Roman antiquities 9.1
The following year,a dispute having arisen between the populace and the senate concerning the men who were to be elected consuls, the senators demanding that both men promoted to that magistracy should be of the aristocratic party and the populace demanding that they be chosen from among such as were agreeable to them, after an obstinate struggle they finally convinced each other that a consul should be chosen from each party. Thus Caeso Fabius, who had accused Cassius of aiming at a tyranny, was elected consul, for the second time, on the part of the senate, and Spurius Furius on the part of the populace, in the seventy-fifth Olympiad, Calliades being archon at Athens, at the time when Xerxes made his expedition against Greece. They had no sooner taken office than ambassadors of the Latins came to the senate asking them to send to them one of the consuls with an army to put a check to the insolence of the Aequians, and at the same time word was brought that all Tyrrhenia was aroused and would soon go to war. For that nation had been convened in a general assembly and at the urgent solicitation of the Veientes for aid in their war against the Romans had passed a decree that any of the Tyrrhenians who so desired might take part in the campaign; and it was a sufficiently strong body of men that voluntarily aided the Veientes in the war. Upon learning of this the authorities in Rome resolved to raise armies and also that both consuls should take the field, one to make war on the Aequians and to aid the Latins, and the other to march with his forces against Tyrrhenia. All this was opposed by Spurius Icilius, one of the tribunes, who, assembling the populace every day, demanded of the senate the performance of its promises relating to the allotment of land and said that he would allow none of their decrees, whether they concerned military or civil affairs, to take effect unless they should first appoint the decemvir so fix the boundaries of the public land and divide it among the people as they had promised. When the senate was at a loss and did not know what to do, Appius Claudius suggested that they should consider how the other tribunes might be brought to dissent from Icilius, pointing out that there is no other method of putting an end to the power of a tribune who opposes and obstructs the decrees of the senate, since his person is sacred and this authority of his legal, than for another of the men of equal rank and possessing the same power to oppose him and to order to be done what the other tries to obstruct. And he advised all succeeding consuls to do this and to consider how they might always have some of the tribunes well disposed and friendly to them, saying that only method of destroying the power of the college was to sow dissension among its members.
Roman antiquities 9.2
When Appius had expressed this opinion, both the consuls and the more influential of the others, believing his advice to be sound, courted the other four tribunes so effectually as to make them well disposed toward the senate. These for a time endeavoured by argument to persuade Icilius to desist from his course with respect to the allotment of land till the wars should come to an end. But when he kept opposing them and swore that he would continue to do so, and had the assurance to make a rather insolent remark in the presence of the populace to the effect that he had rather see the Tyrrhenians and their other enemies masters of the city than leave unpunished those who were occupying public land, they thought they had got an excellent opportunity for opposing so great insolence both by their words and by their acts, and since even the populace showed displeasure at his remark, they said they interposed their veto; and they openly pursued such measures as were agreeable to both the senate and the consuls. Thus Icilius being deserted by his colleagues, no longer had any authority. After this the army was raised and everything that was necessary for the war was supplied, partly from public and partly from private sources, with all possible alacrity; and the consuls, having drawn lots for the armies, set out in haste, Spurius Furius marching against the cities of the Aequians and Caeso Fabius against the Tyrrhenians. In the case of Spurius everything succeeded according to his wish, the enemy not daring to come to an engagement, so that in this expedition he had the opportunity of taking much booty in both money and slaves. For he overran almost all the territory that the enemy possessed, carrying and driving off everything, and he gave all the spoils to the soldiers. Though he had been regarded even before this time as a friend of the people, he gained the favour of the multitude still more by his conduct in this command; and when the season for military operations was over, he brought his army home intact and unscathed, and made the fatherland rich with the money he had taken.
Roman antiquities 9.3
Caeso Fabius, the other consul, though as a general his performance was second to none, was nevertheless deprived of the praise that his achievements deserved, not through any fault of his own, but because he did not enjoy the goodwill of the plebeians from the time when he had denounced and put to death the consul Cassius for aiming at a tyranny. For they never showed any alacrity either in those matters in which men under authority ought to yield a prompt obedience to the orders of their general, or when they should through eagerness and a sense of duty seize positions by force, or when it was necessary to occupy advantageous positions without the knowledge of the enemy, or in anything else from which the general would derive any honour and good repute. Most of their conduct, to be sure, by which they were continually insulting their general was neither very troublesome to him nor the occasion of any great harm to the commonwealth; but their final action brought no small danger and great disgrace to both. For when the two armies had arrayed themselves in battle order in the space between the hills on which their camps were placed, using all the forces on either side, and the Romans had performed many gallant deeds and forced the enemy to begin flight, they neither pursued them as they retreated, notwithstanding the repeated exhortations of the general, nor were they willing to remain and think the enemy's camp by siege; on the contrary, they left a glorious action unfinished and returned to their own camp. And when some of the soldiers attempted to salute the consul as imperator, all the rest joined in a loud outcry, reproaching and taunting their commander with the loss of many of their brave comrades through his want of ability to command; and after many other insulting and indignant remarks they demanded that he break camp and lead them back to Rome, pretending that they would be unable, if the enemy attacked them, to sustain a second battle. And they neither gave heed when their commander endeavoured to show them the error of their course, nor were moved by his entreaties when he turned to lamentations and supplications, nor were they alarmed by the violence of his threats when he made use of these too; but they continued exasperated in the face of all these appeals. Indeed, some of them were possessed with such a spirit of disobedience and such contempt for their general that they rose up about midnight and without orders from anyone proceeded to strike their tents, take up their arms, and carry off their wounded.
Roman antiquities 9.4
When the general was informed of this, he was forced to give the command for all to depart, so great was his fear of their disobedience and audacity. And the soldiers retired with as great precipitation as if they were saving themselves from a rout, and reached the city about daybreak. The guards upon the walls, not knowing that it was an army of friends, began to arm themselves and call out to one another, while all the rest of the city was full of confusion and turmoil, as if some great disaster had occurred; and the guards did not open the gates to them till it was broad day and they could distinguish their own army. Thus, in addition to the ignominy they incurred in deserting their camp, they also exposed themselves to great danger in returning in the dark through the enemy's country, without observing any order. Certainly, if the Tyrrhenians had learned of it and had followed close on their heels as they departed, nothing could have prevented the army from being utterly destroyed. The motive of this unaccountable withdrawal or flight was, as I have said, the hatred of the populace against the general and the begrudging of any honour to him, lest he should be granted a triumph and so acquire the greatest glory. The next day the Tyrrhenians, having learned of the withdrawal of the Romans, stripped their dead, took up and carried off their wounded, and plundered all the stores they had left in their camp, which were very abundant as having been prepared for a long war; then, like conquerors, they laid waste the adjacent territory of the enemy, after which they returned home with their army.
Roman antiquities 9.5
The succeeding consuls,Gnaeus Manlius and Marcus Fabius (the latter chosen for the second time), in pursuance of a decree of the senate ordering them to march against the Veientes with as large an army as they could raise, appointed a day for levying the troops. When Tiberius Pontificius, one of the tribunes, opposed them by forbidding the levy and called upon them to carry out the decree relating to the allotment of land, they courted some of his colleagues, as their predecessors had done, and thus divided the college of tribunes, after which they proceeded to carry out the will of the senate with full liberty. The levy being completed in a few days, the consuls took the field against the enemy, each of them having with him two legions of Romans raised in the city itself a force no less numerous sent by their colonies and subjects. Indeed, there came to them from the Latin and the Hernican nations double the number of auxiliaries they had called for; they did not, however, make use of this entire force, by stating that they were very grateful for their zeal, they dismissed one half of the army that had been sent. They also drew up before the city a third army, consisting of two legions of the younger men, to serve as a garrison for the country in case any other hostile force should unexpectedly make its appearance; the men who were above the military age but still had strength sufficient to bear arms they left in the city to guard the citadels and the walls. When the consuls had led their forces close to the city of Veii, they encamped on two hills not far apart. The enemy's army, which was both large and valiant, had also taken the field and lay encamped before the city. For the most influential men from all Tyrrhenia had joined them with their dependents, with the result that the Tyrrhenians' army was not a little larger than that of the Romans. When the consuls saw the numbers of the enemy and the lustre of their arms, great fear came upon them lest, with their own forces rent by faction, they might not be able to prevail when arrayed against the harmonious forces of the enemy; and they determined to fortify their camps and to prolong the war in the hope that the boldness of the enemy, encouraged by an ill-advised contempt for them, might afford them some opportunity of acting with advantage. After this there were continual skirmishes and brief clashes of the light-armed troops, but no important or signal action.
Roman antiquities 9.6
The Tyrrhenians, being irked by the prolongation of the war, taunted the Romans with cowardice because they would not come out for battle, and believing that their foes had abandoned the field to them, they were greatly elated. They were still further inspired with scorn for the Roman army and contempt for the consuls when they thought that even the gods were fighting on their side. For a thunderbolt, falling upon the headquarters of Gnaeus Manlius, one of the consuls, tore the tent in pieces, overturned the hearth, and tarnished some of the weapons of war, while scorching or completely destroying others. It killed also the finest of his horses, the one he used in battle, and some of his servants. And when the augurs declared that the gods were foretelling the capture of the camp and the death of the most important persons in it, Manlius roused his forces about midnight and led them to the other camp, where he took up quarters with his colleague. The Tyrrhenians, learning of the general's departure and hearing from some of the prisoners the reasons for his action, grew still more elated in mind, since it seemed that the gods were making war upon the Romans; and they entertained great hopes of conquering them. For their augurs, who are reputed to have investigated with greater accuracy than those anywhere else the signs that appear in the sky, determining where the thunderbolts come from, what quarters receive them when they depart after striking, to which of the gods each kind of bolt is assigned, and what good or evil it portends, advised them to engage the enemy, interpreting the omen which had appeared to the Romans on this wise: Since the bolt had fallen upon the consul's tent, which was the army's headquarters, and had utterly destroyed it even to its hearth, the gods were foretelling to the whole army the wiping out of their camp after it should be taken by storm, and the death of the principal persons in it. "If, now," they said, "the occupants of the place where the bolt fell had remained there instead of removing their standards to the other army, the divinity who was wroth with them would have satisfied his anger with the capture of a single camp and the destruction of a single army; but since they endeavoured to be wiser than the gods and changed their quarters to the other camp, leaving the place deserted, as if the god has signified that the calamities should fall, not upon the men, but upon the places, the divine wrath will come upon all of them alike, both upon those who departed and upon those who received them. And since, when destiny had foretold that one camp should be taken by storm, they did not wait for their fate, but of their own accord handed their camp over to the enemy, the camp which received the deserted camp shall be taken by storm instead of the one that was abandoned."
Roman antiquities 9.7
The Tyrrhenians, hearing this from their augurs, sent a part of their army to take possession of the camp deserted by the Romans, with the intention of making it a fort to serve against the other camp. For the place was a very strong one and was conveniently situated for intercepting any who might come from Rome to the enemy's camp. After they had also made the other dispositions calculated to give them an advantage over the enemy, they led out their forces into the plain.Then, when the Romans remained quiet, the boldest of the Tyrrhenians rode up and, halting near the camp, called them all women and taunted their leaders, likening them to the most cowardly of animals; and they challenged them to do one of two things ? either to descend into the plain, if they laid claim to any warlike valour, and decide the contest by a single battle, or, if they owned themselves to be cowards, to deliver up their arms to those who were their betters, and after paying the penalty for their deeds, never again to hold themselves worthy of greatness. This they did every day, and when it had no effect, they resolved to block them off by a wall with the purpose of starving them into surrender. The consuls permitted this to go on for a considerable time, not through any cowardice or weakness ? for they were both men of spirit and fond of war ? but because they feared the soldiers' wilful shirking of duty and their apathy, which had persisted among the plebeians ever since the sedition over the allotment of land. For they still had ringing in their ears and fresh before their eyes the shameful behaviour, unworthy of the commonwealth, which the soldiers, because of their begrudging the honour that would come to the consul, had been guilty of the year before, when they had yielded up the victory to the vanquished and endured the false reproach of flight in order that their general might not celebrated the triumph awarded for victory.
Roman antiquities9. 8
Desiring, therefore, to banish sedition from the army once and for all and to restore the whole rank and file to their original harmony, and devoting to this single end all their counsel and all their thought, since it was not in their power by punishing some of them to reform the rest, who were numerous, bold, and had arms in their hands, or to attempt by the persuasion of words to win over those who did not even wish to be persuaded, they assumed that the following two motives would bring about the reconciliation of the seditious: first, for those of a more reasonable disposition (for there was an admixture of these also among the mass of the troops), the shame of being taunted by the enemy, and second, for those who were not easily led to adopt the honourable course, the thing of which all human nature stands in dread ? necessity. In order, however, to accomplish both these results, they allowed the enemy not only to shame them by words, but also by repeated deeds of scorn and contempt to compel those to show themselves brave men who were not disposed to be so of their own accord. For if these insults should be continued, they had great hopes that all the soldiers would come to headquarters, giving vent to their indignation, reproaching the consuls, and demanding that they lead them against the enemy; and that is just what happened. For when the enemy began to block the outlets of the camp with ditches and kinds, the Romans, growing indignant at their action, ran to the tents of the consuls, first in small numbers and then in a body, and crying out, accused them of treachery, and declared that if no one would lead them in a sortie, they themselves would take their arms and without their generals sally out against the enemy. This being the general cry, the consuls thought the opportunity for which they had been waiting had now come, and they ordered the lictors to call the troops to an assembly. Then Fabius, coming forward, spoke as follows:
Roman antiquities 9.9
"Long delayed is your indignation at the insults you are receiving from the enemy, soldiers and officers, and the eagerness which you one and all have to come to grips with your opponents, by showing itself much too late, is untimely. For you should have done this still earlier, when you first saw them come down from their entrenchments and eager to begin battle. Then, no doubt, the contest for the supremacy would have been glorious and worthy of the Roman spirit; as things are, it is already becoming a matter of necessity, and however successful its outcome may be, it will not be equally glorious. Yet even now you do well in desiring to atone for your slowness and to retrieve what you have lost by neglect, and great thanks are due to you for your eagerness to follow the best course, whether this springs from valour ? for it is better to begin late to do one's duty than never ? or whether indeed you have all come to the same logical conclusions as to what is example, and the same eagerness for rushing into battle has seized all of you. But as it is, we are afraid that the grievances of the plebeians against the authorities over the allotment of land may be the cause of great mischief to the commonwealth. And the suspicion has come to us that this clamour and indignation about a sortie do not spring from the same motive with all of you, but that while some desire to go out of the camp in order to take revenge on the enemy, others do so in order to run away. As for the reasons which have induced us to entertain these suspicions, they are neither divinations nor conjectures, but overt deeds, and deeds, too, that happened, not long ago, but only last year, as you all know. For when a large and excellent army had taken the field against this very enemy and the first battle had had the most successful outcome for us, so that your commander at the time, the consul Caeso, my brother here, could not only have taken the enemy's camp, but also have brought back a most glorious victory for the fatherland, some of the soldiers, begrudging him the glorious because he was not a friend of the people and did not constantly pursue such a course as was pleasing to the poor, struck their tents the first night after the battle and without orders ran away from the camp, neither taking thought for the danger they would incur in retreating from a hostile country in disorderly fashion and without a general, and that too in the night, nor taking into account all the disgrace that was sure to come upon them for yielding the supremacy to the enemy, as far at least as in them lay, and yielding it, moreover, as victors to the vanquished. Being afraid, therefore, tribunes, centurions, and soldiers, of these men who are neither able to command nor willing to obey, who are numerous and bold and have their weapons in their hands, we have been unwilling hitherto to join battle and dare not even now, with such men to support us, engage in a life-and-death struggle, lest they prove hindrances and detriments to those who are displaying all the alacrity in their power. If, however, Heaven is turning the minds of even these men to better ways at the present time, and if, laying aside their seditious spirit, from which the commonwealth is suffering very great harm, or at least postponing it till times of peace, they wish to redeem their pas disgraces by their present valour, let there be no further hindrance to your advancing against the foe, setting before your eyes the fair hopes of victory "We have many resources for winning, but greatest and most decisive are those afforded us by the folly of the enemy. For though they far exceed us in the size of their army, and for that reason alone might have withstood our courage and experience, they have deprived themselves of their only advantage by using up the greater part of their forces in garrisoning the forts. In the next place, when they ought to act with caution and sober reason in everything they do, bearing in mind against what kind of men, actually far superior to them in valour,the hazard will be, they enter the struggle recklessly and incautiously, as if forsooth they were some invincible warriors and as if we stood in terror of them. At any rate, their digging of ditches round our camp, their riding up to our entrenchments, and their many insults both in word and actions indicate this. Bearing these thoughts in mind, then, and remembering the many glorious battles of the past in which you have overcome them, enter with alacrity into this contest also. And let every one of you look upon the spot in which he shall be posted as his house, his lot of land, and his country. Let him who saves the man beside him feel that he is effecting his own safety, and let him who forsakes his comrade feel that he is delivering himself up to the enemy. But, above all, you should remember this, that when men stand their ground and fight their losses are small, but when they give way and flee very few are saved."
