|1. Cicero, On Divination, 1.3, 1.17-1.22, 1.36, 1.55, 1.72, 1.92, 1.119, 1.132, 2.13, 2.28, 2.45, 2.47, 2.52, 2.62, 2.74-2.75, 2.85, 2.87-2.88, 2.91 (2nd cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)
Tagged with subjects: • Etruria, haruspicy and • Haruspicy • Herrenius Siculus (haruspex) • Julius Caesar, C., and haruspicy • Sempronius Gracchus, Ti., haruspices, dispute with • Spurrina (haruspex) • Vulcanius (haruspex) • haruspex maximus • haruspex/haruspices • haruspex/haruspices, and Ti. Gracchus • haruspices • haruspices, and lightning • haruspices, haruspicina (ars), • haruspices, private • haruspices, prophecies • haruspices, recruitment • haruspices, vicani • haruspicy • haruspicy, Etruscan • private divination, haruspices
Found in books: Bowen and Rochberg (2020) 302, 308; Dignas Parker and Stroumsa (2013) 20; Green (2014) 68, 70, 83; Konrad (2022) 39, 284; Luck (2006) 309; Malherbe et al (2014) 775; Mowat (2021) 149; Mueller (2002) 119, 120, 121; Rosa and Santangelo (2020) 17, 50, 51; Santangelo (2013) 27, 31, 32, 70, 72, 74, 84, 87, 96, 99, 108, 111, 151, 160, 237, 253, 255; Shannon-Henderson (2019) 249; Walters (2020) 80; Wynne (2019) 204, 232, 245, 247, 261
1.3. Quam vero Graecia coloniam misit in Aeoliam, Ioniam, Asiam, Siciliam, Italiam sine Pythio aut Dodonaeo aut Hammonis oraculo? aut quod bellum susceptum ab ea sine consilio deorum est? Nec unum genus est divinationis publice privatimque celebratum. Nam, ut omittam ceteros populos, noster quam multa genera conplexus est! Principio huius urbis parens Romulus non solum auspicato urbem condidisse, sed ipse etiam optumus augur fuisse traditur. Deinde auguribus et reliqui reges usi, et exactis regibus nihil publice sine auspiciis nec domi nec militiae gerebatur. Cumque magna vis videretur esse et inpetriendis consulendisque rebus et monstris interpretandis ac procurandis in haruspicum disciplina, omnem hanc ex Etruria scientiam adhibebant, ne genus esset ullum divinationis, quod neglectum ab iis videretur.
1.17. Sed quo potius utar aut auctore aut teste quam te? cuius edidici etiam versus, et lubenter quidem, quos in secundo de consulatu Urania Musa pronuntiat: Principio aetherio flammatus Iuppiter igni Vertitur et totum conlustrat lumine mundum Menteque divina caelum terrasque petessit, Quae penitus sensus hominum vitasque retentat Aetheris aeterni saepta atque inclusa cavernis. Et, si stellarum motus cursusque vagantis Nosse velis, quae sint signorum in sede locatae, Quae verbo et falsis Graiorum vocibus erant, Re vera certo lapsu spatioque feruntur, Omnia iam cernes divina mente notata. 1.18. Nam primum astrorum volucris te consule motus Concursusque gravis stellarum ardore micantis Tu quoque, cum tumulos Albano in monte nivalis Lustrasti et laeto mactasti lacte Latinas, Vidisti et claro tremulos ardore cometas, Multaque misceri nocturna strage putasti, Quod ferme dirum in tempus cecidere Latinae, Cum claram speciem concreto lumine luna Abdidit et subito stellanti nocte perempta est. Quid vero Phoebi fax, tristis nuntia belli, Quae magnum ad columen flammato ardore volabat, Praecipitis caeli partis obitusque petessens? Aut cum terribili perculsus fulmine civis Luce sereti vitalia lumina liquit? Aut cum se gravido tremefecit corpore tellus? Iam vero variae nocturno tempore visae Terribiles formae bellum motusque monebant, Multaque per terras vates oracla furenti Pectore fundebant tristis minitantia casus, 1.19. Atque ea, quae lapsu tandem cecidere vetusto, Haec fore perpetuis signis clarisque frequentans Ipse deum genitor caelo terrisque canebat. Nunc ea, Torquato quae quondam et consule Cotta Lydius ediderat Tyrrhenae gentis haruspex, Omnia fixa tuus glomerans determinat annus. Nam pater altitos stellanti nixus Olympo Ipse suos quondam tumulos ac templa petivit Et Capitolinis iniecit sedibus ignis. Tum species ex aere vetus venerataque Nattae Concidit, elapsaeque vetusto numine leges, Et divom simulacra peremit fulminis ardor. 1.21. Haec tardata diu species multumque morata Consule te tandem celsa est in sede locata, Atque una fixi ac signati temporis hora Iuppiter excelsa clarabat sceptra columna, Et clades patriae flamma ferroque parata Vocibus Allobrogum patribus populoque patebat. Rite igitur veteres, quorum monumenta tenetis, Qui populos urbisque modo ac virtute regebant, Rite etiam vestri, quorum pietasque fidesque Praestitit et longe vicit sapientia cunctos, Praecipue coluere vigenti numine divos. Haec adeo penitus cura videre sagaci, Otia qui studiis laeti tenuere decoris, 1.22. Inque Academia umbrifera nitidoque Lyceo Fuderunt claras fecundi pectoris artis. E quibus ereptum primo iam a flore iuventae Te patria in media virtutum mole locavit. Tu tamen anxiferas curas requiete relaxans, Quod patriae vacat, id studiis nobisque sacrasti. Tu igitur animum poteris inducere contra ea, quae a me disputantur de divinatione, dicere, qui et gesseris ea, quae gessisti, et ea, quae pronuntiavi, accuratissume scripseris?
1.36. Quid? qui inridetur, partus hic mulae nonne, quia fetus extitit in sterilitate naturae, praedictus est ab haruspicibus incredibilis partus malorum? Quid? Ti. Gracchus P. F., qui bis consul et censor fuit, idemque et summus augur et vir sapiens civisque praestans, nonne, ut C. Gracchus, filius eius, scriptum reliquit, duobus anguibus domi conprehensis haruspices convocavit? qui cum respondissent, si marem emisisset, uxori brevi tempore esse moriendum, si feminam, ipsi, aequius esse censuit se maturam oppetere mortem quam P. Africani filiam adulescentem; feminam emisit, ipse paucis post diebus est mortuus. Inrideamus haruspices, vanos, futtiles esse dicamus, quorumque disciplinam et sapientissimus vir et eventus ac res conprobavit, contemnamus, condemnemus etiam Babylonem et eos, qui e Caucaso caeli signa servantes numeris et modis stellarum cursus persequuntur, condemnemus, inquam, hos aut stultitiae aut vanitatis aut inpudentiae, qui quadringenta septuaginta milia annorum, ut ipsi dicunt, monumentis conprehensa continent, et mentiri iudicemus nec, saeculorum reliquorum iudicium quod de ipsis futurum sit, pertimescere.
