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[77] Therefore they have no tripudium and they cross rivers without first taking the auspices. What, then, has become of divining by means of birds? It is not used by those who conduct our wars, for they have not the right of auspices. Since it has been [p. 459] withdrawn from use in the field I suppose it is reserved for city use only!

"As to divination ex acuminibus, 1 which is altogether military, it was wholly ignored by that famous man, Marcus Marcellus, who was consul five times and, besides, was a commander-in-chief, as well as a very fine augur. In fact, he used to say that, if he wished to execute some manœuvre which he did not want interfered with by the auspices, he would travel in a closed litter.2 His method is of a kind with the advice which we augurs give, that the draught-cattle be ordered to be unyoked so as to prevent a iuge auspicium.3

1 This is supposed to be a divining by means of electrical flashes from the points of spears, swords, and javelins. Cf. Pliny, H.N. ii. 37; Seneca, Q.N. i. 1; Livy xxii. 1; xliii. 13; Cic. N.D. ii. 3. 9.

2 So that he would not see any unpropitious signs.

3 This occurred when two draught cattle while yoked together dunged at the same time.

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load focus Introduction (William Armistead Falconer, 1923)
load focus Latin (C. F. W. Müller, 1915)
load focus Latin (William Armistead Falconer, 1923)
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