point for further exploration of textual problems:

In l. 7 M. differs from Peterson and Pocock in preferring fui paulo in te intemperatior fortasse quam debui of HA rather than fui paulo ante intemperatior ... of PGE. But note that intemperatus is not elsewhere used in antiquity with in plus accusative or indeed otherwise than absolutely.9 In light of this, ante is the better choice.

As tribune, Vatinius not merely excluded the consul M. Bibulus from public places but also attempted to extract him from his home by force (ll. 280 ff.): ... miserisne viatorem qui M. Bibulum domo vi extraheret, ut, quod in privatis semper est servatum, id te tribuno plebis consuli domus exilium esse non posset? One does not seek to extract someone from exile, but rather from a place of asylum; hence Baumeister's asylum for exilium, recently revived by Shackleton Bailey.10 In addition, the ut-clause contains one subject too many. Either id or domus must be intrusive. In bracketing id, Garatoni has opted for the less likely error. More probably domus originated as a gloss on id.11 Cicero will have written: ... ut, quod in privatis semper est servatum, id te tribuno plebis consuli asylum esse non posset.

It seems very likely that Cicero addressed Vatinius throughout this interrogatio in the second person. If that is so, then the Vatini in l. 199 will also be a gloss: ... id tibi, furcifer, sumes, et [Vatini] latronis ac sacrilegi vox audietur hoc postulantis, ut idem sibi concedatur quod Caesari? Likewise in l. 319 we will need to print, with the Venetian edition, Jordan, and Mueller, oculos <tuos>, Vatini, rather than the transmitted oculos Vatini.

Cicero makes heavy weather of an incident in which Vatinius, to make a political point, wore mourning clothes at a banquet. This section poses several tricky textual problems. For instance, in ll. 396 ff. we read: ita enim illud epulum est funebre ut munus sit funeris, epulae quidem ipsae dignitatis. The sense of the underlined words must be something like "The banquet itself is in honour of the celebrant" (Gardner), but how can this sense be extracted from the transmitted text? M.'s defense of the transmission on grounds that dignitas can be used absolutely, documented by reference to Sest. 23 (eos ... qui dicerent dignitati esse serviendum ... vaticinari atque insanire dicebat [sc. Piso]), fails to satisfy, because in our passage it surely must be specified that it is the host's dignitas that is in question. And why epulae . . . ipsae? Perhaps read epulae quidem ips<ius qui invitaverit vit>ae dignitatis, a supplement that would fill one line of the archetype.12 For the iunctura vitae dignitas see Mil. 17. At 402 ff. (cum tot hominum milia accumberent, cum ipse epuli dominus, Q. Arrius, albatus esset ... tu ... te ... funestum intulisti), we surely need to supply albata, which can easily have dropped out by saut du meme au meme before accumberent, to make the contrast explicit.13 In his note on l. 414 (dominum cum toga pulla et eius amicos ante convivium) M. has wrongly assimilated Shackleton Bailey's conjecture to Madvig's; the former proposed insertion of videras not before dominum, but after convivium, to be followed by cenantis non item.14 In the same note M. should have made it clear that the usage convivium = convivae, invoked by some interpreters of this passage, is post-Ciceronian.15 Finally, Shackleton Bailey is surely right in finding difficulty with nomen epuli at 415 ff.: quae <te> tanta tenuit amentia ut, nisi id fecisses quod fas non fuit, nisi violasses templum Castoris, nomen epuli... M., however, fails to cite Shackleton Bailey's conjecture, omen epuli.16

Cicero's outrage is likewise provoked by Vatinius' appeal to the tribuni plebis to avoid criminal prosecution by C. Memmius (pr. 58). In this passage I find difficulty with the formulation at ll. 446 ff.: in foro, luce, inspectante populo Romano quaestionem, magistratus, morem maiorum, leges, iudices, reum, poenam esse sublatam. Surely the reus cannot be placed on the same level as these other entities and be said to have been done away with; perhaps read in reum <constitutam> poenam, where in is the reading of G and constitutam may have fallen out by saut du même au même.

As Cicero nears the conclusion of this invective he asks rhetorically (l. 518) ... si es odium publicum populi, senatus, universorum hominum rusticanorum, quid est quam ob rem praeturam potius exoptes quam mortem . . .? Cicero means to emphasize the universality of the hatred for Vatinius; there would be no point in specially emphasizing the enmity of the rusticani. Clearly we need a polar expression like Shackleton Bailey's <urbanorum,> rustic[an]orum,17 which, by deletion of a syllable, yields a ditrochaic clausula; for the expression cf. Agr. 2.79; Phil. 5.20.

The praefatio does not discuss punctuation. In this speech of interrogation M. sometimes uses the question mark (e.g. ll. 201, 395, 460 ff.) but often replaces the question marks used by other editors, whether the question is direct or indirect, with periods or semicolons, a practice which, I suspect, most readers will find to be an annoyance. On the other hand, at Vat. 91 and Cael. 857 surely an exclamation point is needed. Finally I found the punctuation of Vat. 75, with comma between respondeo and the following indirect statement, less helpful than Peterson's separation of the following cum-clause with commas.

