artyartie: (cicero-icicero)
Bad, bad pun in the subject line, but I've just run across two squee-worthy bits of Ciceronia so I am quite pleased.

Google Video Player has "Murder in Rome," a 45 minute dramatization of the trial of Sextus Roscius, which made Cicero's reputation in his early career. The advocate himself is played by a handsome and utterly captivating Paul Rhys (they know how to grow men in Wales), and Sextus is played by Mark McGann. I've been trying to find this for a year or so and this just made my night, along with the next exiting bit of news!

The second part to Robert Harris' Cicero trilogy has a title and release date! Titan will come out sometime in October of this year, and based on the timeline (Cicero was just elected consul at the end of the first book, Imperium), it should hit the Catalinian conspiracy and possibly his exile. If you haven't read the first book, definitely give it a try!
artyartie: (rome-consolations)
Title: "A Man's Character"
Rating: PG-13
Pairing: Brutus/Cicero, if you squint through the spyglass
Words: 3491
Spoilers: Through 1.8 "Caesarion"
Summary: When Antony and his daemon do the unthinkable, Cicero's life depends upon Brutus' faltering courage. (AU, fusion between 'Rome' and 'His Dark Materials). For an introduction to daemons, click here.

Many thanks to my beta, [ profile] cerebel!

One would never discover the limits of a soul, even traversing every road - so deep a measure does it possess. - Heraclitus, Fragment 45 )
artyartie: (rome-teamcicero)
Thanks to the wonders of Internet business and the quirks of naming conventions both for cities and people (namely, the orator/statesman/crankypants in the icon), I have been a little bundle of giggling glee on my couch. Some of these are just so deliciously wrong they have to be seen to be believed.

A shirt for Atticus..
Change 'dating' to 'marrying' and you have something for Terentia..
This made me giggle faaaaar too much - draw your own conjecture on this shirt!
For people who were a little overwrought watching Philippi...oh, wait...
They'd be lining up in Rome to buy this one..
artyartie: (rome-teamcicero)
I'm currently circumventing certain state laws, and have, oh, about eight hours to kill (they think people read so damn slow online), so I have no excuse not to post!

This weekend was rather good, in retrospect. I went with my Nana and Mom to a small family gathering, and ended up talking to one of my mom's myriad cousins who is quite the amateur astronomer. We ended up chatting about Shoemaker-Levy (he knew both Shoemakers and a friend of Levy's), comets we have loved, lunar astronomy, and the Hubble Deep Field, among other things. We were both happy to find someone who could share our interest and enthusiasm - ever since I was very young and my parents gave me a telescope and The Astronomy Handbook, I've been enamored with the heavens.

Sunday my mom, dad and I ended up going to a Dodger game, and though we missed the first two innings due to LA traffic, and thus most of the scoring, it was a fun game, despite the heat. [ profile] ainsley, I took some pictures, and even bought you a little souvenier! Afterwards, we went down to Santa Monica to kill some time, eating at a wonderful restaurant on the Promenade, watching 1408, and doing a little shopping. Borders was open late, thankfully, so I ran in and bought Roman Blood by Stephen Saylor, the first in his Roma Sub Rosa series featuring Gordianus the Finder, who is quite the character himself. I'm 90 some pages in and its a wonderful book, and it makes me wonder, again, about the writers of 'Rome.'

What the hell did they have against Tiro? Everyone else certainly fangirls him madly. He's the speaker of Imperium, Robert Harris' wonderful novel, and everyone loves him. Cicero, Tullia (in an absolutely adorable scene), Caesar, Crassus (in a rather disturbing scene) - everyone wants their own piece of the good secretary. Just from the first section I've read, Saylor has wonderfully captured Cicero and Tiro's early relationship, and even while the young Cicero is haughty and fussy, he has a gentle regard for Tiro, who is described as a lovely man with a mellifluous voice (unlike his master at this point). And Tiro? Oh, he certainly has his fun in a most amusing section around page 80.

And so again, what was up with Batboy!Tiro in the second season of Rome? I know they were out to portray Cicero as negatively as they could, especially in the first season, but why, oh why, did they have to do this to his intelligent secretary (who had been freed long before Cicero's death) who was probably more handsome than his master? It just makes me more angry the longer I think of it. So from now on, any stories with Tiro will be with a Tiro of my own choosing - because these books are starting to make me a Tiro fangirl, too.

