For the man who sees that, if he is correct in giving his assent to the thing about which he is first asked, that thing also to which he does not agree must unavoidably be admitted by him, very often will not allow the examination to proceed any further, either by not answering at all, or by answering wrongly. Wherefore it is necessary that he should, by the method in which the inquiry is conducted, be led on without perceiving it, from the admissions which he has already made, to admit that which he is not inclined to admit, and at last he must either decline to give an answer, or he must admit what is wanted, or he must deny it. If the proposition be denied, then we must either show its resemblance to those things which have been already admitted or we must employ some other induction. If it be granted, then the argumentation may be brought to a close. If he keeps silence, then an answer must be extracted, or, since silence is very like a confession, it may be as well to bring the discussion to a close, taking the silence to be equivalent to an admission.
And so this kind of argumentation is threefold. The first part consists of one simile, or of several, the second, of that which we desire to have admitted, for the sake of which the similes have been employed, the third proceeds from the conclusion which either establishes the admissions which have been made or points out what may be established from it.
XXXIII But because it will not appear to some people to have been explained with sufficient clearness, unless we submit some instance taken from the civil class of causes, it seems desirable to employ some example of this sort, not because the rules to be laid down differ, or because it is expedient to employ such differently in this sort of discussion from what we should in ordinary discourse, but in order to satisfy the desire of those men, who, though they may have seen something in one place, are unable to recognise it in another unless it be proved. Therefore in this cause which is very notorious among the Greeks, that of Epaminondas, the general of the Thebans, who did not give up his army to the magistrate who succeeded him in due course of law, and when he himself had retained his army a few days contrary to law, he utterly defeated the Lacedaemonians, the accuser might employ an argumentation by means of induction, while defending the letter of the law in opposition to its spirit, in this way:—
"If, O judges, the framer of the law had added to his law what Epaminondas says that he intended, and had subjoined the exception 'except where any one has omitted to deliver up his army for the advantage of the republic,' would you have endured it? I think not. And if you yourselves, (though, such a proceeding is very far from your religious habits and from your wisdom,) for the sake of doing honour to this man, were to order the same exception to be subjoined to the law, would the Theban people endure that such a thing should be done? Beyond all question it would not endure it. Can it possibly then appear to you that that which would be scandalous if it were added to a law, should be proper to be done just as if it had been added to the law? I know your acuteness well; it cannot seem so to you, O judges. But if the intention of the framer of the law cannot be altered as to its expressions either by him or by you, then beware lest it should be a much more scandalous thing that that should be altered in fact, and by your decision, which cannot be altered in one single word."
And we seem now to have said enough for the present respecting induction. Next, let us consider the power and nature of ratiocination.
XXXIV. Ratiocination is a sort of speaking, eliciting something probable from the fact under consideration itself, which being explained and known of itself, confirms itself by its own power and principles.
Those who have thought it profitable to pay diligent attention to this kind of reasoning, have differed a little in the manner in which they have laid down rules, though they were aiming at the same end as far as the practice of speaking went. For some of them have said that there are five divisions of it, and some have thought that it had no more parts than could be arranged under three divisions. And it would seem not useless to explain the dispute which exists between these parties, with the reasons which each allege for it; for it is a short one, and not such that either party appears to be talking nonsense. And this topic also appears to us to be one that it is not at all right to omit in speaking.
Those who think that it ought to be arranged in five divisions, say that first of all it is desirable to explain the sum of the discussion, in this way:—Those things are better managed which are done on some deliberate plan, than those which are conducted without any steady design. This they call the first division. And then they think it right that it should be further proved by various arguments, and by as copious statements as possible; in this way:—"That house which is governed by reason is better appointed in all things, and more completely furnished, than that which is conducted at random, and on no settled plan;—that army which is commanded by a wise and skilful general, is governed more suitably in all particulars than that which is managed by the folly and rashness of any one. The same principle prevails with respect to sailing; for that ship performs its voyage best which has the most experienced pilot."
When the proposition has been proved in this manner, and when two parts of the ratiocination have proceeded, they say in the third part, that it is desirable to assume, from the mere intrinsic force of the proposition, what you wish to prove; in this way:—"But none of all those things is managed better than the entire world." In the fourth division they adduce besides another argument in proof of this assumption, in this manner:—"For both the rising and setting of the stars preserve some definite order, and their annual commutations do not only always take place in the same manner by some express necessity, but they are also adapted to the service of everything, and their daily and nightly changes have never injured anything in any particular from being altered capriciously." And all these things are a token that the nature of the world has been arranged by no ordinary wisdom. In the fifth division they bring forward that sort of statement, which either adduces that sort of fact alone which is compelled in every possible manner, in this way:—"The world, therefore, is governed on some settled plan;" or else, when it has briefly united both the proposition and the assumption, it adds this which is derived from both of them together, in this way:—"But if those things are managed better which are conducted on a settled plan, than those which are conducted without such settled plan; and if nothing whatever is managed better than the entire world; therefore it follows that the world is managed on a settled plan." And in this way they think that such argumentation has five divisions.
XXXV. But those who affirm that it has only three divisions, do not think that the argumentation ought to be conducted in any other way, but they find fault with this arrangement of the divisions. For they say that neither the proposition nor the assumption ought to be separated from their proofs; and that a proposition does not appear to be complete, nor an assumption perfect, which is not corroborated by proof. Therefore, they say that what those other men divide into two parts, proposition and proof, appears to them one part only, namely proposition. For if it be not proved, the proposition has no business to make part of the argumentation. In the same way they say that that which those other men call the assumption, and the proof of the assumption, appears to them to be assumption only. And the result is, that the whole argumentation being treated in the same way, appears to some susceptible of five divisions, and to others of only three; so that the difference does not so much affect the practice of speaking, as the principles on which the rules are to be laid down.
But to us that arrangement appears to be more convenient which divides it under five heads; and that is the one which all those who come from the school of Aristotle, or of Theophrastus, have chiefly followed. For as it is chiefly Socrates and the disciples of Socrates who have employed that former sort of argumentation which goes on induction, so this which is wrought up by ratiocination has been exceedingly practised by Aristotle, and the Peripatetics, and Theophrastus; and after them by those rhetoricians who are accounted the most elegant and the most skilful. And it seems desirable to explain why that arrangement is more approved of by us, that we may not appear to have adopted it capriciously; at the same time we must be brief in the explanation, that we may not appear to dwell on such subjects longer than the general manner of laying down rules requires.
XXXVI. If in any sort of argumentation it is sufficient to use a proposition by itself, and if it is not requisite to add proof to the proposition; but if in any sort of argumentation a proposition is of no power unless proof be added to it; then proof is something distinct from the proposition. For that which can be joined to a thing or separated from it, cannot possibly be the same thing with that to which it is joined or from which it is separated. But there is a certain kind of argumentation in which the proposition does not require confirmatory proof, and also another kind in which it is of no use at all without such proof, as we shall show. Proof, then, is a thing different from a proposition. And we will demonstrate that point which we have promised to show in this way:—The proposition which contains in itself something manifest, because it is unavoidable that that should be admitted by all men, has no necessity for our desiring to prove and corroborate it.
It is a sort of statement like this:—"If on the day on which that murder was committed at Rome, I was at Athens, I could not have been present at that murder." Because this is manifestly true, there is no need to adduce proof of it; wherefore, it is proper at once to assume the fact, in this way:—"But I was at Athens on that day." If this is not notorious, it requires proof; and when the proof is furnished the conclusion must follow:—"Therefore I could not have been present at the murder." There is, therefore, a certain kind of proposition which does not require proof. For why need one waste time in proving that there is a kind which does require proof; for that is easily visible to all men. And if this be the case, from this fact, and from that statement which we have established, it follows that proof is something distinct from a proposition. And if it is so, it is evidently false that argumentation is susceptible of only three divisions.
In the same manner it is plain that there is another sort of proof also which is distinct from assumption. For if in some sort of argumentation it is sufficient to use assumption, and if it is not requisite to add proof to the assumption; and if, again, in some sort of argumentation assumption is invalid unless proof be added to it; then proof is something separate and distinct from assumption. But there is a kind of argumentation in which assumption does not require proof; and a certain other kind in which it is of no use without proof; as we shall show. Proof, then, is a thing distinct from assumption. And we will demonstrate that which we have promised to in this manner.
