Letter I: ad Atticum 1.1
Rome, July, 65 B.C.
The tenth letter of the extant correspondence; the earlier letters being Att. 1.5, 6, 7 (68 B.C.); 9, 8, 10, 11 (67 B.C.); 3, 4 (66 B.C.). The letter is interesting for the light which it throws in general upon methods of electioneering at Rome, and in particular upon Cicero's political plans and prospects a year before the elections at which he intended to be a candidate for the consulship. On the elections, cf. also Herzog, 1. pp. 654-661.
Cicero Attico sal.: cf. Intr. 62. This form of greeting, which precedes all the extant letters to Atticus, is probably not authentic.
petitionis: technical expression for a political canvass. Its position indicates that it is the subject of the letter.
summae curae: cf. minori curae, Ep. XXV.2n.
prensat, etc.: i.e. Galba alone is making an open canvass; probably with reference to the practice of personally seeking votes or winning friends by shaking hands with, and talking with, voters in the Forum and other public places.
unus: Antonius and Cornificius have not yet begun an active canvass, although their intentions are known. On P. Sulpicius Galba, cf. Verr. 1.30.
fuco ac fallaciis: see Intr. 93; cf. below, more maiorum, praepropera prensatio, frontem ferias.
more maiorum: to be joined closely with negatur; cf. similar expressions, Fam. 7.18.3 ego te Balbo [gap in text] more Romano commendabo, and Fam. 7.5.3.
praepropera: Galba is canvassing in July, 65 B.C.
, although the election will not take place before July, 64 B.C.
cogitaramus and dicebat: epistolary tenses, representing respectively the perfect and present; cf. Intr. 84c. The statement is put in the form in which the facts would present themselves to Atticus when the letter should be received.
puerum, servant; referring to the tabellarius (see Intr. 64).
Cincius: one of the agents (procuratores) of Atticus.
a.d. xvi Kalend. Sextiles : this was not the formal announcement (professio) on Cicero's part of his intention of standing for the consulship, as the latter would be made on the day on which notice of the election was given, i.e. three nundinae, or 17 days, before the day of the election. Cf. Herzog, 1. p.656, 1092, n. 2.
Antonius: Cicero's colleague in 63 B.C.
Q. Cornificius: the father of the orator and politician Q. Cornificius, to whom Fam. 12.17-30 are addressed.
risisse aut ingemuisse: on hearing that such nobodies aspire to the consulship. The situation, while humorous, is also one to excite the indignation of a patriot.
frontem ferias: cf. Brut. 278 nulla perturbatio animi, nulla corporis, frons non percussa, non femur. Cicero speaks of Caesonius in a very different way in Verr. 1.29 homo in rebus iudicandis spectatus et cognitus.
Aquilium: sc. competitorem fore. C. Aquilius Gallus was praetor with Cicero in 66 B.C.
iuravit morbum: the simple acc. after iurare is rare. The phrase is probably a legal one; cf. Fam. 8.8.3 cum calumniam iurasset. Iurare morbum means to take an oath that one is ill as an excuse for the non-performance of some duty.
regnum iudiciale: Aquilius was a well-known jurist (pro Caec. 77), too much occupied with legal business to engage in politics. Cf. regno forensi, Ep. LXII.1.
iudicatum erit: in the approaching trial of Catiline for misappropriation of public funds. The accuser was Cicero's subsequent enemy Clodius.
Aufidio: a former praetor in Asia (cf. pro Flacco, 45).
Palicano: a tribune in 71 B.C.
Cicero's actual opponents at the polls were Galba and Catiline, patricians; C. Antonius, Q. Cornificius, L. Cassius Longinus, and C. Licinius Sacerdos, plebeians (cf. Ascon. argum. to Or. in toga cand.).