It was on this date, January 3, 106 BCE, that Roman statesman and orator Marcus Tullius Cicero was born in Arpinum, which is modern Arpino, Italy. Having chosen parents not among the ruling class in oligarchic Rome, Cicero rose through the political ranks – quaestor, aedile, praetor, and consul – much as one would today: after distinguishing himself as a lawyer. At the peak of his political career, as Consul, in 63 BCE, Cicero exposed the Catiline conspiracy to overthrow Rome.
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Originally published January 2003 by Ronald Bruce Meyer.