Roman antiquities 9.10
While he was yet uttering these encouragements to bravery and accompanying his words with many tears, calling by name each one of the centurions, tribunes, and common soldiers whom he knew to have performed some gallant action in battle, and promising to those who should distinguish themselves in this engagement many great rewards in proportion to the magnitude of their deeds, such as honours, riches, and all the other advantages, shouts arose from all of them as they bade him be of good cheer and demanded that he lead them to battle. As soon as he had done speaking, there came forward from the throng a man named Marcus Flavoleius, a plebeian and a small farmer, though not one of the rabble but one celebrated for his merits and valiant in war and on both these accounts honoured with the most conspicuous command in one of the legions ? a command which the sixty centuries are enjoined by the law to follow and obey. These officers the Romans call in their own tongue primipili. This man, who, besides his other recommendations, was tall and fair to look upon, taking his stand where he would be in full view of all, said: "Since this is what you fear, consuls, that our actions will not agree with our words, I will be the first to give you in my own name the greatest pledge I can give. And you too, fellow citizens and sharers of the same fortune, as many of you as are resolved to make your actions match your words, will make no mistake in following my example." Having said this, he held up his sword and took the oath traditional among the Romans and regarded by them as the mightiest of all, swearing by his own good faith that he would return to Rome victorious over the enemy, or not at all. After Flavoleius had taken this oath there was great applause from all; and immediately both the consuls did the same, as did also the subordinate officers, both tars and centurions, and last of all the rank and file. When this had been done, great cheerfulness came upon them all and great affection for one another and also confidence and ardour. And going from the assembly, some bridled their horses, others sharpened their swords and spears, and still others cleaned their defensive arms; and in a short time the whole army was ready for the combat. The consuls, after invoking the gods by vows, sacrifices, and prayers to be their guides as they marched out, led the army out of the camp in regular order and formation. The Tyrrhenians, seeing them come down from their entrenchments, were surprised and marched out with their whole force to meet them.
Roman antiquities 9.11
When both armies had come into the plain and the trumpets had sounded the charge, they raised their war-cries and ran to close quarters; and engaging, horse with horse and foot with foot, they fought there, and great was the slaughter on both sides. The troops on the right wing of the Romans, commanded by Manlius, one of the consuls, repulsed the part of the enemy that stood opposite to them, and quitting their horses, fought on foot. But those on the left wing were being surrounded by the enemy's right wing, since the Tyrrhenians' line at this point outflanked that of the Romans and was considerably deeper. Thus the Roman army was being broken in this sector and was receiving many blows. This wing was commanded by Quintus Fabius, who was a legate and proconsul9 and had been twice consul. He maintained the fight for a long time, receiving wounds of all kinds till, being struck in the breast by a spear, the point of which pierced his bowels, he fell through loss of blood. When Marcus Fabius, the other consul, who commanded in the centre, was informed of this, he took with him the best of the centuries, and summoning Caeso Fabius, his other brother, he passed beyond his own line, and advancing a long way, till he had got beyond the enemy's right wing, he turned upon those who were encircling his men, and charging them, caused great slaughter among all whom he encountered, and also put to flight those who were at a distance; and finding his brother still breathing, he took him up. The man lived only a short time after that; but his death filled his avengers with still more and greater anger against the foe and, heedless now of their own lives, they rushed with a few followers into the densest ranks of the enemy and made large heaps of their dead bodies. In this part of their line, therefore, the Tyrrhenians were hard pressed, and those who earlier had forced their enemies to give ground were now repulsed by those they had conquered; but those on the left wing, where Manlius was, though they were already in distress and beginning to flee, put their opponents to flight. For when Manlius had been struck in the knee with a javelin by an opponent who thrust the point through to the hamstrings, and those about him took him up and were carrying him back to the camp, the enemy, believing the Roman commander to be dead, took heart and, the rest coming to their assistance, pressed hard upon the Romans who now had no commander. This obliged the Fabii to quit their left wing once more and rush to the relief of the right; and the Tyrrhenians, learning that they were approaching in a strong body, gave over further pursuit, and closing their ranks, fought in good order, losing a large number of their own men, but also killing many of the Romans.
Roman antiquities 9.12
In the meantime the Tyrrhenians who had possessed themselves of the camp abandoned by Manlius, as soon as the signal for battle was given at headquarters, ran with great haste and alacrity to the other camp of the Romans, suspecting that it was not guarded by a sufficient force. And their belief was correct. For, apart from the triarii and a few younger troops, the rest of the crowd then in the camp consisted of merchants, servants and artificers; and with many crowded into a small space ? for the struggle was for the gates of the camp ? a sharp and severe engagement followed, and there were many dead on both sides. During this action the consul Manlius was coming out with the cavalry to the relief of his men, when his horse fell; and he, falling with him and being unable to rise because of his many wounds, died there, and likewise many brave young men at his side. After this disaster the camp was soon taken, and the Tyrrhenians' prophecies had their fulfilment. Now if they had husbanded the good fortune that was then theirs and had kept the camp under guard, they would have got possession of the Romans' baggage and forced them to a shameful retreat; but as it was, by turning to plundering what had been left behind and from then on refreshing themselves, as most of them did, they allowed a fine booty to escape out of their hands. For as soon as word of the taking of the camp reached the other consul, he hastened thither with the flower of both horse and foot. The Tyrrhenians, informed of this approach, formed a circle round the camp and a sharp battle occurred between them, as the Romans endeavoured to recover what was theirs and the enemy feared being annihilated if their camp should be taken. When considerable time passed and the Tyrrhenians had many advantages, since they fought from higher ground and against men spent with fighting the whole day, Titus Siccius, the legate and proconsul,11 after communicating his plan to the consul, ordered that a retreat should be sounded and that all the men should assemble in a single body and assault one side of the camp where it was most easy of attack. He left free from attack the parts next the gates, reasoning plausibly ? and in this he was not deceived ? that if the Tyrrhenians saw any hope of saving themselves, they would abandon the camp, whereas, if they despaired of this, finding themselves surrounded on all sides and no way of escape left, necessity would make them brave. And when the attack was directed against one point only, the Tyrrhenians no longer resisted, but opening the gates, made their way back in safety to their own camp.
Roman antiquities 9.13
The consul, after he had averted the danger, returned once more to the assistance of those who were in the plain. This battle is said to have been greater than any the Romans had previously fought as regards not only the numbers of the combatants, but also the time it lasted and its sudden turns of fortune. For of the Romans themselves from the city the flower and choice of their youth consisted of about 20,000 foot and some 1200 horse attached to the four legions, while from their colonies and allies there was another force equally large. As for the duration of the battle, it began a little before noon and lasted till sunset. Its fortunes continued for a long time shifting to and fro with alternating victories and defeats. A consul was slain, as well as a legate who had himself been twice consul, and many other commanders, tribunes and centurions ? more indeed than in any previous battle. But the victory in the struggle seemed to rest with the Romans, for this one reason alone, that the Tyrrhenians left their camp the following night and withdrew. 3 The next day the Romans turned to plundering the camp which had been abandoned by the Tyrrhenians, and having buried the dead, returned to their own camp. There, having called an assembly of the soldiers, they distributed the rewards of valour to those who had distinguished themselves in the battle, as follows: first, to Caeso Fabius, the consul's brother, who had performed great and remarkable exploits; next, to Siccius, who had brought about the recovery of their camp; and third, to Marcus Flavoleius, the commander of the legion, on account of both the oath he had taken and the prowess he had shown in the midst of danger. 4 After attending to these things they remained a few days in the camp; then, when none of the enemy came out to fight against them, they returned home. Though all in the city wished to honour the surviving consul with the victor's reward of a triumph because of a most glorious outcome to a very great battle, the consul declined the favour they offered, saying that it was neither right nor lawful for him to ride in procession and wear a crown of laurel after the death of his brother and the loss of his colleague. But after putting away the standards and dismissing the soldiers to their homes he resigned the consulship when two months still remained to complete his year's term, since he was no longer capable of performing the duties of the office. For he was still suffering from a horrible wound and obliged to keep his bed.
Roman antiquities 9.14
The senate chose interreges to preside at the election of magistrates, and the second interrex having assembled the centuries in the Field, Caeso Fabius, the one who had been awarded the prize for valour in the battle, and brother to the man who had abdicated his magistracy, was chosen consul for the third time, and with him Titus Verginius. These, having drawn lots for the armies, took the field, Fabius to war against the Aequians, who were plundering the fields of the Latins, and Verginius against the Veientes. The Aequians, when they learned that an army was going to come against them, hastily evacuated the enemy's country and returned to their own cities; and after that they permitted their own territory to be ravaged, so the consul possessed himself at the first blow of large amounts of money, many slaves, and much booty of other sorts. As for the Veientes, they at first remained within their walls; but as soon as they thought they had a favourable opportunity, they fell upon the enemy as they were dispersed over the plains and occupied in seizing booty. And attacking them with a large army in good order, they not only took away their booty, but also killed or put to flight all who engaged them. Indeed, if Titus Siccius, who was legate at the time, had not come to their relief with a body of foot and horse in good order and held the foe in check, nothing could have prevented the army from being utterly destroyed. But when he got in the enemy's way, the rest of the troops, who had been scattered one here and one there, succeeded in getting together before it was too late; and being now all united, they occupied a hill late in the afternoon and remained there the following night. The Veientes, elated by their success, encamped near the hill and sent for their forces in the city, imagining that they had shut up the Romans in a place where they could not get any provisions, and that they would soon force them to deliver up their arms to them. And when a multitude of their men had arrived, there were now two armies posted on the two sides of the hill that could be assailed, as well as many smaller detachments to guard the less vulnerable positions; and every place was full of armed men. The other consul, Fabius, learning from a letter that came from his colleague that the troops shut up on the hill were in the direst straits and would be in danger of being reduced by famine unless someone came to their relief, broke camp and marched in haste against the Veientes. Indeed, if he had been one day later in completing his march, he would have been of no help, but would have found the army there destroyed. For the men holding the hill, distressed by the lack of provisions, had sallied out, ready to choose the most honourable death; and having engaged the enemy, they were then fighting, though the bodies of most of them were weakened by hunger, thirst, want of sleep, and every other hardship. But after a short time, when the army of Fabius, which was very large and drawn up in order of battle, was seen approaching, it brought confidence to their own men and fear to the enemy; and the Tyrrhenians, believing themselves no longer to be strong enough to engaged in battle with a valiant and fresh army, abandoned their camps and withdrew. When the two armies of the Romans had come together, they made a large camp in a strong position near the city; then, after remaining there many days and plundering the best part of the territory of the Veientes, the generals led the army home. When the Veientes heard that the forces of the Romans had been discharged from the standards, taking the light-armed youth, not only their own which they had already assembled, but also that of their neighbours which was then present, they made an incursion into the plains bordering upon their own territory, which were full of corn, cattle and men, and plundered them. For the husbandmen had come down from the strongholds to get feed for their cattle and to till their lands, relying upon the protection of their army, which then lay encamped between them and the enemy; and after this army had retired, they had made no hasten to move back, as they did not expect the Veientes, after having suffered so many defeats, to make a return attack so promptly against the foes. This irruption of the Veientes into the Romans' country, though brief in point of the time it lasted, was very serious with respect to the amount of territory they overran; and it caused the Romans unusual vexation, mingled with shame, since it extended as far as the river Tiber and Mount Janiculum, which is not twenty stades from Rome. For there was no force then under the standards to stop the enemy's further progress; at any rate, the army of the Veientes had gone before the Romans could assemble and be assigned to centuries.
Roman antiquities 9.15
When the senate was later called together by the consuls and had deliberated in what manner the war should be carried on against the Veientes, the opinion which prevailed was to maintain a standing army upon the frontiers, which should keep guard over the Roman territory, camp ing in the open and always remaining under arms. But the expense of maintaining the garrisons, which would be very great, grieved them, since the public treasury was exhausted as a result of the continual campaigns, and their private fortunes had prove unequal to the burden of the war-taxes. And they were grieved still more by the problem of enlisting the garrisons which were to be sent out, how that could be accomplished, there being little probability that a few men would, willingly at least, serve as a bulwark in defence of all and submit to hardships, not in successive shifts, but continuously. While the senate was troubled on both these accounts, the two Fabii assembled all the members of their clan, and having consulted with them, promised the senate that they themselves would voluntarily undertake this risk in defence of all the citizens, taking along with them their clients and friends, and would at their own expense continue in arms as long as the war should last. All admired them for their noble devotion and placed their hopes of victory in this single undertaking; and while they were being acclaimed and their names were on the lips of all, they took their arms and marched forth, accompanied by vows and sacrifices. Their leader was Marcus Fabius, the man who had been consul the preceding year and had conquered the Tyrrhenians in the late battle; those he took with him were about four thousand in number, the greater part of them being clients and friends, while of the Fabian clan there were three hundred and six men. They were followed a little later by the Roman army under the command of Caeso Fabius, one of the consuls. When they came near the river Cremera, which is not far from the city of the Veientes, they built upon a steep and craggy hill a fortress to command their territory, as large as could be garrisoned by an army of such size, surrounding it with a double ditch and erecting frequent towers; and the fortress was named Cremera, after the river. Since many hands were employed at this work and consul himself assisted them, it was completed sooner than might have been expected. After that the consul marched out with the army and went past the city to the other side of the territory of the Veientes, the side facing toward the rest of Tyrrhenia, where the Veientes kept their herds, not expecting that a Roman army would ever come there; and having possessed himself of much booty, he returned home to the newly erected fortress. This quarry afforded him great satisfaction for two reasons ? first, because he had so promptly retaliated upon the enemy, and again, because it would furnish abundant supplies to the garrison of the stronghold. For he neither turned over any part of the spoils to the treasury nor distributed any to the soldiers, but presented all the cattle, the beasts of burden, the yokes of oxen, the iron, and the other implements of husbandry to the patrols of the country. After accomplishing this he led the army home. The Veientes found themselves in very dire straits after the erection of the frontier stronghold, since they could no longer either till their land in safety or receive the provisions that were imported from abroad. For the Fabii had divided their army into four bodies, with one of which they guarded the stronghold, while with the other three they continually pillaged the enemy's country; and often, when the Veientes openly attacked them with a considerable force or endeavoured to entice them into places beset with ambuscades, the Fabii had the advantage in both situations, and after killing many of them, would retire safely to their stronghold. Consequently the enemy no longer dared to engage them, but remained shut up within their walls for the most part, and only ventured out by stealth. Thus ended that winter.
Roman antiquities 9.16
The next year, when Lucius Aemilius and Gaius Servilius had assumed the consulship, the Romans were informed that the Volscians and the Aequians had entered into an agreement to lead out armies against them at the same time, and that they would soon make an irruption into their territory. And this information was true. At all events, sooner than anyone was expecting, both nations with their armies were ravaging the parts of the Roman territory that adjoined their own, in the belief that the Romans would not be able to cope with the Tyrrhenian war and at the same time to withstand their own attack. And again other messengers came reporting that all Tyrrhenia had become hostile to them and was prepared to send joint reinforcements to the Veientes. For the latter, finding themselves unable to destroy the fortress by themselves alone, had turned to them for help, reminding them of their kinship and friendship, and enumerating the many wars they had waged in common. In view of all this, they asked them to assist them in their war against the Romans, since they were now serving as a bulwark for all Tyrrhenia and stemming the torrent of war which was rushing from Rome upon all the peoples of their race. The Tyrrhenians were persuaded, and promised to send them as large a force of auxiliaries as they asked for. The senate, being informed of this, resolved to send three armies into the field; and the levies were speedily raised. Lucius Aemilius was sent against the Tyrrhenians; and taking part in the expedition with him was Caeso Fabius, the man who had recently resigned the consulship, having now asked leave of the senate to join his kinsmen on the Cremera whom his brother had led out to garrison that place, and to take part in the same contests as they; and invested with the proconsular power, he set out with his followers. Gaius Servilius, the other consul, marched against the Volscians, and Servius Furius, the proconsul, against the Aequians. Each of them was at the head of two legions of Romans and an equally strong force of Latins, Hernicans and the other allies. In the case of the proconsul Servius the war went according to his wish and was soon over. For in a single battle he routed the Aequians, and that without any trouble, having terrified the enemy at the first onset; and thereafter he laid waste their country, as the people had taken refuge in their forts. But Servilius, one of the consuls, having rushed into battle in a precipitate and headstrong fashion, found himself greatly disappointed in his expectations, with the result that after losing many brave men he was forced to give up engaging in pitched battles with them any longer, but remaining in his camp, to carry through the war by means of skirmishes and engagements of the light-armed troops. Lucius Aemilius, who had been sent against the Tyrrhenians, finding that the Veientes had taken the field before their city together with a large number of auxiliaries of the same race, set to work without further delay; and letting only a single day pass after making camp, he led out his forces to battle, in which the Veientes joined with great confidence. When the contest continued doubtful, he took the horse and charged the right wing of the enemy; then, after throwing that into confusion, he proceeded to the other wing, fighting on horseback where the ground would permit, and where it would not, dismounting and fighting on foot. When both of the enemy's wings were in distress, those in the centre could no longer hold out either, but were thrust back by the Roman foot; and after that they all fled to their camp. Aemilius followed them in their flight with his army in good order and killed many of them. When he came near their camp, he attacked it with relays of fresh troops, remaining there all that day and the following night; and the next day, when the enemy were spent with weariness, wounds and want of sleep, he made himself master of the camp. The Tyrrhenians, when they saw the Romans already mounting the palisades, left their camp and fled, some to the city and some to the neighbouring hills. That day the consul remained in the enemy's camp; and on the next day he rewarded with the most magnificent presents those who had distinguished themselves in the battle, and gave to the soldiers all the beasts of burden and slaves that had been left behind in the camp, together with the tents, which were full of many valuables. And the Roman army found itself in greater opulence than after any former battle. For the Tyrrhenians were a people of dainty and expensive tastes, both at home and in the field carrying about with them, besides the necessities, costly and artistic articles of all kinds designed for pleasure and luxury.