That assumption which contains a truth evident to all men has no need of proof. That is an assumption of this sort:—"If it be desirable to be wise, it is proper to pay attention to philosophy." This proposition requires proof. For it is not self-evident. Nor is it notorious to all men, because many think that philosophy is of no service at all, and some think that it is even a disservice. A self-evident assumption is such as this:—"But it is desirable to be wise." And because this is of itself evident from the simple fact, and is at once perceived to be true, there is no need that it be proved. Wherefore, the argumentation may be at once terminated:—"Therefore it is proper to pay attention to philosophy." There is, therefore, a certain kind of assumption which does not stand in need of proof; for it is evident that is a kind which does. Therefore, it is false that argumentation is susceptible of only a threefold division.
XXXVII. And from these considerations that also is evident, that there is a certain kind of argumentation in which neither proposition nor assumption stands in need of proof, of this sort, that we may adduce something undoubted and concise, for the sake of example. "If wisdom is above all things to be desired, then folly is above all things to be avoided; but wisdom is to be desired above all things, therefore folly is above all things to be avoided." Here both the assumption and the proposition are self-evident, on which account neither of them stands in need of proof. And from all these facts it is manifest that proof is at times added, and at times is not added. From which it is palpable that proof is not contained in a proposition, nor in an assumption, but that each being placed in its proper place, has its own peculiar force fixed and belonging to itself. And if that is the case, then those men have made a convenient arrangement who have divided argumentation into five parts.
Are there five parts of that argumentation which is carried on by ratiocination? First of all, proposition, by which that topic is briefly explained from which all the force of the ratiocination ought to proceed. Then the proof of the proposition, by which that which has been briefly set forth being corroborated by reasons, is made more probable and evident. Then assumption, by which that is assumed which, proceeding from the proposition, has its effect on proving the case. Then the proof of the assumption, by which that which has been assumed is confirmed by reasons. Lastly, the summing up, in which that which results from the entire argumentation is briefly explained. So the argumentation which has the greatest number of divisions consists of these five parts.
The second sort of argumentation has four divisions; the third has three. Then there is one which has two; which, however, is a disputed point. And about each separate division it is possible that some people may think that there is room for a discussion.
XXXVIII. Let us then bring forward some examples of those matters which are agreed upon. And in favour of those which are doubtful, let us bring forward some reasons. Now the argumentation which is divided into five divisions is of this sort:—It is desirable, O judges, to refer all laws to the advantage of the republic, and to interpret them with reference to the general advantage, and according to the strict wording according to which they are drawn up. For our ancestors were men of such virtue and such wisdom, that when they were drawing up laws, they proposed to themselves no other object than the safety and advantage of the republic; for they were neither willing themselves to draw up any law which could be injurious; and if they had drawn up one of such a character, they were sure that it would be rejected when its tendency was perceived. For no one wishes to preserve the laws for the sake of the laws, but for the sake of the republic; because all men believe that the republic is best managed by means of laws. It is desirable, therefore, to interpret all written laws with reference to that cause for the sake of which it is desirable that the laws should be preserved. That is to say, since we are servants of the republic, let us interpret the laws with reference to the advantage and benefit of the republic. For as it is not right to think that anything results from medicine except what has reference to the advantage of the body, since it is for the sake of the body that the science of medicine has been established; so it is desirable to think that nothing proceeds from the laws except what is for the advantage of the republic, since it is for the sake of the republic that laws were instituted.
Therefore, while deciding on this point, cease to inquire about the strict letter of the law, and consider the law (as it is reasonable to do) with reference to the advantage of the republic. For what was more advantageous for the Thebans than for the Lacedaemonians to be put down? What object was Epaminondas, the Theban general, more bound to aim at than the victory of the Thebans? What had he any right to consider more precious or more dear to him, than the great glory then acquired by the Thebans, than such an illustrious and magnificent trophy? Surely, disregarding the letter of the law, it became him to consider the intention of the framer of the law. And this now has been sufficiently insisted on, namely, that no law has ever been drawn up by any one, that had not for its object the benefit of the commonwealth. He then thought that it was the very extremity of madness, not to interpret with reference to the advantage of the republic, that which had been framed for the sake of the safety of the republic. And it is right to interpret all laws with reference to the safety of the republic; and if he was a great instrument of the safety of the republic, certainly it is quite impossible that he by one and the same action should have consulted the general welfare, and yet should have violated the laws.
XXXIX. But argumentation consists of four parts, when we either advance a proposition, or claim an assumption without proof. That it is proper to do when either the proposition is understood by its own merits, or when the assumption is self-evident and is in need of no proof. If we pass over the proof of the proposition, the argumentation then consists of four parts, and is conducted in this manner:—"O judges, you who are deciding on your oaths, in accordance with the law, ought to obey the laws; but you cannot obey the laws unless you follow that which is written in the law. For what more certain evidence of his intention could the framer of a law leave behind him, than that which he himself wrote with great care and diligence? But if there were no written documents, then we should be very anxious for them, in order that the intention of the framer of the law might be ascertained; nor should we permit Epaminondas, not even if he were beyond the power of this tribunal, to interpret to us the meaning of the law; much less will we now permit him, when, the law is at hand, to interpret the intention of the lawgiver, not from that which is most clearly written, but from that which is convenient for his own cause. But if you, O judges, are bound to obey the laws, and if you are unable to do so unless you follow what is written in the law; what can hinder your deciding that he has acted contrary to the laws?"
But if we pass over the proof of the assumption, again the argumentation will be arranged under four heads, in this manner:—"When men have repeatedly deceived us, having pledged their faith to us, we ought not to give credit to anything that they say for if we receive any injury; in consequence of their perfidy, there will be no one except ourselves whom we shall have any right to accuse. And in the first place, it is inconvenient to be deceived, in the next place, it is foolish, thirdly, it is disgraceful. But the Carthaginians have before this deceived us over and over again. It is therefore the greatest insanity to rest any hopes on their good faith, when you have been so often deceived by their treachery."
When the proof both of the proposition and of the assumption is passed over, the argumentation becomes threefold only, in this way—"We must either live in fear of the Carthaginians if we leave them with their power undiminished, or we must destroy their city. And certainly it is not desirable to live in fear of them. The only remaining alternative then is to destroy their city."
XL But some people think that it is both possible and advisable at times to pass over the summing up altogether, when it is quite evident what is effected by ratiocination. And then if that be done they consider that the argumentation is limited to two divisions, in this way—"If she has had a child she is not a virgin. But she has had a child." In this case they say it is quite sufficient to state the proposition and assumption, since it is quite plain that the matter which is here stated is such as does not stand in need of summing up. But to us it seems that all ratiocination ought to be terminated in proper form and that that defect which offends them is above all things to be avoided namely, that of introducing what is self evident into the summing up.
But this will be possible to be effected if we come to a right understanding of the different kinds of summing up. For we shall either sum up in such a way as to unite together the proposition and the assumption, in this way—"But if it is right for all laws to be referred to the general advantage of the republic, and if this man ensured the safety of the republic, undoubtedly he cannot by one and the same action have consulted the general safety and yet have violated the laws,"—or thus, in order that the opinion we advocate may be established by arguments drawn from contraries, in this manner—"It is then the very greatest madness to build hopes on the good faith of those men by whose treachery you have been so repeatedly deceived,"—or so that that inference alone be drawn which is already announced, in this manner—"Let us then destroy their city,"—or so that the conclusion which is desired must necessarily follow from the assertion which has been established, in this way—"If she has had a child, she has laid with a man. But she has had a child." This then is established. "Therefore she has lain with a man." If you are unwilling to draw this inference, and prefer inferring what follows, "Therefore she has committed incest," you will have terminated your argumentation but you will have missed an evident and natural summing up.
Wherefore in long argumentations it is often desirable to draw influences from combinations of circumstances, or from contraries. And briefly to explain that point alone which is established, and in those in which the result is evident, to employ arguments drawn from consequences. But if there are any people who think that argumentation ever consists of one part alone they will be able to say that it is often sufficient to carry-on an argumentation in this way.—"Since she has had a child, she has lain with a man." For they say that this assertion requires no proof, nor assumption, nor proof of an assumption, nor summing up. But it seems to us that they are misled by the ambiguity of the name. For argumentation signifies two things under one name, because any discussion respecting anything which is either probable or necessary is called argumentation, and so also is the systematic polishing of such a discussion.
