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Many dreadful portents were witnessed in Rome this year and reported from outlying districts.  In the precincts of the temple of Vulcan and Concord there was a rain of blood, and the pontiffs announced that the spears had been shaken and the image of Juno Sospita at Lanuvium had shed tears.  So severe an epidemic broke out in the market-towns and country districts that Libitina was hardly able to supply the materials for the funerals.  Greatly alarmed by these portents and by the ravages of the pestilence, the senate decreed that the consuls should sacrifice full-grown victims to whatever deities they thought proper, and that the Sacred Books should be consulted.  The Keepers of these Books decreed that special intercession should be offered at all the shrines for a whole day. They also advised that intercessions and suspension of work for three days should be observed throughout Italy.  The senate approved and the consuls published an edict ordering the observance. Owing to a revolt in Corsica and hostilities on the part of the Ilians in Sardinia it had been decided to call up 8000 Latin and allied infantry and 300 cavalry for the praetor M. Pinarius to take with him to Sardinia, but such was the extent and deadly [7??] nature of the pestilence that the consuls reported the number could not be made up owing to the great mortality and wide-spread sickness.  The praetor was ordered to take what he wanted from C. Baebius, who was wintering in Pisae, and to sail from there to Sardinia.  The praetor L. Duronius, to whom the province of Apulia had fallen, was further charged with an investigation into the Bacchanalia, some remains of which had come to light the previous year, seeds as it were sown by the earlier mischief.  L. Pupius, the former praetor, had begun an inquiry but it had not been brought to a definite issue. The senate sent orders to the new praetor to cut the evil out and prevent it from spreading.  Acting on the authority of the senate, the consuls brought before the people a measure dealing with bribery.
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