Proskriptionen

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Cic. S. Rosc. 21-25 – Original

[21] ne diutius teneam, iudices, societas coitur. cum nulla iam proscriptionis mentio fieret, cum etiam qui antea metuerant redirent ac iam defunctos sese periculis arbitrarentur, nomen refertur in tabulas Sex. Rosci, hominis studiosissimi nobilitatis; manceps fit Chrysogonus; tria praedia vel nobilissima Capitoni propria traduntur, quae hodie possidet; in reliquas omnis fortunas iste T. Roscius nomine Chrysogoni, quem ad modum ipse dicit, impetum facit. haec omnia, iudices, imprudente L. Sulla facta esse certo6 scio. [22] neque enim mirum, cum eodem tempore et ea quae praeterita sunt reparet et ea quae videntur instare praeparet, cum et pacis constituendae rationem et belli gerendi potestatem solus habeat, cum omnes in unum spectent, unus omnia gubernet, cum tot tantisque negotiis distentus sit ut respirare libere non possit, si aliquid non animadvertat, cum praesertim tam multi occupationem eius observent tempusque aucupentur ut, simul atque ille despexerit, aliquid huiusce modi moliantur. huc accedit quod, quamvis ille felix sit, sicut est, tamen in tanta felicitate nemo potest esse in magna familia qui neminem neque servum neque libertum improbum habeat. [23] interea iste T. Roscius, vir optimus, procurator Chrysogoni, Ameriam venit, in praedia huius invadit, hunc miserum, luctu perditum, qui nondum etiam omnia paterno funeri iusta solvisset, nudum eicit domo atque focis patriis disque penatibus praecipitem, iudices, exturbat, ipse amplissimae pecuniae fit dominus. qui in sua re fuisset egentissimus, erat, ut fit, insolens in aliena; multa palam domum suam auferebat, plura clam de medio removebat, non pauca suis adiutoribus large effuseque donabat, reliqua constituta auctione vendebat. [24] quod Amerinis usque eo visum est indignum ut urbe tota fletus gemitusque fieret. etenim multa simul ante oculos versabantur, mors hominis florentissimi, Sex. Rosci, crudelissima, fili autem eius egestas indignissima, cui de tanto patrimonio praedo iste nefarius ne iter quidem ad sepulcrum patrium reliquisset, bonorum emptio flagitiosa, possessio, furta, rapinae, donationes. nemo erat qui non ardere omnia mallet quam videre in Sex. Rosci, viri optimi atque honestissimi, bonis iactantem se ac dominantem T. Roscium. [25] itaque decurionum decretum statim fit ut decem primi proficiscantur ad L. Sullam doceantque eum qui vir Sex. Roscius fuerit, conquerantur de istorum scelere et iniuriis, orent ut et illius mortui famam et fili innocentis fortunas conservatas velit. atque ipsum decretum, quaeso, cognoscite. DECRETVM DECVRIONVM. legati in castra veniunt. intellegitur, iudices, id quod iam ante dixi, imprudente L. Sulla scelera haec et flagitia fieri. nam statim Chrysogonus et ipse ad eos accedit et homines nobilis adlegat qui peterent ne ad Sullam adirent, et omnia Chrysogonum quae vellent esse facturum pollicerentur.
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Übersetzung: C.D. Yonge
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Übersetzung

[21] As at this time there was no mention of a proscription, and as even those who had been afraid of it before, were returning and thinking themselves now delivered from their dangers, the name of Sextus Roscius, a man most zealous for the nobility, is proscribed and his goods sold; Chrysogonus is the purchaser; three of his finest farms, are given to Capito for his own, and he possesses them to this day; all the rest of his property that fellow Titus Roscius seizes in the name of Chrysogonus, as he says himself. This property, worth six millions of sesterces, is bought for two thousand. I well know, O judges, that all this was done without the knowledge of Lucius Sulla; [22] and it is not strange that while he is surveying at the same time both the things which are past, and those which seem to be impending; when he alone has, the authority to establish peace, and the power of carrying on war; when all are looking to him alone, and he alone is directing all things; when he is occupied incessantly by such numerous and such important affairs that he cannot breathe freely, it is not strange, I say, if he fails to notice some things; especially when so many men are watching his, busy condition, and catch their opportunity of doing something of this sort the moment he looks away. To this is added, that although he is fortunate, as indeed he is, yet no man can have such good fortune, as in a vast household to have no one, whether slave or freedman, of worthless character. [23] In the meantime Titus Roscius, excellent man, the agent of Chrysogonus, comes to Ameria; he enters on this man’s farm; turns this miserable man, overwhelmed with grief, who had not yet performed all the ceremonies of his father’s funeral, naked out of his house, and drives him headlong from his paternal hearth and household gods; he himself becomes the owner of abundant wealth. He who had been in great poverty when he had only his own property, became, as is usual, insolent when in possession of the property of another; he carried many things openly off to his own house; he removed still more privily; he gave no little abundantly and extravagantly to his assistants; the rest he sold at a regular auction. [24] Which appeared to the citizens of Ameria so scandalous, that there was weeping and lamentation over the whole city. In truth, many things calculated to cause grief were brought at once before their eyes; the most cruel death of a most prosperous man, Sextus Roscius, and the most scandalous distress of his son; to whom that infamous robber had not left out of so rich a patrimony even enough for a road to his father’s tomb; the flagitious purchase of his property, the flagitious possession of it; thefts, plunders, largesses. There was no one who would not rather have had it all burnt, than see Titus Roscius acting as owner of and glorying in the property of Sextus Roscius, a most virtuous and honourable man. [25] Therefore a decree of their senate is, immediately passed, that the ten chief men should go to Lucius Sulla, and explain to him what a man Sextus Roscius had been; should complain of the wickedness and outrages of those fellows, should entreat him to see to the preservation both of the character of the dead man, and of the fortunes of his innocent son, And observe, I entreat you, this decree— [here the decree is read] —The deputies come to the camp. It is now seen, O judges, as I said before, that these crimes and atrocities were committed without the knowledge of Lucius Sulla. For immediately Chrysogonus himself comes to them, and sends some men of noble birth to them too, to beg them not to go to Sulla, and to promise them that Chrysogonus, will do everything which they wish.
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Cic. S. Rosc. 21-25