When then they bring forward any statement of this kind,—"Since she has had a child, she has lain, with a man," they bring forward a plain assertion, not a highly worked up argument, but we are speaking of the parts of a highly worked up argument.
XLI. That principle then has nothing to do with this matter. And with the help of this distinction we will remove other obstacles which seem to be in the way of this classification, if any people think that it is possible that at times the assumption may be omitted, and at other times the proposition, and if this idea has in it anything probable or necessary, it is quite inevitable that it must affect the hearer in some great degree. And if it were the only object in view, and if it made no difference in what manner that argument which had been projected was handled, it would be a great mistake to suppose that there is such a vast difference between the greatest orators and ordinary ones.
But it will be exceedingly desirable to infuse variety into our speech, for in all cases sameness is the mother of satiety. That will be able to be managed if we not always enter upon our argumentation in a similar manner. For in the first place it is desirable to distinguish our orations as to their kinds, that is to say, at one time to employ induction, and at another ratiocination. In the next place, in the argumentation itself, it is best not always to begin with the proposition, nor in every case to employ all the five divisions, nor always to work up the different parts in the same manner, but it is permissible sometimes to begin with the assumption, sometimes with one or other of the proofs, sometimes with both, sometimes to employ one kind of summing up, and sometimes another. And in order that this variety may be seen, let us either write, or in any example whatever let us exercise this same principle with respect to those things which we endeavour to prove, that our task may be as easy as possible.
And concerning the parts of the argumentation it seems to us that enough has been said. But we wish to have it understood that we hold the doctrine that argumentations are handled in philosophy in many other manners, and those too at times obscure ones, concerning which, however, there is still some definite system laid down. But still those methods appear to us to be inconsistent with the practice of an orator. But as to those things which we think belong to orators, we do not indeed undertake to say that we have attended to them more carefully than others have, but we do assert that we have written on them with more accuracy and diligence. At present let us go on in regular order to the other points, as we originally proposed.
XLII. Reprehension is that by means of which the proof adduced by the opposite party is invalidated by arguing, or is disparaged, or is reduced to nothing. And this sort of argument proceeds from the same source of invention which confirmation employs, because whatever the topics may be by means of which any statement can be confirmed, the very same may be used in order to invalidate it. For nothing is to be considered in all these inventions, except that which has been attributed to persons or to things. Wherefore it will be necessary that the invention and the high polish which ought to be given to argumentation must be transferred to this part of our oration also from those rules which have been already laid down. But in order that we may give some precepts with reference to this part also, we will explain the different methods of reprehension, and those who observe them will more easily be able to do away with or invalidate those statements which are made on the opposite side.
All argumentation is reprehended when anything, whether it be one thing only, or more than one of those positions which are assumed, is not granted, or if, though they are granted, it is denied that the conclusion legitimately follows from them, or if it is shown that the very kind of argumentation is faulty, or if in opposition to one form and reliable sort of argumentation another is employed which is equally firm and convincing. Something of those positions which have been assumed is not granted when either that thing which the opposite party says is credible is denied to be such, or when what they think admits of a comparison with the present case is shown to be unlike it, or when what has been already decided is either turned aside as referring to something else, or is impeached as having been erroneously decided, or when that which the opposite party have called a proof is denied to be such, or if the summing up is denied in some one point or in every particular, or if it is shown that the enumeration of matters stated and proved is incorrect, or if the simple conclusion is proved to contain something false. For everything which is assumed for the purpose of arguing on, whether as necessary or as only probable, must inevitably be assumed from these topics, as we have already pointed out.
XLIII. What is assumed as something credible is invalidated, if it is either manifestly false, in this way:—"There is the one who would not prefer riches to wisdom." Or on the opposite side something credible may be brought against it, in this manner—"Who is there who is not more desirous of doing his duty than of acquiring money?" Or it may be utterly and absolutely incredible, as if some one, who it is notorious is a miser, were to say that he had neglected the acquisition of some large sum of money for the sake of performing some inconsiderable duty. Or if that which happens in some circumstances, and to some persons, were asserted to happen habitually in all cases and to everybody, in this way.—'Those men who are poor have a greater regard for money than for duty.' 'It is very natural that a murder should have been committed in that which is a desert place.' How could a man be murdered in a much frequented place? Or if a thing which is done seldom is asserted never to be done at all, as Curius asserts in his speech in behalf of Fulvius, where he says, "No one can fall in love at a single glance, or as he is passing by."
But that which is assumed as a proof may be invalidated by a recurrence to the same topics as those by which it is sought to be established. For in a proof the first thing to be shown is that it is true, and in the next place, that it is one especially affecting the matter which is under discussion, as blood is a proof of murder in the next place, that that has been done which ought not to have been, or that has not been done which ought to have been and last of all, that the person accused was acquainted with the law and usages affecting the matter which is the subject of inquiry. For all these circumstance are matters requiring proof, and we will explain them more carefully, when we come to speak about conjectural statements separately. Therefore, each of these points in a reprehension of the statement of the adversary must be laboured, and it must be shown either that such and such a thing is no proof, or that it is an unimportant proof, or that it is favourable to oneself rather than to the adversary, or that it is altogether erroneously alleged, or that it may be diverted so as to give grounds to an entirely different suspicion.
XLIV. But when anything is alleged as a proper object of comparison, since that is a class of argument which turns principally on resemblance, in reprehending the adversity it will be advisable to deny that there is any resemblance at all to the case with which it is attempted to institute the comparison. And that may be done if it be proved to be different in genus or in nature, or in power, or in magnitude, or in time or place, or with reference to the person affected, or to the opinions generally entertained of it. And if it be shown also in what classification that which is brought forward on account of the alleged resemblance and in what place too the whole genus with reference to which it is brought forward, ought to be placed. After that it will be pointed out how the one thing differs from the other, from which we shall proceed to show that a different opinion ought to be entertained of that which is brought forward by way of comparison, and of that to which it is sought to be compared. And this sort of argument we especially require when that particular argumentation which is carried on by means of induction is to be reprehended. If any previous decision be alleged, since these are the topics by which it is principally established, the praise of those who have delivered such decision, the resemblance of the matter which is at present under discussion to that which has already been the subject of the decision referred to, that not only the decision is not found fault with because it is mentioned, but that it is approved of by every one, and by showing too, that the case which has been already decided is a more difficult and a more important one than that which is under consideration now. It will be desirable also to invalidate it by arguments drawn from the contrary topics, if either truth or probability will allow us to do so. And it will be necessary to take care and notice whether the matter which has been decided has any real connexion with that which is the present subject of discussion, and we must also take care that no case is adduced in which any error has been committed, so that it should seem that we are passing judgment on the man himself who has delivered the decision referred to.
It is desirable further to take care that they do not bring forward some solitary or unusual decision when there have been many decisions given the other way. For by such means as this the authority of the decision alleged can be best invalidated. And it is desirable that those arguments which are assumed as probable should be handled in this way.
XLV. But those which are brought forward as necessary, if they are only imitations of a necessary kind of argumentation and are not so in reality, may be reprehended in this manner. In the first place, the summing up, which ought to take away the force of the admissions you have made if it be a correct one, will never be reprehended, if it be an incorrect one it may be attacked by two methods, either by conversion or by the invalidating one portion of it. By conversion, in this way.
"For if the man be modest, why should you Attack so good a man? And if his heart And face be seats of shameless impudence, Then what avails your accusation Of one who views all fame with careless eye?"
In this case, whether you say that he is a modest man or that he is not, he thinks that the unavoidable inference is that you should not accuse him. But that may be reprehended by conversion thus—"But indeed, he ought to be accused, for if he be modest, accuse him, for he will not treat your imputations against him lightly, but if he has a shameless disposition of mind, still accuse him, for in that case he is not a respectable man."
And again, the argument may be reprehended by an invalidating of the other part of it—"But if he is a modest man, when he has been corrected by your accusation he will abandon his error." An enumeration of particulars is understood to be faulty if we either say that something has been passed over which we are willing to admit, or if some weak point has been included in it which can be contradicted, or if there is no reason why we may not honestly admit it. Something is passed over in such an enumeration as this.—"Since you have that horse, you must either have bought it, or have acquired it by inheritance, or have received it as a gift, or he must have been born on your estate, or, if none of these alternatives of the case, you must have stolen it. But you did not buy it, nor did it come to you by inheritance, nor was it foaled on your estate, nor was it given to you as a present, therefore you must certainly have stolen it."
