Make me Lord, that I May Smite ye Puny LawsMay 30, 2008 at 9:41 pm | Posted in Thoughts | 2 Comments
Tags: Cicero, Fiction, Imperium, Law, Robert Harris
“Imperium, Robert Harris”
Image copyright of… uh, author, publisher , or whoever drew it
This book actually dared to rekindle my dying interest in law. I’m not going to bother giving a wonderful ‘makes reader wanna steal it from me’ review, since there’s already plenty lurking here and there. Don’t be lazy and just go find it. So one thing’s out of the way: this is in no way a book review. However, I’m gonna be the nice person I am and bequeath you all with a short summary: Cicero, Roman nobody, whose name was derived from the Latin word for chickpea, has a big ambition, and the ego to match: imperium, total control of the state.
Harris gives us a first person view of Cicero through the eyes of his personal assistant/slave Tiro, vividly detailing Cicero’s beginnings as a trainee orator, then senator, and finally one of the two consuls of Rome… and of course, his law firm. Cicero would probably trump any of the lawyers we have these days, but I’m straying away from the point I’m trying to make. I’d always liked ancient Roman history, but I’d never bothered about Cicero or their legal system, politics, etc. The only attention Cicero got from me before I read the book was a quote aimed at Julius Caesar: “Come now, what orator would you rank above him…?” Somewhere through the book, I got interested in law again. Went online and found some of Cicero’s speeches- long long things requiring lots of patience to go through. Which I didn’t have. Anyway the point is the book got me interested in law again. Now why couldn’t this have taken place just before my contract and tort exams?
…gah… I hate this cybercafe keyboard… so I’ll make this quick. Law exams are over. I want to forget about law. Contract was touchy. Tort was oddly satisfying. Now that the whole world knows how my law paper went, it’s time to move on. Purge all this nonsense out of my precious head. Return the rainbowishness to my voluptous brain cells. I stared at my friends com screen. Someone died on it. Now I forgot what I was going to say- oh wait. From this point onwards, my interest in law shall be confined to the realm of fiction. Who cares if Malaysia won some tiny rock in the middle of the ocean that’s gonna be flooded in a few years due to smokers and oily residue from KFC kitchens.