Such were the events in Spain in the consulship of Quintus Fabius and Marcus Claudius.
At Rome, immediately after the newly elected tribunes of the plebs had entered upon office, a day was set by Marcus Metellus, a tribune of the plebs, for the censors Publius Furius and Marcus Atilius to appear at the bar of the people.
In his quaestorship the year before they had taken away his horse, removed him from his tribe and made him an aerarian on account of the conspiracy formed at Cannae to desert Italy.1
But by the aid of nine tribunes they were forbidden to plead their cause while in office and were released.
From completing the ceremony of purification they were prevented by the death of Publius Furius. Marcus Atilius abdicated his office.
For the consulship the election was conducted by Quintus Fabius Maximus, the consul. Elected consuls, both in absence, were Quintus Fabius Maximus, the consul's son, and Tiberius Sempronius Gracchus, the latter for the second time.
Two men [p. 315]
who were at the time curule aediles, Publius2
Sempronius Tuditanus and Gnaeus Fulvius Centumalus, were made praetors, and with them Marcus Atilius and Marcus Aemilius Lepidus.
Tradition has it that at the festival given that year by the curule aediles four days had dramatic performances for the first time.
The aedile Tuditanus was the man who at Cannae, when others were paralyzed by fear in such a disaster, led his men through the midst of the enemy.3
These elections being completed, the consuls4
designate were summoned to Rome, as proposed by Quintus Fabius, the consul, entered upon office and consulted the senate in regard to the war and the provinces, their own and those of the praetors, and as to the armies which they should respectively command;