de imperio: 44


An vero ullam usquam esse oram tam desertam putatis, quo non illius diei fama pervaserit, cum universus populus Romanus, referto foro completisque omnibus templis ex quibus hic locus conspici potest, unum sibi ad commune omnium gentium bellum Cn. Pompeium imperatorem deposcit? Itaque—ut plura non dicam, neque aliorum exemplis confirmem quantum [huius] auctoritas valeat in bello—ab eodem Cn. Pompeio omnium rerum egregiarum exempla sumantur: qui quo die a vobis maritimo bello praepositus est imperator, tanta repente vilitas annonae ex summa inopia et caritate rei frumentariae consecuta est unius hominis spe ac nomine, quantum vix in summa ubertate agrorum diuturna pax efficere potuisset.


Or indeed do you think that there is any shore anywhere so deserted, to which the reputation of that day has not spread, when the entire Roman population – with the forum packed and all the temples, from which this place can be seen, filled – insisted on Cnaeus Pompeius alone as their leader for the purpose of a war common to all nations? Therefore, to say no more and not to confirm, through the examples of others, how much influence prevails in war, let examples of all his exceptional deeds be taken from the same Cnaeus Pompeius: on the day which he was put in charge of a naval war by you as a general, suddenly a drop in the price of corn followed, from a supreme shortage and high cost of the corn supply, because of the expectation and name of this one man, as great as a long-lasting peace could have scarcely produced in the utmost fertility of fields.