Another concern also pressed upon them, namely, that the public was heavily distressed by usurious practices;
and although avarice had been restricted by many laws respecting usury, yet a fraudulent course had been adopted —that of transferring the securities to subjects of some of the allied states, who were not bound by those laws, by which means usurers over-whelmed their debtors by unlimited interest.
On considering of the best method for putting a stop to this evil the senate decreed, that a certain day should be fixed on for it, the next approaching festival of the infernal deities; and that any of the allies who should from that day lend money to the Roman citizens, should register the transaction; and that all proceedings respecting such money, lent after that day, should be regulated by the laws of whichever of the two states the debtor should choose.
In some time after, when the great amount of debt, contracted through this kind of fraud, was discovered
by means of the registries, Marcus Sempronius, plebeian tribune, by direction of the senate, proposed to the people, and the people ordered, that the laws relative to money lent between Roman citizens and subjects of any of the allied states, or Latin confederacy, should be the same as those between Roman citizens. Such were the transactions in Italy, civil and military.
In Spain the war was far from being so formidable as the exaggerations of report had represented it.
In Hither Spain, Caius Flaminius took the town of Ilucia, in the country of the Oretanians, and then marched his army into winter quarters. Several engagements took place during the winter, but none deserving of particular mention, directed against incursions of robbers rather than of the enemy; and yet with various success, and not without the loss of some men. More important services were performed by Marcus Fulvius.
He fought a pitched battle near the town of Toletum, against the Vaccaeans, Vectonians, and Celtiberians; routed and dispersed their combined forces, and took prisoner their king, Hilermus. [p. 1560]