1.55. Sed quid ego Graecorum? nescio quo modo me magis nostra delectant. Omnes hoc historici, Fabii, Gellii, sed proxume Coelius: Cum bello Latino ludi votivi maxumi primum fierent, civitas ad arma repente est excitata, itaque ludis intermissis instaurativi constituti sunt. Qui ante quam fierent, cumque iam populus consedisset, servus per circum, cum virgis caederetur, furcam ferens ductus est. Exin cuidam rustico Romano dormienti visus est venire, qui diceret praesulem sibi non placuisse ludis, idque ab eodem iussum esse eum senatui nuntiare; illum non esse ausum. Iterum esse idem iussum et monitum, ne vim suam experiri vellet; ne tum quidem esse ausum. Exin filium eius esse mortuum, eandem in somnis admonitionem fuisse tertiam. Tum illum etiam debilem factum rem ad amicos detulisse, quorum de sententia lecticula in curiam esse delatum, cumque senatui somnium enarravisset, pedibus suis salvum domum revertisse. Itaque somnio comprobato a senatu ludos illos iterum instauratos memoriae proditum est.
1.72. in quo haruspices, augures coniectoresque numerantur. Haec inprobantur a Peripateticis, a Stoicis defenduntur. Quorum alia sunt posita in monumentis et disciplina, quod Etruscorum declarant et haruspicini et fulgurales et rituales libri, vestri etiam augurales, alia autem subito ex tempore coniectura explicantur, ut apud Homerum Calchas, qui ex passerum numero belli Troiani annos auguratus est, et ut in Sullae scriptum historia videmus, quod te inspectante factum est, ut, cum ille in agro Nolano inmolaret ante praetorium, ab infima ara subito anguis emergeret, cum quidem C. Postumius haruspex oraret illum, ut in expeditionem exercitum educeret; id cum Sulla fecisset, tum ante oppidum Nolam florentissuma Samnitium castra cepit.
1.92. Etruria autem de caelo tacta scientissume animadvertit eademque interpretatur, quid quibusque ostendatur monstris atque portentis. Quocirca bene apud maiores nostros senatus tum, cum florebat imperium, decrevit, ut de principum filiis x ex singulis Etruriae populis in disciplinam traderentur, ne ars tanta propter tenuitatem hominum a religionis auctoritate abduceretur ad mercedem atque quaestum. Phryges autem et Pisidae et Cilices et Arabum natio avium significationibus plurimum obtemperant, quod idem factitatum in Umbria accepimus.
1.119. Quod ne dubitare possimus, maximo est argumento, quod paulo ante interitum Caesaris contigit. Qui cum immolaret illo die, quo primum in sella aurea sedit et cum purpurea veste processit, in extis bovis opimi cor non fuit. Num igitur censes ullum animal, quod sanguinem habeat, sine corde esse posse? †Qua ille rei novitate perculsus, cum Spurinna diceret timendum esse, ne et consilium et vita deficeret; earum enim rerum utramque a corde proficisci. Postero die caput in iecore non fuit. Quae quidem illi portendebantur a dis immortalibus, ut videret interitum, non ut caveret. Cum igitur eae partes in extis non reperiuntur, sine quibus victuma illa vivere nequisset, intellegendum est in ipso immolationis tempore eas partes, quae absint, interisse.
1.132. Nunc illa testabor, non me sortilegos neque eos, qui quaestus causa hariolentur, ne psychomantia quidem, quibus Appius, amicus tuus, uti solebat, agnoscere; non habeo denique nauci Marsum augurem, non vicanos haruspices, non de circo astrologos, non Isiacos coniectores, non interpretes somniorum; non enim sunt ii aut scientia aut arte divini, Séd superstitiósi vates ínpudentesque hárioli Aút inertes aút insani aut quíbus egestas ímperat, Quí sibi semitám non sapiunt, álteri monstránt viam; Quíbus divitias póllicentur, áb iis drachumam ipsí petunt. De hís divitiis síbi deducant dráchumam, reddant cétera. Atque haec quidem Ennius, qui paucis ante versibus esse deos censet, sed eos non curare opinatur, quid agat humanum genus. Ego autem, qui et curare arbitror et monere etiam ac multa praedicere, levitate, vanitate, malitia exclusa divinationem probo. Quae cum dixisset Quintus, Praeclare tu quidem, inquam, paratus
2.13. Sed animadverti, Quinte, te caute et ab iis coniecturis, quae haberent artem atque prudentiam, et ab iis rebus, quae sensibus aut artificiis perciperentur, abducere divinationem eamque ita definire: divinationem esse earum rerum praedictionem et praesensionem, quae essent fortuitae. Primum eodem revolveris. Nam et medici et gubernatoris et imperatoris praesensio est rerum fortuitarum. Num igitur aut haruspex aut augur aut vates quis aut somnians melius coniecerit aut e morbo evasurum aegrotum aut e periculo navem aut ex insidiis exercitum quam medicus, quam gubernator, quam imperator?
2.28. Ut ordiar ab haruspicina, quam ego rei publicae causa communisque religionis colendam censeo. Sed soli sumus; licet verum exquirere sine invidia, mihi praesertim de plerisque dubitanti. Inspiciamus, si placet, exta primum. Persuaderi igitur cuiquam potest ea, quae significari dicuntur extis, cognita esse ab haruspicibus observatione diuturna? Quam diuturna ista fuit? aut quam longinquo tempore observari potuit? aut quo modo est conlatum inter ipsos, quae pars inimica, quae pars familiaris esset, quod fissum periculum, quod commodum aliquod ostenderet? An haec inter se haruspices Etrusci, Elii, Aegyptii, Poeni contulerunt? At id, praeterquam quod fieri non potuit, ne fingi quidem potest; alios enim alio more videmus exta interpretari, nec esse unam omnium disciplinam.
2.45. quid, cum in altissimos montis, quod plerumque fit? quid, cum in desertas solitudines? quid, cum in earum gentium oras, in quibus haec ne observantur quidem? At inventum est caput in Tiberi. Quasi ego artem aliquam istorum esse negem! divinationem nego. Caeli enim distributio, quam ante dixi, et certarum rerum notatio docet, unde fulmen venerit, quo concesserit; quid significet autem, nulla ratio docet. Sed urges me meis versibus: Nam pater altitos stellanti nixus Olympo Ipse suos quondam tumulos ac templa petivit Et Capitolinis iniecit sedibus ignis. Tum statua Nattae, tum simulacra deorum Romulusque et Remus cum altrice belua vi fulminis icti conciderunt, deque his rebus haruspicum extiterunt responsa verissuma.
