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Whilst they were on their way to Syracuse Scipio prepared to justify himself, not by words but by acts. He gave orders for the whole of the army to muster at Syracuse and the fleet to be prepared for action as though he had to engage the Carthaginians that day both by land and sea.  When the commission had landed he received them courteously, and the following day he invited them to watch the maneuvers of his land and sea forces, the troops performing their evolutions as in [3??] battle, whilst the ships in the harbour engaged in a sham sea-fight.  Then the praetor and the commissioners were taken for a tour of inspection round the arsenals and magazines and the other preparations for war, and the impression made by the whole and by each separate detail was such as to convince them that if that general and that army could not conquer Carthage, no one ever could.  They bade him sail for Africa with the blessing of heaven, and fulfil as speedily as possible the hopes and expectations in which the centuries had unanimously chosen him as their consul.  They left in such joyous spirits that they seemed to be taking back the announcement of a victory, and not simply reporting the magnificent preparations for war.  Pleminius and his fellow criminals were thrown into prison as soon as they reached Rome. When they were first brought before the people by the tribunes the minds of all were too full of the sufferings of the Locrians to leave any room for pity.  But after they had been brought forward several times the feeling against them became gradually less embittered, the mutilation which Pleminius had suffered and the thought of the absent Scipio who had befriended him disposed the populace in his favour.  However, before the trial was over he died in prison. Clodius Licinius in the Third Book of his Roman History says that Pleminius bribed some men to set fire to various parts of the City during the Games which Scipio Africanus was celebrating, in fulfilment of a vow, during his second consulship, to give him an opportunity of breaking out of gaol and making his escape.  The plot was discovered, and he was by order of the senate consigned to the Tullianum.  No proceedings took place with regard to Scipio except in the senate, where all the commissioners and the tribunes spoke in such glowing terms of the general and his fleet and army that the senate resolved that an expedition should start for Africa as soon as possible.  They gave Scipio permission to select from the armies in Sicily what troops he would like to take with him, and what he would leave in occupation of the island.
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