Roman antiquities 9.17
In the course of the following days the Veientes, yielding at last to their misfortunes, sent their oldest citizens to the consul with the tokens of suppliants to treat for peace. These men, resorting to lamentations and entreaties and with many tears rehearsing every argument calculated to arouse compassion, endeavoured to persuade the consul to let them send ambassadors to Rome to treat with the senate for a termination of the war, and until the ambassadors should return with the senate's answer, to do no injury to their country. In order to obtain these concessions, they promised to supply the Roman army with corn for two months and with money for their pay for six months, as the victor commanded. And the consul, after receiving what they brought and distributing it among his men, made the truce with them. The senate, having heard the ambassadors and received the letter of the consul, in which he earnestly recommended and urged putting an end to the war with the Tyrrhenians as soon as possible, passed a decree to grant peace as the enemy desired; as to the terms on which the peace should be made, they left them for the consul Lucius Aemilius to determine in such manner as he should think best. The consul, having received this answer, concluded a peace with the Veientes that was more equitable than advantageous to the conquerors; for he neither took far from them any part of their territory, nor imposed on them any further fine of money, nor compelled them to give hostages as security for the performance of their agreement. This action brought upon him great odium and was the reason for his not receiving from the senate the rewards due for his success; for when he requested the customary triumph, they opposed it, censuring his arbitrary behaviour in the matter of the treaty, in that he had concluded it without their concurrence. But lest he should take this action as an insult and evidence of their anger, they ordered him to march with his army against the Volscians in order to bear aid to his colleague, on the chance that if he succeeded in the war there ? for he was a man of great bravery ? he might blot out the resentment for his former errors. But Aemilius, angry at this slight upon his honour, inveighed violently against the senate in the popular assembly, accusing them of being displeased that the war against the Tyrrhenians was ended, He declared that they were doing this with treacherous intent and through contempt of the poor, lest these, when freed from foreign wars, should demand the performance of the promises concerning the allotment of land with which they had been cajoled by them for so many years already. After he had in his ungovernable resentment poured forth these and many similar reproaches against the patricians, he not only dismissed from the standards the army that had served under him, but also sent for the forces that were tarrying in the country of the Aequians under Furius the proconsul and dismissed them to their homes. Thereby he once more gave the tribunes a considerable warrant for accusing the senators in the meetings of the assembly and sowing dissension between the poor and the rich.
Roman antiquities 9.18
These consuls were succeeded by Gaius Horatius and Titus Menenius in the seventy-sixth Olympiad (the one at which Scamander of Mitylene won the foot-race), when Phaedo was archon at Athens. The new consuls were at first hindered from transacting the public business by the domestic disturbance, the populace being exasperated and not permitting any other public business to be carried on until they should divide up among themselves the public land; but after a time the seditious and turbulent elements yielded to necessity and came in voluntarily to be enlisted. For the eleven cities of the Tyrrhenians which had had no part in the peace, holding a general assembly, inveighed against the Veientes for having put an end to the war with the Romans without the general consent of the nation, and demanded that they do one of two things ? either break the compact they had made with the Romans, or join with the Romans in making war upon the rest of the Tyrrhenians. But the Veientes laid the blame for the peace upon necessity, and proposed that the assembly consider how they might break it with decency. Upon this someone suggested to them that they should make formal complaint of the erection of the frontier stronghold on the Cremera and of the failure of its garrison to withdraw from there, and then should first make an oral demand that they evacuate the place, and, if they refused, should lay siege to the fortress and make this action the beginning of the war. Having agreed on this course, they left the assembly; and not long afterwards the Veientes sent ambassadors to the Fabii to demand from them the fortress, and all Tyrrhenia was in arms. The Romans, learning of these things through letters from the Fabii, resolved that both the consuls should take the field, one to command in the war that was coming upon them from Tyrrhenia and the other to prosecute the war which was still going on with the Volscians. Horatius, accordingly, marched against the Volscians with two legions and an adequate force of the allies, and Menenius was preparing to set out against the Tyrrhenians with another force of equal size; but while he was making his preparations and losing time, the fortress on the Cremera was destroyed by the enemy and the entire Fabian clan perished. Concerning the disaster that befell these men two accounts are current, one less probable and the other coming nearer to the truth. I shall give them both as I have received them.
Roman antiquities 19
Some say that when the time was at hand for a traditional sacrifice which devolved upon the Fabian clan, the men set out from the fortress, attended by a few clients, to perform the rites, and proceeded without reconnoitring the roads or marching ranged in centuries under their standards, but negligently and unguardedly as in time of peace and as if they were passing through friendly territory. The Tyrrhenians, having learned of their departure in advance, placed one part of their army in ambush at a spot along the road, and followed son after with the rest of their forces in regular formation. When the Fabii drew near the ambuscade, the Tyrrhenians who were lying in wait there rose up and fell upon them, some in front and others in flank, and a little later the rest of the Tyrrhenian force attacked them from the rear; and surrounding them on all sides and shooting at them, some with slings, some with bows, and others hurling javelins and spears, they overwhelmed them all with the multitude of their missiles. Now this account seems to me to be the less credible. For not only is it improbable that so many serving under the standards would have returned from the camp to the city because of a sacrifice without a decree from the senate, when the rites might have been performed by others of the same clan who were advanced in years; but even if they had all gone from the city and no part of the Fabian clan was left in their homes, it is improbable that all who held the fortress would have abandoned the guarding of it, since even three or four of them would have sufficed to return to Rome and perform the rites for the whole clan. For these reasons, then, this account has not seemed to me to be credible.
Roman antiquities 9.20
The other account concerning the destruction of the Fabii and the capture of the fortress, which I regard as being nearer to the truth, is somewhat as follows. As the men went out frequently to forage and, encouraged by the continued success of their forays, advanced even farther, the Tyrrhenians got ready a numerous army and encamped in the near neighbourhood unperceived by the enemy. Then, sending out of their strongholds flocks of sheep, herds of cattle, and drove of mares as if to pasture, they lured the garrison to these; and the men, coming out, seized the herdsmen and rounded up the cattle. The Tyrrhenians kept doing this and drawing the enemy ever farther away from their camp; then, when they had destroyed in them all thought for their safety by enticing them with constant booty, they placed ambuscades at night in the most suitable positions, while others occupied the heights that commanded the plains. The next day, sending ahead a few armed men, as if to serve as a guard for the herdsmen, they drove out a large number of herds from their strongholds. When word was brought to the Fabii that if they went over the neighbouring hills they would in a very short time find the plain covered with cattle of all sorts with a guard insufficient to defend them, they went out of the fortress, leaving an adequate garrison there. And covering the distance speedily in their eagerness, they appeared before the guards of the cattle in battle array. These did not await their attack, but fled, and the Fabii, thinking themselves now quite secure, set about seizing the herdsmen and rounding up the cattle. Thereupon the Tyrrhenians, rising up from ambush in many places, fell upon them from all sides. The greater part of the Romans, being scattered and unable to assist one another, were killed upon the spot; but those who were in a body, being eager to reach a secure position and hastening toward the hills, fell into another ambuscade that lay concealed in the woods and glens. Here a sharp battle took place between them and there was great slaughter on both sides. But nevertheless they repulsed even these foes, and after filling the ravine with dead bodies, they ran up to the top of a hill that was not easy to take, and there passed the following night in want of the necessary provisions.
Roman antiquities 9.21
The next day those who were holding the fortress, upon being informed of the disaster that had befallen their companions ? namely, that the greater part of the army had been destroyed in their pursuit of plunder and the bravest of them were shut up and besieged on a lonely mountain, and that if some aid seems reach them promptly they would soon be destroyed for want of provisions ? set out in haste, leaving very few in the fortress to guard it. These troops, before they could join their companions, were surrounded by the Tyrrhenians, who rushed down upon them from their strongholds; and though they displayed many feats of valour, they were in time all destroyed. Not long afterwards those also who had seized the hill, being oppressed by both hunger and thirst, resolved to charge the enemy; and engaging, a few against many, they continued fighting from morning till night, and made so great a slaughter of the enemy that the heaps of dead bodies piled up in many places were a hindrance to them in fighting. Indeed, the Tyrrhenians had lost above a third part of their army, and fearing for the rest, they now gave the signal for a retreat and stopped fighting for a short time; and sending heralds to the men, they offered them their lives and a safe-conduct if they would lay down their arms and evacuate the fortress. When the others refused their offer and chose the death befitting men of noble birth, the Tyrrhenians renewed the struggle, attacking them in relays, though no longer fighting at close quarters in hand-to-hand combat, but standing in a body and hurling javelins and stones at them from a distance; and the multitude of missiles was like a snow-storm. The Romans, massing by companies, rushed upon their foes, who did not stand their ground, and though they received many wounds from those surrounding them, they stood firm. But when the swords of many had become useless, some having their edges blunted and others being broken, and the borders of their shields next the rims were hacked in pieces, and the men themselves were for the most part bled white and overwhelmed by missiles and their limbs paralysed by reason of the multitude of their wounds, the Tyrrhenians scorned them and came to close quarters. Then the Romans, rushing at them like wild beasts, seized their spears and broke them, grasped their swords by the edges and wrenched them out of their hands, and twisting the bodies of their antagonists, fell with them to the ground, locked in close embrace, fighting with greater rage than strength. Hence the enemy, astonished at their endurance and terrified at the madness that had seized them in their despair of life, no longer ventured to come to grips with them, but retiring again, stood in a body and hurled at them sticks, stones, and anything else they could lay their hands on, and at last buried them under the multitude of missiles. After destroying these men they ran to the fortress, carrying with them the heads of the most prominent, expecting to take the men there prisoners at their first onset. However, the attempt did not turn out according to their hopes; for the men who had been left there, emulating the noble death of their comrades and kinsmen, came out of the fortress, though very few in number, and after fighting for a considerable time were all destroyed in the same manner as the others; and the place was empty of men when the Tyrrhenians took it. To me now this account appears much more credible than the former; but both of them are to be found in Roman writings of good authority.
Roman antiquities 9.22
The addition to this account which has been made by certain writers, though neither true nor plausible, but invented by the multitude from some false report, does not deserve to be passed over without examination. For some report that after the three hundred and six Fabii had been slain, there was only one boy left out of the whole clan, thereby introducing a detail that is not only improbable, but even impossible; for it is not possible that all the Fabii who went out to the fortress were unmarried and childless. For not only did the ancient law of the Romans oblige all of the proper age to marry, but they were forced also to rear all their children; and surely the Fabii would not have been the only persons to violate a law which had been observed by their ancestor down to their time. But even if one were to admit this assumption, yet he would never make the further assumption that none of them had any brothers still in their childhood. Why, such institutions resemble myths and fictions of the stage! Besides, would not as many of their fathers as were still of an age to beget children, now that so great a desolation had come upon their clan, have begotten other children both willingly and unwillingly, in order that neither the sacrifices of their ancestors might be abandoned nor the great reputation of the clan be extinguished? Unless, indeed, none even of their fathers were left and all the conditions which would render it impossible to perpetuate the clan combined together ink those three hundred and six men ? namely, that they left behind them no infant children, no wives with child, no brothers still under age, no fathers in the prime of life. Testing the story by such reasoning, I have come to the conclusion that it is not true, but that the following is the true account. Of the three brothers, Caeso, Quintus, and Marcus, who had been consuls for seven years in succession, I believe that Marcus left one young son, and that this boy was the one who is reported to have been the survivor of the Fabian house. There is no reason why it should not have been because no one else of the clan became famous and illustrious except this one son, when he had grown to manhood, that most people came to hold the belief that he was the only survivor of the Fabian clan ? not, indeed, that there was no other, but that there was none like those famous three ? judging kinship on the basis of merit, not of birth. But enough on this subject.
Roman antiquities 9.24
After the Tyrrhenians, then, had destroyed the Fabii and taken the fortress on the Cremera, they led their forces against the other army of the Romans. It chanced that Menenius, one of the consuls, lay encamped not far away in an insecure position; and when the Fabian clan and their clients perished, he was only some thirty stades from the place where the disaster occurred ? a circumstance which gave many people reason to believe that, though aware of the dire straits of the Fabii, he had shown no concern for them because of the envy he felt of their valour and reputation. Accordingly, when he was later brought to trial by the tribunes, this was the chief ground for his condemnation. For the people of Rome deeply mourned their having shorn themselves of the valour of so many and so brave men and were severe and inexorable toward all whom they suspected of having been responsible for so great a calamity; and they regard the day onwhich the disaster occurred as black and inauspicious and will begin no useful labour on it, looking upon the disaster which then occurred on that day as a bad omen. When the Tyrrhenians came near the Romans and observed the situation of their camp, which lay under a flank of a hill, they felt contempt for the inexperience of the general and gladly grasped the advantage presented to them by Fortune. They at once marched up the opposite side of the hill with their horse and gained the summit without opposition. Then, having possessed themselves of the height above the Romans, they made camp there, brought up the rest of their army in safety, and fortified the camp with a high palisade and a deep ditch. Now if Menenius, when he perceived what an advantage he had given the enemy, had repented of his error and removed his army to a safer position, he would have been wise; but as it was, being ashamed to be thought to have made a mistake, and maintaining an obstinate front toward those who advised him to change his plans, he came a merited fall which brought disgrace as well. For as the enemy were constantly sending out detachments from places that commanded his camp, they had many advantages, not only seizing the provisions which the merchants were bringing to the Romans, but also attacking his men as they went out for forage or for water; and it had come to the point where the consul did not have it in his power to choose either the time or the place of combat ? which seems to be strong evidence of the inexperience of a general ? whereas the Tyrrhenians could do both as they wished. And not even then could Menenius bring himself to move his army away from there; but leading out the troops, he drew them up ready for battle, scorning all who offered salutary advice. The Tyrrhenians, looking upon the folly of the general as a piece of great good fortune, came down from their camp with numbers fully twice those of their foe. When they engaged, there was a great slaughter of the Romans, who were unable to keep their ranks. For they were forced back by the Tyrrhenians, who not only had the terrain as an ally, but were also helped by the vigorous pressure of those who stood behind them, their army being drawn up with deep files. When the most prominent centurions had fallen, the rest of the Roman army gave way and fled to the camp; and the enemy pursued them, took away their standards, seized their wounded, and got possession of their dead. Then they shut them up in their camp and besieged them; and delivering numerous attacks during all the rest of the day, without desisting even at night, they captured the camp, which the Romans had abandoned, and took many prisoners and a great quantity of booty; for those who fled had not been able to pack up their belongings, but were glad to escape with their bare lives, many not keeping even their arms.
Roman antiquities 9.24
When those at Rome heard that their army was destroyed and their camp taken ? the first who had saved themselves from the rout arrived while it was still deep night ? they fell into great confusion, as may well be imagined; and expecting the enemy to come against them at any moment, they seized their arms and some formed a circle about the walls, others stationed themselves before the gates, and still others occupied the heights in the city. There was a disorderly running to and fro throughout the entire city and a confused clamour; on the roofs of the houses were the members of each household, prepared to defend themselves and give battle; and an uninterrupted succession of torches, as it was in the night and dark, blazed through lanterns and from roofs, so many in number that to those seeing them at a distance it seemed to be one continuous blaze and gave the impression of a city on fire. And if the Tyrrhenians at that time had scorned the booty to be got from the camp and had followed on the heels of the fleeing Romans, the whole army which had taken the field against them would have been destroyed; but as it was, by turning to plundering everything which had been left behind in the camp and to resting their bodies, they deprived themselves of a great opportunity for boasting. The next day they led their forces against Rome, and when they were about sixteen stades from the city, they occupied the mount called Janiculum, from which the city is in full view. And using that as a base of operations, they pillaged the territory of the Romans without hindrance, holding those in the city in great contempt, till the other consul, Horatius, appeared with the army which had been among the Volscians. Then at last the Romans thought themselves safe, and arming the youth that were in the city, they took the field; and having not only in the first battle, which was fought at the distance of eight stades from the city near the temple of Hope, overcome their opponents and driven them back, but also, after that engagement, having fought brilliantly with them again near the gate called the Colline, when the Tyrrhenians had come against them with another and larger army, they recovered from their fear. Thus ended that year.
Roman antiquities 9.25
The following year, about the summer solstice, in the month of August, Servius Servilius and Aulus Verginius succeeded to the consulship, both being men of experience in warfare. To them the Tyrrhenian war, though great and difficult, seemed pure gold in comparison with the conflict inside the city walls. For since the land had gone unsown the preceding winter because the enemy had fortified the adjacent hill against them and had kept up incessant raids, and since not even the merchants any longer imported the usual provisions from outside, Rome suffered from a great scarcity of corn, as the city was then crowded not only with its permanent population, but also with a multitude that had flocked thither from the country. For of adult citizens there were more than 110,000, as appeared by the latest census; and the number of the women, children, domestics, foreign traders and artisans who plied the menial trades ? for no Roman citizen was permitted to earn a livelihood as a tradesman or artisan ? was not less than treble the number of the citizens. This multitude was not easy to placate; for they were exasperated at their misfortune, and gathering together in the Forum, clamoured against the magistrates, rushed in a body to the houses of the rich and endeavoured to seize without payment the provisions that were stored up by them. In the meantime the tribunes assembled the people, and by accusing the patricians of always contriving some mischief against the poor, and calling them the authors of all the evils which had ever happened at the caprice of Fortune, whose whims men can neither foresee nor guard against, they inspired them with insolence and bitter resentment. The consuls, beset by these evils, sent men with large sums of money to the neighbouring districts to purchase corn, and ordered all those who had stored up more than a moderate amount of corn for their own subsistence to turn it over to the state; and they fixed a reasonable price for it. By these and many other like expedients they put a stop to the lawless actions of the poor and thus got respite and thus got respite for their preparations for war.
