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New Commissioners Sent to Achaia

When the commissioners with L. Aurelius Orestes
On the report of L. Aurelius Orestes of the disturbance at Corinth, B.C. 147, the Senate send a fresh commission to warn the Achaeans.
arrived in Rome from the Peloponnese, they reported what had taken place, and declared that they had a narrow escape of actually losing their lives. They made the most of the occurrence and put the worst interpretation upon it; for they represented the violence which had been offered them as not the result of a sudden outbreak, but of a deliberate intention on the part of the Achaeans to inflict a signal insult upon them. The Senate was therefore more angry than it had ever been, and at once appointed Sextus Julius Caesar and other envoys with instructions to rebuke and upbraid the Achaeans for what had occurred, yet in terms of moderation, but to exhort them "not to listen to evil councillors, not to allow themselves to be betrayed into hostility with Rome, but even yet to make amends for their acts of folly by inflicting punishment on the authors of the crime." This was a clear proof that the Senate gave its instructions to Aurelius and his colleagues, not with the view of dismembering the league, but with the object of restraining the obstinacy and hostility of the Achaeans by terrifying and overawing them. Some people accordingly imagined that the Romans were acting hypocritically, because the Carthaginian war was still unfinished; but this was not the case. The fact is, that they had long regarded the Achaean league with favour, believing it to be the most trustworthy of all the Greek governments; and though now they were resolved to give it an alarm, because it had become too lofty in its pretensions, yet they were by no means minded to go to war or to have a serious quarrel with the Achaeans. . . .

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147 BC (1)
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