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[162] WHEN the public affairs were in this posture, Claudius was on the sudden hurried away out of his house; for the soldiers had a meeting together; and when they had debated about what was to be done, they saw that a democracy was incapable of managing such a vast weight of public affairs; and that if it should be set up, it would not be for their advantage; and in case any one of those already in the government should obtain the supreme power, it would in all respects be to their grief, if they were not assisting to him in this advancement; that it would therefore be right for them, while the public affairs were unsettled, to choose Claudius emperor, who was uncle to the deceased Caius, and of a superior dignity and worth to every one of those that were assembled together in the senate, both on account of the virtues of his ancestors, and of the learning he had acquired in his education; and who, if once settled in the empire, would reward them according to their deserts, and bestow largesses upon them. These were their consultations, and they executed the same immediately. Claudius was therefore seized upon suddenly by the soldiery. But Cneas Sentius Saturninus, although he understood that Claudius was seized, and that he intended to claim the government, unwillingly indeed in appearance, but in reality by his own free consent, stood up in the senate, and, without being dismayed, made an exhortatory oration to them, and such a one indeed as was fit for men of freedom and generosity, and spake thus:

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