Having finished her testimony, again falling at their feet, she repeated the same prayers that they should banish her.
The consul asked his mother-in-law to vacate some part of the house into [p. 257]
which Hispala might move. An apartment above1
was assigned to her, the stairs leading to the street being closed up and an approach to the house arranged.
All the household goods of Faecenia were at once moved and her slaves summoned, and Aebutius was directed to move to the house of a client of the consul.
When both witnesses were thus available, Postumius laid the matter before the senate, everything being set forth in detail; first what had been reported, then what he had himself discovered.
Great panic seized the Fathers, both on the public account, lest these conspiracies and gatherings by night might produce something of hidden treachery or danger, and privately, each for himself, lest anyone might be involved in the mischief. The senate, moreover, decreed that the consul should be thanked because he had investigated the affair both with great industry and without creating any confusion.
Then the investigation of the Bacchanals and their nocturnal orgies they referred to the consuls, not as a part of their regular duties;
they directed the consuls to see to it that the witnesses Aebutius and Faecenia did not suffer harm and to attract other informers by rewards; the priests of these rites, whether men or women, should be sought out, not only at Rome but through all the villages and communities, that they might be at the disposal of the consuls;
that it should be proclaimed in addition in the city of Rome and that edicts should be sent through all Italy, that no one who had been initiated in the Bacchic rites should presume to assemble or come together for the purpose of celebrating those rites or to perform any such ritual.
Before all, it [p. 259]
was decreed that an inquiry should be conducted3
regarding those persons who had come together or conspired for the commission of any immorality or crime. Such was the decree of the senate.
The consuls ordered the curule aediles to search out all the priests of this cult and to keep them under surveillance, in free custody for the investigation; the plebeian aediles were to see to it that no celebration of the rites should be held in secret.
The task was entrusted to the triumviri capitales4
of placing guards through the City, of seeing that no night meetings were held, and of making provision against fire; as assistants to the triumviri,
the quinqueviri uls cis Tiberim5
were to stand guard each over the buildings of his own district.