2.47. cur quidque fieret, non quaerere! Et eo quidem loco et Prognostica nostra pronuntiabas et genera herbarum, scammoniam aristolochiamque radicem, quarum causam ignorares, vim et effectum videres. Dissimile totum; nam et prognosticorum causas persecuti sunt et Boëthus Stoicus, qui est a te nominatus, et noster etiam Posidonius, et, si causae non reperiantur istarum rerum, res tamen ipsae observari animadvertique potuerunt. Nattae vero statua aut aera legum de caelo tacta quid habent observatum ac vetustum? Pinarii Nattae nobiles; a nobilitate igitur periculum. Hoc tam callide Iuppiter ex cogitavit! Romulus lactens fulmine ictus; urbi igitur periculum ostenditur, ei quam ille condidit. Quam scite per notas nos certiores facit Iuppiter! At eodem tempore signum Iovis conlocabatur, quo coniuratio indicabatur. Et tu scilicet mavis numine deorum id factum quam casu arbitrari, et redemptor, qui columnam illam de Cotta et de Torquato conduxerat faciendam, non inertia aut inopia tardior fuit, sed a deis inmortalibus ad istam horam reservatus est.
2.52. Quota enim quaeque res evenit praedicta ab istis? aut, si evenit quippiam, quid adferri potest, cur non casu id evenerit? Rex Prusias, cum Hannibali apud eum exsulanti depugnari placeret, negabat se audere, quod exta prohiberent. Ain tu? inquit, carunculae vitulinae mavis quam imperatori veteri credere? Quid? ipse Caesar cum a summo haruspice moneretur, ne in Africam ante brumam transmitteret, nonne transmisit? quod ni fecisset, uno in loco omnes adversariorum copiae convenissent. Quid ego haruspicum responsa commemorem (possum equidem innumerabilia), quae aut nullos habuerint exitus aut contrarios?
2.62. ita omnino nullum esse portentum. Quod etiam coniector quidam et interpres portentorum non inscite respondisse dicitur ei, qui quondam ad eum rettulisset quasi ostentum, quod anguis domi vectem circumiectus fuisset: Tum esset, inquit, ostentum, si anguem vectis circumplicavisset. Hoc ille responso satis aperte declaravit nihil habendum esse, quod fieri posset, ostentum. C. Gracchus ad M. Pomponium scripsit duobus anguibus domi conprehensis haruspices a patre convocatos. Qui magis anguibus quam lacertis, quam muribus? Quia sunt haec cotidiana, angues non item; quasi vero referat, quod fieri potest, quam id saepe fiat. Ego tamen miror, si emissio feminae anguis mortem adferebat Ti. Graccho, emissio autem maris anguis erat mortifera Corneliae, cur alteram utram emiserit; nihil enim scribit respondisse haruspices, si neuter anguis emissus esset, quid esset futurum. At mors insecuta Gracchum est. Causa quidem, credo, aliqua morbi gravioris, non emissione serpentis; neque enim tanta est infelicitas haruspicum, ut ne casu quidem umquam fiat, quod futurum illi esse dixerint.
2.74. Iam de caelo servare non ipsos censes solitos, qui auspicabantur? Nunc imperant pullario; ille renuntiat. Fulmen sinistrum auspicium optumum habemus ad omnis res praeterquam ad comitia; quod quidem institutum rei publicae causa est, ut comitiorum vel in iudiciis populi vel in iure legum vel in creandis magistratibus principes civitatis essent interpretes. At Ti. Gracchi litteris Scipio et Figulus consules, cum augures iudicassent eos vitio creatos esse, magistratu se abdicaverunt. Quis negat augurum disciplinam esse? divinationem nego. At haruspices divini; quos cum Ti. Gracchus propter mortem repentinam eius, qui in praerogativa referenda subito concidisset, in senatum introduxisset, non iustum rogatorem fuisse dixerunt. 2.75. Primum vide, ne in eum dixerint, qui rogator centuriae fuisset; is enim erat mortuus; id autem sine divinatione coniectura poterant dicere. Deinde fortasse casu, qui nullo modo est ex hoc genere tollendus. Quid enim scire Etrusci haruspices aut de tabernaculo recte capto aut de pomerii iure potuerunt? Equidem adsentior C. Marcello potius quam App. Claudio, qui ambo mei collegae fuerunt, existimoque ius augurum, etsi divinationis opinione principio constitutum sit, tamen postea rei publicae causa conservatum ac retentum.
2.85. Sortes restant et Chaldaei, ut ad vates veniamus et ad somnia. Dicendum igitur putas de sortibus? Quid enim sors est? Idem prope modum, quod micare, quod talos iacere, quod tesseras, quibus in rebus temeritas et casus, non ratio nec consilium valet. Tota res est inventa fallaciis aut ad quaestum aut ad superstitionem aut ad errorem. Atque ut in haruspicina fecimus, sic videamus, clarissumarum sortium quae tradatur inventio. Numerium Suffustium Praenestinorum monumenta declarant, honestum hominem et nobilem, somniis crebris, ad extremum etiam minacibus cum iuberetur certo in loco silicem caedere, perterritum visis irridentibus suis civibus id agere coepisse; itaque perfracto saxo sortis erupisse in robore insculptas priscarum litterarum notis. Is est hodie locus saeptus religiose propter Iovis pueri, qui lactens cum Iunone Fortunae in gremio sedens mammam adpetens castissime colitur a matribus.
2.87. Quis enim magistratus aut quis vir inlustrior utitur sortibus? ceteris vero in locis sortes plane refrixerunt. Quod Carneadem Clitomachus scribit dicere solitum, nusquam se fortunatiorem quam Praeneste vidisse Fortunam. Ergo hoc divinationis genus omittamus. Ad Chaldaeorum monstra veniamus; de quibus Eudoxus, Platonis auditor, in astrologia iudicio doctissimorum hominum facile princeps, sic opinatur, id quod scriptum reliquit, Chaldaeis in praedictione et in notatione cuiusque vitae ex natali die minime esse credendum. 2.88. Nominat etiam Panaetius, qui unus e Stoicis astrologorum praedicta reiecit, Anchialum et Cassandrum, summos astrologos illius aetatis, qua erat ipse, cum in ceteris astrologiae partibus excellerent, hoc praedictionis genere non usos. Scylax Halicarnassius, familiaris Panaetii, excellens in astrologia idemque in regenda sua civitate princeps, totum hoc Chaldaicum praedicendi genus repudiavit.
