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Towards the close of the day, he entered the senate, and after he had made a short speech to them, pretending that he had been seized in the streets, and compelled by violence to assume the imperial authority, which he designed to exercise in conjunction with them, he retired to the palace Besides other compliments which he received from those who flocked about him to congratulate and flatter him, he was called Nero by the mob, and manifested no intention of declining that cognomen. Nay, some authors relate, that he used it in his official acts, and the first letters he sent to the governors of provinces. He suffered all his images and statues to be replaced, and restored his procurators and freedmen to their former posts. And the first writing which he signed as emperor, was a promise of fifty millions of sesterces to finish the Golden-house.1 He is said to have been greatly frightened that night in his sleep, and to have groaned heavily; and being found, by those who came running in to see what the matter was, lying upon the floor before his bed, he endeavoured by every kind of atonement to appease the ghost of Galba, by which he had found himself violently tumbled out of bed. The next day, as he was taking the omens, a great storm arising, and sustaining a grievous fall, he muttered to himself from time to time: “τί γαρ́ μοι καὶ μακροῖς αὐλοῖς;2
” “What business have I the loud trumpets to sound?
1 See NERO, c. xxxi. The sum estimated as requisite for its completion amounted to $10,500,000 of our money.
2 The two last words, literally translated, mean "long trumpets;" such as were used at sacrifices. The sense is, therefore, "What have I to do, my hands stained with blood, with performing religious ceremonies?"
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