Marcus Antonius (orator)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Marcus Antonius Orator)
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Marcus Antonius (born 143 BC-died 87 BC)[1] was a Roman politician of the Antonius family and one of the most distinguished Roman orators of his time. He was also the grandfather of the famous general and triumvir, Mark Antony.


His cursus honorum begins with quaestor in 113 BC, and in 102 Antonius was elected praetor with proconsular powers for the Roman province of Cilicia. During his term, Antonius fought the pirates with such success that the Senate voted a naval triumph in his honor. He was then elected consul in 99, together with Aulus Postumius Albinus, and in 97, he was elected censor. He held a command in the Social War in 90. During the civil war between Gaius Marius and Lucius Cornelius Sulla, Antonius supported the latter. This cost him his life; Gaius Marius and Lucius Cornelius Cinna executed him when they obtained possession of Rome in 87.[2]

Throughout Antonius' political career, he continued to appear as a mediative defender or an accuser in Roman courts of law. Antonius' modern reputation for eloquence derives from the authority of Cicero, since none of his speeches survive. He is one of the chief speakers in Cicero's De Oratore.[2]


Antonius' father was named Gaius Antonius.

Antonius had a daughter, Antonia, and two sons, Marcus Antonius Creticus and Gaius Antonius Hybrida. Marcus Antonius Creticus was the father of the triumvir Mark Antony.

In 100 Antonius obtained a triumph, because he had fought successfully against the Cilician pirates. Some time later his daughter Antonia was kidnapped by pirates from his villa near Misenum and was only released after the payment of a large ransom.[3]


  1. ^ George, Alexander Kennedy (1972). A History Of Rhetoric The Art Of Rhetoric In The Roman World 300 BC-300 CE Volume 2. pp. 80–84.
  2. ^ a b Chisholm 1911.
  3. ^ Plutarch, Pompey 24.6; Cicero, Pro lege Manilia de imperio Cn. Pompei 33.


 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Antonius". Encyclopædia Britannica. 2 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.; endnotes:

  • Marcus Velleius Paterculus ii. 22
  • Appian, Bell. Civ. i. 72
  • Dio Cassius xlv. 47
  • Plutarch, Marius, 44
  • Cicero, Orator, 5, Brutus, 37
  • Quintilian, Instit. iii. 1, 19
  • O. Enderlein, De M. Antonio oratore (Leipzig, 1882)

External links[edit]

  • Details of the paternal ancestors of Antonius can be found in the Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology, Volume 1, pages 213 and 214.
Political offices
Preceded by
Lucius Valerius Flaccus,
and Gaius Marius
Consul of the Roman Republic
with Aulus Postumius Albinus
99 BC
Succeeded by
Quintus Caecilius Metellus Nepos,
and Titus Didius