Now the dog star began to rise and sickness broke out in the camp of Censorinus, who was conducting his operations on a lake of stagnant water with high walls shutting off the fresh air from the sea, for which reason he moved his station from the lake to the sea. The Carthaginians, observing that the wind blew toward the Romans, attached ropes to some small boats and hauled them behind the walls, so that they should not be observed by the enemy, and filled them with dry twigs and tow. Then they pushed them back, and as they turned the corner and came in sight of the enemy, they poured brimstone and pitch over the contents, spread the sails, and, as the wind filled them, set fire to the boats. These, driven by the wind and the fury of the flames against the Roman ships, set fire to them and came a little short of destroying the whole fleet. Shortly afterward Censorinus went to Rome to conduct the election. Then the Carthaginians began to press more boldly against Manilius. They made a sally by night, some with arms, others, unarmed, carrying planks with which to bridge the ditch of the Roman camp, and began to tear down the palisades. While all was in confusion in the camp, as is usual in nocturnal assaults, Scipio passed out with his horse by the rear gates where there was no fighting, moved around to the front, and so frightened the Carthaginians that they betook themselves to the city. Thus a second time Scipio appeared to have been the salvation of the Romans by his conduct in this nocturnal mel£ee.
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THE PUNIC WARS
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