Roman antiquities 9.26
But when the provisions from outside were slow in coming and all the food supplies in the city had been consumed and there was no other means of averting the evils but to choose one of two courses? either to hazard an engagement with all their forces, in order to drive the enemy out of the country, or by remaining shut up within the walls to perish both by famine and by sedition ? they chose the lesser of these evils and resolved to go forth to meet the perils from the enemy. Marching out of the city, therefore, with their forces, they crossed the river about midnight on rafts, and before it was broad daylight encamped near the enemy. The next day they came out of their camp and drew up their army for battle, Verginius commanding the right wing and Servilius the left. The Tyrrhenians, seeing them ready for the contest, rejoiced greatly, believing that by this single battle, if it turned out according to their wish, they would overthrow the empire of the Romans; for they knew that all their foes' best soldiery was entered in this contest, and they entertained the hope, which was very ill founded, of defeating them with ease, since they had conquered the troops of Menenius when these had been arrayed against them in a disadvantageous position. But after a sharp and protracted battle, in which they killed many of the Romans but lost many more of their own men, they began to retreat gradually toward their camp. Verginius, who commanded the right wing, would not permit his men to pursue the enemy, but urged them to rest content with the advantage they had gained; Servilius, however, who was posted on the other wing, pursued the foes who had faced him, following them for a long distance. But when he reached the heights, the Tyrrhenians face about and, those in the camp coming to their aid, they fell upon the Romans. These, after receiving their attack for a short time, turned their backs and, being pursued down hill, were slain as they became scattered. When Verginius was informed of the plight of the left wing of the army, he led his entire force in battle array by a transverse road that passed over the hill. Then, finding himself in the rear of those who were pursuing his troops, he left a part of his army there to block any who should be sent from the camp to the relief of their comrades, and he himself with the rest attacked the enemy. In the meantime the troops also under Servilius, encouraged by the arrival of their comrades, faced about and, standing their ground, engaged. The Tyrrhenians, being thus surrounded by both forces and being unable either to break through in front, by reason of those who engaged them, or to flee back to their camp, by reason of those who attacked them in the rear, fought bravely but unsuccessfully, and were almost all destroyed. The Romans having thus gained a melancholy victory and the outcome of the battle being not altogether fortunate, the consuls encamped before the bodies of the slain and there spent the following night under the open sky. The Tyrrhenians who were occupying the Janiculum, when no reinforcements came to them from home, decided to abandon the fortress; and breaking camp in the night, they withdrew to Veii, which lay nearest to them of the Tyrrhenian cities. 7The Romans, having possessed themselves of their camp, plundered all the effects which the enemy had left behind as being impossible to carry away in their flight, and also seized many of their wounded, part of whom had been left in their tents, while others lay scattered all along the road. For some, eager to be on their way home, were holding out and with hearts stout beyond their strength were persisting in following their comrades; then, when their limbs grew heavy, they collapsed half dead to the ground. These the Roman horsemen slew as they advanced a good distance along the road. And when there was no longer any sign of the enemy, the army razed the fortress and returned to the city with the spoils, carrying with them the bodies of those who had been slain in the battle ? a piteous sight to all the citizens by reason both of the number and of the valour of those who had perished. Accordingly, the people did not think it fitting either to hold festival as for a glorious victory or to mourn as for a great and irreparable calamity; and the senate, while ordering the required sacrifices to be offered to the gods, did not permit the consuls to conduct the triumphal procession in token of a victory. A few days later the city was filled with all sorts of provisions, as not only the men who had been sent out by the commonwealth but also those who were accustomed to carry on this trader had brought in much corn; consequently, everybody enjoyed the same abundance as aforetime.
Roman antiquities 9.27
The foreign wars being now ended, the civil dissensions began to flare up again as the tribunes once more stirred up the populace. And though all their other measures were defeated as the result of marshalling their forces against every proposal, yet they were unable to suppress the accusation against Menenius, the late consul, in spite of all their efforts, but he was brought to trial by Quintus Considius and Titus Genucius, two of the tribunes. And being called upon to give an accounting of his conduct of the war, the outcome of which had been neither fortunate nor honourable, and being blamed particularly for the destruction of the Fabii and the capture of Cremera, he was condemned by no small majority of the votes when the plebeians passed judgement upon him by tribes ? even though he was the son of Agrippa Menenius who had brought the populace home after their secession and reconciled them with the patricians, the son of a man whom the senate after his death had honoured with a most magnificent funeral at the public expense and for whom the Roman matrons had mourned for a whole year, laying aside their purple and gold. However, those who convicted him did not impose death as the penalty, but rather a fine ? one which if compared with the fortunes of to-day would appear ridiculous, but to the men of that age, who worked their own farms and aimed at no more than the necessaries of life, and particularly to Menenius, who had inherited poverty from his father, was excessive and oppressive, amounting to 2000 asses. The as was at that time a copper coin weighing a pound, so that the whole fine amounted to sixteen talents of copper in weight. And this appeared invidious to the men of those days, who, in order to redress it, abolished all pecuniary fines, changing them to payments in sheep and oxen, and limiting the number even of these in the case of all fines to be imposed thereafter by the magistrates upon private persons. From this condemnation of Menenius the patricians took fresh occasion for resentment against the plebeians and would neither permit them to carry out the allotment of lands nor make any other concession in their favour. 5And not long afterwards even the populace repented of having condemned him, when they learned of his death. For from that time he no longer entered into any intercourse with his fellow men nor was seen by anyone in any public place; and though it was his privilege by paying his fine not to be excluded from any public doings ? for not a few of his friends were ready to pay the fine ? he would not accept their offer, but rating his misfortune as a capital sentence and remaining at home and admitting no one, wasted away through dejection and abstinence from food, and so perished. These were the events of that year.
Roman antiquities 9.28
When Publius Valerius Publicola and Gaius Nautius had succeeded to the consulship, another of the patricians, Servius Servilius, who had been consul the preceding year, was put on trial for his life not long after laying down his magistracy. Those who cited him to trial before the populace were Lucius Caedicius and Titus Statius, two of the tribunes, who demanded an accounting, not for any crime, but for his bad luck, inasmuch as in the battle against the Tyrrhenians he had pressed forward to the enemy's camp with greater daring than prudence, and being pursued by the garrison, who rushed out in a body, had lost the flower of the youth. This trial was regarded by the patricians as the most grievous of all; and meeting together, they expressed their resentment and indignation if boldness on the part of generals and their refusal to shirk any danger were going to be made a ground for accusations, in case Heaven opposed their plans, on the part of those who had not faced the dangers; and they reasoned that such trials would in all probability be the cause of cowardice, shirking and the lack of any further initiative on the part of commanders ? the very weaknesses through which liberty is lost and supremacy undermined. They earnestly implored the plebeians not to condemn the man, pointing out that they would do great harm to the commonwealth if they punished their generals for being unfortunate. When the time for the trial was at hand, Lucius Caedicius, one of the tribunes, came forward and accused Servilius of having through his folly and inexperience in the duties of a general led his forces to manifest destruction and lost the finest manhood of the army; and he declared that if his colleague had not been informed promptly of the disaster and had not by bringing up his forces in all haste repulsed the enemy and saved their own men, nothing could have prevented the other army from being utterly destroyed and the state from being reduced henceforth to one-half its former members. After he had thus spoken, he produced as witnesses all the centurions who had survived and some of the rank and file, who in the effort to wipe out their own disgrace arising from that defeat and flight were ready to blame the general for the ill success of the engagement. Then, having poured out many words of commiseration for the fate of those who had lost their lives upon that occasion, exaggerated the disaster, and with great contempt of the patricians dwelt at length upon everything else which by exposing their whole order to hatred was sure to discourage all who were intending to intercede for the man, he gave him an opportunity of speaking.
Roman antiquities 9.29
Taking up his defence, Servilius said: "If it is to a trial, citizens, that you have summoned me, and you desire an accounting of my generalship, I am ready to make my defence; but if it is to a punishment all determined, and no advantage is to accrue to me for showing that I have not wronged you in any way, take my person and deal with it as you have long desired to do. Indeed, for me it is better to die without a trial than after getting a chance to plead my cause and then failing to convince you ? since I should in that case seem to suffer deservedly whatever you determined against me ? and you on your part will be less blameworthy for depriving me of the right to plead my cause and for indulging your angry passions while it is still uncertain even whether I have done you any wrong. And your intention will be evident to me by the manner in which you give me a hearing: by your clamour and by your silence I shall judge whether it is to vengeance or to judgement that you have summoned me." Having said this, he stopped, And when silence followed and then the majority cried out to him to be of good courage and say all that he wished, he resumed his plea and said: "Well then, citizens, if you are to be my judges and not my enemies, I believe I shall easily convince you that I am guilty of no crime. I shall begin my defence with facts with which you are all familiar. I was chosen consul together with that most excellent man, Verginius, at the time when the Tyrrhenians, having fortified against you the hill that commands the city, were masters of all the open country and entertained hopes of speedily overthrowing our empire. There was a great famine in the city, and sedition, and perplexity as to what should be done. Having been brought face to face with so turbulent and so formidable a crisis, I together with my colleague overcame the enemy in two engagements and obliged them to abandon the fort and leave the country, while I soon put an end to the famine by supplying the markets with abundant provisions; and I handed over to my successors not only our territory freed from hostile arms but also our city cured of every political distemper with which the demagogues had infected it. For what wrongdoing, then, am I accountable to you ? unless to conquer your enemies is to wrong you? And if some of the soldiers happened to lose their lives in the battle while fighting successfully, in what way has Servilius wronged the people? For naturally no god offers himself as surety to generals for the lives of all who are going into battle; nor do we receive the command of armies upon stated terms and conditions, namely that we are to overcome all our enemies and lose none of our own men. For who that is a mere mortal would consent to take upon himself all the consequences both of his judgement and of his luck? No man, I say; but our great successes we always buy at the cost of great hazards.
Roman antiquities 9.30
"Moreover, I am not the first to whom it has fallen to suffer this fate when engaging the enemy, but it has happened to practically all who have risked desperate battles against enemy forces more numerous than their own. For there have been instances when generals after chasing their foes have themselves been put to flight, and while slaying many of their opponents have lost still more of their own men. I shall not add that many even after meeting utter defeat have returned home with ignominy and great loss, yet not one of them has been punished for his bad luck. For the calamity itself is a sufficient punishment, and to receive no praise, as is inevitable, even without anything else, is a great and grievous penalty for a general. Nevertheless, I for my part am so far from maintaining ? what all reasonable men will allow to be just ? that I do not have to render an accounting of my luck, that, even though no one else was ever willing to submit to such a trial, I alone do not decline to do so, but consent that my luck be inquired into as well as my judgement ? after I have first made this one statement: I observe that men's undertakings, both unsuccessful and successful, are judged, not by the several operations in detail, which are many and various, but by the final outcome. When this turns out according to their hopes, even though the intermediate operations, which are many, may not be to their liking, I nevertheless hear the undertakings praised and admired by all and regarded as the consequences of good luck; but when these measures lead to bad results, even though every measure before the final outcome is carried out with the greatest ease, they are ascribed, not to the good, but to the bad luck of their authors. So, taking this as the target, do you yourselves consider what has been my luck in the various wars; and if you find that I was vanquished by the enemy, call my luck bad, but if I was victorious over them, call it good. On the subject of luck, now, I could say still more; however, as I am not unaware that all who discuss it are tiresome, I will desist.
Roman antiquities 9.31
"But since they censure my judgement also, not daring, indeed, to accuse me of treachery or cowardice, the charges on which other generals are tried, but accuse me of inexperience in the duties of a general and imprudence, in that I undertook an unnecessary risk in pressing forward to the enemy's camp, I wish to render you an accounting on that point, too, since I can make the very obvious retort that it is very easy and lies within the power of any man to censure past actions, whereas to venture upon glorious exploits is difficult and within the power of but few; also that it is not so apparent what future events will be as what past events are, but, on the contrary, we apprehend the latter by perception and our experiences, while we conjecture the others by divination and opinions, in which there is much that is deceptive; and again, that it is the easiest thing in the world for people to conduct wars by talk when they stand far from the danger, which is what my accusers do. But, to waive all this, tell me, in the name of the gods, do you regard me as the first or the only man who ever attempted to capture a stronghold by force and led his men against lofty positions? Or have not many others of your generals done the sam, some of whom have succeeded, while the attempt of others has not turned out as they wished? Why in the world, then, did you let the others off but now try me, if you consider these actions to be marks of incapacity and imprudence in a general? How many other undertakings more daring than this does it occur to your generals to attempt when times of crisis will by no means admit of the safe and well-considered course? Some indeed have snatched the standards from their own men and hurled them among the enemy, in order that the indolent and cowardly might perforce gain courage, since they knew that those who failed to recover those standards must be put to death ignominiously by their generals. Others, after invading the enemy's country, have destroyed the bridges over the rivers what they had crossed, in order that any who entertained thoughts of saving themselves by flight might find their hope vain and so be inspired with boldness and resolution in the battles. Still others by burning their tents and baggage have imposed on their men the necessity of supplying themselves out of the enemy's country with everything they needed. I omit mentioning all the other instances of the kind, which are countless, and the many other daring actions and expedients of generals that we know of from both history and our own experience, for which no general was ever punished when disappointed in his helps. Unless, indeed, someone among you can bring the charge against me that when I exposed the others to manifest destruction I kept myself out of danger. But if I took my place in the line with all the rest, was last to withdraw and shared the same fortune with the others, of what crime am I guilty? Concerning myself, then, let this suffice.
Roman antiquities 9.32
"But concerning the senate and the patricians I wish to say a few words to you, since the general hatred you plebeians bear toward them because they prevented the allotment of land hurts me also, and since my accuser too did not conceal this hatred, but made it no small part of his accusation against me. And I shall prospect with frankness; for I could not speak in any other fashion, nor would it be to your interest to hear me if I did. You are not doing right in the eyes of men or the gods, plebeians, if, on the one hand, you show no gratitude for the many great benefits you have received from the senate, but, on the other hand, because, when you demanded a measure the concession of which would bring great harm to the public, the senate, not in any spirit of animosity toward you, but having in view the welfare of the commonwealth, opposed it, you angrily resent its action. But what you ought to have done was, preferably, to accept the senate's decisions as having been made with the best of motives and for the good of all and then to have desisted from your selfish striving; but if you were unable to restrain your inexpedient desire by means of sober reason, you should have sought to obtain these same ends by persuasion and not by violence. For voluntary gifts are not only more pleasing to those who grant them than such as are extorted by force, but are also more lasting to those who receive them than those which are not freely given. Of this truth you, however, as Heaven is my witness, take no account, but you are continually stirred up by your demagogues and roused to fury even as is the sea by winds that spring up one after another, and you do not permit the commonwealth to remain calm and serene for even the briefest space of time. The result, therefore, is that we prefer war to peace; at any rate, when we Romans are at war, we hurt our enemies, but when at peace, our friends. And yet, plebeians, if you regard all the resolutions of the senate as excellent and advantageous, as they really are, why do you not assume this also to be one of them? If, however, you believe that the senate takes no thought at all for the things it should, but governs the commonwealth dishonourably and basely, why in the world do you not abolish it bag and baggage and yourselves govern and deliberate and wage wars in defence of our empire, rather than pare it down and destroy it by degrees by making away with its most important members in your trials? For it would be better for all of us to be attacked together in war than for each one separately to be the victim of false accusations. However, it is not you, as I said, who are the authors of these disorders, but rather the demagogues, who keep you stirred up and who are neither willing to be ruled nor capable of ruling. Indeed, so far as their imprudence and inexperience could accomplish it, this ship of yours would have foundered many times over; but as it is, the power which corrects their errors and enables your commonwealth to sail on an even keel is the senate, so greatly maligned by them. 7 These remarks, whether they are pleasant for you to hear or vexatious, have been uttered and hazarded by me in all sincerity; and I had rather lose my life by using a freedom of speech that is advantageous for the commonwealth than save it by flattering you."
Roman antiquities 9.33
Having spoken in this manner and without either resorting to lamentations and wailings over his misfortune or abasing himself by entreaties and unseemly grovelling at the feet of anyone, and without displaying any other mark of an ignoble nature, he yielded the floor to those who desired to speak or bear witness in his favour. Many came forward and sought to clear him of the charge, and particularly Verginius, who had been consul at the same time with him and was regarded as having been the cause of the victory. He not only declared Servilius to be innocent, but argued that, as the bravest of men in war and the most prudent of generals, he deserved to be praised and honoured by all. He said that if they thought the war had ended favourably, they ought to feel grateful to both commanders, but if unfavourably, they ought to punish them both; for not only their plans, but also their actions and the fortunes meted out to them by Heaven had belonged to them both. Not only were the man's words convincing, but his whole life as well, which had been tested in all manner of good deeds. He had moreover ? and this it was that stirred the greatest compassion ? a look of fellow-suffering, such a look as one is apt to see on the faces of those who themselves have suffered calamities or are about to suffer them. Hence even the relations of the men who had lost their lives in the battle and seemed irreconcilable to the au of their misfortune became softened and laid aside their resentment, as they presently made evident. For when the votes had been taken, not a single tribe condemned him. Such was the outcome of the jeopardy in which Servilius had been placed.
Roman antiquities 9.34
Not long afterwards an army of the Romans marched out against the Tyrrhenians under the command of Publius Valerius, one of the consuls. For the forces of the Veientes had again assembled and had been joined by the Sabines. The latter had hitherto hesitated to assist them in the war, fearing that they were aiming at the impossible; but now, when they learned both of the flight of Menenius and of the fortifying of the hill close to the city, concluding that the forces of the Romans had been humbled and that the spirit of the commonwealth had been broken, they proceeded to aid the Tyrrhenians, sending them a large body of troops. The Veientes, relying night on their own forces and on those of the Sabines which had just come to them, and expecting reinforcements from the rest of the Tyrrhenians, were eager to march on Rome with the greater part of their army, in the belief that none would oppose them, but that they should either take the city by storm or reduce it by famine. But Valerius forestalled their plan, while they were still delaying and waiting for the allies who tarried, by setting out himself with the flower of the Roman youth and with the auxiliary force from the allies, not openly, but in such a manner as would conceal his march from the enemy so far as possible. For, advancing from Rome in the later afternoon and crossing the Tiber, he encamped at a short distance from the city; then, rousing the army about midnight, he marched in haste and, before it was day, attacked one of the enemy's camps. For there were two camp s, separate but at no great distance from one another, one of the Tyrrhenian and the other of the Sabines. The first camp he attacked was that of the Sabines, where most of the men were still asleep and there was no guard worth mentioning, inasmuch as they were in friendly territory and felt great contempt for the enemy, whose presence had not been reported from any quarter; and he took it by storm. Some of the Sabines were slain in their beds, others just as they were getting up and arming themselves, and still others, who, though armed, were dispersed and fighting in disorder; but the larger part of them were intercepted and destroyed by the Roman horse while they were endeavouring to escape to the other camp.