2.91. At ii nec totidem annos vixerunt; anno enim Procli vita brevior fuit, multumque is fratri rerum gestarum gloria praestitit. At ego id ipsum, quod vir optumus, Diogenes, Chaldaeis quasi quadam praevaricatione concedit, nego posse intellegi. Etenim cum, ut ipsi dicunt, ortus nascentium luna moderetur, eaque animadvertant et notent sidera natalicia Chaldaei, quaecumque lunae iuncta videantur, oculorum fallacissimo sensu iudicant ea, quae ratione atque animo videre debebant. Docet enim ratio mathematicorum, quam istis notam esse oportebat, quanta humilitate luna feratur terram paene contingens, quantum absit a proxuma Mercurii stella, multo autem longius a Veneris, deinde alio intervallo distet a sole, cuius lumine conlustrari putatur; reliqua vero tria intervalla infinita et inmensa, a sole ad Martis, inde ad Iovis, ab eo ad Saturni stellam, inde ad caelum ipsum, quod extremum atque ultumum mundi est.' '. None
|1.3. And, indeed, what colony did Greece ever send into Aeolia, Ionia, Asia, Sicily, or Italy without consulting the Pythian or Dodonian oracle, or that of Jupiter Hammon? Or what war did she ever undertake without first seeking the counsel of the gods? 2 Nor is it only one single mode of divination that has been employed in public and in private. For, to say nothing of other nations, how many our own people have embraced! In the first place, according to tradition, Romulus, the father of this City, not only founded it in obedience to the auspices, but was himself a most skilful augur. Next, the other Roman kings employed augurs; and, again, after the expulsion of the kings, no public business was ever transacted at home or abroad without first taking the auspices. Furthermore, since our forefathers believed that the soothsayers art had great efficacy in seeking for omens and advice, as well as in cases where prodigies were to be interpreted and their effects averted, they gradually introduced that art in its entirety from Etruria, lest it should appear that any kind of divination had been disregarded by them. |
1.3. Therefore Ateius, by his announcement, did not create the cause of the disaster; but having observed the sign he simply advised Crassus what the result would be if the warning was ignored. It follows, then, that the announcement by Ateius of the unfavourable augury had no effect; or if it did, as Appius thinks, then the sin is not in him who gave the warning, but in him who disregarded it.17 And whence, pray, did you augurs derive that staff, which is the most conspicuous mark of your priestly office? It is the very one, indeed with which Romulus marked out the quarter for taking observations when he founded the city. Now this staffe is a crooked wand, slightly curved at the top, and, because of its resemblance to a trumpet, derives its name from the Latin word meaning the trumpet with which the battle-charge is sounded. It was placed in the temple of the Salii on the Palatine hill and, though the temple was burned, the staff was found uninjured.
1.17. But what authority or what witness can I better employ than yourself? I have even learned by heart and with great pleasure the following lines uttered by the Muse, Urania, in the second book of your poem entitled, My Consulship:First of all, Jupiter, glowing with fire from regions celestial,Turns, and the whole of creation is filled with the light of his glory;And, though the vaults of aether eternal begird and confine him,Yet he, with spirit divine, ever searching the earth and the heavens,Sounds to their innermost depths the thoughts and the actions of mortals.When one has learned the motions and variant paths of the planets,Stars that abide in the seat of the signs, in the Zodiacs girdle,(Spoken of falsely as vagrants or rovers in Greek nomenclature,Whereas in truth their distance is fixed and their speed is determined,)Then will he know that all are controlled by an Infinite Wisdom. 1.18. You, being consul, at once did observe the swift constellations,Noting the glare of luminous stars in direful conjunction:Then you beheld the tremulous sheen of the Northern aurora,When, on ascending the mountainous heights of snowy Albanus,You offered joyful libations of milk at the Feast of the Latins;Ominous surely the time wherein fell that Feast of the Latins;Many a warning was given, it seemed, of slaughter nocturnal;Then, of a sudden, the moon at her full was blotted from heaven —Hidden her features resplendent, though night was bejewelled with planets;Then did that dolorous herald of War, the torch of Apollo,Mount all aflame to the dome of the sky, where the sun has its setting;Then did a Roman depart from these radiant abodes of the living,Stricken by terrible lightning from heavens serene and unclouded.Then through the fruit-laden body of earth ran the shock of an earthquake;Spectres at night were observed, appalling and changeful of figure,Giving their warning that war was at hand, and internal commotion;Over all lands there outpoured, from the frenzied bosoms of prophets,Dreadful predictions, gloomy forecasts of impending disaster. 1.19. And the misfortunes which happened at last and were long in their passing —These were foretold by the Father of Gods, in earth and in heaven,Through unmistakable signs that he gave and often repeated.12 Now, of those prophecies made when Torquatus and Cotta were consuls, —Made by a Lydian diviner, by one of Etruscan extraction —All, in the round of your crowded twelve months, were brought to fulfilment.For high-thundering Jove, as he stood on starry Olympus,Hurled forth his blows at the temples and monuments raised in his honour,And on the Capitols site he unloosed the bolts of his lightning.Then fell the brazen image of Natta, ancient and honoured:Vanished the tablets of laws long ago divinely enacted;Wholly destroyed were the statues of gods by the heat of the lightning. 1.21. Long was the statue delayed and much was it hindered in making.Finally, you being consul, it stood in its lofty position.Just at the moment of time, which the gods had set and predicted,When on column exalted the sceptre of Jove was illumined,Did Allobrogian voices proclaim to Senate and peopleWhat destruction by dagger and torch was prepared for our country.13 Rightly, therefore, the ancients whose monuments you have in keeping,Romans whose rule over peoples and cities was just and courageous,Rightly your kindred, foremost in honour and pious devotion,Far surpassing the rest of their fellows in shrewdness and wisdom,Held it a duty supreme to honour the Infinite Godhead.Such were the truths they beheld who painfully searching for wisdomGladly devoted their leisure to study of all that was noble, 1.22. Who, in Academys shade and Lyceums dazzling effulgence,Uttered the brilliant reflections of minds abounding in culture.Torn from these studies, in youths early dawn, your country recalled you,Giving you place in the thick of the struggle for public preferment;Yet, in seeking surcease from the worries and cares that oppress you,Time, that the State leaves free, you devote to us and to learning.In view, therefore, of your acts, and in view too of your own verses which I have quoted and which were composed with the utmost care, could you be persuaded to controvert the position which I maintain in regard to divination?