The paired speech, Pro Caelio, is, by contrast, one of Cicero's most studied works and now enjoys a place in high school curricula. The speech is of interest as a strategy for constructing an influential woman and for the urbanity with which the orator relieves Caelius of the onus of being an adulter. In fact, M. is prepared, like Stroh,18 to assert that the affair between Caelius and Clodia was probably invented by the orator for the sake of his defense (p. XII). I single out for praise the way in 61 M. is able to clarify a passage which caused trouble for editors who missed that in ll. 822 and 826 constitutum is a noun meaning "agreement," i.e., appointment.

Again, to provoke discussion, I raise a few points of disagreement:

The epithet nobilem applied to Caelius only in Cv and Cb is set in the text by M. (l. 13), wrongly, for Cicero states clearly that Caelius' father was an eques Romanus (l. 40). M. cites in support Quint. 11.1.68; but there not Caelius, but Atratinus is called nobilis.

To me the asyndeton in ll. 119-20 seems unduly harsh (M. prints secutus est tum annus, causam de pecuniis repetundis Catilina dixit); I would print, with Garatoni, cum following annus.

I have trouble with l. 134 ... tamen infamiam veram effugere non poterat. The iunctura infamia vera is not paralleled in the Ciceronian corpus. The closest approach is Clu. 61 (tum vero illa iudicia senatoria non falsa invidia sed vera atque insigni turpitudine notata atque operta dedecore et infamia defensioni locum nullum reliquissent), where, however, there is a clear point of contrast (falsa invidia) in context. I recommend instead infamiam gravem; for the iunctura cf. Ver. 1.43 (gravi diuturnaque iam flagramus infamia) and 2.3.140 (... ut ... sese gravissima levaret infamia).

In ll. 390-91 I prefer the reading video fontem, video auctorem, video certum nomen et caput (PGEH) as a progression from general to specific, rather than Cv's reading adopted by M. reversing fontem and auctorem.

A couple of lines down (l. 395) the crisp narrative sollicitavit quos potuit, paravit, locum constituit, attulit is not improved by M.'s addition of quodam modo after paravit, nor do I agree with the premise that quam of Cv at this point must conceal some true reading otherwise lost.19

Relative pronouns can easily drop out in transmission (for an example see Cael. 532). I suspect that this is part of the problem at ll. 481-82, where habes can hardly be on the same level as the following parasti; read something like habes hortos ad Tiberim <quos curiose> ac diligenter eo loco parasti quo omnis iuventus natandi causa venit.

In l. 910 Cicero gives a preview of the line of questioning he would pursue with the nameless witnesses to the delivery of poison: ex quibus requiram quonam modo latuerint aut ubi, alveusne ille an equus Troianus fuerit qui tot invictos viros muliebre bellum gerentis tulerit ac texerit. There is a play on alveus, which can be a pool or tub in the baths but also a (hollow) container of other kinds. Perhaps the only change needed here is either Baiter's illic for ille or, perhaps better, transposition of ille and an. In any case, ille with alveus makes no sense, the alveus of the Senian baths neither having been previously mentioned nor being famous.

A few smaller points: l. 248: Heinze is likely to be right that Cv's de teste Fufio has its origin in a marginal note by a reader identifying the unnamed senator of l. 246;20 l. 338: Stroh's et ea<dem> lenior surely deserved to be set in the text; l. 545: bracket Graeciae with Francken for the reasons cited in the a.c.; ll. 548-550 alii cum voluptate dignitatem coniungendam putaverunt, ut res maxume inter se repugnantis dicendi facultate coniungerent: Baiter thought that the con of coniungendam should be bracketed; rather that of coniungerent; cf. Calvert Watkins, "An Indo-European Construction in Greek and Latin," HSCP 71 (1966), 115-19, with literature; Jaan Puhvel, "An 'Indo-European Construction' in Arcadian," CP 65 (1970), 50-51; the wordplay of l. 185 (haerebat ... cohaerebat) is different; l. 607: read Lambin's in <eo> erat for the transmitted inerat (similarly at l. 811 adopt Vollgraf's consul eum for consulem of PGEH, not Manutius' consul); ll. 652-53: Schoell was surely right to delete actis, navigatione, conviviis, which would not show Clodia to be a proterva meretrix procaxque; in l. 729 PGEH correctly omit servis, which spoils the contrast of a suis to per ignotos; on l. 751 M. fails to cite Shackleton Bailey's <non> religiose, surely needed;21 in l. 869 Cv's non paucos fuisse as a ditrochee should be preferred to fuisse non paucos of the rest of the tradition; l. 879: surely fuerant ad hoc rogati (CvCii), not fuerant hoc rogati (PH, followed by M.); cf. Vat. ll. 36-37: ... ei te quos rogasset ad accusandum libros dixeris dedisse; l. 915: we need J's si in hunc locum processerint, rather than the otherwise transmitted in istum or istum in; at issue is not whether the nameless witnesses went to the point of rendezvous but whether they will appear in court; only in the latter event will they be unable to extricate themselves (qui se nunquam profecto ... explicabunt); this allusion then sets up the following witty contrast between the exigencies of social life and of the courtroom.

