Wednesday 4 October 2023

Attempted Murder

John Emerich Edward Dalberg, Lord Acton, Letters of Lord Acton to Mary, daughter of the Right Hon. W.E. Gladstone, ed. by Herbert Paul (London: George Allen, 1904), p. 90 [1881]:

The poet Mortola, out of envy, shot at another poet and missed him. He had to get relieved of his excommunication by the Pope, and his confession was: “E vero, Santo Padre, ho fallito.”

Cicero, Pro Sex. Roscio Amerino oratio, XII.33:

Hominem longe audacissimum nuper habuimus in civitate C. Fimbriam et, quod inter omnis constat, nisi inter eos, qui ipsi quoque insaniunt, insanissimum. Is cum curasset, in funere C. Mari ut Q. Scaevola volneraretur, vir sanctissimus atque ornatissimus nostrae civitatis, de cuius laude neque hic locus est, ut multa dicantur, neque plura tamen dici possunt, quam populus Romanus memoria retinet, diem Scaevolae dixit, postea quam comperit eum posse vivere. Cum ab eo quaereretur, quid tandem accusaturus esset eum, quem pro dignitate ne laudare quidem quisquam satis commode posset, aiunt hominem, ut erat furiosus, respondisse: ‘quod non totum telum corpore recepisset.’  
We had quite recently a most audacious man in our city, Caius Fimbria, who, as is known among all those who are not themselves mad, was the worst of madmen. When Fimbria, at Caius Marius’s funeral, contrived that Quintus Scaevola—the most pious and decorated man of our city, whose praises there is not enough room to talk much about here nor is it possible to say more than the Roman people retain in their memory—be wounded; after Fimbria learned that Scaevola might be able to live, he brought a charge against him. When he was asked what he was going to charge that man whom no one could sufficiently praise with, he answered like the madman he was, ‘for not have having received the whole weapon into his body.’
My Translation.