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In Gaul nothing of any importance was accomplished by the consul Sex.  Aelius, though he had two armies in the province. He retained the one which L. Cornelius had commanded and which ought to have been disbanded, and placed C. Helvius in command of it, the other army he brought with him into the province.  Almost the whole of his year of office was spent in compelling the former inhabitants of Cremona and Placentia to return to the homes from which they had been dispersed by the accidents of war.  While things were unexpectedly quiet in Gaul this year, the districts round the City very nearly became the scene of a rising among the slaves.  The Carthaginian hostages were under guard at Setia. As children of the nobility they were attended by a large body of [6??] slaves whose numbers had been swelled by many whom the Setians themselves had purchased from among the prisoners taken in the recent war in Africa.  When they had set their conspiracy on foot they sent some of their number to gain over the slaves in the country round Setia and then in the districts of Norba and Cerceii. Their preparations being now sufficiently advanced they arranged to seize the opportunity of the Games which were shortly to take place at Setia and attack the people while their attention was absorbed in the spectacle.  Then in the midst of the excitement and bloodshed the slaves were to seize Setia and then secure Norba and Cerceii. Information of this monstrous affair was brought to Rome and laid before L. Cornelius, the City praetor. Two slaves came to him before daybreak and gave him a full account of what had been done and what was contemplated.  After issuing instructions for them to be detained in his house he convened the senate and communicated the intelligence which the informers had brought.  He received instructions to start off at once to investigate and crush the conspiracy.  Accompanied by five assessors he compelled all whom he found in the fields to take the military oath, arm themselves and follow him. In this informal levy he collected an armed force of about 2000 men [12??] with which he reached Setia, all of them being perfectly ignorant of his destination. Here he promptly seized the ringleaders, and this led to a general flight of slaves from the town.  Parties were sent through the fields to hunt them down. . . . . The service rendered by the two slaves who gave the information and by one who was a freeman was of the utmost value.  To the latter the senate ordered a gratuity of 100,000 ases, to each of the slaves 5000 ases and their liberty, the owners being compensated out of the public treasury.  Not long afterwards news arrived that some slaves, the remains of that conspiracy, were intending to seize Praeneste. L. Cornelius proceeded thither and inflicted punishment on nearly 2000 who had been involved in the plot.  Fears were entertained by the citizens lest the Carthaginian hostages and prisoners of war should have been prime movers in the affair. Strict watch was accordingly kept in Rome in all the different wards, the subordinate magistrates were required to visit the posts and [17??] the superintendents of gaols were to see that the public prison at the quarries was more strictly guarded.  Instructions were also sent by the praetor to the Latin communities for the hostages to be kept in privacy and not allowed to appear in public; the prisoners were to be manacled with fetters not less than ten pounds in weight, and not to be confined in custody anywhere but in the State prisons.
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