This enumeration is fairly reprehended, if it can be alleged that the horse was taken from the enemy, as that description of booty is not sold. And if that be alleged, the enumeration is disproved, since that matter has been stated which was passed over in such enumeration.
XLVI. But it will also be reprehended in another manner, if any contradictory statement is advanced; that is to say, just by way of example, if, to continue arguing from the previous case, it can be shown that the horse did come to one by inheritance, or if it should not be discreditable to admit the last alternative, as if a person, when his adversaries said,—"You were either laying an ambush against the owner, or you were influenced by a friend, or you were carried away by covetousness," were to confess that he was complying with the entreaties of his friend.
But a simple conclusion is reprehended if that which follows does not appear of necessity to cohere with that which has gone before. For this very proposition, "If he breathes, he is alive," "If it is day, it is light," is a proposition of such a nature that the latter statement appears of necessity to cohere with the preceding one. But this inference, "If she is his mother, she loves him," "If he has ever done wrong, he will never be chastised," ought to be reprehended in such a manner as to show that the latter proposition does not of necessity cohere with the former.
Inferences of this kind, and all other unavoidable conclusions, and indeed all argumentation whatever, and its reprehension too, contains some greater power and has a more extensive operation than is here explained. But the knowledge of this system is such that it cannot be added to any portion of this art, not that it does of itself separately stand in need of a long time, and of deep and arduous consideration. Wherefore those things shall be explained by us at another time, and when we are dealing with another subject, if opportunity be afforded us. At present we ought to be contented with these precepts of the rhetoricians given for the use of orators. When, therefore, any one of these points which are assumed is not granted, the whole statement is invalidated by these means.
XLVII. But when, though these things are admitted, a conclusion is not derived from them, we must consider these points too, whether any other conclusion is obtained, or whether anything else is meant, in this way,—If, when any one says that he is gone to the army, and any one chooses to use this mode of arguing against him, "If you had come to the army you would have been seen by the military tribunes, but you were not seen by them, therefore you did not go to the army." On this case, when you have admitted the proposition, and the assumption, you have got to invalidate the conclusion, for some other inference has been drawn, and not the one which was inevitable.
And at present, indeed, in order that the case might be more easily understood, we have brought forward an example pregnant with a manifest and an enormous error; but it often happens that an error when stated obscurely is taken for a truth; when either you do not recollect exactly what admissions you have made, or perhaps you have granted something as certain which is extremely doubtful. If you have granted something which is doubtful on that side of the question which you yourself understand, then if the adversary should wish to adapt that part to the other part by means of inference, it will be desirable to show, not from the admission which you have made, but from what he has assumed, that an inference is really established; in this manner:—"If you are in need of money, you have not got money. If you have not got money, you are poor. But you are in need of money, for if it were not so you would not pay attention to commerce; therefore you are poor." This is refuted in this way:—"When you said, if you are in need of money you have not got money, I understood you to mean, 'If you are in need of money from poverty, then you have not got money;' and therefore I admitted the argument. But when you assumed, 'But you are in need of money,' I understood you to mean, 'But you wish to have more money.' But from these admissions this result, 'Therefore you are poor,' does not follow. But it would follow if I had made this admission to you in the first instance, that any one who wished to have more money, had no money at all."
XLVIII. But many often think that you have forgotten what admissions you made, and therefore an inference which does not follow legitimately is introduced into the summing up as if it did follow; in this way:—"If the inheritance came to him, it is probable that he was murdered by him." Then they prove this at considerable length. Afterwards they assume, But the inheritance did come to him. Then the inference is deduced; Therefore he did murder him. But that does not necessarily follow from what they had assumed. Wherefore it is necessary to take great care to notice both what is assumed, and what necessarily follows from those assumptions. But the whole description of argumentation will be proved to be faulty on these accounts; if either there is any defect in the argumentation itself, or if it is not adapted to the original intention. And there will be a defect in the argumentation itself, if the whole of it is entirely false, or common, or ordinary, or trifling, or made up of remote suppositions; if the definition contained in it be faulty, if it be controverted, if it be too evident, if it be one which is not admitted, or discreditable, or objected to, or contrary, or inconstant, or adverse to one's object.
That is false in which there is evidently a lie; in this manner:—"That man cannot be wise who neglects money. But Socrates neglected money; therefore he was not wise." That is common which does not make more in favour of our adversaries than of ourselves; in this manner:—"Therefore, O judges, I have summed up in a few words, because I had truth on my side." That is ordinary which, if the admission be now made, can be transferred also to some other case which is not easily proved; in this manner:—"If he had not truth on his side, O judges, he would never have risked committing himself to your decision." That is trifling which is either uttered after the proposition, in this way:—"If it had occurred to him, he would not have done so;" or if a man wishes to conceal a matter manifestly disgraceful under a trifling defence, in this manner:—
"Then when all sought your favour, when your hand Wielded a mighty sceptre, I forsook you; But now when all fly from you, I prepare Alone, despising danger, to restore you."
XLIX. That is remote which is sought to a superfluous extent, in this manner:—"But if Publius Scipio had not given his daughter Cornelia in marriage to Tiberius Gracchus, and if he had not had the two Gracchi by her, such terrible seditions would never have arisen. So that all this distress appears attributable to Scipio." And like this is that celebrated complaint—
"Oh that the woodman's axe had spared the pine That long on Pelion's lofty summit grew."
For the cause is sought further back than is at all necessary. That is a bad definition, when it either describes common things in this manner:—"He is seditious who is a bad and useless citizen;" for this does not describe the character of a seditious man more than of an ambitious one,—of a calumniator, than of any wicked man whatever, in short. Or when it says anything which is false; in this manner:—"Wisdom is a knowledge how to acquire money." Or when it contains something which is neither dignified nor important; in this way:—"Folly is a desire of inordinate glory." That, indeed, is one folly; but this is defining folly by a species, not by its whole genus. It is controvertible when a doubtful cause is alleged, for the sake of proving a doubtful point; in this manner:—
"See how the gods who rule the realms above And shades below, and all their motions sway, Themselves are all in tranquil concord found."
That is self-evident, about which there is no dispute at all. As if any one while accusing Orestes were to make it quite plain that his mother had been put to death by him. That is a disputable definition, when the very thing which we are amplifying is a matter in dispute. As if any one, while accusing Ulysses, were to dwell on this point particularly, that it is a scandalous thing that the bravest of men, Ajax, should have been slain by a most inactive man. That is discreditable which either with respect to the place in which it is spoken, or to the man who utters it, or to the time at which it is uttered, or to those who hear it, or to the matter which is the subject of discussion, appears scandalous on account of the subject being a discreditable one. That is an offensive one, which offends the inclinations of those who hear it; as if any one were to praise the judiciary law of Caepio before the Roman knights, who are themselves desirous of acting as judges.
L. That is a contrary definition, which is laid down in opposition to the actions which those who are the hearers of the speech have done; as if any one were to be speaking before Alexander the Great against some stormer of a city, and were to say that nothing was more inhuman than to destroy cities, when Alexander himself had destroyed Thebes. That is an inconsistent one, which is asserted by the same man in different senses concerning the same case; as if any one, after he has said that the man who has virtue is in need of nothing whatever for the purpose of living well, were afterwards to deny that any one could live well without good health; or that he would stand by a friend in difficulty out of good-will towards him, for that then he would hope that some good would accrue to himself by so doing.
That is an adverse definition, which in some particular is an actual injury to one's own cause; as if any one were to extol the power, and resources, and prosperity of the enemy, while encouraging his own soldiers to fight. If some part of the argumentation is not adapted to the object which is or ought to be proposed to one, it will be found to be owing to some one of these defects. If a man has promised a great many points and proved only a few; or if, when he is bound to prove the whole, he speaks only of some portion; in this way:—The race of women is avaricious; for Eriphyle sold the life of her husband for gold. Or if he does not speak in defence of that particular point which is urged in accusation; as if any one when accused of corruption were to defend himself by the statement that he was brave; as Amphion does in Euripides, and so too in Pacuvius, who, when his musical knowledge is found fault with, praises his knowledge of philosophy. Or if a part of conduct be found fault with on account of the bad character of the man; as if any one were to blame learning on account of the vices of some learned men. Or if any one while wishing to praise somebody were to speak of his good fortune, and not of his virtue; or if any one were to compare one thing with another in such a manner as to think that he was not praising the one unless he was blaming the other; or if he were to praise the one in such a manner as to omit all mention of the other.
