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Cicero’s Consolatio
Carlo Sigonio was a highly respected Italian scholar who specialized in the history of Rome. Around 1583 he claimed that he had discovered a new complete work by the great Roman orator Cicero. It was titled De Consolatione or the Consolation. In it Cicero grieved for his daughter's death. Only small fragments of this work had ever been found before.

The discovery of this manuscript caused great excitement. But when other scholars read it, the general consensus was that it had to be a fake. It contained numerous anachronistic phrases and Italian mannerisms that Cicero would never have used.

Sigonio stubbornly defended the work, but today it is still regarded as being a forgery. Sigonio might have written the book himself, perhaps to display his mastery of Ciceronian scholarship.

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All text Copyright © 2014 by Alex Boese, except where otherwise indicated. All rights reserved.