The same year Valerius the consul, having marched with an army against the Aequi, was unable to entice the enemy into a battle, and directed an assault upon their camp. This was foiled by an awful storm that descended upon them with hail and claps of thunder.
Their amazement was soon increased, on the signal for retreat being given, by the reappearance of so tranquil and cloudless a sky, that, as though some god had defended the camp, they scrupled to attack it a second time, and directed all their hostility towards devastating the fields.
The other consul, Aemilius, conducted a campaign in the Sabine country. There, too, the enemy kept within his walls, and the Romans laid waste his fields.
Afterwards, by setting fire not only to farmhouses but even to the villages, where the people lived close together, they aroused the Sabines, who, having met the pillagers and fought a drawn battle with them, next day withdrew their camp to a safer position.
This seemed to the consul a sufficient pretext for leaving the enemy, as conquered, and he retired ere the campaign had fairly begun.