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Legittima difesa, tirannicidio e strategia difensiva nell’orazione di Cicerone a favore di Milone


This paper presents a new analysis of the speech delivered by Cicero on behalf of Milo (pro Milone), who had been charged with the murder of Clodius. It suggests that Cicero’s defensive strategy aimed from the beginning to get an acquittal on two different grounds. The first one was based on the reasoning that Clodius’ murder was committed lawfully in self-defense. The second one was based on the argument that Clodius’ killing was in the best interest of the state. Both do not have to be conflicting. Even if the spoken version of the speech achieved just the first aim, the second aim, prevented by the interruption of Cicero’s speech due to the screams of the Clodian mob present at the trial, was developed in the written version according to the original plan. It’s likely that with the second argument Cicero took at the same time his chance to justify his own former conduct during his consulship against Catilina and to speak for the last time in a public context against his personal enemy, Clodius.