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Listen now to the facts relating to the charge about wine, which they meant to be the most odious, and the most important charge. The charge, O judges, has been thus stated by Plaetorius: that it had not occurred to Fonteius for the first time when he was in Gaul to establish a transit duty on wine, but that he had thought of the plan in Italy, before he departed from Rome. Accordingly, that Titurius had exacted at Tolosa fourteen denarii for every amphora 1 of wine, under the name of transit duty; that Portius and Numius at Crodunum had exacted three victoriati; that Serveus at Vulchalo had exacted two victoriati; and in those districts they believe that transit duty was exacted by these men at Vulchalo, in case of any one turning aside to Cobiamachus, which is a small town between Tolosa and Narbo, and not wishing to proceed so far as Tolosa. Elesiodulus exacted only six denarii from those who were taking wine to the enemy. 2 [20] I see, O judges, that this is a charge, important both from the sort of crime imputed, (for a tax is said to have been imposed on our produce, and I confess that a very large sum of money might have been amassed by that means,) and from its unpopular nature; for our adversaries have endeavoured to make this charge as widely known as possible, by making it the subject of their conversation. But I think that the more serious a charge is, which is proved to be false, the greater is the wickedness of that man who invented it; for he wishes by the magnitude of the accusation to prejudice the minds of those who hear it, so that the truth may afterwards find a difficult entrance into them.

[Everything relating to the charge about the wine, to the war with the Vocontii, and the arrangement of winter quarters, is wanting.]

1 The amphora contained nearly six gallons, a denarius, as has been said before, was about eight pence-halfpenny; so that this duty was, as nearly as may be, one and eightpence a gallon. A victoriatus was half a denarius.

2 The whole of this passage is very corrupt; the last line or two so hopelessly so, and so unintelligible, that perhaps it would have been better to have marked them with asterisks instead of attempting to translate them.

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