1.36. Why, then, when here recently a mule (which is an animal ordinarily sterile by nature) brought forth a foal, need anyone have scoffed because the soothsayers from that occurrence prophesied a progeny of countless evils to the state?What, pray, do you say of that well-known incident of Tiberius Gracchus, the son of Publius? He was censor and consul twice; beside that he was a most competent augur, a wise man and a pre-eminent citizen. Yet he, according to the account left us by his son Gaius, having caught two snakes in his home, called in the soothsayers to consult them. They advised him that if he let the male snake go his wife must die in a short time; and if he released the female snake his own death must soon occur. Thinking it more fitting that a speedy death should overtake him rather than his young wife, who was the daughter of Publius Africanus, he released the female snake and died within a few days.19 Let us laugh at the soothsayers, brand them as frauds and impostors and scorn their calling, even though a very wise man, Tiberius Gracchus, and the results and circumstances of his death have given proof of its trustworthiness; let us scorn the Babylonians, too, and those astrologers who, from the top of Mount Caucasus, observe the celestial signs and with the aid of mathematics follow the courses of the stars; let us, I say, convict of folly, falsehood, and shamelessness the men whose records, as they themselves assert, cover a period of four hundred and seventy thousand years; and let us pronounce them liars, utterly indifferent to the opinion of succeeding generations.
1.55. But why am I dwelling on illustrations from Greek sources when — though I cant explain it — those from our own history please me more? Now here is a dream which is mentioned by all our historians, by the Fabii and the Gellii and, most recently, by Coelius: During the Latin War when the Great Votive Games were being celebrated for the first time the city was suddenly called to arms and the games were interrupted. Later it was determined to repeat them, but before they began, and while the people were taking their seats, a slave bearing a yoke was led about the circus and beaten with rods. After that a Roman rustic had a dream in which someone appeared to him and said that he disapproved of the leader of the games and ordered this statement to be reported to the Senate. But the rustic dared not do as he was bid. The order was repeated by the spectre with a warning not to put his power to the test. Not even then did the rustic dare obey. After that his son died and the same vision was repeated the third time. Thereupon he became ill and told his friends of his dream. On their advice he was carried to the Senate-house on a litter and, having related his dream to the Senate, his health was restored and he walked home unaided. And so, the tradition is, the Senate gave credence to the dream and had the games repeated.
1.72. But those methods of divination which are dependent on conjecture, or on deductions from events previously observed and recorded, are, as I have said before, not natural, but artificial, and include the inspection of entrails, augury, and the interpretation of dreams. These are disapproved of by the Peripatetics and defended by the Stoics. Some are based upon records and usage, as is evident from the Etruscan books on divination by means of inspection of entrails and by means of thunder and lightning, and as is also evident from the books of your augural college; while others are dependent on conjecture made suddenly and on the spur of the moment. An instance of the latter kind is that of Calchas in Homer, prophesying the number of years of the Trojan War from the number of sparrows. We find another illustration of conjectural divination in the history of Sulla in an occurrence which you witnessed. While he was offering sacrifices in front of his head-quarters in the Nolan district a snake suddenly came out from beneath the altar. The soothsayer, Gaius Postumius, begged Sulla to proceed with his march at once. Sulla did so and captured the strongly fortified camp of the Samnites which lay in front of the town of Nola.
1.92. Again, the Etruscans are very skilful in observing thunderbolts, in interpreting their meaning and that of every sign and portent. That is why, in the days of our forefathers, it was wisely decreed by the Senate, when its power was in full vigour, that, of the sons of the chief men, six should be handed over to each of the Etruscan tribes for the study of divination, in order that so important a profession should not, on account of the poverty of its members, be withdrawn from the influence of religion, and converted into a means of mercenary gain. On the other hand the Phrygians, Pisidians, Cilicians, and Arabians rely chiefly on the signs conveyed by the flights of birds, and the Umbrians, according to tradition, used to do the same. 42
1.119. Conclusive proof of this fact, sufficient to put it beyond the possibility of doubt, is afforded by incidents which happened just before Caesars death. While he was offering sacrifices on the day when he sat for the first time on a golden throne and first appeared in public in a purple robe, no heart was found in the vitals of the votive ox. Now do you think it possible for any animal that has blood to exist without a heart? Caesar was unmoved by this occurrence, even though Spurinna warned him to beware lest thought and life should fail him — both of which, he said, proceeded from the heart. On the following day there was no head to the liver of the sacrifice. These portents were sent by the immortal gods to Caesar that he might foresee his death, not that he might prevent it. Therefore, when those organs, without which the victim could not have lived, are found wanting in the vitals, we should understand that the absent organs disappeared at the very moment of immolation. 53
1.132. I will assert, however, in conclusion, that I do not recognize fortune-tellers, or those who prophesy for money, or necromancers, or mediums, whom your friend Appius makes it a practice to consult.In fine, I say, I do not care a figFor Marsian augurs, village mountebanks,Astrologers who haunt the circus grounds,Or Isis-seers, or dream interpreters:— for they are not diviners either by knowledge or skill, —But superstitious bards, soothsaying quacks,Averse to work, or mad, or ruled by want,Directing others how to go, and yetWhat road to take they do not know themselves;From those to whom they promise wealth they begA coin. From what they promised let them takeTheir coin as toll and pass the balance on.Such are the words of Ennius who only a few lines further back expresses the view that there are gods and yet says that the gods do not care what human beings do. But for my part, believing as I do that the gods do care for man, and that they advise and often forewarn him, I approve of divination which is not trivial and is free from falsehood and trickery.When Quintus had finished I remarked, My dear Quintus, you have come admirably well prepared.
2.13. But I observed, Quintus, that you prudently withdrew divination from conjectures based upon skill and experience in public affairs, from those drawn from the use of the senses and from those made by persons in their own callings. I observed, also, that you defined divination to be the foreknowledge and foretelling of things which happen by chance. In the first place, that is a contradiction of what you have admitted. For the foreknowledge possessed by a physician, a pilot, and a general is of things which happen by chance. Then can any soothsayer, augur, prophet, or dreamer conjecture better than a physician, a pilot, or a general that an invalid will come safely out of his sickness, or that a ship will escape from danger, or that an army will avoid an ambuscade?
2.13. Chrysippus, indeed, defines divination in these words: The power to see, understand, and explain premonitory signs given to men by the gods. Its duty, he goes on to say, is to know in advance the disposition of the gods towards men, the manner in which that disposition is shown and by what means the gods may be propitiated and their threatened ills averted. And this same philosopher defines the interpretation of dreams thus: It is the power to understand and explain the visions sent by the gods to men in sleep. Then, if that be true, will just ordinary shrewdness meet these requirements, or rather is there not need of surpassing intelligence and absolutely perfect learning? But I have never seen such a man. 64
2.28. In discussing separately the various methods of divination, I shall begin with soothsaying, which, according to my deliberate judgement, should be cultivated from reasons of political expediency and in order that we may have a state religion. But we are alone and for that reason we may, without causing ill-will, make an earnest inquiry into the truth of soothsaying — certainly I can do so, since in most things my philosophy is that of doubt. In the first place, then, if you please, let us make an inspection of entrails! Now can anybody be induced to believe that the things said to be predicted by means of entrails were learned by the soothsayers through long-continued observation? How long, pray, did the observations last? How could the observations have continued for a long time? How did the soothsayers manage to agree among themselves what part of the entrails was unfavourable, and what part favourable; or what cleft in the liver indicated danger and what promised some advantage? Are the soothsayers of Etruria, Elis, Egypt, and of Carthage in accord on these matters? Apart from such an agreement being impossible in fact, it is impossible even to imagine; and, moreover, we see some nations interpreting entrails in one way and some in another; hence there is no uniformity of practice.
