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On the Ideal Orator

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  297 ratings  ·  20 reviews
In On the Ideal Orator, (De oratore), Cicero, the greatest Roman orator and prosewriter of his day, gives his mature views on rhetoric, oratory, and philosophy. Cast in the lively, literary form of a dialogue, this classic work presents a daring view of the orator as the master of all language communication while still emphasizing his role at the heart of Roman society and ...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published March 8th 2001 by Oxford University Press, USA (first published -55)
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Jul 23, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dans cette excellente lettre que Cicéron écrit à son ami Brutus, le célèbre avocat et politicien républicain tente de répondre à la question du style le plus complet, le plus achevé, le plus parfait. Cicéron analyse donc le problème sans omettre de s'appuyer sur les épaules de Platon, d'Aristote, car si la philosophie décrie la rhétorique, elle est aussi un excellent entrainement pour ceux qui pratiquent cette dernière. On retrouve donc l'analyse d'Aristote en moins fouillé, moins systématique, ...more
Mark Adderley
Feb 19, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: classical
This is not an easy book to read. Although it contains a lot of valuable information on rhetoric, it's all hidden behind a dialogue that Cicero obviously finds much more entertaining than I do. The contemporary references are largely lost on me, not being a classical historian, and the repartee between the various characters is probably funnier in Latin.

On the other hand, it's a valuable source of information about rhetoric, even if you have to dig for it, and contains a wealth of information to
Mar 20, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Cicerón escribe una carta a Bruto para enseñarle cómo es su prototipo de orador perfecto. Expone que debe dominar todos los estilos y los tonos deben estar referidos a un público y tema adecuados, así como manejar todos los campos de conocimiento posibles para estar preparado. Mediante ejemplos de oradores clásicos y modelando frases latinas que permiten un uso más adecuado, Cicerón redacta de una manera algo desordenada pero coherente su ideal de experto en Retórica.
Victor Heranz
Jan 25, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Un gran ensayo sobre la oratorio, aunque una ardua lectura. Cicerón en estado puro. Un must para los alumnos de clásicas.
Mateo R.
En este escrito a Bruto, Cicerón se propone determinar si existe un orador perfecto. Primero señala que sin filosofía no hay elocuencia porque el conocimiento y la sabiduría permiten hablar de las cosas. Siguiendo a Platón, dice que se puede encontrar el modelo de la elocuencia y al orador perfecto en el ámbito de las ideas y no necesariamente en un ejemplo de la realidad.

Distingue tres estilos de oradores (los que hablan de forma grandilocuente y ornamentada, los que buscan la claridad y la su
Feb 04, 2012 rated it liked it
Cicero sets up his text as a dialogue between two famous Roman orators he much admired: Antonius and Crassus. The dialogue is set in the garden of Crassus’ villa, with minor figures (Scaevola, Cotta, Caesar, etc.) coming and going as the two-day discussion unfolds. Central to the dialogue is the question of whether oratory--and rhetoric, by extension--is an art. References are made to Plato’s Phaedrus and Gorgias--particularly Plato’s Socrates’ argument that rhetoric is not an art because it has ...more
Antti Värtö
Apr 09, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
On jotenkin hämmentävää tarttua 2000 vuotta vanhaan kirjaan. Onhan sitä monesti lukenut kirjoja, joiden tekijät ovat kuolleet jo aikapäiviä sitten, mutta silti. Se, että kirjoittaja on kuollut sata vuotta sitten on yksi juttu; se että hän on kuollut ennen ajanlaskun alkua on toinen. Ja erityisen oudolta tuntuu, kun kirja on ihan ymmärrettävä, jopa nautittava.

Kreikkalais-roomalainen kulttuuri oli omituisen moderni. Olen lukenut sumerien ja babylonialaisten kirjoituksia, mutta ne ovat ihan vierait
Peter Bennett
Oct 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: law-school
A very useful guide; potentially dangerous in the wrong hands.
Feb 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The annotations and introduction are super useful and makes this translation a great alternative/update to the Loeb editions.
Jun 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: re-read-books

A particular foreshadowing question for a reader is of this book’s applicability in modern life. Under the general “communication skill”, our ability to speak tends to be confined in narrower forms of one-on-one conversations and presentations to groups. With the exception of certain professions such as performing artists in theaters, legal professionals in courts, religious or political personnels, the requirement for speaking well falls far below anything oratory. Yet, there is much to learn f
Oct 20, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: rhetoric, 2010
An excellent translation as far as coherence goes. Granted, I don't speak or read Latin, but I found it cogent. The arrangement on the page was excellent, particularly the way subjects were divided into sections. The outline of sections in the introduction is incredibly useful. Historiography and explanations of concepts as clarified by the introduction and footnotes were also helpful to my understanding of the text. Not to mention, Cicero was just plain logical about the way he wrote this stuff ...more
Aug 20, 2008 rated it it was amazing
One of the greatest literary achievements of all time. Here, the full force of Cicero's intellect is unleashed. Using a form similar to Plato's "Symposium," he explores the obligations, perogatives, and ultimate goals of the "ideal orator"--the man who has both wisdom and eloquence, and who cultivates the practical and speculative virtues. Contained here is the most compelling and profound definition of rhetoric ever produced.
Kathryn Marie
I really love Cicero. I have mixed feelings on the classical dialogue style, but I appreciate what Cicero takes on with the dialogue and that he continues that tradition especially in an exploration of rhetoric. Cicero covers so much material here on rhetoric and art that I don't even know where to begin, but his main argument is in favor of a the Isocrates strand of rhetorical education, which is totally awesome.
Sep 27, 2011 rated it it was ok
This was for class, so for me a decent amount of background knowledge on Cicero and On the Ideal Orator is necessary, but beyond that I generally find classical dialogues tedious, and this was no exception. However, I was pleasantly surprised that the section on wit and humor was both interesting and relevant.
Jan 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
The structure of the book was a reflection of its content. Ridiculously impressive.
Kirk Kittell
Scanned copy on Google Books: De Oratore ...more
Dec 05, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
(I only read Book I, but this looks quite useful indeed)
A reference.
Oct 24, 2015 rated it liked it
Cicero sais that a rhetor has to be familiar also with the philosophy, and has to speak every time in the best style. He tells a lot also about the rithm in the text, and about other topics.
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Marcus Tullius Cicero, Roman philosopher, statesman, lawyer, political theorist, and Roman constitutionalist. Cicero is widely considered one of Rome's greatest orators and prose stylists.

Alternate profiles:
Marco Tulio Cicerón

Note: All editions should have Marcus Tullius Cicero as primary author. Editions with another name on the cover should have that name added as seco

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