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Whilst steps were being taken to complete the drafts for the legions in the provinces, some of the senators suggested that the time had come to deal with a state of things, which, however they might have put up with it at a time of critical emergency, was intolerable now that the goodness of the gods had removed their fears.  Amid the close attention of the House they stated that "the twelve Latin colonies which refused to furnish soldiers when Q. Fabius and Q. Fulvius were our consuls have now for almost six years been enjoying an exemption from military service, as though an honourable distinction had been conferred upon them.  In the meanwhile our good and faithful allies have, as a reward for their fidelity and devotion, been completely exhausted by the levies which they have raised year after year."  These words not only recalled to the memory of the senate a fact which they had almost forgotten, but they called forth a strong feeling of resentment.  Accordingly, they insisted on taking this as the first business before the House, and made the following decree: "The consuls shall summon to Rome the chief magistrates and the ten leading councillors of each of the offending colonies, namely, Nepete, Sutrium, Ardea, Cales, Alba, Carseoli, Sora, Suessa, Setia, Cerceii, Narnia, and Interamna.  They shall order each colony to supply a contingent of infantry twice as numerous as the largest they have raised since the Carthaginians appeared in Italy, and 120 cavalry in addition. In case any colony cannot make up the required number of mounted men they shall be allowed to substitute three foot-soldiers for each horseman deficient.  Both the cavalry and infantry are to be selected from the wealthiest citizens, and sent wherever reinforcements are required outside the limits of Italy. If any of them refuse to comply with this demand, we order that the magistrates and representatives of that colony be detained, and no audience of the senate shall be granted until they have done what is required of them.  In addition to these requirements a property tax of one tenth per cent.  shall be imposed on those colonies to be paid annually, and the assessment shall be made similarly to the one in force in Rome. The Roman censors are to supply the censors of the colonies with the necessary schedule of instructions, and the latter must bring their lists to Rome and verify their accuracy on oath before going out of office."  In pursuance of this resolution of the senate the magistrates and chief councillors of those colonies were summoned to Rome.  When the consuls ordered them to furnish the necessary supplies of men and money they broke out into loud and angry remonstrances.  It was impossible, they said, for so many soldiers to be raised, they would have the utmost difficulty in getting as many as they were bound to supply under the old conditions.  They entreated that they might be allowed to appear and plead their cause before the senate, and protested that they had done nothing to justify this ruinous treatment. Even if it meant death to them, no fault which they might have committed, no angry threats on the part of Rome could make them raise more men than they possessed. The consuls were inflexible and ordered the representatives to remain in Rome whilst the magistrates returned home to levy the men.  They were told that unless the required number of men was brought to Rome the senate would grant them no audience.  As there was no hope of approaching the senate and begging for more favourable treatment, they proceeded with the enlistment throughout the twelve colonies, and it presented no difficulty owing to the increase in the number of men of military age through the long exemption.
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