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On this page: Coknelius Celsus – Cornelius Fronto – Cornelius Martialis – Cornelius Tuscus – Cornicen – Cornificia – Cornificia Gens – Cornificius








CORNELIUS TUSCUS. [Tuscus.] CORNI'ADES (KopvidSys), an intimate friend of Epicurus, is spoken of by Cicero (de Fin. v. 31) as paying a visit to Arcesilaus. The MSS. of Ci­cero have Carneades, but there can be little doubt that Corniades is the correct reading, since the latter is mentioned by Plutarch (non posse suaviter vim secundum Epicur. p. 1089) as a friend of Epi­curus, and the former could not possibly have been the friend of Epicurus, as Carneades died in b. c. 129, and Epicurus in b. c. 209.

CORNICEN, a "horn-blower," an agnomen of Postumus Aebutius Elva, consul b. c. 442 [elva], and a cognomen of the Oppia gens. Cicero uses the form Cornicimis. [See No. 2.]

1. sp. oppius cornicen, a plebeian, one of the second decemvirate, b. c. 450. When the other decemvirs had to march against the enemy, Cor-nicen was left as the colleague of App. Claudius to take care of the city; and it was he who convened the senate when the people rose in arms upon the death of Virginia. In the next year, he was sent to prison on the evidence of an old soldier, whom, after twenty-seven years of service, he had ordered to be scourged without any cause; but Cornicen, fearing the result of a trial, put an end to his own life in prison. (Liv. iii. 35, 41, 49, 50, 58; Dio-nys. x. 58, xi. 23, 44, 46.)

2. (oppius) cornicinus, a senator, the son-in-law of Sex. Atilius Serranus, tribune of the plebs, b, c. 57. (Cic. ad Alt. iv. 2.)

CORNIFICIA. 1. Daughter of Q. Cornificius [cornificius, No. 2], was sought in marriage by Juventius Thalna in b. c. 45, when she was rather advanced in years and had been married several times; but she refused his offer, because his for­tune was not large enough. (Cic. ad Att. xiii. 29.)

2. Sister of the poet Cornificius, is said by Hieronymus (Chron. Euseb. Ol. 184. 4) to have written some excellent epigrams, which were ex­tant in his time.

CORNIFICIA, the last surviving daughter of M. Aurelius, was put to death by Caracalla, and a very interesting account of her last moments and last words has recently come to light in the frag­ ments of Dion Cassius discovered by Mai. (Mai, Fragment. Vatican, ii. p. 230.) [W. R.]

CORNIFICIA GENS, plebeian, seems to have come originally from Rhegium. (Cic. ad Fam. xii. 25.) No persons of this name occur till the last century of the republic; and the first who ob­tained any of the higher honours of the state was Q. Cornincius, praetor, b. c. 66. On coins the name is written Cornuficius, which is also the form used by Dion Cassius (xlviii. 21).

CORNIFICIUS. 1. cornificius, secretary

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(scriba) of Verres in his praetorship, b. c. 74. (Cic. in Vcrr. i. 57.)



2. Q. cornificius, was one of the judices on the trial of Verres, and tribune of the plebs in the following year, b. c. 69. He probably obtained the praetorship in 66, and was one of Cicero's competitors for the consulship in 64. His failure, however, did not make him an enemy of the great orator; he seems to have assisted him in the sup­pression of the Catilinarian conspiracy, and it was to his care that Cethegus was committed upon the arrest of the conspirators. Subsequently in b. c. 62, Cornificius was the first to bring before the senate the sacrilege of Clodius in violating the mysteries of the Bona Dea. He probably died soon afterwards, as we hear nothing further of him. He is called by Asconius "vir sobrius ac sanctus." (Cic. in Verr. Act. i. 10 : Ascon. in Tog. Cand. p. 82; Cic. ad Att. i. 1; Sail. Cat. 47; Appian, B.C. ii. 5; Cic. ad Att. i. 13.)

3. Q. cornificius, son of No. 2, is first men­tioned in b. c. 50, as betrothing himself to the daughter of Aurelia Orestilla, the beautiful but pro­fligate widow of Catiline. (Cic. ad Fam. viii. 7.) In the civil war between Caesar and Pompey, he served in 48 as the quaestor of the former, by whom he was sent into lllyricum with the title of propraetor. By his prudence and military skill, Cornificius reduced the province to a state of obe­dience, and rendered no small service to Caesar's cause. (Hirt. B. Aleoc. 42.) He seems to have returned to Rome in the following year, and was then probably rewarded by Caesar with the augu-rate, as we find, from Cicero's letters, that he was in possession of that office in the next year. He also formed an intimate friendship with Cicero, several of whose letters to him are extant. (Ad Fam. xii. 17—30.)

Cornificius did not remain long in Rome. In b. c. 46, we find him in Syria, where he was ob­serving the movements of Caecilius Bassus, and in the beginning of the following year he was ap­pointed by Caesar governor of Syria. (Cic. ad Fam. xii. 18, 19.) This office, however, he did not hold long, for on the death of Caesar, in b. c. 44, he was in possession of the province of Old Africa. This he maintained for the senate against L. Cal-visius Sabinus, and continued to adhere to the same party on the formation of the triumvirate, in 43. He sent troops to the assistance of Sex. Pompey, and gave shelter and protection to those who had been proscribed by the triumvirs. He refused to surrender his province to T. Sextius, who commanded the neighbouring province of New Africa, and who had ordered him, in the name of the triumvirs, to do so. Hereupon a war broke out between them. The details of this war are related somewhat differently by Appian and Dion Cassius; but so much is certain, that Corni­ficius at first defeated T. Sextius, but was eventu­ally conquered by the latter, and fell in battle. (Appian, B. C. iii. 85, iv. 36, 53—56 ; Dion Cass. xlviii. 17, 21; Liv. Epit. 123.)

Cornificius was a man of literary habits and tastes. Cicero speaks highly of his judgment when he sends him in b. c. 45 a copy of his "Ora­tor," but seems to banter him somewhat respecting his oratory. (Cic. Ad Fam. xii. 17, 18.) Many have attributed to him the authorship of the " Rhetorica ad Herennium." Some remarks are made on this subject below.

The following coin refers to this Cornificius. It bears on the obverse the head of Ammon, and on

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