Roman antiquities 9.35
The camp of the Sabines having thus been taken, Valerius led his forces to the other camp, where the Veientes lay, having occupied a position that was not very strong. Here it was not possible for the attackers to approach the camp without being seen, since it was now broad daylight and the fleeing Sabines had informed the Tyrrhenians both of their own disaster and of the advance of the Romans against the others; hence it was necessary to attack the enemy with might and main. Then, as the Tyrrhenians ought to before their camp with all possible vigour, a sharp action ensued, with great slaughter on both sides; and the decision of the battle was equally balanced, shifting to and fro for a long time. At last the Tyrrhenians, forced back by the Roman horse, gave way and retired to their camp. The consul followed, and when he came near their ramparts ? these had been poorly constructed and the place, as I said, was not very secure ? he attacked them in many places at once, continuing his exhausting efforts all the rest of that day and not even resting the following night. The Tyrrhenians, exhausted by their continual hardships, left their camp at break of day, some fleeing to their city and others dispersing themselves in the neighbouring woods. The consul, having made himself master of this camp also, rested his army that day; then, on the next day he distributed to the men who had shared in the fighting the spoils, great in quantity, which he had taken in both camps, and honoured with the customary crowns those who had distinguished themselves in the battles. The man who was regarded as having fought with the better bravery of all and put the troops of the Veientes to flight was Servilius, the consul of the preceding year, who had been acquitted in his trail before the populace and now had been sent along as legate to Valerius; and in consideration of the superior valour he showed upon this occasion he was the first to receive the rewards which among the Romans are the most esteemed. After that the consul, having stripped the enemy's dead and buried his own, marched away with his army, and encamping near the city of the Veientes, challenged those inside to give battle. But when none ventured out to fight and he saw that it would be a difficult matter to capture them by assault, occupying as they did a city that was exceedingly strong, he overran a great part of their country and then invaded that of the Sabines. For many days he plundered their territory too, which was still untouched, and then, since his baggage train was now heavily laden with booty, he led his troops homeward. While he was yet a long way from the city he was met by the people, who, crowned with garlands, perfumed the route with frankincense as he entered and received the army with bowls of honeyed wine. And the senate decreed to him the celebration of a triumph. The other consul, Gaius Nautius, to whom the defence of their allies the Latins and the Hernicans had fallen by lot, had delayed taking the field, not because he was swayed by any irresolution or fear of danger, but because he was awaiting the uncertain outcome of the war with the Veientes, to the end that, if any misfortune should befall the army employed against them the commonwealth might have another force assembled in readiness to hinder the enemy from making an irruption into the country, in case this foe, like those who had earlier marched against Rome, should attempt to fortify any places as a threat to the city. In the meantime the war brought upon the Latins by the Aequians and the Volscians had been happily concluded and messengers had arrived announcing that the enemy, defeated in battle, had left the territory of the Latins and that these allies no longer stood in any need of assistance for the present. Nevertheless, Nautius, after affairs in Tyrrhenia had taken a happy turn for the Romans, marched out with his army. Then, having invaded the country of the Volscians and overrun a great part of it which they had left deserted, he possessed himself of a very few slaves and cattle, and having set fire to their fields, the corn being then ripe, and done not a little other damage to their farmsteads, as none came to oppose him, he led his army home. These were the things accomplished in the consulship of those men.
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Their successors in the consulship, Aulus Manlius and Lucius Furius, after the senate had voted that one of them should march against the Veientes, drew lots, according to their custom, to determine which should command the expedition. And the lot falling to Manlius, he speedily led out the troops and encamped near the enemy. The Veientes, being shut up within their walls, defended themselves for some time; and sending ambassadors both to the other cities of Tyrrhenia and to the Sabines who had lately assisted them, they asked them to send them aid promptly. But when they failed of everything they asked for and had consumed all their provisions, the oldest and most honoured among them, compelled by necessity, came out of the city to the consul with the tokens of suppliants, begging for an end to the war. Manlius ordered them to bring money for a year's pay for the army and provisions for two months and after doing this to send envoys to Rome to treat with the senate for peace. And they, having approved these conditions and speedily brought the pay for the army, together with the money which the consul permitted them to pay in lieu of the corn, came to Rome; and being introduced into the senate, they sought to obtain forgiveness for the past and for the future to be freed from the war. After many arguments on both sides, the motion prevailed to put an end to the war by a treaty, and a truce was granted to them for forty years. Then the envoys departed, feeling very grateful to the commonwealth for the peace. And Manlius, coming to the city, requested and received an ovatio for having put an end to the war. There was also a census in this consulship; the number of the citizens who registered their own names, their wealth, and the names of their sons who had reached manhood was a little over 103,000.
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These consuls were succeeded by Lucius Aemilius Mamercus (elected for the third time) and Vopiscus Julius, in the seventy-seventh Olympiad (the one at which Dandes of Argos won the foot-race), when Chares was archon at Athens. The administration of the new consuls was very difficult and turbulent; they enjoyed peace, it is true, from foreign wars ? for all their quarrels were in a state of quiet ? but through the dissensions at home they were not only themselves exposed to dangers, but came near destroying the commonwealth as well. For as soon as the populace had a respite from military expeditions, they at once became eager for a distribution of the public lands. It seems there was among the tribunes a certain bold man, not wanting in eloquence, Gnaeus Genucius, who whetted the passions of the poor. This man, by assembling the populace on every occasion and cajoling the needy, was endeavouring to force the consuls to carry out the decree of the senate concerning the allotment of lands. But the consuls kept refusing to do, alleging that this duty had been assigned by the senate, not to them, but to the consuls who immediately followed Cassius and Verginius, with reference to whom the preliminary decree had been drawn up. At the same time they pointed out that decrees of the senate were not laws continuing in force forever, but measures designed to meet temporary needs and having validity for one year only. When the consuls put forward these excuses, Genucius, finding himself unable to employ compulsion against them, since they were invested with a superior authority, took a bold course. He brought a public suit against Manlius and Lucius, the consuls of the preceding year, and summoned them to appear before the populace and make their defence, specifying openly the ground for the action, which was that they had wronged the populace in not appointing the decemvirs directed by the senate to distribute the allotments of land. And he advanced plausible reasons for not bringing to trail some of the other consuls, though there had been twelve consulships in the interval since the senate had drawn up this decree, and for accusing only these men of violating the promise. He ended by saying that the only way the present consuls could be compelled to allot the land would be for them to see some others punished by the populace and thus be reminded that it would be their fate to meet with the same treatment.
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After he had said this and exhorted them all to be present at the trial and had solemnly sworn over the victims that he would persist in his resolution and prosecute the men with all possible vigour, he appointed a day for holding the trail. The patricians, upon learning of this, felt great fear and concern, wondering what course they ought to take to secure the men's acquittal of the charge and also to put a stop to the boldness of the demagogue. And they resolved, in case the populace should pass any vote to the prejudice of the consular power, to prevent them from carrying it out, by opposing them with all their power and even resorting to arms if that should be necessary. But they had no need to use any violent means, as the danger was dispelled in a sudden and unexpected manner. For when only one day remained till the trial, Genucius was found dead on his bed without the least sign of stabbing, strangling, poisoning, or any of the other means of killing as the result of a plot. As soon as this unhappy occurrence was known and the body had been brought into the Forum, the event was looked upon as a kind of providential obstacle to the trial, which was straightway dismissed. For none of the other tribunes dared to revive the sedition, but they even looked upon Genucius as having been guilty of great madness. Now if the consuls had not committed any further act of officiousness, but had let the dissension, as Heaven had put it to sleep, remain so, no further danger would have beset them; but as it was, by turning to arrogance and contempt for the plebeians and by desiring to display the extent of their power, they brought about great mischiefs. For, having appointed a day for levying troops and endeavouring to coerce the disobedient by various punishments, including even scourging with rods, they drove the greater part of the plebeians to desperation. This was caused particularly by the incident I shall now relate.
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A certain man of the plebeians, famous for his exploits in war, Volero Publius, who had commanded centuries in the late campaigns, was now listed by the consuls as a common soldier instead of a centurion. Upon his objecting to this and refusing to take a lower rank when he had been guilty of misconduct in the former campaigns, the consuls, offended at his frankness, ordered the lictors to strip him and lash his body with their rods. The young man called upon the tribunes for assistance, and asked, if he were guilty of any crime, to stand trial before the plebeians. When the consuls paid no heed to him but repeated their orders to the lictors to take him away and flog him, he regarded the insult as intolerable and took justice into his own hands. The first lictor who approached him he struck squarely in the face with his fists, and being a young man and vigorous, he knocked him down; and the next one likewise. When the consuls in their anger ordered all their attendants to approach him at the same time, the plebeians who were present thought it an outrageous thing. And immediately gathering together in a body and shouting the cry used to incite one another's resentment, they snatched the young man away and repulsed the lictors with blows, and at last made a rush against the consuls; and if those magistrates had not left the Forum and fled, the mob would have done some irreparable mischief. As a result of this incident the whole city was divided, and those tribunes who till then had remained quiet grew wild with rage and inveighed against the consuls. Thus the dissensions over the land-allotment had turned into another quarrel of greater consequence because of the contest concerning the form of government. On the one hand the patricians, believing that the power of the consuls was being destroyed, shared their indignation and demanded that the man who had dared to lay hands on their attendants should be hurled down from the precipice. On the other hand the plebeians, assembling together, raised a loud clamour and exhorted one another not to betray their liberty, but to carry the matter before the senate, to accuse the consuls and to endeavour to ought to be some justice from them because they had refused to permit a man who had invoked the assistance of the tribunes and asked to be tried before the populace, in case he were guilty of any wrongdoing, to obtain either of these rights, but had treated him like a slave, though he was free born and a citizen, when they ordered him to be beaten. The two parties being thus arrayed against one another and neither being willing to yield to the other, all the remaining time of this consulship was consumed without being marked either by any glorious exploits in war or by achievements at home worthy of mention.
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The election of magistrates being at hand, Lucius Pinarius and Publius Furius were chosen consuls. At the very beginning of this year the city was filled with a kind of religious awe and fear of the gods owing to the occurrence of many prodigies and omens. All the augurs and the pontiffs declared that these occurrences were indications of divine anger, aroused because of some rites were not being performed in a pure and holy manner. And not long afterwards the disease known as the pestilence attacked the women, particularly such as were with child, and more of them died than ever before; for as they miscarried and brought forth dead children, they died together with their infants. And neither supplications made at the statues and altars of the gods nor expiatory sacrifices performed on behalf of the state and of private households gave the women any respite from their ills. While the commonwealth was suffering from such a calamity, information was given to the pontiffs by a slave that one of the Vestal virgins who have the care of the perpetual fire, Urbinia by name, had lost her virginity and, though unchaste, was performing the public sacrifices. The pontiffs removed her from her sacred offices, brought her to trial, and after her guilt had been clearly established, they ordered her to be scourged with rods, to be carried through the city in solemn procession and then to be buried alive. One of the two men who had perpetrated the impious defilement killed himself; the other was seized by the pontiffs, who ordered him to be scourged in the Forum like a slave and then put to death. After this action the pestilence which had attacked women and caused so great a mortality among them promptly ceased.
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But the sedition raised by the plebeians against the patricians, which had long continued in the city, was starting up again. The person who stirred it up was Volero Publius, one of the tribunes, the same man who the year before had disobeyed the consuls Aemilius and Julius when they would have listed him as a common soldier instead of a centurion. He was chosen by the poor as leader of the populace, not so much for any other reason ? for he was not only of common birth, but had been brought up in great obscurity and want ? but because he was regarded as the first person in private life who by his disobedience had humbled the consular power, which till then had been invested with the royal dignity, and still more by reason of the promises he had made, when he stood candidate for the tribunate against the patricians, to deprive them of their power. This man, as soon as it was possible for him to attend to public business, now that the divine anger had abated, called an assembly of the populace and proposed a law concerning the tribunician elections, transferring them from the assembly of the clans, called by the Romans the curiate assembly, to the tribal assembly. What the difference was between these assemblies I will now point out. In order that the voting in the curiate assembly might be valid it was necessary that the senate should pass a preliminary decree and that the plebeians should vote on it by curiae, and that after both these votes the heavenly signs and omens should offer no opposition; whereas, in the case of the voting of tribal assembly, neither the preliminary decree of the senate was necessary nor the sanction of the priests and augurs, but it was only necessary that it should be carried through and completed by the members of the tribes in a single day. Now of the other four tribunes there were two who joined with Volero in proposing this law; and by enlisting the co-operation of these two he carried the day, as those who were not of the same mind were in the minority. But the consuls, the senate, and all the patricians sought to prevent the law from passing; and coming to the Forum in great numbers on the day appointed by the tribunes for ratifying the law, they delivered all kinds of speeches, the consuls, the oldest senators and everyone else who so desired enumerating the absurdities inherent in the law. When the tribunes had argued on the other side and the consuls had spoken a second time and the verbal skirmishing had lasted a long while, that assembly at least was dispersed by the closing in of night-time. The tribunes having again appointed the third market-day for the consideration of the law and an even greater throng flocking to the Forum on that day, the same thing happened as before. Publius, perceiving this, resolved neither to permit the consuls to inveigh against the law again nor to allow patricians to be present at the voting. For the patricians in their partisan bands and in groups together with their clients, who were numerous, occupied many parts of the Forum, shouting encouragement to those who inveighed against the law and noisily interrupting those who defended it, and doing many other things that were indications of the disorder and violence that there would be in the voting.
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These designs of Publius, pointing toward a tyranny, were checked by a fresh calamity sent from Heaven. For the city was visited with a pestilence, which occurred, indeed, in the rest of Italy also, but was especially prevalent in Rome. No human assistance could relieve the sick; but alike whether they were attended with great care or received none of the necessary attentions, they died all the same. No supplications to the gods nor sacrifices nor the final refuge to which men under such calamities are compelled to have recourse ? private and public expiations ? contributed any help at that time; and the disease made no distinction of age or sex, of strong or weak constitutions, of skill, or of any other of the agencies supposed to lighten the malady, but attacked both men and women, old and young. However, it did not last long ? a circumstance which saved the city from utter destruction; but, like a river in flood or a conflagration, falling upon the people with full force, it made a sharp attack and a speedy departure. As soon as the calamity abated, Publius, whose magistracy was near expiring, since he could not get the law confirmed during the remainder of his term, as the election of magistrates was at hand, stood again for the tribuneship for the following year, making many big promises to the plebeians; and he was again chosen tribune by them, together with two of his colleagues. The patricians, to meet this situation, contrived to advance to the consulship a man of stern disposition and an enemy of the populace, one who would not diminish in any respect the power of the aristocracy, namely, Appius Claudius, the son of that Appius who had most strongly opposed the populace in the matter of their return. And though he protested much and even refused to go to the field for the election, they nevertheless passed the preliminary vote and appointed him consul in his absence.
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After the election had been carried through quite easily ? for the poorer people left the field as soon as they heard Appius named ? Titus Quintius Capitolinus and Appius Claudius Sabinus succeeded to the consulship, men alike neither in their dispositions nor in their principles. For it was the opinion of Appius that the idle and needy populace should be kept employed in military expeditions abroad, in order that, while supplying themselves from the enemy's country by their own toils with an abundance of the daily necessaries of which they were in the greatest need and at the same time accomplishing results advantageous to the commonwealth, they might be least likely to be hostile and troublesome to the senators who were administering public affairs. He declared that any excuse for making war would be justifiable for a state that laid claim to supremacy and was envied by all; and he asked them, applying the principle of probability, to judge what was to happen in the future by what had already taken place in the past, adding that all the commotions which had occurred in the commonwealth in the past had happened during the respites from war. Quintius, on the other hand, thought they ought not to wage any war. He declared they ought to be satisfied if the populace, when called upon to face the inevitable dangers brought upon them from outside, yielded ready obedience; and he showed that if they attempted to use force with the disobedient they would drive the plebeians to desperation, as the consuls before them had done. As a result, they would run the risk either of putting down the sedition with bloodshed and slaughter or of submitting to a shameful courting of the plebeians. In that month the command belonged to Quintius, so that the other consul was bound to do nothing without his consent. In the meantime Publius and the other two tribunes without further delay were again proposing the law which they had been unable to get ratified the year before, with this additional provision that the college of aediles should also be chosen in the same assemblies, and that everything else that was to be done and ratified by the populace should be voted on in like manner by the members of the tribes. This, now, clearly meant the overthrow of the senate and the dominance of the populace.
