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As was to be expected in a long siege requiring many meetings for conference with the enemy, it fell out that a certain Roman became intimate and confidential with one of the citizens of Veii, a man versed in ancient oracles, and reputed wiser than the rest from his being a diviner. The Roman saw that this man, on hearing the story of the lake, was overjoyed and made mock of the siege. He therefore told him this was not the only wonder which the passing days had brought, but that other and stranger signs than this had been given to the Romans, of which he was minded to tell him, in order that, if possible, he might better his own private case in the midst of the public distresses.

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