Sunday, March 20, 2011

Cicero, On the Agrarian Law (De Lege Agraria)

Marcus Tullius Cicero [Cicero or Tully]
106-43 BC Rome *executed by 2nd Triumvirate (specifically Mark Antony)
Trans RMBullard
Latin (Republican Era/Golden Age of Latin Literature)

     [1] * * * quae res aperte petebatur, ea nunc occulte cuniculis oppugnatur.
[This matter was once sought out in the open: now it is secretly being fought underground.]

Dicent enim xviri, id quod et dicitur a multis et saepe dictum est, post eosdem consules regis Alexandri testamento regnum illud populi Romani esse factum.
[You see, the Decemviri will say, and this is something which is both said by many and said often, that the well-known kingdom of King Alexander was established by the will of the Roman people.]

 Dabitis igitur Alexandream clam petentibus eis quibus apertissime pugnantibus restitistis?
[So will you secretly grant Alexandria to men seeking to rebel these most obvious rebels, whom you have resisted before?]

Haec, per deos immortalis!
[This is exactly the case, by the immortal gods!]

utrum esse vobis consilia siccorum an vinolentorum somnia, et utrum cogitata sapientium an optata furiosorum videntur?
[Which is it? Do you think these are the proposals of sober men, or the fairy tales of drunkards? Are they the thoughts of wise fellows or the wishes of insane people?]

 [2] Videte nunc proximo capite
[See to it that you now, in your upcoming evaluation,]

 ut impurus helluo turbet rem publicam,
[that a perverted glutton bring the Republic to a panic,]

 ut a maioribus nostris possessiones relictas disperdat ac dissipet,
[so that he distribute and waste the remainders of our possessions from our forefathers,]

 ut sit non minus in populi Romani patrimonio nepos quam in suo.
[so that a grandson might be no less valuable in the inheritance of the Roman people than in his own.]

Perscribit in sua lege vectigalia quae xviri vendant, hoc est, proscribit auctionem publicorum bonorum.
[Via the law, he advocates in his law for his own plots of lands, ones that the Decemviri, that is, he officially advocates for the sale of public property.]

Agros emi volt qui dividantur;
[He wishes to buy land that are being divided up;]

 quaerit pecuniam.
[He desires money.]

Videlicet excogitabit aliquid atque adferet.
[Obviously, he will come up with some plan and bring it to fruition.]

 Nam superioribus capitibus dignitas populi Romani violabatur,
[You see, the dignity of the Roman people was violated by better evaluations,]

nomen imperi in commune odium orbis terrae vocabatur,
[The name of 'empire' used to be evoked against the common hatred of the world,]

 urbes pacatae, agri sociorum, regum status xviris donabantur;
[pacified cities, the lands of our allies, and the states of kings used to be donated by the Decemviri;] 

nunc praesens pecunia, certa, numerata quaeritur.
[Now money at hand, a fixed and counted amount is being requested.]

[3] Exspecto quid tribunus plebis vigilans et acutus excogitet.
[I await the answer as to why the tribune of the plebs thinks so, so watchfully and sharp-minded.]

 'Veneat,' inquit, 'silva Scantia.'
[He says, "Let the Scantian wood come.']

 Vtrum tandem hanc silvam in relictis possessionibus, an in censorum pascuis invenisti?
[What is it: that you finally found this forest to be in the remainder of our possessions, or that meadow lands of our censors?] 

Si quid est quod indagaris,
[And if something exists that you've shall investigated,]

[that you've shall discovered,]

 ex tenebris erueris,
[that you've shall revealed from the shadows,]

 quamquam iniquum est,
[albeit that it is base]

 tamen consume sane, quod commodum est,
[still take upon yourself in assurance whatever brings comfort,]

quoniam quidem tu attulisti;
[since indeed it is you who carried it off;]