And in happy academic news, my adviser finally e-mailed me back in response to my update - and all is good! I rather can't believe it, though he isn't the type to just say everything is fine when things aren't. Now that it's almost the middle of July, England has been on my brain every day - today when I was walking home I was imagining walking down the lush green lawns of Greenwich, beneath the cool columns, besides the Thames. Only two more months! But now I feel more prepared, academically. If only the finances will improve in the next few months...

artyartie: (rome-grief)
Four Historical!Cicero drabbles for this week's [ profile] rome100 prompt, Loss.

the heart-ache and the thousand natural shocks that flesh is heir to )
artyartie: (rome-freespeech)
Two drabbles (one Vorenus and Pullo, one Tiro and Cicero) for this week's [ profile] rome100 prompt, Body. Spoilers for 'De Patre Vostro' and 'Philippi.'

the withered leaves of our sensations )
artyartie: (rome-happycicero)
I've been meaning to write this post for a while now, but a question of [ profile] ainsley's inspired me to finally put pen to paper, metaphorically. Besides, I need a little bit of distraction from the Paper of Doom!

The Hows and Whys - Writing Cicero on a Historical/Fictional Spectrum )
artyartie: (rome-letmylife)
Only one drabble this week for [ profile] rome100. Set shortly before 'These Beings the Words...'


Generals and soldiers weren’t the only ones to wage war. A single voice could overpower a volley of arrows, a single pen could shatter the strength of a thousand swords.

Cicero’s hand hovered over a white expanse, where flickering lamplight cast hesitant shadows. So many years since he had taken up the charge, an imperator of passions and ideals, and so much grief in those years.

He no longer had the luxury of doubt. Brutus and Cassius struck down the first tyrant with their daggers; Cicero would strike down the second with his best and only weapon – his words.
artyartie: (cicero-icicero)
Two more Cicero (pre-series) and Brutus drabbles for [ profile] rome100, with the prompt of 'Desire.'

Cicero wonders at what moment he first loved his wife. Not their wedding night - he still flushes at the remembrance of fumbling hands and the impatience in her eyes. It was a gradual thing, his love, like struggling with a new language for years only to hear it, suddenly, from his lips.

He should die in her arms, not in bitter exile. The sun flickers through the window and he closes his eyes, denies this day has come. Yet his longing that all will be right is stronger, however faintly, than the desperate desire to remain forever with her.


The vaulted Stoic freedom felt nothing so much like a cage, only with bars Brutus couldn’t see. But he could feel them, twisting about, threatening to crush him at any moment.

Living life without desire had once been so easy. He was never disappointed, for there was nothing in which to be disappointed. And now –

His mother’s plots, Cassius’ pleading – their desires were those invisible bars, closing around him. The graffiti, that damn note, the eager gleam in Cicero’s eyes, the guarded caution in Caesar’s-

What good was it to live without wants if he could not live without resistance?
artyartie: (rome-powerless)
Written for [ profile] rome100, prompt "Past."

The burnished gold of his ancestors’ death masks, glistening in the torchlight, frighten the young boy. Generations of both Junii and Servilli, watching him with solemn expectation. He has learned to return their stares with a calm gaze and unquivering lip – his mother’s sharp look of disapproval when he first whimpered under the weight of his own history hit him like a blow across the cheek.

“One day, your image will join them,” his mother says, kneeling behind him, her hands on his small shoulders. Brutus imagines his own face, older and silent and stern, staring back at him.


The sun beat down on his back, but the young boy felt no discomfort. He was gawky, all arms and legs, his head bobbling precariously on a thin neck. His blue eyes, however, were as bright as the summer sky, a scroll clutched tight in his small hands.

While some of the Greek was unfamiliar, certain words almost burned into the page, as if from Aristotle’s own hand. Ethos, pathos, logos. The tools of rhetoric and the orator. The power of words, the very words of power. Other boys played at soldier; Marcus Cicero desired a far more important future.
artyartie: (Default)
For the [ profile] rome100 challenge, Future. Two futures which never happenned to two very different men.

It wasn’t hubris if he succeeded.

And he succeeded, in spite of every obstacle before him. Mark Antony and his ambition, Cicero’s harangues in the Senate, Brutus and his-

It still made his heart ache, Brutus’ betrayal. Caesar had mercy, when he could afford it, but the treachery of the man who had once been like a son could not be forgiven. Servilla followed her son soon after, and some nights her curses still rang in his ears.

Yet these were bearable costs, to forge his own destiny. To craft the very future of Rome, to earn them both immortality.


