The next day, according to his custom, Caesar led out
his forces from both camps, and having advanced a little from the larger one,
drew up his line of battle, and gave the enemy an opportunity of fighting. When
he found that they did not even then come out [from their intrenchments,] he led
back his army into camp about noon. Then at last Ariovistus sent
part of his forces to attack the lesser camp. The battle was vigorously
maintained on both sides till the evening. At sunset, after many wounds had been
inflicted and received, Ariovistus led back his forces into camp.
When Caesar inquired of his prisoners, wherefore
Ariovistus did not come to an engagement, he discovered this to
be the reason-that among the Germans it was the
custom for their matrons to pronounce from lots and divination, whether it were
expedient that the battle should be engaged in or not; that they had said, "that
it was not the will of heaven that the Germans should
conquer, if they engaged in battle before the new moon."