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Marius, who, as I said before, had been made consul with great eagerness on the part of the populace, began, though he had always been hostile to the patricians, to inveigh against them, after the people gave him the province of Numidia, with great frequency and violence; he attacked them sometimes individually and sometimes in a body; he said that he had snatched from them the consulship as spoils from vanquished enemies; and uttered other remarks laudatory to himself and offensive to them. Meanwhile he made the provision for the war his chief object; he asked for reinforcements for the legions; he sent for auxiliaries from foreign states, kings, and allies; he also enlisted all the bravest men from Latium, most of whom were known to him by actual service, some few only by report, and induced, by earnest solicitation, even discharged veterans1 to accompany him. Nor did the senate, though adverse to him, dare to refuse him any thing; the additions to the legions they had voted even with eagerness, because military service was thought to be unpopular with the multitude, and Marius seemed likely to lose either the means of warfare,2 or the favor of the people. But such expectations were entertained in vain, so ardent was the desire of going with Marius that had seized on almost all. Every one cherished the fancy3 that he should return home laden with spoil, crowned with victory, or attended with some similar good fortune. Marius himself, too, had excited them in no small degree by a speech; for, when all that he required was granted, and he was anxious to commence a levy, he called an assembly of the people, as well to encourage them to enlist, as to inveigh, according to his practice, against the nobility. He spoke, on the occasion, as follows:

1 LXXXIV. Discharged veterans] “Homines emeritis stipendiis.” Soldiers who had completed their term of service.

2 Means of warfare] “Usum belli.” That is ea quœ belli usus posceret, troops and supplies.

3 Cherished the fancy] “Animis trahebant.” “"Trahere animo is always to revolve in the mind, not to let the thought of a thing escape from the mind."” Kritzius.

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