Or if, when an inquiry is being carried on respecting one particular point, the speech is addressed to common topics; as if any one, while men are deliberating whether war shall be waged or not, were to devote himself wholly to the praises of peace, and not to proving that that particular war is inexpedient. Or if a false reason for anything be alleged, in this way:—Money is good because it is the thing which, above all others, makes life happy. Or if one is alleged which is invalid, as Plautus says:—
"Sure to reprove a friend for evident faults Is but a thankless office; still 'tis useful, And wholesome for a youth of such an age, And so this day I will reprove my friend, Whose fault is palpable."—Plautus, Frinummus, Act i. sc. 2, l.1.
Or in this manner, if a man were to say, "Avarice is the greatest evil; for the desire of money causes great distress to numbers of people." Or it is unsuitable, in this manner:—"Friendship is the greatest good for there are many pleasures in friendship."
LI. The fourth manner of reprehension was stated to be that by which, in opposition to a solid argumentation, one equally, or still more solid, has been advanced. And this kind of argumentation is especially employed in deliberations when we admit that something which is said in opposition to us is reasonable, but still prove that that conduct which we are defending is necessary; or when we confess that the line of conduct which they are advocating is useful, and prove that what we ourselves are contending for is honourable. And we have thought it necessary to say thus much about reprehension; now we will lay down some rules respecting the conclusion.
Hermagoras places digression next in order, and then the ultimate conclusion. But in this digression he considers it proper to introduce some inferential topics, unconnected with the cause and with the decision itself, which contain some praise of the speaker himself, or some vituperation of the adversary, or else may lead to some other topic from which he may derive some confirmation or reprehension, not by arguing, but by expanding the subject by some amplification or other. If any one thinks that this is a proper part of an oration, he may follow Hermagoras. For precepts for embellishing, and praising, and blaming, have partly been already given by us, and partly will be given hereafter in their proper place. But we do not think it right that this part should be classed among the regular divisions of a speech, because it appears improper that there should be digressions, except to some common topics, concerning which subject we must speak subsequently. But it does not seem desirable to handle praise and vituperation separately, but it seems better that they should be considered as forming part of the argumentation itself. At present we will treat of the conclusion of an oration.
LII. The conclusion is the end and terminating of the whole oration. It has three parts,—enumeration, indignation, and complaint. Enumeration is that by which matters which have been related in a scattered and diffuse manner are collected together, and, for the sake of recollecting them, are brought under our view. If this is always treated in the same manner, it will be completely evident to every one that it is being handled according to some artificial system; but if it be done in many various ways, the orator will be able to escape this suspicion, and will not cause such weariness. Wherefore it will be desirable to act in the way which most people adopt, on account of its easiness; that is, to touch on each topic separately, and in that manner briefly to run over all sorts of argumentation; and also (which is, however, more difficult) to recount what portions of the subject you previously mentioned in the arrangement of the subject, as those which you promised to explain; and also to bring to the recollection of your hearers the reasonings by which you established each separate point, and then to ask of those who are hearing you what it is which they ought to wish to be proved to them; in this way:—"We proved this; we made that plain;" and by this means the hearer will recover his recollection of it, and will think that there is nothing besides which he ought to require.
And in these kinds of conclusions, as has been said before, it will be serviceable both to run over the arguments which you yourself have employed separately, and also (which is a matter requiring still greater art) to unite the opposite arguments with your own; and to show how completely you have done away with the arguments which were brought against you. And so, by a brief comparison, the recollection of the hearer will be refreshed both as to the confirmation which you adduced, and as to the reprehension which you employed. And it will be useful to vary these proceedings by other methods of pleading also. But you may carry on the enumeration in your own person, so as to remind your hearers of what you said, and in what part of your speech you said each thing; and also you may bring on the stage some other character, or some different circumstance, and then make your whole enumeration with reference to that. If it is a person, in this way:—"For if the framer of the law were to appear, and were to inquire of you why you doubted, what could you say after this, and this, and this has been proved to you?" And in this case, as also in our own character, it will be in our power to run over all kinds of argumentation separately: and at one time to refer all separate genera to different classes of the division, and at another to ask of the hearer what he requires, and at another to adopt a similar course by a comparison of one's own arguments and those of the opposite party.
But a different class of circumstance will be introduced if an enumerative oration be connected with any subject of this sort,—law, place, city, or monument, in this manner.—"What if the laws themselves could speak? Would not they also address this complaint to you? What more do you require, O judges when this, and this, and this has been already made plain to you?" And in this kind of argument it is allowable to use all these same methods. But this is given as a common precept to guide one in framing an enumeration, that out of every part of the argument, since the whole cannot be repeated over again, that is to be selected which is of the greatest weight, and that each point is to be run over as briefly as possible, so that it shall appear to be only a refreshing of the recollection of the hearers, not a repetition of the speech.
LIII. Indignation is a kind of speech by which the effect produced is, that great hatred is excited against a man, or great dislike of some proceeding is originated. In an address of this kind we wish to have this understood first, that it is possible to give vent to indignation from all those topics which we have suggested in laying down precepts for the confirmation of a speech. For any amplifications whatever, and every sort of indignation may be expressed, derived from those circumstances which are attributed to persons and to things, but still we had better consider those precepts which can be laid down separately with respect to indignation.
The first topic is derived from authority, when we relate what a great subject of anxiety that affair has been to the immortal gods, or to those whose authority ought to carry the greatest weight with it. And that topic will be derived from prophecies, from oracles, from prophets, from tokens, from prodigies, from answers, and from other things like these. Also from our ancestors, from kings, from states, from nations from the wisest men, from the senate, the people, the framers of laws. The second topic is that by which it is shown with amplification, by means of indignation, whom that affair concerns,—whether it concerns all men or the greater part of men, (which is a most serious business,) or whether it concerns the higher classes, such as those men are on whose authority the indignation which we are professing is grounded, (which is most scandalous,) or whether it affects those men who are one's equals in courage, and fortune, and personal advantages, (which is most iniquitous,) or whether it affects our inferiors, (which is most arrogant).
The third topic is that which we employ when we are inquiring what is likely to happen, if every one else acts in the same manner. And at the same time we point out if this man is permitted to act thus, that there will be many imitators of the same audacity, and then from that we shall be able to point out how much evil will follow.
The fourth topic is one by the use of which we show that many men are eagerly looking out to see what is decided, in order that they may be able to see by the precedent of what is allowed to one, what will be allowed to themselves also in similar circumstances.
The fifth topic is one by the use of which we show that everything else which has been badly managed, as soon as the truth concerning them is ascertained, may be all set right, that this thing, however, is one which, if it be once decided wrongly, cannot be altered by any decision, nor set right by any power.
The sixth topic is one by which the action spoken of is proved to have been done designedly and on purpose, and then we add this argument, that pardon ought not to be granted to an intentional crime.
The seventh topic is one which we employ when we say that any deed is foul, and cruel, and nefarious, and tyrannical; that it has been effected by violence or by the influence of riches—a thing which is as remote as possible from the laws and from all ideas of equal justice.
LIV. An eighth topic is one of which we avail ourselves to demonstrate that the crime which is the present subject of discussion is not a common one,—not one such as is often perpetrated. And, that is foreign to the nature of even men in a savage state, of the most barbarous nations, or even of brute beasts. Actions of this nature are such as are wrought with cruelty towards one's parents, or wife, or husband, or children, or relations, or suppliants; next to them, if anything has been done with inhumanity towards a man's elders,—towards those connected with one by ties of hospitality, —towards one's neighbours or one's friends,—to those with whom one has been in the habit of passing one's life,—to those by whom one has been brought up,—to those by whom one has been taught,—to the dead,—to those who are miserable and deserving of pity,—to men who are illustrious, noble, and who have been invested with honours and offices,—to those who have neither had power to injure another nor to defend themselves, such as boys, old men, women: by all which circumstances indignation is violently excited, and will be able to awaken the greatest hatred against a man who has injured any of these persons.
The ninth topic is one by which the action which is the subject of the present discussion is compared with others which are admitted on all hands to be offences. And in that way it is shown by comparison how much more atrocious and scandalous is the action which is the present subject of discussion.
The tenth topic is one by which we collect all the circumstances which have taken place in the performance of this action, and which have followed since that action, with great indignation at and reproach of each separate item, and by our description we bring the case as far as possible before the eyes of the judge before whom we are speaking, so that that which is scandalous may appear quite as scandalous to him as if he himself had been present to see what was done.