2.45. What, for example, is his object in hurling them into the middle of the sea? or, as he so often does, on to the tops of lofty mountains? Why, pray, does he waste them in solitary deserts? And why does he fling them on the shores of peoples who do not take any notice of them?20 Oh! but you say, the head was found in the Tiber. As if I contended that your soothsayers were devoid of art! My contention is that there is no divination. By dividing the heavens in the manner already indicated and by noting what happened in each division the soothsayers learn whence the thunderbolt comes and whither it goes, but no method can show that the thunderbolt has any prophetic value. However, you array those verses of mine against me:For high-thundering Jove, as he stood on starry Olympus,Hurtled his blows at the temples and monuments raised in his honour,And on the Capitols site unloosed the bolts of his lightning.Then, the poem goes on to say, the statue of Natta, the images of the gods and the piece representing Romulus and Remus, with their wolf-nurse, were struck by a thunderbolt and fell to the ground. The prophecies made by the soothsayers from these events were fulfilled to the letter.
2.47. It was in that same connexion that you brought force my Prognostics and some samples of herbs — the scammony and aristolochia root — saying that you could see their virtue and effect but did not know the cause.21 But your illustrations are not pertinent at all. For example, the causes of meteorological phenomena have been investigated by Boëthus the Stoic, whom you mentioned, and by our friend Posidonius; and even if the causes are not discovered by them, yet the phenomena themselves are capable of observation and study. But what opportunity was there for long-continued observation in the case where Nattas statue and the brazen tablets of laws were struck by lightning? The Nattas, you say, were of the Pinarian gens and of noble birth, therefore danger was to be expected from the nobility. So clever of Jupiter to devise such a means to warn us of danger! The statue of the infant Romulus, you observe, was struck by a thunderbolt; hence danger was thereby predicted to the city which he founded. How wise of Jupiter to use signs in conveying information to us! Again, you say, Jupiter statue was being set up at the very time the conspiracy was being exposed. You, of course, prefer to attribute this coincidence to a divine decree rather than to chance. The man to whom Cotta and Torquatus let the contract for the statue did not, I presume, delay the completion of his work either from lack of energy or from lack of funds, but his hand was stayed till the appointed hour by the immortal gods!
2.52. For how many things predicted by them really come true? If any do come true, then what reason can be advanced why the agreement of the event with the prophecy was not due to chance? While Hannibal was in exile at the court of King Prusias he advised the king to go to war, but the king replied, I do not dare, because the entrails forbid. And do you, said Hannibal, put more reliance in piece of ox‑meat than you do in a veteran commander? Again, when Caesar himself was warned by a most eminent soothsayer not to cross over to Africa before the winter solstice, did he not cross? If he had not done so all the forces opposed to him would have effected a junction. Why need I give instances — and, in fact, I could give countless ones — where the prophecies of soothsayers either were without result or the issue was directly the reverse of the prophecy?
2.62. This is illustrated by the story of a clever response made by a certain diviner and interpreter of portents. A man referred to him for interpretation as a portent the fact that a snake was seen at his house, coiled about a beam. That was not a portent, said the diviner; it would have been if the beam had been wrapped around the snake. By this answer he said plainly enough: Nothing that can happen is to be considered a portent.29 You refer to a letter, written by Gaius Gracchus to Marcus Pomponius, stating that Tiberius Gracchus, father of Gaius, caught two snakes in his house and called together the soothsayers. And why a conference about snakes rather than about lizards or mice? You answer, Because we see lizards and mice every day; snakes we do not. As if it makes any difference how often a thing happens if it can happen at all! And yet what surprises me is this: If the release of the female snake was to be fatal to Tiberius Gracchus and that of the male was to be the death of Cornelia, why in the world did he let either snake escape? For Gaius in his letter does not state that the soothsayers expressed any opinion as to the result if neither snake had been released. Be that as it may, you reply, death overtook Gracchus. That is granted, but his death was caused by some very serious illness and not by the release of the snake. Besides, soothsayers are not so unlucky that their predictions never come true — even by accident! 30
2.74. Again, do you not think that formerly it was the habit of the celebrants themselves to make observation of the heavens? Now they order the poulterer, and he gives responses! We regard lightning on the left as a most favourable omen for everything except for an election, and this exception was made, no doubt, from reasons of political expediency so that the rulers of the State would be the judges of the regularity of an election, whether held to pass judgements in criminal cases, or to enact laws, or to elect magistrates.The consuls, Scipio and Figulus, you say, resigned their office when the augurs rendered a decision based on a letter written by Tiberius Gracchus, to the effect that those consuls had not been elected according to augural law. Who denies that augury is an art? What I deny is the existence of divination. But you say: Soothsayers have the power of divination; and you mention the fact that, on account of the unexpected death of the person who had suddenly fallen while bringing in the report of the vote of the prerogative century, Tiberius Gracchus introduced the soothsayers into the Senate and they declared that the president had violated augural law. 2.75. Now, in the first place, do not understand that by the president they meant the president of the prerogative century, for he was dead; and, moreover, they could have told that by conjecture without the use of divination; or, in the second place, perhaps, they said so by accident which is no wise to be left out of account in cases of this kind. For what could the Etruscan soothsayers have known, either as to whether the tabernaculum had been properly placed, or as to whether the regulations pertaining to the pomerium had been observed? For my part, I agree with Gaius Marcellus, rather than with Appius Claudius — both of whom were my colleagues — and I think that, although in the beginning augural law was established from a belief in divination, yet later it was maintained and preserved from considerations of political expediency. 36
2.85. And pray what is the need, do you think, to talk about the casting of lots? It is much like playing at morra, dice, or knuckle-bones, in which recklessness and luck prevail rather than reflection and judgement. The whole scheme of divination by lots was fraudulently contrived from mercenary motives, or as a means of encouraging superstition and error. But let us follow the method used in the discussion of soothsaying and consider the traditional origin of the most famous lots. According to the annals of Praeneste Numerius Suffustius, who was a distinguished man of noble birth, was admonished by dreams, often repeated, and finally even by threats, to split open a flint rock which was lying in a designated place. Frightened by the visions and disregarding the jeers of his fellow-townsmen he set about doing as he had been directed. And so when he had broken open the stone, the lots sprang forth carved on oak, in ancient characters. The site where the stone was found is religiously guarded to this day. It is hard by the statue of the infant Jupiter, who is represented as sitting with Juno in the lap of Fortune and reaching for her breast, and it is held in the highest reverence by mothers.
