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 When they had so testified the Senate deprived Lentulus of his office. Cicero put each of the conspirators under arrest at the houses of the prætors, and returned directly to take the vote of the Senate concerning them. In the meantime there was a great tumult around the senate-house, the affair being as yet little understood, and those who did understand it being alarmed. The slaves and freedmen of Lentulus and Cethegus, reënforced by numerous artisans, made a circuit by back streets and assaulted the houses of the prætors in order to rescue their masters. When Cicero heard of this he hurried out of the senate-house and stationed the necessary guards and then came back and hastened the taking of the vote. Silanus, the consul-elect, spoke first, as it was the custom among the Romans for the one who was about to assume that office to deliver his opinion first, because, as I think, he would have most to do with the execution of the decrees, and hence would give more careful consideration and circumspection to each. It was the opinion of Silanus that the culprits should suffer the extreme penalty, and many senators agreed with him until it came Nero's turn to deliver his opinion. Nero judged that it would be best to keep them under guard until Catiline should be beaten in the field and they could obtain the most accurate knowledge of the facts.
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