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Pressure Put On Achaia and Aetolia

Aulus being thus Proconsul, and wintering in Thessaly
B. C. 169. Aulus Hostilius, in Greece with proconsular authority, sends Popilius and Octavius to visit the Greek towns and read the decree of the Senate.
with the army, sent Gaius Popilius and Gnaeus Octavius to visit certain places in Greece. They first came to Thebes, where, after speaking in complimentary terms of the Thebans, they exhorted them to maintain their good disposition towards Rome. They then went a round of the cities in the Peloponnese, and endeavoured to convince the people of the clemency and humanity of the Senate by producing the1 decree which I recently mentioned.
They visit the Peloponnese, and express some dissatisfaction at the backward policy of certain Achaeans.
At the same time they made it clearly understood that the Senate was aware who in the several states were hanging back and trying to evade their obligations, and who were forward and zealous; and they let it be seen that they were as much displeased with those who thus hung back as with those who openly took the opposite side. This brought hesitation and doubt to the minds of the people at large, as to how to frame their words and actions so as to exactly suit the necessities of the times.
Lycortas, Archon, and Polybius are supposed to be particularly aimed at.
Gaius and Gnaeus were reported to have resolved, as soon as the Achaean congress was assembled, to accuse Lycortas, Archon, and Polybius, and to point out that they were opposed to the policy of Rome; and were at the present moment refraining from active measures, not because that was their genuine inclination, but because they were watching the turn of events, and waiting their opportunity. They did not, however, venture to do this, because they had no wellfounded pretext for attacking these men. Accordingly, when the council2 met at Aegium, after delivering a speech of mingled compliments and exhortation, they took ship for Aetolia.

1 The decree referred to is given in Livy, 43, 17. "No one shall supply any war material to the Roman magistrates other than that which the Senate has decreed." This had been extracted from the Senate by vehement complaints reaching Rome of the cruel extortions of the Roman officers in the previous two years.

2 Polybius seems to mean the smaller council, not the public assembly, though Livy evidently understood the latter (43, 47).

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