He never should have fled his villa into yet another exile. His death would have held some honor, at least. His life now held nothing but shame.

Antony’s death brought no satisfaction. Octavian was far more dangerous than he ever imagined, no mere boy the Senate could use. The day of his triumph, Cicero came home and held a sword to his belly, but could not drive it in.

With this latest failure, he finally abandoned Rome, slunk back to his villa. He drank too much and wrote too little, of futures that never happened and courage he never had.
artyartie: (buffyangel-ivegotatheory)
The drabbles for this week's [ profile] rome100 challenge, Future, are just not coming tonight, so I'm going to finish packing and head to bed. I'm off to a conference in San Francisco which should not only be educational and productive, but will include the night tour of Alcatraz, bread bowls of chowder, Ghiradelli chocolate sundaes, the Wine Country, and other things purely for enjoyment. Oh, and working on that pesky paper in the rare moments of free time.

While the drabbles are being stubborn (mostly because there are so many alternate futures one can imagine), I have the worst sort of plot bunny. It's a plot warren, actually, and I probably won't seriously start writing it until May, though I'm starting to block it in my head. It's a Rome fic, of course, Cicero centered, of course, incorporating his daughter and yet trying to stay true to the show's canon. So far, the bunnies are warm and fuzzy, and I'm anxious to start working on it - but not until every assignment and my thesis prospectus is turned in. That should be excellent motivation.

And speaking of Cicero, Imperium, which I am now 200 pages into, is simply incredible. It took me about 10 pages to get into Harris' style, but his characterization is so vibrant, I could hardly put the book down. Tiro is a keen observer, Pompey is a soldier who never should have played in politics, Terentia is shrewd and fiery, Tullia is adorable, and Cicero is so very human and rich and flawed and - read this book, if you'd like another look into ancient Rome. It's out in paperback in August, if you don't want to pony up for a hardcover, or can't find it at the library.

So, in all likelihood, I won't be back until Sunday - so if I don't answer posts or stories, it's because I'm living it up in Northern California!
artyartie: (Default)
Written for [ profile] rome100. Set during 'Philippi.' If you can't tell, I'm on a Brutus and Cicero kick lately.


Brutus wonders how Cassius can sleep so soundly. His dreams are haunted by lurid visions and aching doubts, and when he awakens to the bright Grecian sun his first thought is I shouldn’t be here.

He shares this with no one; it wouldn’t do to be seen as indecisive. The road back home doesn’t allow for regret, but Brutus still allows himself to feel it. Still rails against his mother’s machinations, Cicero’s flattery, Cassius’ ever-present encouragement.

Yet he wonders if he would have found this path of his own accord, where he would have no one but himself to blame.


The night air assails Cicero, unexpectedly cold for so late in summer. The wind rattles the boughs of the peach trees, flings the rosemary against the statuary.

He should find comfort here, but it is hollow. Nights rarely bring sleep, and when he sleeps, his dreams leave him shaking. Even this nightly vigil brings no peace, and instead of the music of the spheres, he only hears echoes of his own failures.

The stars give a weak, silvery light, and yet they burn with accusation. The stars fill him with regret, with shame, and they are countless in the heavens.
artyartie: (Default)
Theme: "Senses"
Written for [ profile] rome100

The skin of the peach caressed his hand, soft as the hairs of a baby’s head. His wife regarded the luminous fruit with wide eyes, reaching out her hand to take it.

“Peaches? How did you get these?”

“You don’t want to know.” He smiled at her and took a bite, the flesh juicy and succulent, all the sweetness of summer in a single mouthful. His wife closed her eyes in bliss, pressed a hand to her belly, just beginning to swell.

“We’ll plant a tree.” Cicero leaned over and kissed Terentia, sticky fingers tangling in the curls of her hair.
artyartie: (cicero-wherethereslife)
You were like a traveller in the night, whose torch lights up for others the path where he himself has miserably fallen.
-Letter from Petrarch to Cicero

O spirit ever restless and perturbed )
artyartie: (Default)
What will-o'-the-wisp tempted you away, with a delusive hope of glory; involved you, in your declining years, in the wars of younger men; and, after exposing you to every form of misfortune, hurled you down to a death that it was unseemly for a philosopher to die?

-letter from petrarch to cicero

Here begins the live blogging of 'phillipi' - this is to keep me from throwing things at the television.

ETA Mea culpa, flist, for not doing my cut right, and spamming your page. Bad grieving classicist.

Read more... )


artyartie: (Default)

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