He then sounded the charge, and leaping from his horse, caught hold of the nearest standard bearer and hurried him towards the enemy, calling out: “Forward soldiers!”
But when they saw Camillus, who for bodily feats was now grown old and infirm, advancing in person against the foe, they all gave a cheer and rushed forward together, and every man took up the cry of “Follow the General!”
It is even said that Camillus bade the standard-bearer hurl his ensign into the press of enemies, and urging the front ranks to recover it, then for the first time discomfited the Antiates.
The panic did not stop with the first line, but spread even to the troops in support.
It was not only the dash of the Roman soldiers, inspired by their leader's presence, which overcame them; for nothing so daunted the spirits of the Volsci as the sight of Camillus himself, when they happened to encounter him —so surely, wherever he went, did he carry victory with him.
This was especially apparent on the left. That wing had already nearly given way, when Camillus suddenly threw himself upon a horse, and, armed with an infantry-shield, rode up and by his presence retrieved the battle, calling out that the rest of the army was conquering.
The fortune of the day had now turned, [p. 223]
but the enemy's numbers were an obstacle even to1
their flight, and a great multitude remained for the weary soldiers to dispatch with long-drawn massacre, when suddenly great gusts of wind brought on a downpour of rain, which broke off what was rather a certain victory than a battle.
Thereupon the recall was sounded, and the night that followed finished the campaign for the Romans, while they slept. For the Latins and Hernici abandoned the Volsci and marched off to their homes, their evil counsels rewarded with as evil an outcome;
and the Volsci, perceiving themselves to be deserted by those on whom they had relied in their rebellion, forsook their camp and shut themselves up within the walls of Satricum.
Camillus at first set about confining them with a palisade and mound, intending to lay siege to them; but finding the enemy made no sorties to interrupt the work, he concluded they had not sufficient resolution to make him wait so long for victory. He therefore encouraged his troops not to wear themselves out with protracted toil, as though they were besieging Veii, when victory was within their grasp; and with great alacrity on the part of the soldiers, he approached the walls from every side and captured the town with scaling ladders. The Volsci threw away their weapons and surrendered.