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At the beginning of the year in which the above events took place, before M. Acilius had left for the war and whilst P. Cornelius was still in Rome, various portents were announced.  There is a tradition that two tame oxen in the Carinae climbed up the stairs on to the flat roof of a building. The haruspices ordered them to be burnt alive and the ashes thrown into the Tiber.  At Terracina and Amiternum several showers of stones were said to have fallen. At Menturnae the temple of Jupiter and the booths round the forum were reported to have been struck by lightning, and at Volturnus two ships in the mouth of the river which had been similarly struck were burnt out.  In consequence of these portents the senate gave directions for the decemviri to consult the Sibylline Books, and they ordained that a fast day must be instituted in honour of Ceres to be observed every five years;  that the sacrifices should be offered for nine days and solemn intercessions for one day, the suppliants to wear wreaths of laurel leaves, and that the consul should offer sacrifice to such deities and with such victims as the decemvirs should name.  After the gods had been appeased and the portents duly expiated the consul left for his province. On his arrival he ordered the proconsul Cneius Domitius to disband his army and depart for Rome; he himself led his army into the country of the Boii.
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