2.87. for no magistrate and no man of any reputation ever consults them; but in all other places lots have gone entirely out of use. And this explains the remark which, according to Clitomachus, Carneades used to make that he had at no other place seen Fortune more fortunate than at Praeneste. Then let us dismiss this branch of divination.42 Let us come to Chaldean manifestations. In discussing them Platos pupil, Eudoxus, whom the best scholars consider easily the first in astronomy, has left the following opinion in writing: No reliance whatever is to be placed in Chaldean astrologers when they profess to forecast a mans future from the position of the stars on the day of his birth. 2.88. Panaetius, too, who was the only one of the Stoics to reject the prophecies of astrologers, mentions Anchialus and Cassander as the greatest astronomers of his day and states that they did not employ their art as a means of divining, though they were eminent in all other branches of astronomy. Scylax of Halicarnassus, an intimate friend of Panaetius, and an eminent astronomer, besides being the head of the government in his own city, utterly repudiated the Chaldean method of foretelling the future.
2.91. But they did not live the same number of years, for the life of Procles was shorter by a year than that of his brother and his deeds were far more glorious. But for my part I say that even this concession which our excellent friend Diogenes makes to the Chaldeans in a sort of collusive way, is in itself unintelligible. For the Chaldeans, according to their own statements, believe that a persons destiny is affected by the condition of the moon at the time of his birth, and hence they make and record their observations of the stars which anything in conjunction with the moon on his birthday. As a result, in forming their judgements, they depend on the sense of sight, which is the least trustworthy of the senses, whereas they should employ reason and intelligence. For the science of mathematics which the Chaldeans ought to know, teaches us how close the moon comes to the earth, which indeed it almost touches; how far it is from Mercury, the nearest star; how much further yet it is from Venus; and what a great interval separates it from the sun, which is supposed to give it light. The three remaining distances are beyond computation: from the Sun to Mars, from Mars to Jupiter, from Jupiter to Saturn. Then there is the distance from Saturn to the limits of heaven — the ultimate bounds of space.' '. None
|11. Tacitus, Annals, 2.32.3, 6.12, 6.21, 11.15, 11.15.1, 12.8.1, 12.52.3, 13.24.2, 14.12.2, 15.47.2 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)
Tagged with subjects: • Julius Caesar, C., and haruspicy • haruspex maximus • haruspices • haruspices, and Augustus • haruspices, as collegium • haruspices, recruitment • haruspices, under the Roman Empire • haruspicy, decline
Found in books: Bowen and Rochberg (2020) 308; Davies (2004) 97, 166, 187, 196; Dignas Parker and Stroumsa (2013) 17, 24; Eidinow and Driediger-Murphy (2019) 166; Santangelo (2013) 95, 108, 138; Shannon-Henderson (2019) 247, 248, 249, 250, 271, 288, 289, 324
6.12. Relatum inde ad patres a Quintiliano tribuno plebei de libro Sibullae, quem Caninius Gallus quindecimvirum recipi inter ceteros eiusdem vatis et ea de re senatus consultum postulaverat. quo per discessionem facto misit litteras Caesar, modice tribunum increpans ignarum antiqui moris ob iuventam. Gallo exprobrabat quod scientiae caerimoniarumque vetus incerto auctore ante sententiam collegii, non, ut adsolet, lecto per magistros aestimatoque carmine, apud infrequentem senatum egisset. simul commonefecit, quia multa vana sub nomine celebri vulgabantur, sanxisse Augustum quem intra diem ad praetorem urbanum deferrentur neque habere privatim liceret. quod a maioribus quoque decretum erat post exustum sociali bello Capitolium, quaesitis Samo, Ilio, Erythris, per Africam etiam ac Siciliam et Italicas colonias carminibus Sibullae, una seu plures fuere, datoque sacerdotibus negotio quantum humana ope potuissent vera discernere. igitur tunc quoque notioni quindecimvirum is liber subicitur.
6.21. Quoties super tali negotio consultaret, edita domus parte ac liberti unius conscientia utebatur. is litterarum ignarus, corpore valido, per avia ac derupta (nam saxis domus imminet) praeibat eum cuius artem experiri Tiberius statuisset et regredientem, si vanitatis aut fraudum suspicio incesserat, in subiectum mare praecipitabat ne index arcani existeret. igitur Thrasullus isdem rupibus inductus postquam percontantem commoverat, imperium ipsi et futura sollerter patefaciens, interrogatur an suam quoque genitalem horam comperisset, quem tum annum, qualem diem haberet. ille positus siderum ac spatia dimensus haerere primo, dein pavescere, et quantum introspiceret magis ac magis trepidus admirationis et metus, postremo exclamat ambiguum sibi ac prope ultimum discrimen instare. tum complexus eum Tiberius praescium periculorum et incolumem fore gratatur, quaeque dixerat oracli vice accipiens inter intimos amicorum tenet.' '. None
|2.32.3. \xa0His estate was parcelled out among the accusers, and extraordinary praetorships were conferred on those of senatorial status. Cotta Messalinus then moved that the effigy of Libo should not accompany the funeral processions of his descendants; Gnaeus Lentulus, that no member of the Scribonian house should adopt the surname of Drusus. Days of public thanksgiving were fixed at the instance of Pomponius Flaccus. Lucius Piso, Asinius Gallus, Papius Mutilus, and Lucius Apronius procured a decree that votive offerings should be made to Jupiter, Mars, and Concord; and that the thirteenth of September, the anniversary of Libo's suicide, should rank as a festival. This union of sounding names and sycophancy I\xa0have recorded as showing how long that evil has been rooted in the State.\xa0â\x80\x94 Other resolutions of the senate ordered the expulsion of the astrologers and magic-mongers from Italy. One of their number, Lucius Pituanius, was flung from the Rock; another â\x80\x94 Publius Marcius â\x80\x94 was executed by the consuls outside the Esquiline Gate according to ancient usage and at sound of trumpet. <" '|
6.12. \xa0A\xa0proposal was now put to the Fathers by the plebeian tribune Quintilianus with regard to a Sibylline book; Caninius Gallus, of the Fifteen, demanding its admission among the other verses of the same prophetess, and a senatorial decree on the point. This had been accorded without discussion, when the emperor forwarded a letter, in which he passed a lenient criticism on the tribune "whose youth accounted for his ignorance of old custom": to Gallus he expressed his displeasure that he, "long familiar with religious theory and ritual, had on dubious authority forestalled the decision of his College, and, before the poem had, as usual, been read and considered by the Masters, had brought up the question in a thinly attended senate." He reminded him at the same time that, because of the many apocryphal works circulated under the famous name, Augustus had fixed a\xa0day within which they were to be delivered to the Urban Praetor, private ownership becoming illegal. â\x80\x94 A\xa0similar decision had been taken even at an earlier period, after the burning of the Capitol during the Social War; when the verses of the Sibyl, or Sibyls, as the case may be, were collected from Samos, Ilium, and Erythrae, and even in Africa, Sicily, and the Graeco-Italian colonies; the priests being entrusted with the task of sifting out the genuine specimens, so far as should have been possible by human means. Hence, in this case also, the book in question was submitted to the examination of the Quindecimvirate. <