The eleventh topic is one which we avail ourselves of when we are desirous to show that the action has been done by him whom of all men in the world it least became to do it, and by whom indeed it ought to have been prevented if any one else had endeavoured to do it.
The twelfth topic is one by means of which we express our indignation that we should be the first people to whom this has happened, and that it has never occurred in any other instance.
The thirteenth topic is when insult is shown to have been added to injury, and by this topic we awaken hatred against pride and arrogance.
The fourteenth topic is one which we avail ourselves of to entreat those who hear us to consider our injuries as if they affected themselves; if they concern our children, to think of their own, if our wives have been injured, to recollect their own wives, if it is our aged relations who have suffered, to remember their own fathers or ancestors.
The fifteenth topic is one by which we say that those things which have happened to us appear scandalous even to foes and enemies, and as a general rule, indignation is derived from one or other of these topics.
LV. But complaint will usually take its origin from things of this kind. Complaint is a speech seeking to move the pity of the hearers. In this it is necessary in the first place to render the disposition of the hearer gentle and merciful, in order that it may the more easily be influenced by pity. And it will be desirable to produce that effect by common topics, such as those by which the power of fortune over all men is shown, and the weakness of men too is displayed, and if such an argument is argued with dignity and with impressive language, then the minds of men are greatly softened, and prepared to feel pity, while they consider their own weakness in the contemplation of the misfortunes of another.
Then the first topic to raise pity is that by which we show how great the prosperity of our clients was, and how great their present misery is.
The second is one which is divided according to different periods, according to which it is shown in what miseries they have been, and still are, and are likely to be hereafter.
The third topic is that by which each separate inconvenience is deplored, as, for instance, in speaking of the death of a man's son, the delight which the father took in his childhood, his love for him, his hope of him, the comfort he derived from him, the pains he took in his bringing up, and all other instances of the same sort, may be mentioned so as to exaggerate the complaint.
The fourth topic is one in which all circumstances which are discreditable or low or mean are brought forward, all circumstances which are unworthy of a man's age, or both, or fortune, or former honours or services, all the disasters which they have suffered or are liable to suffer.
The fifth topic is that by using which all disadvantages we brought separately before the eyes of the hearer, so that he who hears of them may seem to see them, and by the very facts themselves, and not only by the description of them, may be moved to pity as if he had been actually present.
The sixth topic is one by which the person spoken of is shown to be miserable, when he had no reason to expect any such fate; and that when he was expecting something else, he not only failed to obtain it, but fell into the most terrible misfortunes.
The seventh is one by which we suppose the fact of a similar mischance befalling the men who are listening to us, and require of them when they behold us to call to mind their own children, or their parents, or some one for whom they are bound to entertain affections.
The eighth is one by which something is said to have been done which ought not to have been done; or not to have been done which ought to have been. In this manner:—"I was not present, I did not see him, I did not hear his last words, I did not receive his last breath. Moreover, he died amid his enemies, he lay shamefully unburied in an enemy's country, being torn to pieces by wild beasts, and was deprived in death of even that honour which is the due of all men."
The ninth is one by which our speech is made to refer to things which are void both of language and sense; as if you were to adapt your discourse to a horse, a house, or a garment; by which topics the minds of those who are hearing, and who have been attached to any one, are greatly moved.
The tenth is one by which want, or weakness, or the desolate condition of any one is pointed out.
The eleventh is one in which is contained a recommendation to bury one's children, or one's parents, or one's own body, or to do any other such thing.
The twelfth is one in which a separation is lamented when you are separated from any one with whom you have lived most pleasantly,—as from a parent, a son, a brother, an intimate friend.
The thirteenth is one used when we complain with great indignation that we are ill-treated by those by whom above all others we least ought to be so,—as by our relations, or by friends whom we have served, and whom we have expected to be assistants to us; or by whom it is a shameful thing to be ill-treated,—as by slaves, or freedmen, or clients, or suppliants.
The fourteenth is one which is taken as an entreaty, in which those who hear us are entreated, in a humble and suppliant oration, to have pity on us.
The fifteenth is one in which we show that we are complaining not only of our own fortunes, but of those who ought to be dear to us.
The sixteenth is one by using which we show that our hearts are full of pity for others; and yet give tokens at the same time that it will be a great and lofty mind, and one able to endure disaster if any such should befall us. For often virtue and splendour, in which there is naturally great influence and authority, have more effect in exciting pity than humility and entreaties. And when men's minds are moved it will not be right to dwell longer on complaints; for, as Apollonius the rhetorician said, "Nothing dries quicker than a tear."
But since we have already, as it seems, said enough of all the different parts of a speech, and since this volume has swelled to a great size, what follows next shall be stated in the second book.
* * * * *
THE SECOND BOOK OF THE RHETORIC, OR OF THE TREATISE ON RHETORICAL INVENTION, OF M.T. CICERO.
I. Some men of Crotona, when they were rich in all kinds of resources, and when they were considered among the most prosperous people in Italy, were desirous to enrich the temple of Juno, which they regarded with the most religious veneration, with splendid pictures. Therefore they hired Zeuxis of Heraclea at a vast price, who was at that time considered to be far superior to all other painters, and employed him in that business. He painted many other pictures, of which some portion, on account of the great respect in which the temple is held, has remained to within our recollection; and in order that one of his mute representations might contain the preeminent beauty of the female form, he said that he wished to paint a likeness of Helen. And the men of Crotona, who had frequently heard that he excelled all other men in painting women, were very glad to hear this; for they thought that if he took the greatest pains in that class of work in which he had the greatest skill, he would leave them a most noble work in that temple.
Nor were they deceived in that expectation: for Zeuxis immediately asked of them what beautiful virgins they had; and they immediately led him into the palaestra, and there showed him numbers of boys of the highest birth and of the greatest beauty. For indeed, there was a time when the people of Crotona were far superior to all other cities in the strength and beauty of their persons; and they brought home the most honourable victories from the gymnastic contests, with the greatest credit. While, therefore, he was admiring the figures of the boys and their personal perfection very greatly; "The sisters," say they, "of these boys are virgins in our city, so that how great their beauty is you may infer from these boys." "Give me, then," said he, "I beg you, the most beautiful of these virgins, while I paint the picture which I promised you, so that the reality may be transferred from the breathing model to the mute likeness." Then the citizens of Crotona, in accordance with a public vote, collected the virgins into one place, and gave the painter the opportunity of selecting whom he chose. But he selected five, whose names many poets have handed down to tradition, because they had been approved by the judgment of the man who was bound to have the most accurate judgment respecting beauty. For he did not think that he could find all the component parts of perfect beauty in one person, because nature has made nothing of any class absolutely perfect in every part. Therefore, as if nature would not have enough to give to everybody if it had given everything to one, it balances one advantage bestowed upon a person by another disadvantage.
II. But since the inclination has arisen in my mind to write a treatise on the art of speaking, we have not put forth any single model of which every portion was necessarily to be copied by us, of whatever sort they might be; but, having collected together all the writers on the subject into one place, we have selected what each appears to have recommended which may be most serviceable, and we have thus culled the flower from various geniuses. For of those who are worthy of fame or recollection, there is no one who appears either to have said nothing well, or everything admirably. So that it seemed folly either to forsake the sensible maxims brought forward by any one, merely because we are offended at some other blunder of his, or, on the other hand, to embrace his faults because we have been tempted by some sensible precept which he has also delivered.
But if in other pursuits also men would select all that was found most sensible from many sources, instead of devoting themselves to one fixed leader, they would err less on the side of arrogance; they would not persist so much in error, and they would make less enormous mistakes through ignorance. And if we had as deep an acquaintance with this art as he had with that of painting, perhaps this work of ours might appear as admirable in its kind as his picture did. For we have had an opportunity of selecting from a much more copious store of models than he had. He was able to make his selection from one city, and from that number of virgins only which existed at that time and place; but we have had opportunity of making our selection from all the men who have ever lived from the very first beginning of this science, being reduced to a system up to the present day, and taking whatever we thought worth while from all the stores which lay open before us.