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When the consuls were informed of this, they grew anxious and considered by what means the commotion and sedition might speedily and safely be removed. Appius advised summoning to arms all who wished the constitution of their fathers to be preserved, and if any opposed them, to look upon them as enemies. But Quintius thought they ought to use persuasion with the plebeians and convince them that through ignorance of their own interest they were being led into pernicious counsels. He said that it was the extreme of folly to wish to obtain from their fellow citizens against their will the things which they might receive by their consent. The advice of Quintius being approved of by the other members of the senate, the consuls went to the Forum and asked the tribunes to give them a hearing and to appoint a time for it. And having obtained both requests with difficulty, when the day they had asked of them had come, the Forum being filled with a great concourse of people of all sorts, which the magistrates on both sides had got together under instructions to support them, the consuls presented themselves with the intention of speaking against the law. Quintius, accordingly, who was a fair-minded man in all respects and most capable of winning over the populace by his eloquence, first desired leave to speak, and then made an adroit speech that was acceptable to everybody, with the result that those who spoke in favour of the law were reduced to great embarrassment, finding nothing to say that was more just or more reasonable. And if his colleague had not chosen to continue his officiousness, the populace, being fully aware that their demands were neither just nor right, would have rejected the law. But as it was, he delivered a speech that was haughty and offensive to the ears of the poor, so that they became exasperated and implacable and fell into greater strife than before. For he did not talk to them as if they were free men and his fellow citizens who had power to confirm or reject the law, but domineering over them as if they were outcasts or foreigners or men whose liberty was precarious, he uttered bitter and intolerable reproaches, upbraiding them with the abolition of their debts and with their desertion of the consuls when they snatched up the consuls and quit the camp, imposing voluntary banishment upon themselves; and he appealed to the oaths they had sworn when they took up arms in defence of the country which had given them birth, only to turn them against that very country. Therefore their conduct was not at all strange, he said, if, after being guilty of perjury to the gods, deserting their generals, leaving the city undefended as far as in them lay, and returning home in order to violate the public faith, subvert the laws and overthrow the constitution of their fathers, they showed no moderation and could not behave themselves like good citizens, but were always aiming at some selfish encroachment and violation of the laws. At one time they were demanding the right to choose for themselves their own magistrates and making these unaccountable for their actions and sacrosanct; again, they were putting on trial for their lives such of the patricians as they saw fit, and transferring the legitimate courts, to which the commonwealth had formerly entrusted the trial of causes involving death or banishment, from the most incorruptible senate to the vilest mob; and yet again, the labourers for hire and the homeless were introducing tyrannical and unfair laws against the men of noble birth, without leaving to the senate the power even of passing the preliminary decree concerning those laws, but depriving that body of this honour also, which it had always enjoyed undisputed under both kings and tyrants. After he had uttered many other reproaches of like nature and withheld neither any bitter fact nor any opprobrious word, he concluded with this declaration ? which gave greater offence to the multitude than all the rest ? that the commonwealth would never cease being divided into factions over every matter, but would always suffer from some fresh distemper following the old as long as the tribunician power should last. He pointed out that it is important to examine the beginnings of every political and public institution, to see that they shall be righteous and just; for from good seeds are wont to come good and wholesome fruit, and from bad seeds evil and deadly fruit.
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"If, now," he said, "this magistracy had been introduced into the commonwealth harmoniously, for the good of all, entering in with the sanction of both omens and religious rites, it would have been the source of many blessings to us ? kindly services, harmony, wholesome laws, hopes of blessings from Heaven, and countless any other benefits. But as it is, since it was introduced by violence, lawlessness, sedition, the fear of civil war, and by everything mankind most abhors, what good or salutary thing can one now expect will ever come of it when it had such beginnings? So that it is vain for us to seek for a cure and for the aids which human reason suggests against the evils that are continually springing out of it, so long as the pernicious root remains. For we shall have no end of outbursts of the divine wrath, no deliverance from them, while this malignant curse and cancer, firmly imbedded in our body politic, corrupts and destroys all that is wholesome. But for the discussion of this subject another occasion will be more suitable. For the moment, since it is necessary to compose the present disturbances, I put aside all equivocation and say this to you: Neither this nor any other law shall become valid during my consulship without a preliminary decree of the senate; on the contrary, I will fight for the aristocracy not only with words, but, if it shall be necessary to proceed to deeds, I shall not be outdone by its opponents even in these. And if you did not know before the extent of the consular power, you shall learn it during my term of office."
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Thus Appius spoke; and, on the side of the tribunes, the oldest and most highly respected, Gaius Laetorius, a man acknowledged to be of no mean courage in warfare and not without ability in public affairs, rose up to answer him; and he delivered a long speech in behalf of the populace, beginning with the earliest times. He showed that the poor whom Appius maligned had made many hard campaigns not only under their kings, when one might say their action was due to compulsion, but also after the expulsion of the kings, when they were acquiring liberty and supremacy for the fatherland. But they had received no recompense from the patricians nor enjoyed any of the public advantages, but, like captives taken in war, had been deprived by them even of their liberty, to recover which they had been compelled to leave their country in their yearning for another land in which they might live as free men without being insulted. And they had obtained their return to their possessions neither by offering violence to the senate nor by resorting to the compulsion of war, but by yielding to it when it asked and implored them to receive back their abandoned possessions. He mentioned the oaths and appealed to the terms of the compact which had been made to induce them to return, among which there was, first, a general amnesty, and then for the poor the power of choosing magistrates who should assist them and oppose those who would do violence to them. After recounting these matters, he cited the laws which the people had not long before ratified, both the one concerning the transfer of the courts, by which the senate had granted to the people the power to try any of the patricians they should think fit, and also the one concerning the manner of their voting, which no longer made the centuriate assembly, but rather the tribal assembly, responsible for the voting.
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When he had finished his defence of the populace, he turned to Appius and said: "After this do you dare revile these men through whom the commonwealth, once small, has become great, and, once obscure, illustrious? And do you call your opponents seditious and reproach them for a fate akin to exile, as if all these men here did not still remember what befell your own family ? that your ancestors, having raised a sedition against the authorities and abandoned their country, settled here as suppliants? Unless, indeed, your folk, when they forsook their country through a desire for liberty, did a noble thing, but Romans, when they did the same thing as you, did an ignoble thing! Do you dare also to revile the tribunician power as having been introduced into the commonwealth for a mischievous purpose and do you attempt to persuade these men here to abrogate this sacred and inviolable protection of the poor, safeguarded as it is by powerful sanctions which stem from both gods and men, O greatest enemy of the populace and most tyrannical of men? Have you not been able, then, to learn even this, that in saying these things you traduce both the senate and your own magistracy? For the senate, having risen against the kings, whose arrogance and insults they resolved to bear no longer, established the consulship, and before they had expelled the kings, invested others with the royal authority. So that everything you say against the tribunician power as having been introduced for a mischievous purpose, since it had its origin in sedition, you say against the consulship also; for there was no other ground for introducing that magistracy than the sedition of the patricians against the kings. 4 But why do I talk thus with you as with a good and fair-minded citizen, when all these men here know that you are by inheritance mischievous, harsh and an enemy of the populace, and that you can never tame your inborn savagery? Why do I not rather come to grips with you, preferring actions to words, and show you how great is the strength, all unknown to you, of the populace, whom you were not ashamed to call homeless and vile, and how great is the power of this magistracy, to which the law obliges you to give way and submit? I too shall lay aside all equivocation and set to work."
Roman antiquities 9.48
Having said this and sworn the strongest oath in use among the Romans that he would either get the law ratified or abandon life, the multitude meanwhile having become silent and being in an agony of expectation concerning what he was going to do, he ordered Appius to leave the assembly. And when Appius, instead of obeying, placed the lictors about him, together with the crowd which he had brought from home for that purpose, and obstinately refused to leave the Forum, Laetorius, after bidding the heralds to command silence, announced that the tribunes ordered the consul to be led away to prison. Upon this the assist by his command advanced in order to seize the person of Appius, but the foremost lictor with a successful blow drove him back. When those present raised a great outcry and showed their resentment, Laetorius himself rushed forward after appealing to the crowds to assist him, while Appius, supported by a numerous and vigorous body of young men, stood his ground. There followed unseemly words between the factions and shouting and the pushing of body against body; and at last the strife broke out into blows and they began to throw stones. But a stop was put to this and the mischief was prevented from proceeding farther by Quintius, the other consul, who together with the oldest senators implored and entreated them all to desist, and thrust himself into the midst of the contending parties. Moreover, there was little of the day left, so that, albeit reluctantly, they separated.
During the following days not only did the magistrates indulge in accusations against one another, the consul charging the tribunes with a desire to invalidate his authority by ordering a consul to be led away to prison, and the tribunes charging the consul with having struck those whose persons were sacred and made inviolate by the law ? Laetorius, indeed, bore on his face the marks, still visible, of the blows ? but the whole city, filled with rage and fury, was rent with faction. Then the populace together with the tribunes proceeded to guard the Capitol both day and night without intermission. The senate assembled and entered into a long and difficult consideration of the proper means of putting a stop to the sedition, being sensible not only of the magnitude of the danger but also that not even the consuls had succeeded in being of one mind; for Quintius advised yielding to the populace in everything that was reasonable, whereas Appius proposed to resist till death.
Roman antiquities 9.49
When no end would come to the strife, Quintius took each party aside separately, the tribunes and Appius, and begged, besought and implored them to regard the public interests as more vital than their private concerns. And observing that the tribunes had become milder but that his colleague persisted in the same arrogance, he undertook to persuade Laetorius and his colleagues to refer all their complaints, both private and public, to the determination of the senate. When he had accomplished this, he assembled the senate, and after bestowing great praise upon the tribunes and begging his colleague not to act against the safety of the state, he then proceeded to call upon those who were wont to express their opinions. Publius Valerius Publicola, who was called upon first, expressed the following opinion: That the mutual accusations of the tribunes and the consul relating to what they had suffered or done in the tumult, since they had gone so far, not with malice aforethought or for personal advantage, but out of rivalry in their zeal for the public welfare, should be publicly dismissed and that no suit should be brought because of them. As to the proposed law, since the consul would not allow any law to be presented to the assembly without a preliminary vote of the senate, he advised that the senate should vote upon it first; also that the tribunes together with the consuls should take care to preserve harmony and decorum among the citizens when the vote should be taken concerning it. This advice being approved of by all, Quintius immediately put the question to the senate concerning the law, and after many objections offered by Appius and many rejoinders made by the tribunes the motion to lay it before the populace was carried by a large majority. The preliminary decree having been thus passed, the private differences of the magistrates were composed; and the populace, gladly accepting this concession of the senate, ratified the law. From that time down to our own the tribunes and the aediles have been chosen in the tribal assemblies without auspices or any other religious observances. This was the end of the tumult which disturbed the commonwealth at that time.
Roman antiquities 9.50
Not long afterwards the Romans decided to enrol armies and to send out both consuls against the Aequians and the Volscians; for it was reported that large forces from both these nations had taken the field and were then pillaging the territories of the Romans' allies. The armies being soon ready, Quintius set out to make war against the Aequians and Appius against the Volscians, these commands having fallen to them by lot. And the fortunes of each of the consuls were such as might have been expected. The army assigned to Quintius, pleased with the fairness and moderation of their general, were eager to carry out all his orders, and undertook most of the hazards unbidden, thereby achieving glory and honour for their commander. They overran a large part of the country of the Aequians and plundered it, the enemy not daring to come to an engagement; and from it they acquired great booty and rich spoils. After tarrying a short time in the enemy's country they returned to the city without any losses, bringing their general home illustrious because of his exploits. But the army that went out with Appius because of their hatred of him disregarded many of the principles of their ancestors. In fact, during the whole campaign they not only played the coward deliberately and treated their general with contempt, but particularly when they were to engage the army of the Volscians and their commanders had drawn them up in order of battle, they refused to come to grips with the enemy, but both the centurions and the antesignani, some throwing away their standards and others quitting their posts, fled to the camp. And if the enemy, wondering at their unexpected flight and fearing there might be an ambush, had not turned back from pursuing them farther, the greater part of the Romans would have been destroyed. The troops acted thus because of the grudge they bore to their general, lest he should win a brilliant engagement and so obtain the distinction of a triumph and the other honours. And the following day, when the consul alternately upbraided them for their inglorious flight, exhorted them to redeem their most disgraceful conduct by a noble effort, and threatened to invoke the laws against them if they would than stand firm in the face of danger, they broke out into disobedience, clamoured against him and bade him lead them out of the enemy's country, alleging that they were no longer able to hold out by reason of their wounds; for most of them had bound up the sound parts of their bodies as if they had been wounded. Hence Appius was obliged to withdraw his army from the enemy's country, and the Volscians, pursuing them as they retreated, killed many of them. As soon as they were in friendly territory, the consul assembled the troops, and after uttering many reproaches said that he would inflict upon them the punishment ordained against those who quit their posts. And though the legates and the other officers earnestly besought him to use moderation and not to heap one calamity after another upon the commonwealth, he paid no heed to any of them but confirmed the punishment. Thereupon the centurions whose centuries had run away and the antesignani who had lost their standards were either beheaded with an axe or beaten to death with rods; as for the rank and file, one man chosen by lot out of every ten was put to death for the rest. This is the traditional punishment among the Romans for those who desert their posts or yield their standards. Afterwards, the general, an object of hatred himself and leading back, dejected and disgraced, what was left of his army, the elections being now at hand, returned to the fatherland.
Roman antiquities 9.51
When Lucius Valerius (for the second time) and Tiberius Aemilius had been appointed as the next consuls, the tribunes after a short delay brought up again the question of the land-allotment; and coming to the consuls, they asked them, with prayers and entreaties, to fulfil for the populace the promises which the senate had made in the consulship of Spurius Cassius and Proculus Verginius. Both consuls favoured their request, Tiberius Aemilius bringing up an old and not unreasonable grudge against the senate because it had refused a triumph to his father when he asked for it, and Valerius from a desire to heal the anger of the populace directed against him because of the death of Spurius Cassius, whom he, being quaestor at the time, had caused to be put to death for aiming at tyranny. Cassius had been the most distinguished of his contemporaries both in military commands and in civil affairs; moreover, he was the first to introduce into the commonwealth the measure concerning the allotment of lands and for that reason in particular was hated by the patricians as one who preferred the populace to them. At the time in question, at any rate, when the consuls promised them to bring up in the senate the question of the division of the public lands and to assist in securing the ratification of the law, the tribunes trusted them, and going to the senate, they spoke with moderation. And the consuls, desiring to avoid any appearance of contention, said nothing in opposition, but asked the oldest senators to express their opinions. The first person called upon was Lucius Aemilius, the father of one of the consuls, who said it seemed to him that it would be both just and for the interest of the commonwealth that the possessions of the public should belong to all and not to a few, and he advised them to support the plea of the populace, in order that this concession on their part might be regarded as a favour; for many other things which they had not granted them by choice they had yielded through necessity. He felt also that those who were occupying these possessions ought to be grateful for the time they had enjoyed them without being detected, and when peeved from using them longer should not cling to them obstinately. He added that, along with the principle of justice, the force of which all would acknowledge, according to which the public possessions are the common property of all and private possessions the property of the one who has acquired them according to law, the action had also become unavoidable now through the action of the senate, which seventeen years before had ordered that the land be divided. And he declared that it had reached this decision at that time in the public interest, to the end that neither the land should go uncultivated nor the multitude of poor people dwelling in the city should live in idleness, envying the advantages of the others, as was now the case, and that young men might be reared up for the state in the homes and on the lands of their fathers, deriving also some pride of spirit from the very rearing. For such as have no lands of their own and live miserably off the possessions of others which they cultivate for hire either do not feel any desire at all to beget children, or, if they do, produce a sorry and wretched offspring, such as might be expected of those who are the fruit of humble marriages and are reared in beggared circumstances. "As for me, then," he said, "the motion I make is that the consuls should carry out the preliminary decree which was then passed by the senate and has since been delayed by reason of the intervening disturbances, and appoint the men to divide the land."
Roman antiquities 9.52
Aemilius having spoken thus, Appius Claudius, who had been consul the preceding year, being the second person called upon, expressed the contrary opinion, pointing out that neither the senate had had any intention of dividing the public possessions ? for in that case its decree would long since have been carried out ? but had deferred it to a later time for further consideration, its concern being to put a stop to the sedition then raging, which had been stirred up by the consul who was aiming at tyranny and afterwards suffered deserved punishment; nor had the first consuls chosen after the preliminary decree put the vote into effect, when they saw what a source of evils would be introduced into the state if the poor were once accustomed to get by allotment the public possessions; nor did the consuls of the following fifteen years, though they were threatened with many dangers from the populace, consent to do anything that was not in the public interest, for the reason that no authority even was given to them by the preliminary decree to appoint the land commissioners, but only to those first consuls. "So that for you men also, Valerius, yes, and you too, Aemilius, to propose allotments of land which the senate did not direct you to carry out is neither honourable, descended as you are from worthy ancestors, nor is it safe. As regards the preliminary decree, then, let this suffice to show that you who have become consuls so many years afterwards are not bound by it. As for any who may, either forcibly or stealthily, have appropriated to themselves the public possessions, a few words will serve my purpose. If anyone knows that another is enjoying the use of property to which he cannot support his title by law, let him give information of it to the consuls and prosecute him according to the laws, which will not have to be drawn up afresh; for they were drawn up long since, and no lapse of time has abrogated them. But since Aemilius has spoken also about the advantage of this measure, asserting that the allotting of the land will be for the good of all, I do not wish to leave this point either unrefuted. For he, it seems to me, looks only to the present, and does not foresee the future, namely, that the granting of a portion of the public possessions to the idle and the poor, which now seems to him of small importance, will be the cause of many great evils, since the custom thereby introduced will not only continue in the state, but will for all time prove pernicious and dangerous. For the gratification of evil desires does not eradicate them from the soul, but rather strengthens them and renders them still more evil. Let the facts convince you of this; for why should you pay any attention to words, either mine or those of Aemilius?
