They now give way in every direction, the consul Sempronius in vain chiding and exhorting them; neither his authority nor his dignity availed any thing;
and they would presently have turned their backs to the enemy, had not Sextus Tempanius, a commander of a troop of horse, with great presence of mind brought them support, when matters were now desperate.
When he called out aloud, “that the horsemen who wished for the safety of the commonwealth should leap from their horses,” the horsemen of all the troops being moved, as if by the consul's orders, he says, “unless this cohort by its arms can stop the progress of the enemy, there is an end of the empire. Follow my spear as your standard. Show to the Romans and Volscians, that no cavalry are equal to you as cavalry, nor infantry to you as infantry.”
When this exhortation was approved by a loud shout, he advances, holding his spear aloft. Wherever they go, they open a passage for themselves; putting forward their targets they force on to [p. 294]
the place where they saw the distress of their friends great- est.
The fight is restored in every part, as far as their onset reached; nor was there a doubt but that if so few could accomplish every thing at the same time, the enemy would have turned their backs.