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COLUMNA BELLICA

a small column standing in an open area beside the temple of Bellona in the campus Martius. A soldier of Pyrrhus had been forced to buy this spot of ground in order that it might represent foreign soil, and the column represented a boundary stone over which the fetial cast his spear when war was to be declared in due form against a foreign foe (Ov. Fast. vi. 205-9; Serv. Aen. ix. 52; Fest. 33; Placidus 14 (Deuerl.)). This act is said to have been performed as late as the time of Marcus Aurelius (Cass. Dio lxxi. 33).

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