Cross-references from the critical apparatus to the praefatio would have been useful on occasion, e.g., at l. 347, where the reader needs to refer to p. CVIII for the rationale for M.'s spelling Baiias.

The volume concludes with an Index Nominum citing, after Klotz's example, the relevant articles in the RE.

The proof-reading is done to a very high standard; I have found only very minor mistakes: p.VI, n.3 read "Universitaires"; p.VIII, line 2: "singularum"; p.XIV, 8th from last line: surely "AI = M"; p.XX next to last line: "non"; Vat. 187: "tibi"; a.c. Cael. 2: "consuetudinisque" (reading of Cv et al.); a.c. Cael. 279: "relicta"; a.c. Cael. 444 something seems to have gone wrong in the reference "and. 1"; a.c. Cael. 535 read "ornatum"; a.c. Cael. 595: "TLL VII 2, 1885, 82"; a.c. Cael. 625: "Barwes"; a.c. Cael. 789: "Mdv.3"

If I have dwelt overlong on points of disagreement, I should conclude by emphasizing that all students of these speeches owe gratitude to M. for his tireless efforts to clarify the relations of witnesses, especially in the C tradition. The result is, on the whole, a better text and one founded on a fuller and more accurate citation of evidence than we have had before.22 One looks forward with anticipation to his edition of In Catilinam, which will take account of the new papyrus evidence.23


  • [1] R.H. Rouse and M.D. Reeve in Texts and Transmission, ed. L.D. Reynolds (Oxford, 1983; corr. rp. 1986), p.58, n.12.
  • [2] On the edition of the post reditum speeches cf. W.D. Lebek, Gnomon 56 (1984), 4-8; on Sest. cf. K. Wellesley, CR 39 (1989), 36-37, and H. Solin, Arctos 24 (1990), 185-86.
  • [3] Cf. Wilfried Stroh, Taxis und Taktik. Die advokatische Dispositionskunst in Ciceros Gerichtsreden (Stuttgart, 1975), 31-54, esp. 48-49.
  • [4] T. Maslowski and R.H. Rouse, "The Manuscript Tradition of Cicero's Post-Exile Orations," Philologus 128 (1984), 60-104.
  • [5] However, in light of what is said on page XXIV I would have expected in the stemma on p. XLII a line of descent connecting P2 and y, rather than P1 and P2; I also question whether at Vat. 431 T for P is involved (see M.'s own comment on p. XV).
  • [6] Cf. A.C. Clark, The Vetus Cluniacensis of Poggio (Oxford, 1905), xlvii ff.
  • [7] L.G. Pocock, A Commentary on Cicero In Vatinium with an Historical Introduction and Appendices (London, 1926; rp. Amsterdam, 1967).
  • [8] At ll. 951-52 one would have expected the information about the terminal point of H in the uppermost apparatus, not the a.c.
  • [9] Cf. material cited by Hermans, TLL s.v.
  • [10] D.R. Shackleton Bailey, "More on Cicero's Speeches (Post Reditum)," HSCP 89 (1985), 150, citing Dom. 109; cf. also Dig. 2.4.18: Gaius libro primo ad XII tab.: Plerique putaverunt nullum de domo sua in ius vocari licere, quia domus tutissimum cuique refugium atque receptaculum sit ... ; sim. 2.4.21.
  • [11] Cf. sch. Bob. ad loc., citing our passage simply as ut consuli domus exilium esse non potest, with domus serving as subject, a (conscious or unconscious) simplification.
  • [12] Cf. M., p. XV and ad l. 215.
  • [13] A more plausible solution than Busche's cum togis albis supplied after accumberent.
  • [14] D.R. Shackleton Bailey, "On Cicero's Speeches (post reditum)," TAPA 117 (1987), 279-80.
  • [15] Cf. Gudeman, TLL 4.885.54 ff.; OLD s.v. convivium b.
  • [16] Shackleton Bailey (n.14 supra), 280. Might one contemplate morem epuli?
  • [17] Cited in M.'s apparatus but not set in the text.
  • [18] Stroh (n.3 supra), 272-73 and 296 ff.
  • [19] M. has argued his case in detail at AJP 112 (1991), 507-11.
  • [20] R. Heinze, "Ciceros Rede Pro Caelio," Hermes 60 (1925), 218-19.
  • [21] Cf. D.R. Shackleton Bailey, "On Cicero's Speeches," HSCP 83 (1979), 273-74.
  • [22] I have recollated Cael. 21.261-25.315 from plate 23 in E. Chatelain, Palaeographie des classique latins, 1 (Paris, 1884-92) and have found only trivial orthographical variants unreported: l. 276: iudicii (cf. M., pp. CVII-CVIII); l. 278: detorquaeri; l. 292: suspitione.
  • [23] The cause célèbre is, of course, Ciceró, Catilinàries (I et II in Cat.): Papyri Barcinonenses, ed. R. Roca-Puig (Barcelona, 1977), but there are other papyrus fragments that Clark could not yet cite; cf. Richard Seider, "Beiträge zur Geschichte und Paläographie der antiken Cicerohandschriften," Bibliothek und Wissenschaft 13 (1979), 112.