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[108] Nor is it the Sicilians only, but even all other tribes and nations greatly worship Ceres of Enna. In truth, if initiation into those sacred mysteries of the Athenians sought for with the greatest avidity, to which people Ceres is said to have come in that long wandering of hers, and then she brought them corn. How much greater reverence ought to be paid to her by those people among whom it is certain that she was born, and first discovered corn. And, therefore, in the time of our fathers, at a most disastrous and critical time to the republic, when, after the death of Tiberius Gracchus, there was a fear that great dangers were portended to the state by various prodigies, in the consulship of Publius Mucius and Lucius Calpurnius, recourse was had to the Sibylline books, in which it was found set down, “that the most ancient Ceres ought to be appeased.” Then, priests of the Roman people, selected from the most honourable college of decemvirs, although there was in our own city a most beautiful and magnificent temple of Ceres, nevertheless went as far as Enna. For such was the authority and antiquity of the reputation for holiness of that place, that when they went thither, they seemed to be going not to a temple of Ceres, but to Ceres herself.

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load focus Notes (J. B. Greenough, G. L. Kittredge)
load focus Latin (Albert Clark, William Peterson, 1917)
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