After the capture of Veii, the following year had six military tribunes with consular power, the two Publii Cornelii, Cossus and Scipio, Marcus Valerius Maximus a second time, Kaeso Fabius Ambustus a third time, Lucius Furius Medullinus a fifth time, Quintus Servilius a third time. To the Cornelii the Faliscian war, to Valerius and Servilius the Capenatian war, fell by lot.
By them no cities were attempted by storm or by siege, but the country was laid waste, and the plunder of the effects on the lands was driven off; not a single fruit tree, not a vegetable was left on the land. These losses reduced the people of Capena; peace was granted to them on their suing for it. The war among the Faliscians still continued.
At Rome in the mean time sedition became multiplied; and for the purpose of assuaging this they resolved that a colony should be sent off to the Volscian country, for which three thousand Roman citizens should be enrolled; and the triumvirs appointed for the purpose, distributed three acres and seven-twelfths to each man.
This donation began to be scorned, because they thought that it was offered as a solace for the disappointment of higher hopes. For why were the commons to be sent into exile to the Volscians, when the magnificent city of Veii was still in view, and the Veientian territory, more fertile and extensive than the Roman territory?
The city also they extolled as preferable to the city of Rome, both in situation, in the grandeur of its enclosures, and buildings, both public and private. Nay, even that scheme was proposed, which after the taking of Rome by the Gauls was still more strongly urged, of removing to Veii. But they destined Veii to be inhabited by half the commons and half the senate; and that two cities of one common republic might be inhabited by the Roman people.1
When the nobles strove against these measures so strenuously, as to de- [p. 354]
dare "that they would sooner die in the sight of the Roman people, than that any
of these things should be put to the vote; for that now in one city there were so many dissensions; what would there be in two? Would any one prefer a vanquished to a victorious city; and suffer Veii now after being captured to enjoy greater prosperity than it had before its
capture? Lastly, that they may be forsaken in their country by their fellow-citizens; that no power should ever oblige them to forsake their country and fellow-citizens, and follow Titus Licinius (for he was the tribune of the commons who proposed the measure) as a founder to Veii, abandoning the divine Romulus, the son of a god, the parent and founder of the city of Rome. When these proceedings were going on with shameful contentions, (for the
patricians had drawn over one half of the tribunes of the commons to their sentiments,) nothing else obliged the commons to refrain from violence, but that whenever a clamour was set up for the purpose of commencing a riot, the principal members of the senate, presenting themselves among the foremost to the crowd, ordered that they themselves should be attacked, struck, and put to death. Whilst they abstained from violating their age, dignity, and honourable station, their respect for them checked their rage even with respect to similar attempts on others.