Leitfragen:

1) Welche Vorfälle liegen dem Prozess zugrunde, in dem Cicero als Verteidiger seine Rede hielt?

2) Welche Einstellung Ciceros gegenüber Sulla lässt sich aus dieser Quellenstelle erkennen?

3) Welche Rückschlüsse lässt diese Rede auf Sullas Herrschaft zu?

Kommentar:

In einer seiner frühesten Reden ist Cicero als Verteidiger eines gewissen Sextus Roscius aus Ameria bestellt, der des Vatermordes angeklagt ist. In dieser Stelle gibt Cicero einen Einblick in die Ereignisse um den Tod des Vaters, der ebenfalls den Namen Sextus Roscius trug.

Zeitlich fallen die Ereignisse in die Herrschaft des Diktators Sulla und damit die Zeit der Proskriptionen, der Todeslisten Sullas. Wer auf dieser Liste stand, war vogelfrei, d.h. durfte ermordet werden, und der Mörder durfte das Vermögen des Opfers behalten, was für einen meist schnellen Tod der Reichen auf den Listen sorgte. Sextus Roscius stand jedoch ursprünglich auf keiner dieser Listen, so Cicero, wurde aber dennoch von Chrysogonus, einem Handlanger Sullas, und dessen Männern getötet, sein Name nachträglich auf die Liste gesetzt. Die Mörder bemächtigten sich seines Besitzes und trieben den trauernden Sohn aus dem Haus, der nun auch noch des Vatermordes bezichtigt wurde. Dass die Proskription nicht von Sulla autorisiert gewesen war, ist daran ersichtlich, dass Chrysogonus alles unternimmt, um die Amerianer davon abzuhalten, eine Gesandtschaft zum Diktator zu senden.

Diese Stelle der Rede lässt interessante Einblicke in die Einstellung Ciceros gegenüber Sulla zu. Er gibt sich alle Mühe, Sulla in einem möglichst guten Licht dastehen zu lassen und gibt alle Schuld Chrysogonus, der angeblich Sullas staatstragenden Arbeitseifer ausgenutzt habe, um sich zu bereichern. Mehrmals legt er Wert darauf, dass Sulla keine Schuld trifft, sondern nur seinen Handlanger. Dies ist wohl kaum als Ciceros tatsächliche Meinung auszulegen, wir haben es hier vielmehr mit einer Prozessrede zu tun, in der nicht immer die Wahrheit gesagt wurde. Es ist Selbstschutz, den Cicero hier betreibt, denn er kann nicht den Eindruck erwecken, dass er den Diktator bezichtige – obwohl dieser immerhin die Proskriptionen initiiert hatte, unter deren Deckmantel Chrysogonus mordete. Hätte Cicero dies getan, wäre er womöglich selbst in Gefahr geraten, und sein Klient sicher nicht freigesprochen worden.

Dies lässt auch Rückschlüsse auf Sullas Herrschaft zu. Offenbar war es für geschickte und mutige Redner möglich, auch seine direkten Handlanger zu belangen und vor Gericht zu schlagen – immerhin hatte Sulla auch die Republik formell intakt gelassen. Und eine zu offensichtliche Günstlingswirtschaft hätte seinem Ruf geschadet, die Republik gerettet zu haben. Einfacher war es für Sulla, in einzelnen Fällen wie diesem, Handlanger als Bauernopfer zu nutzen, um selbst besser dazustehen.

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Podcast-Hinweise
Sehen Sie zu dieser Quelle auch den Podcast „Sulla und das Zeitalter der Bürgerkriege“. Um einen breiteren Einblick in das Zeitalter der Römischen Republik  zu erhalten, sehen Sie auch die Podcastreihe „Römische Geschichte I – Republik“.
Hier geht’s zum Podcast

 

Siehe zu Sulla auch die Berichte zu seinem Marsch auf Rom (http://emanualaltegeschichte.blogs.uni-hamburg.de/sullas-marsch-auf-rom/), seiner Herrschaft in Rom (http://emanualaltegeschichte.blogs.uni-hamburg.de/sullas-herrschaft-in-rom/) und seinem Tod (http://emanualaltegeschichte.blogs.uni-hamburg.de/sullas-abdankung-und-tod/).