And Aristotle, indeed, has collected together all the ancient writers on this art, from the first writer on the subject and inventor of it, Tisias, and has compiled with great perspicuity the precepts of each of them, mentioning them by name, after having sought them out with exceeding care; and he has disentangled them with great diligence and explained their difficulties; and he has so greatly excelled the original writers themselves in suavity and brevity of diction, that no one is acquainted with their precepts from their own writings, but all who wish to know what maxims they have laid down, come back to him as to a far more agreeable expounder of their meaning.
And he himself has set before us himself and those too who had lived before his time, in order that we might be acquainted with the method of others, and with his own. And those who have followed him, although they have expended a great deal of labour on the most profound and important portions of philosophy, as he himself also, whose example they were following, had done, have still left us many precepts on the subject of speaking. And other masters of this science have also come forward, taking their rise, as it were in other springs, who have also been of great assistance in eloquence, as far at least as artificial rules can do any good. For there lived at the same time as Aristotle, a great and illustrious rhetorician, named Isocrates, though we have not entirely discovered what his system was.
But we have found many lessons respecting their art from his pupils and from those who proceeded immediately afterwards from this school.
III. From these two different families, as it were, the one of which, while it was chiefly occupied with philosophy, still devoted some portion of its attention to the rhetorical science, and the other was wholly absorbed in the study and teaching of eloquence, but both kinds of study were united by their successors, who brought to the aid of their own pursuits those things which appeared to have been profitably said by either of them, and those and the others their predecessors are the men whom we and all our countrymen have proposed to ourselves as models, as far as we were able to make them so, and we have also contributed something from our own stores to the common stock.
But if the things which are set forth in these books deserved to be selected with such great eagerness and care as they were, then certainly, neither we ourselves nor others will repent of our industry. But if we appear either rashly to have passed over some doctrine of some one worth noticing, or to have adopted it without sufficient elegance, in that case when we are taught better by some one, we will easily and cheerfully change our opinion. For what is discreditable is, not the knowing little, but the persisting foolishly and long in what one does not understand, because the one thing is attributed to the common infirmity of man, but the other to the especial fault of the individual.
Wherefore we, without affirming anything positively, but making inquiry at the same time, will advance each position with some doubt, lest while we gain this trifling point of being supposed to have written this treatise with tolerable neatness, we should lose that which is of the greater importance, the credit, namely, of not adopting any idea rashly and arrogantly. But this we shall endeavour to gain both at present and during the whole course of our life with great care, as far as our abilities will enable us to do so. But at present, lest we should appear to be too prolix, we will speak of the other points which it seems desirable to insist on.
Therefore, while we were explaining the proper classification of this art, and its duties, and its object, and its subject matter, and its divisions, the first book contained an account of the different kinds of disputes, and inventions, and statements of cases, and decisions. After that, the parts of a speech were described, and all necessary precepts for all of them were laid down. So that we not only discussed other topics in that book with tolerable distinctness, we spoke at that same time in a more scattered manner of the topics of confirmation and reprehension; and at present we think it best to give certain topics for confirming and reprehending, suited to every class of causes. And because it has been explained with some diligence in the former book, in what manner argumentations ought to be handled, in this book it will be sufficient to set forth the arguments which have been discovered for each kind of subject simply, and without any embellishment, so that, in this book, the arguments themselves may be found, and in the former, the proper method of polishing them. So that the reader must refer the precepts which are now laid down, to the topics of confirmation and reprehension.
IV. Every discussion, whether demonstrative, or deliberative, or judicial, must be conversant with some kind or other of statement of the case which has been explained in the former book; sometimes with one, sometimes with several. And though this is the case, still as some things can be laid down in a general way respecting everything, there are also other rules and different methods separately laid down for each particular kind of discussion. For praise, or blame, or the statement of an opinion, or accusation, or denial, ought all to effect different ends. In judicial investigations the object of inquiry is, what is just, in demonstrative discussion the question is what is honourable, in deliberations, in our opinion, what we inquire is, what is honourable and at the same time expedient. For the other writers on this subject have thought it right to limit the consideration of expediency to speeches directed to persuasion or dissuasion.
Those kinds of discussions then whose objects and results are different, cannot be governed by the same precepts. Not that we are saying now that the same statement of the case is not admissible in all of them, but some kinds of speech arise from the object and kind of the discussion, if it refers to the demonstration of some kind of life, or to the delivery of some opinion. Wherefore now, in explaining controversies, we shall have to deal with causes and precepts of a judicial kind, from which many precepts also which concern similar disputes will be transferred to other kinds of causes without much difficulty. But hereafter we will speak separately of each kind.
At present we will begin with the conjectural statement of a case of which this example may be sufficient to be given—A man overtook another on his journey as he was going on some commercial expedition, and carrying a sum of money with him, he, as men often do entered into conversation with him on the way, the result of which was, that they both proceeded together with some degree of friendship, so that when they had arrived at the same inn, they proposed to sup together and to sleep in the same apartment. Having supped, they retired to rest in the same place. But when the innkeeper (for that is what is said to have been discovered since, after the man had been detected in another crime) had taken notice of one of them, that is to say, of him who had the money, he came by night, after he had ascertained that they were both sound asleep, as men usually are when tired, and took from its sheath the sword of the one who had not the money, and which sword he had lying by his side and slew the other man with it and took away his money, and replaced the bloody sword in the sheath, and returned himself to his bed.
But the man with whose sword the murder had been committed, rose long before dawn and called over and over again on his companion; he thought that he did not answer because he was overcome with sleep; and so he took his sword and the rest of the things which he had with him, and departed on his journey alone. The innkeeper not long afterwards raised an outcry that the man was murdered, and in company with some of his lodgers pursued the man who had gone away. They arrest him on his journey, draw his sword out of its sheath, and find it bloody, the man is brought back to the city by them, and put on his trial. On this comes the allegation of the crime, "You murdered him," and the denial, "I did not murder him," and from this is collected the statement of the case. The question in the conjectural examination is the same as that submitted to the judges, "Did he murder him, or not?"
V. Now we will set forth the topics one portion of which applies to all conjectural discussion. But it will be desirable to take notice of this in the exposition of these topics and of all the others, and to observe that they do not all apply to every discussion. For as every man's name is made up of some letters, and not of every letter, so it is not every store of arguments which applies to every argumentation, but some portion which is necessary applies to each. All conjecture, then, must be derived either from the cause of an action, or from the person, or from the case itself.
The cause of an action is divided into impulsion and ratiocination. Impulsion is that which without thought encourages a man to act in such and such a manner, by means of producing some affection of the mind, as love, anger, melancholy, fondness for wine, or indeed anything by which the mind appears to be so affected as to be unable to examine anything with deliberation and care, and to do what it does owing to some impulse of the mind, rather than in consequence of any deliberate purpose.
But ratiocination is a diligent and careful consideration of whether we shall do anything or not do it. And it is said to have been in operation, when the mind appears for some particular definite reason to have avoided something which ought not to have been done, or to have adopted something which ought to have been done, so that if anything is said to have been done for the sake of friendship, or of chastising an enemy, or under the influence of fear, or of a desire for glory or for money, or in short, to comprise everything under one brief general head, for the sake of retaining, or increasing, or obtaining any advantage; or, on the other hand, for the purpose of repelling, or diminishing, or avoiding any disadvantage;—for those former things must fall under one or other of those heads, if either any inconvenience is submitted to for the purpose of avoiding any greater inconvenience, or of obtaining any more important advantage; or if any advantage is passed by for the sake of obtaining some other still greater advantage, or of avoiding some more important disadvantage.
This topic is as it were a sort of foundation of this statement of the case; for nothing that is done is approved of by any one unless some reason be shown why it has been done. Therefore the accuser, when he says that anything has been done in compliance with some impulse, ought to exaggerate that impulse, and any other agitation or affection of the mind, with all the power of language and variety of sentiments of which he is master, and to show how great the power of love is, how great the agitation of mind which arises from anger, or from any one of those causes which he says was that which impelled any one to do anything. And here we must take care, by an enumeration of examples of men who have done anything under the influence of similar impulse, and by a collation of similar cases, and by an explanation of the way in which the mind itself is affected, to hinder its appearing marvellous if the mind of a man has been instigated by such influence to some pernicious or criminal action.
VI. But when the orator says that any one has done such and such an action, not through impulse, but in consequence of deliberate reasoning, he will then point out what advantage he has aimed at, or what inconvenience he has avoided, and he will exaggerate the influence of those motives as much as he can, so that as far as possible the cause which led the person spoken of to do wrong, may appear to have been an adequate one. If it was for the sake of glory that he did so and so, then he will point out what glory he thought would result from it; again, if he was influenced by desire of power, or riches, or by friendship, or by enmity; and altogether whatever the motive was, which he says was his inducement to the action, he will exaggerate as much as possible.
