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[4] For Metellus declared that he would not take the oath, and the senate broke up for a while; but after a few days Saturninus summoned the senators to the rostra and tried to force them to take the oath. When Marius came forward there was silence, and the eyes of all were fastened upon him. Then, bidding a long farewell to all his boastful and insincere expressions in the senate, he said his throat was not broad enough to pronounce an opinion once for all upon so important a matter, but that he would take the oath, and obey the law, if it was a law; adding this bit of sophistry as a cloak for his shame.

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