6.21. \xa0For all consultations on such business he used the highest part of his villa and the confidential services of one freedman. Along the pathless and broken heights (for the house overlooks a cliff) this illiterate and robust guide led the way in front of the astrologer whose art Tiberius had resolved to investigate, and on his return, had any suspicion arisen of incompetence or of fraud, hurled him into the sea below, lest he should turn betrayer of the secret. Thrasyllus, then, introduced by the same rocky path, after he had impressed his questioner by adroit revelations of his empire to be and of the course of the future, was asked if he had ascertained his own horoscope â\x80\x94 what was the character of that year â\x80\x94 what the complexion of that day. A\xa0diagram which he drew up of the positions and distances of the stars at first gave him pause; then he showed signs of fear: the more careful his scrutiny, the greater his trepidation between surprise and alarm; and at last he exclaimed that a doubtful, almost a final, crisis was hard upon him. He was promptly embraced by Tiberius, who, congratulating him on the fact that he had divined, and was about to escape, his perils, accepted as oracular truth, the predictions he had made, and retained him among his closest friends. <
11.15.1. \xa0He next consulted the senate on the question of founding a college of diviners, so that "the oldest art of Italy should not become extinct through their indolence. often, in periods of public adversity, they had called in diviners, on whose advice religious ceremonies had been renewed and, for the future, observed with greater correctness; while the Etruscan nobles, voluntarily or at the instance of the Roman senate, had kept up the art and propagated it in certain families. Now that work was done more negligently through the public indifference to all liberal accomplishments, combined with the progress of alien superstitions. For the moment, indeed, all was flourishing; but they must show their gratitude to the favour of Heaven by making sure that the sacred rituals observed in the time of hazard were not forgotten in the day of prosperity." A\xa0senatorial decree was accordingly passed, instructing the pontiffs to consider what points in the discipline of the haruspices needed to be maintained or strengthened.
12.8.1. \xa0On the wedding-day Silanus committed suicide; whether he had preserved his hope of life till then, or whether the date was deliberately chosen to increase the odium of his death. His sister Calvina was expelled from Italy. Claudius, in addition, prescribed sacrifices in accordance with the legislation of King Tullus, and expiatory ceremonies to be carried out by the pontiffs in the grove of Diana; universal derision being excited by this choice of a period in which to unearth the penalties and purifications of incest. Agrippina, on the other hand, not to owe her reputation entirely to crime, procured a remission of banishment for Annaeus Seneca, along with a praetorship: his literary fame, she conceived, would make the act popular with the nation; while she was anxious to gain so distinguished a tutor for Domitius in his transit from boyhood to adolescence, and to profit by his advice in their designs upon the throne. For the belief was that Seneca was attached to Agrippina by the memory of her kindness and embittered against Claudius by resentment of his injury.
12.52.3. \xa0In the consulate of Faustus Sulla and Salvius Otho, Furius Scribonianus was driven into exile, on a charge of inquiring into the end of the sovereign by the agency of astrologers: his mother Vibidia was included in the arraignment, on the ground that she had not acquiesced in her former misadventure â\x80\x94 she had been sentenced to relegation. Camillus, the father of Scribonianus, had taken arms in Dalmatia: a\xa0point placed by the emperor to the credit of his clemency, since he was sparing this hostile stock for a second time. The exile, however, did not long survive: the question whether he died by a natural death or from poison was answered by the gossips according to their various beliefs. The expulsion of the astrologers from Italy was ordered by a drastic and impotent decree of the senate. Then followed a speech by the emperor, commending all who voluntarily renounced senatorial rank owing to straitened circumstances: those who, by remaining, added impudence to poverty were removed. <
13.24.2. \xa0At the end of the year, the cohort usually present on guard at the Games was withdrawn; the objects being to give a greater appearance of liberty, to prevent the troops from being corrupted by too close contact with the licence of the theatre, and to test whether the populace would continue its orderly behaviour when its custodians were removed. A\xa0lustration of the city was carried out by the emperor at the recommendation of the soothsayers, since the temples of Jupiter and Minerva had been struck by lightning. <' "
14.12.2. \xa0However, with a notable spirit of emulation among the magnates, decrees were drawn up: thanksgivings were to be held at all appropriate shrines; the festival of Minerva, on which the conspiracy had been brought to light, was to be celebrated with annual games; a\xa0golden statue of the goddess, with an effigy of the emperor by her side, was to be erected in the curia, and Agrippina's birthday included among the inauspicious dates. Earlier sycophancies Thrasea Paetus had usually allowed to pass, either in silence or with a curt assent: this time he walked out of the senate, creating a source of danger for himself, but implanting no germ of independence in his colleagues. Portents, also, frequent and futile made their appearance: a\xa0woman gave birth to a serpent, another was killed by a thunderbolt in the embraces of her husband; the sun, again, was suddenly obscured, and the fourteen regions of the capital were struck by lightning â\x80\x94 events which so little marked the concern of the gods that Nero continued for years to come his empire and his crimes. However, to aggravate the feeling against his mother, and to furnish evidence that his own mildness had increased with her removal, he restored to their native soil two women of high rank, Junia and Calpurnia, along with the ex-praetors Valerius Capito and Licinius Gabolus â\x80\x94 all of them formerly banished by Agrippina. He sanctioned the return, even, of the ashes of Lollia Paulina, and the erection of a tomb: Iturius and Calvisius, whom he had himself relegated some little while before, he now released from the penalty. As to Silana, she had died a natural death at Tarentum, to which she had retraced her way, when Agrippina, by whose enmity she had fallen, was beginning to totter or to relent. <" '
15.47.2. \xa0At the close of the year, report was busy with portents heralding disaster to come â\x80\x94 lightning-flashes in numbers never exceeded, a comet (a\xa0phenomenon to which Nero always made atonement in noble blood); two-headed embryos, human or of the other animals, thrown out in public or discovered in the sacrifices where it is the rule to kill pregt victims. Again, in the territory of Placentia, a calf was born close to the road with the head grown to a leg; and there followed an interpretation of the soothsayers, stating that another head was being prepared for the world; but it would be neither strong nor secret, as it had been repressed in the womb, and had been brought forth at the wayside.' ". None