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Full description for Sallust's "Bellum Catilinae"

  • In his Bellum Catilinae, C. Sallustius Crispus or Sallust (86-35/34 B.C.E.) recounts the dramatic events of the year 63 B.C.E. when a disgruntled and impoverished nobleman, L. Sergius Catilina, after two electoral defeats, made himself the leader of a group of heavily indebted young aristocrats and the Roman poor and tried to kill his rival Cicero and overthrow the government. With his trademark archaizing style, Sallust skillfully captures the drama of the times, including an early morning raid and the emotionally charged debate in which Caesar and Cato the Younger fight over the lives of the arrested conspirators. Sallust wrote while the Roman Republic was being transformed into an empire during in the turbulent first century BCE. The work is well-suited for second-year or advanced Latin study and gives a fair idea of the richness of Latin literature while also pointing the way to a critical investigation of late-Republican government and historiography. Ramsey's introduction and commentary bring the text to life for Latin students. This new edition includes two maps and two city plans, an updated and now annotated bibliography, a list of divergences from the 1991 Oxford Classical Text of Sallust, and minor revisions in the commentary.