Roman antiquities 9.53
"You all know, to be sure, how many enemies we have overcome, how much territory we have ravaged, and how great spoils we have taken from the towns we have captured, the loss of which has reduced the enemy from their former prosperity to great want, and that those who now bewail their poverty were excluded from none of these spoils nor had less than their share in the distribution of them. Do they appear, then, to have improved their former condition at all by these further acquisitions or to have attained to any distinction in their lives? I could wish and have prayed to the gods that they might do so, in order that they might have been to a less extent mere transients, a nuisance to the city. But as it is, you see and hear them complaining that they are in the direst want. So that not even if you should receive what they now ask for ? aye, still more than that ? will they effect any improvement in their lives. For their poverty is not inherent in their condition in life, but in their character; and not only will this small portion of land not supply their lack of that, but not even all the largesses of kings and despots would do so. If we make this concession also to them, we shall be like those physicians whose treatment of the sick is to tickle their palates. For the diseased part of the commonwealth will not be cured, but even the sound part will catch the disease. In general, senators, you need to take much care and thought how you may preserve with all possible zeal the morals of the commonwealth which are being corrupted. For you see to what lengths the unruliness of the populace has gone and that they no longer care to be governed by the consuls; indeed, they were so far from repenting of what they did here that they showed the same unruliness in the field too, throwing away their arms, quitting their posts, abandoning their standards to the enemy and resorting to discipline graceful flight before ever coming to grips with them, as if they could rob me alone of the glory of the victory without robbing the fatherland at the same time of the renown it would gain at the expense of their enemies. And now trophies are being erected by the Volscians over the Romans, their temples are being adorned with spoils taken from us and their cities vaunt themselves as never before ? those cities which were wont aforetime to beseech our generals to save them from slavery and total destruction. Is it just, then, or becoming in you to feel gratitude to you for such successes and to honour them with public grants by dividing up the land which, so far as they are concerned, is in the enemy's possession? Yet why should we accuse those who because of their lack of education and because of their low birth pay little regard to matters of honour, when we see that no longer in the character of all even of your own number does the ancient proud spirit dwell, but, on the contrary, some call gravity haughtiness, justice folly, courage madness, and modesty stupidity? On the other hand, those qualities that were held in detestation by the men of former times are now extolled and appear to the corrupt as wonderful virtues, such as cowardice, buffoonery, malignity, crafty wisdom, rashness in undertaking everything and unwillingness to listen to any of one's betters ? vices which ere now have laid hold on and utterly overthrown many strong states. These words, senators, whether they are pleasing to you to hear or vexatious, have been uttered in all sincerity and frankness. To those among you who will be persuaded ? if indeed you will be persuaded ? they will prove both useful at the present time and a source of security for the future; but to me, who in the interest of the public good am bringing private hatreds upon myself, they will be the cause of great dangers. For reason enables me to foresee what will happen; and I take the misfortunes of others as examples of my own."
Roman antiquities 9.54
After Appius had spoken thus and almost all the others had expressed the same opinion, the senate was dismissed. The tribunes, angry at their failure, departed and after that considered how they might take revenge on the man; and they decided, after long deliberation, to bring him to trial on a capital charge. Then, having accused him before the popular assembly, they asked all to be present on the day they should appoint in order to give their votes concerning him. The charges they planned to bring against him were these: that he had been spring mischievous opinions against the populace and introducing sedition into the commonwealth, that he had laid hands on a tribune contrary to the sacred laws, and that after taking command of the army he had returned home with great loss and disgrace. After announcing these accusations to the populace and appointing a definite day on which they said they would hold the trial, they summoned him to appear on the day named and make his defence. All the patricians resented this proceeding and were prepared to use every effort to save Appius, and they urged him to yield to the occasion and to assume a bearing suitable to his present fortunes; but he declared that he would do nothing ignoble or unworthy of his former conduct, and that he would rather die a thousand deaths than cling to the knees of any man. And though his friends were prepared to make entreaties in his behalf, he would not permit it, saying that he would be doubly ashamed to see others doing for him things which he thought unbecoming even for him to do for himself. After he had said this and many other things of like nature and neither changed his dress, altered the haughtiness of his looks nor abated anything of his proud spirit, when now he saw the whole city intent upon his trial and on tiptoe with expectation, and only a few days were left, he made away with himself; his relations, however, pretended that he had died a natural death. When his body was brought into the Forum, his son went to the tribunes and consuls and asked them to assemble the people for him in the manner usual upon such occasions and give him leave to deliver the eulogy over his father according to the practice of the Romans at the funerals of worthy men. But the tribunes, even while the consuls were calling the assembly, vetoed it and bade the youth take away the body. However, the people would not permit this nor allow the body to be cast out in dishonour and ignominy, but gave leave to the youth to render the customary honours to his father. Such was the end of Appius.
Roman antiquities 9.55
The consuls, having enrolled the armies, led them out of the city, Lucius Valerius to fight against the Aequians and Tiberius Aemilius against the Sabines; for these nations had made an incursion into the Romans' country on the occasion of the sedition and after plundering much of it had returned home with rich booty. The Aequians came to an engagement repeatedly; but after receiving many wounds they fled to their camp, which was situated in a strong place, and from that time no longer came out to fight. Valerius endeavoured to take their camp by storm but was prevented by the gods from doing so. For as he was advancing and already setting himself to the task darkness descended from the sky, and a heavy rain, accompanied by lightning and terrible thunder claps. Then, as soon as the army had scattered, the storm ceased and the sky over the place became perfectly clear. The consul looking upon this as an omen and the augurs forbidding him to besiege the place any longer, he desisted and laid waste the enemy's country; then, having yielded as spoils to the soldiers all the booty he came upon, he led the army home. As for Tiberius Aemilius, while he was overrunning the enemy's country with great contempt of them at first and no longer expecting anyone to oppose him, the army of the Sabines came upon him and a pitched battle took place between them, beginning about noon and lasting till sunset; but when darkness came on, the two armies retired to their camps neither victorious nor yet outmatched. During the following days the commanders paid the final offices to their dead and constructed ramparts for their camps; and both of them had the same intention, which was to defend their own positions and not to engage in another action. Then, after a time, they struck their tents and withdrew their forces.
Roman antiquities 9.56
The year following their consulship, in the seventy-eighth Olympiad (the one at which Parmenides of Posidonia won the foot-race), Theagenides being annual archon at Athens, Aulus Verginius Caelimontanus and Titus Numicius Priscus were made consuls. They had no sooner entered upon their magistracy than news was brought that a numerous army of Volscians was at hand. And not long afterwards one of the guard-houses of the Romans was on fire after being taken by assault; it was not far from Rome and the smoke informed the people in the city of the disaster. Thereupon, it being still night, the consuls sent some horsemen out to reconnoitre, and stationing guards upon the walls and posting themselves before the gates with the troops which were most lightly equipped, they waited for the report of the horsemen. Then, as soon as it was day and the forces in the city had joined them, they marched against their foes. These, however, after plundering and burning the fort, had retired in haste. The consuls extinguished what was still burning, and leaving a guard over the place, returned to the city. A few days later they both took the field with not only their own forces but those of the allies as well, Verginius marching against the Aequians and Numicius against the Volscians; and the campaigns of both proceeded according to plan. The Aequians, when Verginius was laying waste their country, not only did not dare come to an engagement, but even when they placed an ambush of chosen men in the woods with orders to fall upon their enemies when they were scattered, they were disappointed of their hopes, inasmuch as the Romans soon became aware of their design and a sharp action ensued, in which the Aequians lost many of their men; the result was that they would no longer even try the fortune of another engagement. Neither did any army oppose Numicius as he was marching on Antium, which was at that time among the foremost cities of the Volscians; but the people were forced in every instance to defend themselves from their walls. In the meantime not only was the greater part of their country laid waste, but also a small town on the coast was taken which they used as a station for their ships and a market for the necessaries of life, bringing thither the many spoils they took both from the sea and by raids on land. The slaves, goods, cattle and merchandise were seized as plunder by the army with the consul's permission; but all the free men ho had not lost their lives in the war were taken away to be sold at an auction of spoils. There were also captured twenty-two warships belonging to the Antiates together with rigging and equipment for ships besides. After that at the consul's command the Romans set fire to the houses, destroyed the docks and demolished the wall to its foundations, so that even after their departure the fortress could be of no use to the Antiates. These were the exploits of the two consuls while they acted separately. They afterwards joined forces and made an incursion into the territory of the Sabines; and having laid it waste, they returned home with the army. Thus that year ended.
Roman antiquities 9.57
The next year, when Titus Quintius Capitolinus and Quintus Servilius Priscus had succeeded to the consulship, not only were the Romans' forces all under arms, but the allied contingents as well presented themselves of their own accord before they were notified of the expedition. Thereupon the consuls, after they had offered upon their vows to the gods and performed the lustration of the army, set out against their enemies. The Sabines, against whom Servilius marched, neither drew up for battle nor came out into the open, but remaining in their fortresses, permitted their land to be laid waste, their houses to be burned and their slaves to desert, so that the Romans retired from their country entirely at their ease, loaded down with spoils and exulting in their success. This was the outcome of the expedition led by Servilius. The forces which had marched under Quintius against the Aequians and the Volscians ? for the contingents from both nations who were to fight in behalf of the rest had joined together and had encamped before Antium ? advancing at a quick pace, suddenly appeared before them and set down their baggage not far from the enemy's camp in the place where they had first been visible to each other, even though it was a low position; for they wished to avoid the appearance of fearing the enemy's numbers, which were much larger than their own. When everything was ready for battle on both sides, they advanced into the plain, and engaging, fought till midday, neither yielding to nor charging their opponents, and both sides continually bringing up to equal strength with the enemy, by means of the troops held in reserve, any part of their line that was in distress. In this respect particularly the Aequians and Volscians, being more numerous than the Romans, rallied and had the advantage, since their foes' numbers were not equal to their ardour. Quintius, seeing many of his men dead and the greater part of the survivors wounded, was on the point of recalling his forces, but fearing that this would give the enemy the impression of a flight, he decided that they must make a bold stroke. Choosing, therefore, the best of his horse, he hastened to the aid of his men on the right wing, which was hardest pressed. And upbraiding the officers themselves for their want of courage, reminding them of their former exploits, and showing them to what shame and danger they would be exposed in fleeing, he ended with an untruth, which more than anything else inspired his own men with confidence and the enemy with fear. For he told them that their other wing had already put the enemy to flight and was by now close to their camp. 7 Having said this, he charged the enemy, and dismounting from his horse, he and the chosen horsemen with him fought hand to hand. Upon this a kind of daring came to those whose spirits till then had flagged, and as if they had become different men, all pressed forward; and the Volscians ? for these stood opposite to them ? after holding out for a long time, gave way. Quintius, having repulsed these opponents, mounted his horse and, riding along to the other wing, showed to the foot posted there the part of the enemy which was defeated, and exhorted them not to be behind the others in valour.
Roman antiquities 9.58
After this no part of the enemy stood their ground but all fled together to their camp. The Romans, however, did not pursue them far, but promptly turned back, as their bodies were spent with toil and their weapons no longer what they had been. But after a few days had passed, for which they had made a truce in order to bury their dead and care for their sick, and they had supplied themselves with whatever was lacking for the war, they fought another battle, this time about the camp of the Romans. For, reinforcements having come to the Volscians and Aequians from the neighbouring forts round about, their general grew elated because his forces were actually five times as large as to of the enemy, and observing that the Romans' camp was not strongly situated, he thought this was a most excellent opportunity for attacking them. Having so reasoned, he led his army to their camp about midnight, and surrounding it with his men, kept it under guard so that the Romans should not steal away. Quintius, upon being informed of the numbers of the enemy, welcomed this move and bided his time till it was day and about the hour of full market. Then, perceiving that the enemy were already suffering both from lack of sleep and from the flying missiles and that they were advancing neither by centuries nor by ranks but widely extended and scattered, he opened the gates of the camp and sallied out with the flower of the horse; and the foot, closing their ranks, followed. The Volscians were astonished at their boldness and at the madness of their onset and, after holding out for a brief time, were repulsed and at the same time began to retire from the camp; and, as there stood not far from it a hill of moderate height, they hastened up this hill with the intention of both resting themselves and forming in line of battle again. But they were unable to form their lines and to recover themselves, for the enemy followed at their heels, closing their ranks as much as possible in order not to be hurled back while trying to force their way up-hill. There followed a mighty struggle which lasted a large part of the day, and many fell on both sides. The Volscians, though superior in numbers and having the added security of their position, got no benefit from either circumstance; but being forced from their position by the ardour and bravery of the Romans, they abandoned the hill and while fleeing toward the camp the greater part of them were killed. For the Romans never left them as they pursued, but followed at their heels and did not desist till they had taken their camp by storm. Then, having seized all the persons who had been left behind in the camp and taken possession of the horses and arms and huge quantities of baggage, they encamped there that night. The next day the consul, having prepared everything that was necessary for a siege, marched with his army to Antium, which was not more than thirty stades distant. It chanced that some reinforcements sent by the Aequians to the Antiates for their protection were in the city and were guarding the walls. These men, dreading the boldness of the Romans, were now attempting to escape from the city; but being prevented from leaving by the Antiates, who had notice of their intention, they resolved to deliver up the city to the Romans when they should attack it. The Antiates, being informed of this, yielded to the situation, and concerting measures with the Aequians, surrendered the city to Quintius upon the terms that the Aequians should have leave to depart under a truce and that the Antiates should receive a garrison and obey the commands of the Romans. The consul, having made himself master of the city upon these terms and having received provisions and everything that was needed for the army, placed a garrison there and then led his forces home. In consideration of his success the senate came out to meet him, gave him a cordial welcome and honoured him with a triumph.
Roman antiquities 9.59
The following year the consuls were Tiberius Aemilius (for the second time) and Quintus Fabius, the son of one of the three brothers who had commanded the garrison that was sent out to Cremera and had perished there together with their clients. As the tribunes, supported by Aemilius, one of the consuls, were again stirring up the populace over the land-allotment, the senate, wishing both to court and to relieve the poor, passed a decree to divide among them a certain part of the territory of the Antiates which they had taken by the sword the year before and now held. Those appointed as leaders in the allotting of the land were Titus Quintius Capitolinus, to whom the Antiates had surrendered themselves, together with Lucius Furius and Aulus Verginius. But the masses and the poor among the Romans were dissatisfied with the proposed assignment of land, feeling that they were being banished from the fatherland; and when few gave in their names, the senate resolved, since the list of colonists was insufficient, to permit such of the Latins and Hernicans as so desired to join the colony. The triumvirs, accordingly, who were sent to Antium divided the land among their people, leaving a certain part of it to the Antiates. Meanwhile both consuls took the field, Aemilius marching into the country of the Sabines and Fabius into that of the Aequians. Aemilius, though he remained a long time in the enemy's country, encountered no army ready to fight for it, but ravaged it with impunity; then, when the time for the elections was at hand, he led his forces home. To Fabius the Aequians, even before they were compelled to do so by the destruction of their army or the capture of their walls, sent heralds to sue for a reconciliation and friendship. The consul, after exacting from them two months' provisions for his army, two tunics for every man and six months' pay, and whatever else was urgently required, concluded a truce with them till they should go to Rome and obtain the terms of peace from the senate. The senate, however, when informed of this, gave Fabius full power to make peace with the Aequians upon such terms as he himself should elect. After that the two nations by the mediation of the consul made a treaty as follows: the Aequians were to be subject to the Romans while still possessing their cities and lands, and were not to send anything to the Romans except troops, when so ordered, these to be maintained at their own expense. Fabius, having made this treaty, returned home with his army and together with his fellow consul nominated magistrates for the following year.
Roman antiquities 9.60
The consuls named by them were Spurius Postumius Albinus and Quintus Servilius Priscus, the latter for the second time. In their consulship the Aequians were held to be violating the agreements lately made with the Romans, and this for the following reason. All the Antiates who possessed homes and allotments of land remained in the country cultivating not only the lands assigned to them but also those which had been taken from them by the colonists, tilling the latter on the basis of certain fixed shares which they paid to the colonists out of the produce. But those who had no such possessions left the city, and being heartily welcomed by the Aequians, were using their country as a base from which to ravage the fields of the Latins. As a consequence, such of the Aequians too as were bold and needy joined with them in their raids. When the Latins complained before the senate of their situation and asked them either to send an army to their relief or to permit them to take vengeance themselves on those who had begun the war, the senators, on hearing their complaint, neither voted to send an army themselves nor permitted the Latins to lead out theirs, but choosing three ambassadors, of whom Quintus Fabius, who had concluded the treaty with the Aequian nation, was the leader, they sent them out with instructions to inquire of the leaders of the nation whether it was by general consent that they were sending out these bands of brigands into the territory of the allies and also into that of the Romans ? for there had been some raids into the latter too by the fugitive Antiates ? or whether the state had no hand in any of the things that were going on; and if they should say that the acts complained of were the work of private persons without the consent of the people, they were to demand restitution of the stolen property and ask for the surrender of those who had committed the wrongs. 4 Upon the arrival of the ambassadors the Aequians, having heard their demands, gave them an evasive answer, saying, indeed, that the plundering had not been done by public consent, yet refusing to deliver up the perpetrators, who, after losing their own city and becoming wanderers, had in their destitution become suppliants of the Aequians. Fabius resented this and appealed to the treaty which they had violated; but seeing that the Aequians were dissembling, asking time for deliberation and seeking to detain him under the pretence of hospitality, he remained there in order to spy upon what was going on in the city. And visiting every place, both profane and sacred, on the pretext of seeing the sights, and observing the shops full of weapons of war, some already completed and others still in the making, he perceived their intention. And returning to Rome, he reported to the senate what he had heard and what he had seen. The senate, without hesitating any longer, voted to send the fetiales to declare war against the Aequians unless they expelled the Antiate fugitives from the city and promised satisfaction to the injured. The Aequians gave a rather bold answer to the fetiales and admitted that they not unwillingly accepted war. But the Romans were unable to send an army against them that year, either because Heaven forbade it or because of the maladies with which the population was afflicted during a great part of the year; however, for the protection of their allies a small army marched forth under Quintus Servilius, one of the consuls, and remained on the frontiers of the Latins. At Rome his colleague, Spurius Postumius, consecrated the temple of Dius Fidius upon the Quirinal hill on the day called the nones of June. This temple had been built by Tarquinius, the last king, but had not received at his hands the dedication custom among the Romans. At this time by order of the senate the name of Postumius was inscribed on the temple. Nothing else worth relating happened during that consulship.
