There can be no doubt that both Ambrose’s De officiis and his letters bear witness to their author’s deep knowledge of Cicero.
I will investigate some passages of both works, trying to explore a phenomenon I would define as ‘competing exemplarity’. I will deal with Ambrose’s reuse of some Ciceronian exemplawithin the new Christian context. In such context they have to compete with their biblical counterparts, which of course are intended to outdo the classical exempla.
In this respect, I will try to establish how, why and to which extent Ambrose, with different degrees of explicitness, can be proven to aim to integrate and somewhat ‘correct’ his model.