And he is bound to give great attention to this point, not only what the effect would have been in reality, but still more what it would have been in the opinion of the man whom he is accusing. For it makes no difference that there really was or was not any advantage or disadvantage, if the man who is accused believed that there would or would not be such. For opinion deceives men in two ways, when either the matter itself is of a different kind from that which it is believed to be, or when the result is not such as they thought it would be. The matter itself is of a different sort when they think that which is good bad, or, on the other hand, when they think that good which is bad. Or when they think that good or bad which is neither good nor bad, or when they think that which is good or bad neither bad nor good.
Now that this is understood, if any one denies that there is any money more precious or sweeter to a man than his brother's or his friend's life, or even than his own duty, the accuser is not to deny that; for then the blame and the chief part of the hatred will be transferred to him who denies that which is said so truly and so piously. But what he ought to say is, that the man did not think so; and that assertion must be derived from those topics which relate to the person, concerning whom we must speak hereafter.
VII. But the result deceives a person, when a thing has a different result from that which the persons who are accused are said to have thought it would have. As when a man is said to have slain a different person from him whom he intended to slay, either because he was deceived by the likeness or by some suspicion, or by some false indication; or that he slew a man who had not left him his heir in his will, because he believed that he had left him his heir. For it is not right to judge of a man's belief by the result, but rather to consider with what expectation, and intention, and hope he proceeded to such a crime; and to recollect that the matter of real importance is to consider with what intention a man does a thing, and not what the consequence of his action turns out to be.
And in this topic this will be the great point for the accuser, if he is able to show that no one else had any reason for doing so at all. And the thing next in importance will be to show that no one else had such great or sufficient reason for doing so. But if others appear also to have had a motive for doing so, then we must show that they had either no power, or no opportunity, or no inclination to do it. They had no power if it can be said that they did not know it, or were not in the place, or were unable to have accomplished it; they had no opportunity, if it can be proved that any plan, any assistants, any instruments, and all other things which relate to such an action, were wanting to them. They had no inclination, if their disposition can be said to be entirely alien to such conduct, and unimpeachable. Lastly, whatever arguments we allow a man on his trial to use in his defence, the very same the prosecutor will employ in delivering others from blame. But that must be done with brevity, and many arguments must be compressed into one, in order that he may not appear to be accusing the man on his trial for the sake of defending some one else, but to be defending some one else with a view to strengthen his accusation against him.
VIII. And these are for the most part the things which must be done and considered by an accuser. But the advocate for the defence will say, on the other hand, either that there was no motive at all, or, if he admits that there was, he will make light of it, and show that it was a very slight one, or that such conduct does not often proceed from such a motive. And with reference to this topic it will be necessary to point out what is the power and character of that motive, by which the person on his trial is said to have been induced to commit any action; and in doing this it is requisite to adduce instances and examples of similar cases, and the actual nature of such a motive is to be explained as gently as possible, so that the circumstance which is the subject of the discussion may be explained away, and instead of being considered as a cruel and disorderly act, may be represented as something more mild and considerate, and still the speech itself may be adapted to the mind of the hearer, and to a sort of inner feeling, as it were, in his mind.
But the orator will weaken the suspicions arising from the ratiocination, if he shall say either that the advantage intimated had no existence, or a very slight one, or that it was a greater one to others, or that it was no greater advantage to himself than to others, or that it was a greater disadvantage than advantage to himself. So that the magnitude of the advantage which is said to have been desired, was not to be compared with the disadvantage which was really sustained, or with the danger which was incurred. And all those topics will be handled in the same manner in speaking of the avoiding of disadvantage.
But if the prosecutor has said that the man on his trial was pursuing what appeared to him to be an advantage, or was avoiding that which appeared to him to be a disadvantage, even though he was mistaken in that opinion, then the advocate for the defence must show that no one can be so foolish as to be ignorant of the truth in such an affair. And if that be granted, then the other position cannot be granted, that the man ever doubted at all what the case was, but that he, without the least hesitation, considered what was false as false, and what was true as true. But if he doubted, then it was a proof of absolute insanity for a man under the influence of a doubtful hope to incur a certain danger.
But as the accuser when he is seeking to remove the guilt from others must use the topics proper to an advocate for the defence; so the man on his trial must use those topics which have been allotted to an accuser, when he wishes to transfer an accusation from his own shoulders to those of others.
IX. But conjectures will be derived from the person, if those things which have been attributed to persons are diligently considered, all of which we have mentioned in the first book; for sometimes some suspicion arises from the name. But when we say the name, we mean also the surname. For the question is about the particular and peculiar name of a man, as if we were to say that a man is called Caldus because he is a man of a hasty and sudden disposition; or that ignorant Greeks have been deceived by men being called Clodius, or Caecilius, or Marcus.
And we may also derive some suspicious circumstances from nature; for all these questions, whether it is a man or a woman, whether he is of this state or that one, of what ancestors a man is descended, who are his relations, what is his age, what is his disposition, what bodily strength, or figure, or constitution he has, which are all portions of a man's nature, have much influence in leading men to form conjectures.
Many suspicions also are engendered by men's way of life, when the inquiry is how, and by whom, and among whom a man was brought up and educated, and with whom he associates, and what system and habits of domestic life he is devoted to.
Moreover, argumentation often arises from fortune; when we consider whether a man is a slave or a free man, rich or poor, noble or ignoble, prosperous or unfortunate; whether he now is, or has been, or is likely to be a private individual or a magistrate; or, in fact, when any one of those circumstances is sought to be ascertained which are attributable to fortune. But as habit consists in some perfect and consistent formation of mind or body, of which kind are virtue, knowledge, and their contraries; the fact itself, when the whole circumstances are stated, will show whether this topic affords any ground for suspicion. For the consideration of the state of a man's mind is apt to give good grounds for conjecture, as of his affectionate or passionate disposition, or of any annoyance to which he has been exposed; because the power of all such feelings and circumstances is well understood, and what results ensue after any one of them is very easy to be known.
But since study is an assiduous and earnest application of the mind to any particular object with intense desire, that argument which the case itself requires will easily be deduced from it. And again, some suspicion will be able to be inferred from the intention; for intention is a deliberate determination of doing or not doing something. And after this it will be easy to see with respect to facts, and events, and speeches, which are divided into three separate times, whether they contribute anything to confirming the conjectures already formed in the way of suspicion.
X. And those things indeed are attributed to persons, which when they are all collected together in one place, it will be the business of the accuser to use them as inducing a disapprobation of the person; for the fact itself has but little force unless the disposition of the man who is accused can be brought under such suspicion as to appear not to be inconsistent with such a fault. For although there is no great advantage in expressing disapprobation of any one's disposition, when there is no cause why he should have done wrong, still it is but a trifling thing that there should be a motive for an offence, if the man's disposition is proved to be inclined to no line of conduct which is at all discreditable. Therefore the accuser ought to bring into discredit the life of the man whom he is accusing, by reference to his previous actions, and to show whether he has ever been previously convicted of a similar offence. And if he cannot show that, he must show whether he has ever incurred the suspicion of any similar guilt; and especially, if possible, that he has committed some offence or other of some kind under the influence of some similar motive to this which is in existence here, in some similar case, or in an equally important case, or in one more important, or in one less important. As, if with respect to a man who he says has been induced by money to act in such and such a manner, he were able to show that any other action of his in any case had been prompted by avarice.
And again it will be desirable in every cause to mention the nature, or the manner of life, or the pursuits, or the fortune, or some one of those circumstances which are attributed to persons, in connexion with that cause which the speaker says was the motive which induced the man on his trial to do wrong; and also, if one cannot impute anything to him in respect of an exactly corresponding class of faults, to bring the disposition of one's adversary into discredit by reference to some very dissimilar class. As, if you were to accuse him of having done so and so, because he was instigated by avarice; and yet, if you are unable to show that the man whom you accuse is avaricious, you must show that other vices are not wholly foreign to his nature, and that on that account it is no great wonder if a man who in any affair has behaved basely, or covetously, or petulantly, should have erred in this business also. For in proportion as you can detract from the honesty and authority of the man who is accused, in the same proportion has the force of the whole defence been weakened.