Roman antiquities 9.61
In the seventy-ninth Olympiad (the one at which Xenophon of Corinth won the foot-race). Archedemides being archon at Athens, Titus Quintius Capitolinus and Quintus Fabius Vibulanus succeeded to the consulship, Quintius being elected by the people to that office for the third time and Fabius for the second. Both of them the senate sent into the field, giving them large and well-equipped armies. Quintius was ordered to defend the part of their territory which adjoined that of the enemy, and Fabius to plunder the country of the Aequians. Fabius found the Aequians waiting for him on their own borders with a large force. After both sides had placed their camps in the most advantageous positions, they advanced into the plain, the Aequians being the challengers and beginning the battle; and they continued fighting spiritedly and with perseverance for a great part of the day, each man placing his hopes of victory in no one but himself. 3 But when the swords of the greater part of them had become useless from repeated blows, the generals ordered the retreat to be sounded and the men returned to their camps. After this action no pitched battle was again fought by them, but there were sundry skirmishes and constant clashes of the light-armed troops as they went to fetch water and escorted convoys of provisions; and in these encounters, moreover, they were as a result evenly matched. While this was going on, a detachment of the Aequians' army, marching by other roads, made an irruption into the part of the Roman territory which lay at a very great distance from the common boundary and was for that reason unguarded; and seizing there many persons and goods, they returned to their homes without being discovered by the patrols under Quintius who were guarding their own territory. This happened continually and brought much disgrace upon the consuls. Later Fabius, learning through scouts and prisoners that the best of the Aequians' forces had gone out of their camp, set out himself in the night with the flower of the horse and foot, leaving the oldest men in the camp. The Aequians, after plundering the regions which they had invaded, were returning home with many spoils. But they had not proceeded far when Fabius suddenly appeared before them, took away their booty, and defeated in battle those who valiantly withstood him; the rest scattered, and being familiar with the roads, escaped their pursuers and fled to their camp for refuge. When the Aequians had been checked by this unexpected disaster, they broke camp and departed as night came on; and after that they ventured out no more from their city, but submitted to seeing their corn, which was then ripe, carried off by the enemy, their herds of cattle driven away, their effects seized, their farm-houses given to the flames and many prisoners led away. After these achievements Fabius, the time having come for the consuls to hand over their power to their successors, took his army and returned home; and Quintius did the same.
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When they came to Rome, they named Aulus Postumius Albus and Servius Furius consuls. These had just taken over their magistracy when messengers from the Latin allies, sent in haste to the Romans, arrived. These, being introduced into the senate, informed them that the situation at Antium was precarious, since the Aequians were sending envoys thither in secret and large numbers of Volscians were resorting to the city openly on the pretext of trading; they were being brought there by those who had left Antium earlier because of poverty, when their lands were allotted among the Roman colonists, and had deserted to the Aequians, as I have related. At the same time they reported that along with the natives many also of the colonists had been corrupted, and that unless their pursue were forestalled by means of an adequate garrison an unexpected war would break out in that quarter also against the Romans. Not long after this other messengers, sent by the Hernicans, brought word that a large force of Aequians had set out and now lay encamped in the hernican's country, where they were plundering everything, and that the Volscians were joining with the Aequians in the expedition, contributing the larger part of the army. In view of all this the senate voted, first, with reference to those among the Antiates who were creating the disturbances ? for some of them had come to Rome to defend their conduct and had made it clear that they had no honest purpose ? to send another garrison to keep the city safe; and second, with reference to the Aequians, that Servius Furius, one of the consuls, should lead the army against them; and both forces promptly set out. The Aequians, upon learning that the Roman army had taken the field, departed from the country of the Hernicans and went to meet it. When the two armies came in sight of one another, they encamped that day not far apart; and the next day the enemy advanced toward the camp of the Romans in order to ascertain their intentions. Then, when the Romans did not come out to fight, they engaged in skirmishes, and without performing any noteworthy exploit retired with great boasting. But the Roman consul on the following day left his entrenchments ? for the place was not very safe ? and shifted his camp to a more advantageous position, where he dug a deeper trench and threw up a higher rampart. The enemy, seeing this, were greatly emboldened, and still more so when an army came to their assistance from both the Volscian and the Aequian nations; so that without further delay they led their forces against the camp of the Romans.
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The consul, realizing that the army under his command would not be strong enough to contend against both these nations, sent some of his horsemen to Rome with letters in which he asked that reinforcements might speedily reach him, as his whole army was in danger of being destroyed. When his colleague Postumius had read the letter ? it was about midnight when the horsemen arrived ? he sent out numerous heralds to call the senators together from their homes; and before it was broad daylight a decree was passed by them that Titus Quintius, who had been thrice consul, should take the flower of the young men, both fortune than horse, and, invested with proconsular power, should march against the enemy and attack them immediately; also that Aulus Postumius, the other consul, should get together the rest of the troops, whose assembling would require more time, and go to the assistance of the others as speedily as possible. By the time day began to break Quintius got together the volunteers, about five thousand in number; and after waiting only a short time he led them out of the city. The Aequians, suspecting this move, remained where they were; and having determined, before reinforcements should come to the Romans, to attack their camp, in the belief that it would be taken by main strength and superior numbers, they sallied out in force after dividing themselves into two bodies. There ensued a mighty struggle, lasting throughout the entire day, as the enemy boldly mounted the outworks in many places and were not repulsed, though exposed to a continual shower of javelins, missiles shot from bows, and stones thrown by slings. Then it was that the consul and the legate, after encouraging one another, both opened the gates at the same time, and sallying out against their opponents with the best of their men, engaged them where they were attacking on both sides of the camp, and repulsed those who were mounting the ramparts. When the enemy had been routed, the consul pursued for a short distance those who had been arrayed opposite to him, and then returned. But his brother and legate, Publius Furius, inspired by courage and ardour, drove ahead, pursuing and slaying, till he came to the enemy's camp. He had with him two cohorts, not exceeding a thousand men. Upon learning of this, the enemy, who were about five thousand, advanced against him from their camp. These attacked the Romans in front, while their horse, circling round them, fell upon their rear. The troops of Publius, when thus surrounded and cut off from their own army, though they had it in their power to save their lives by giving up their arms ? for the enemy urged them to do so and were extremely anxious to take prisoner a thousand of the bravest Romans, in order to obtain through them an honourable peace ? nevertheless scorned the enemy and exhorting one another to do nothing unworthy of the commonwealth, all died fighting after they had killed many of the enemy.
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When these men had been slain, the Aequians, elated by their success, advanced to the camp of the Romans, bearing aloft, fixed to their spears, the heads of Publius and the other prominent men, hoping to terrify the troops inside by this spectacle and compel them to surrender to them their arms. But though the Romans were indeed somewhat stirred by compassion at the fate of the slain and lamented their misfortune, yet they were inspired with a double boldness for the struggle and with a noble passion either to conquer or to die like their comrades rather than fall into the enemy's hands. That night, accordingly, while the enemy bivouacked beside their camp, the Romans went without sleep as they repaired the damaged portions of their camp and made ready the other means, of many and various kinds, with which to ward off the enemy if they should attempt again to breach their walls. The next day the assaults were renewed and the rampart was torn apart at many points. Often the Aequians were repulsed by sorties of massed troops from the camp, and often the men who rushed out to recklessly were beaten back by the Aequians. And this kept happening all day long. In these encounters the Roman consul was wounded in the thigh by a javelin that pierced his shield; wounded also were many other persons of distinction who fought at his side. At last, when the Romans had reached exhaustion, Quintius unexpectedly appeared in the late afternoon with his reinforcement of volunteers composed of the choicest troops. When the enemy saw these approaching, they turned back, leaving the siege and completed; and the Romans, sallying out against them as they withdrew, set about slaying the laggards. They did not pursue them for long, however, weakened as most of them were by their wounds, but speedily returned. After this both sides acted upon the defensive, remaining a long time in their camps.
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Later another force of Aequians and Volscians, thinking they now had a fine opportunity to plunder the Romans' country while their best troops were in the field, set out in the night; and invading the remotest part of the land, where the husbandmen thought there was nothing to fear, they gained possession of much booty and many captives. But in the end their return from there proved neither glorious nor fortunate. For the other consul, Postumius, who was bringing the reinforcements he had got together for the relief of the Romans besieged in their camp, when he learned what the enemy were doing, appeared before them unexpectedly. They were neither astonished nor terrified at his approach, but when they had leisurely deposited their baggage and booty in a single strong place and left a sufficient guard to defend it, the rest marched in good order to meet the Romans. And when they had joined combat, they performed notable deeds, though they fought few against many ? for large numbers came streaming in to oppose them from their farms, to which they had earlier scattered ? and lightly-armed against men whose bodies were entirely protected. They killed many of the Romans and, though intercepted in a foreign land, came very near erecting trophies over those who had come to attack them. But the consul and the Roman horsemen who were with him, all chosen men, charging with their horses unbridled that part of the enemy which was firmest and fought best, broke their ranks and killed a goodly number. When those in the front line had been slain, the rest of the army gave way and fled; and the men appointed to guard the baggage abandoned it and made off by way of the near-by mountains. In the action itself only a few of them were slain, but very many in the rout, as they were both unacquainted with the country and pursued by the Roman horse.
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While these things were occurring, the other consul, Servius, being informed that his colleague was coming to his assistance and fearing that the enemy might go out to meet him and prevent him from getting through to him, planned to divert them from this purpose by delivering attacks upon their camp. But the enemy forestalled him; for as soon as they learned of the disaster that had befallen their forces, the report being brought by those who had survived the pillaging expedition, they broke camp the first night after the battle and retired to their city without having accomplished all that they desired. For, besides those who had lost their lives in the battles and the pillaging expeditions, they lost many more stragglers in their retreat at this time than on the former occasion. For those who were overcome by fatigue and their wounds marched slowly, and when their limbs failed them, they fell down, particularly at the fountains and rivers, as they were parched with thirst; and the Roman horse, overtaking them, put them to the sword. Nor did the Romans, either, return home completely successful from this campaign; for they had lost many brave men in the several actions and a legate who had distinguished himself above all the rest in the combat; but they did return with a victory second to none for the commonwealth. These were the achievements of that consulship.
Roman antiquities 9.67
The next year, when Lucius Aebutius and Publius Servilius Priscus had assumed office, the Romans accomplished nothing worthy of mention either in war or at home, as they were afflicted by a pestilence more severely than ever before. It first attacked the studs of mares and herds of cattle and then seize upon the flocks of goats and sheep and destroyed almost all the live-stock. After that it fell upon the herdsmen and husbandmen, and having spread through the whole country, it invaded the city. It was no easy matter to discover the number of servants, labourers and poor people who were carried off by it. For at first the dead bodies were carried away heaped up in carts and at last the persons of least account were shoved into the river that flows past the city. Of the senate the fourth part was estimated to have perished, including not only both consuls but also most of the tribunes. The pestilence began about the calends of September and continued all that year, seizing and destroying people without distinction of sex or age. When the neighbouring peoples learned of the evils that were afflicting Rome, the Aequians and the Volscians, thinking they had an excellent opportunity to overthrow her supremacy, concluded a treaty of alliance with each other, confirmed by oaths; and after making the preparations necessary for a siege, both led out their forces as speedily as possible. In order to deprive Rome of the assistance of her allies, they first invaded the territories of the Latins and the Hernicans. When envoys from the two nations which were attacked came to the senate to beg assistance, it chanced that one of the consuls, Lucius Aebutius, had died that very day, while Publius Servilius was at the point of death. Though he could barely breathe, he convened the senate, of whom the larger part were brought in half dead in litters; and after deliberating, they instructed the envoys to report to their countrymen that the senate gave them leave to repulse the enemy by their own courage till the consul should recover and the army that was to participate with them in the conflict should be assembled. When the Romans had garden this answer, the Latins removed everything they could out of the country into their cities, and keeping their walls under guard, permitted everything else to be destroyed. But the Hernicans, resenting the ruin and desolation of their lands, took up their arms and marched out. And though they fought brilliantly and, while losing many of their own men, slew many more of the enemy, they were forced to take refuge inside their walls and no longer risked an engagement.
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When the Aequians and Volscians had laid waste the Hernicans' territory, they came unopposed to the lands of the Tusculans. And having plundered these also, none offering to defend them, they arrived at the borders of the Gabini. Then, passing through their territory also without opposition, they advanced upon Rome.They caused the city enough alarm, it is true, yet they could not make themselves masters of it; on the contrary, the Romans, though they were utterly weakened in body and had lost both consuls ? for Servilius had recently died ? armed themselves beyond their strength and manned the walls, the circuit of which was at that time of the same extent as that of Athens. Some sections of the walls, standing on hills and sheer cliffs, have been fortified by Nature herself and require but a small garrison; others are protected by the river Tiber, the breadth of which is about four hundred feet and the depth capable of carrying large ships, while its current is as rapid as that of any river and forms great eddies. There is no crossing it on foot except by means of a bridge, and there was at that time only one bridge, constructed of timber, and this they removed in time of war. One section, which is the most vulnerable part of the city, extending from the Esquiline gate, as it is called, to the Colline, is strengthened artificially. For there is a ditch excavated in front of it more than one hundred feet in breadth where it is narrowest, and thirty in depth; and above this ditch rises a wall supported on the inside by an earthen rampart so high and broad that it can neither be shaken by battering rams nor thrown down by undermining the foundations. This section is about seven stades in length and fifty feet in breadth. Here the Romans were drawn up at that time in force and checked the enemy's assault; for the men of that day were unacquainted with the building of either sheds to protect the men filling up ditches or the engines called helepoleis. The enemy, therefore, despairing of taking the city, retired from the walls, and after laying waste all the country through which they marched, led their forces home.
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The Romans after choosing interreges,as they are called, to preside at the election of magistrates ? a course they are accustomed to take whenever a state of "anarchy," or lack of a regular government, occurs ? elected Lucius Lucretius and Titus Veturius Geminus consuls. In their consulship the pestilence ceased and all civil complaints, both public and private, were postponed. Sextus Titius, one of the tribunes, endeavoured, it is true, to revive the measure for the allotment of land, but the populace would not permit it and deferred the matter to more suitable times. A great eagerness came upon all to take revenge on those who had made expeditions against the city on the occasion of the pestilence. And the senate having straightway voted for war and the people having confirmed the decree, they proceeded to enrol their forces; and no man who was of military age, not even if the law exempted him, wished to be left out of the expedition. The army having been divided into three bodies, one of them, commanded by Quintus Furius, an ex-consul, was left to defend the city, while the other two marched out with the consuls against the Aequians and the Volscians. This same course had also been taken already by the enemy. For their best army, assembled from both nations, was in the field under two commanders, and intended to begin with the territory of the Hernicans, in which they were then encamped, and to proceed against all the territory that was subject to the Romans; their less useful forces were left to guard their towns, lest some sudden attack might be made upon them by enemies. In view of this situation the Roman consuls thought it best to attack their foes' cities first; for they reasoned to this effect, that the allied army would fall apart if each of the two nations learned that their own possessions were in the direst peril, and that they would think it much more important to save their own possessions than to destroy those of the enemy. Lucretius accordingly invaded the country of the Aequians and Veturius that of the Volscians. The Aequians, for their part, permitted everything outside their walls to be destroyed, but guarded their city and their fortresses.
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The Volscians, however, inspired by rashness and arrogance and despising the Roman army as inadequate to cope with their own large numbers, came out to fight in defence of their land and encamped near Veturius. But, as usually happens with an army of fresh levies composed of a crowd of both townsmen and farmers got together for the occasion, of which many are not only unarmed but also unacquainted with danger, the Volscian army dared not so much as encounter the enemy; but the greater part of them, thrown into confusion at the first onset of the Romans and unable to endure either their war-cry or the clash of their arms, fled precipitately inside the walls, with the result that many of them perished when overtaken in the narrow parts of the roads and many more when they were crowding about the gates as the cavalry pursued them. The Volscians, therefore, having met with this disaster, reproached themselves for their folly and were unwilling to hazard another engagement. But the generals who commanded the armies of the Volscians and Aequians in the field, when they heard that their possessions were being attacked, resolved to perform some brave action on their part also, namely, to take their army out of the country of the Hernicans and Latins and lead it against Rome in their present mood of anger and haste. For they too had some such thought as this in mind, that they should succeed in one or the other of two glorious achievements ? either to take Rome, if it was unguarded, or to drive the enemy out of their own territory, since the consuls would be forced to hasten to the relief of their own country when it was attacked. Having come to this decision, they made a forced march, in order that they might fall upon the city unexpectedly and immediately get to work.
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Having got as far as the city of Tusculum and learning that the whole circuit of Rome was lined with armed men and that four cohorts of six hundred men each were encamped before the gates, they abandoned their march on Rome; and encamping, they laid waste the district close to the city, which they had left untouched on their former incursion. But when one of the consuls, Lucius Lucretius, appeared and made camp not far from them, they thought this an excellent opportunity to join battle before the other army of the Romans, commanded by Veturius, should come to the assistance of Lucretius; and placing their baggage on a certain hill and leaving two cohorts to defend it, the rest advanced into the plain. Then they engaged the Romans and acquitted themselves bravely in the conflict for a long time; but some of them, being informed by the guards in the rear that an army was coming down over a hill, assumed that the other consul had arrived with the forces under his command, and fearing to be hemmed in between the two armies, they no longer stood their ground, but turned to flight. In this ancient both their generals fell after performing the deeds of valiant men, and likewise many other brave men fighting at their side. Those who escaped from the battle scattered and every man retired to his own city. As a result of this victory Lucretius laid waste the country of the Aequians in great security, and Veturius that of the Volscians, till the time for the elections was at hand. Then both of them, breaking camp, returned to Rome with their armies and celebrated the triumphs awarded for victories, Lucretius entering the city in a chariot drawn by four horses and Veturius on foot. For these two triumphs are granted to generals by the senate, as I have stated; they are equal in other respects, but differ in this, that one is celebrated in a chariot and the other on foot.