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The fall of Heraclea, however, broke the spirit of the Aetolians.  Within a few days of their asking Antiochus to resume hostilities and return to Greece they laid aside all thoughts of war and sent envoys to the consul to sue for peace.  When they began to speak, the consul cut them short by saying that there were other matters which had to be attended to first. He then granted them a ten days' armistice and directed them to return to Hypata accompanied by L. Valerius Flaccus, to whom they were to refer the questions they had intended to discuss with him, and any other matters which they wished to discuss.  On his arrival at Hypata, Flaccus found the Aetolian leaders assembled in council and deliberating as to what line they should take in negotiating with the consul.  They were preparing to begin by alleging the old-standing treaty-rights and their service to Rome, when Flaccus bade them desist from appealing to treaties which they had themselves violated and broken.  They would gain much more, he told them, by confessing their misdoings and simply asking for mercy.  Their only hope of safety lay not in the strength of their case but in the clemency of the Roman people, and if they adopted a suppliant attitude he would stand by them before the consul and in the senate at Rome, for they would have to send their delegates there also.  All those present saw that only one path led to safety, namely their formal submission to Rome. They believed that their appearance as suppliants would give them an inviolable character in Roman eyes, and they would still preserve their independence should Fortune hold out any better prospect.
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