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Marcus Porcius Cato

Who was Cato the Elder, Marcus Porcius? Short biograhpy. Marcus Porcius Cato history, pictures and videos. Marcus Porcius Cato facts, birthday and Life Story…

Cato the Elder, Marcus Porcius (234-149 BC) – Roman statesman

Cato the Elder was a very highly principled and austere statesman, who bitterly regretted the effect the Roman conquests in the Near East had on the character of the Roman people. From being stern, simple and hard-working people, they had been changed by the Eastern luxuries and wealth pouring into the city, into lax, pleasure-seeking spendthrifts and layabouts who were, for the most part, quite unfit to govern the vast new territories their armies had won. In the Senate he sought to get men to turn back to the old virtues, to be perhaps more like Cincin-natus (p. 17), and he set an example by the austerity of his own life.

Cato also developed an intense fear of Carthage. Although Hannibal had been defeated, he dreaded the resurgence of Carthage, and time after time he urged the Senate to attack and root out this menace once and for all. He ended every speech he made with the sentence ‘I say Carthage ought to be destroyed,’ even if it had nothing to do with the rest of the speech. He lived just long enough to witness the outbreak of the Third Carthaginian War (149-46), which actually culminated in the total destruction of the city of Carthage.

Marcus Porcius Cato

Marcus Porcius Cato

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