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Meanwhile the operations of Vespasian were hastened by the zeal of the army of Illyricum, which had come over to his side. The third legion set the example to the other legions of Mœsia. These were the eighth and seventh (Claudius's), who were possessed with a strong liking for
VESPASIAN'S PREPARATIONS FOR WAR
Otho, though they had not been present at the battle of Bedriacum. They had advanced to Aquileia, and by roughly repulsing the messengers who brought the tidings of Otho's defeat, by tearing the colours which displayed the name of Vitellius, by finally seizing on the military chest and dividing it among themselves, had assumed a hostile attitude. Then they began to fear; fear suggested a new thought, that acts might be made a merit of with Vespasian, which would have to be excused to Vitellius. Accordingly, the three legions of Mœsia sought by letter to win over the army of Pannonia, and prepared to use force if they refused. During this commotion, Aponius Saturnius, governor of Mœsia, ventured on a most atrocious act. He despatched a centurion to murder Tettius Julianus, the legate of the 7th legion, to gratify a private pique, which he concealed beneath the appearance of party zeal. Julianus, having discovered his danger, and procured some guides, who were acquainted with the country, fled through the pathless wastes of Mœsia beyond Mount Hamus, nor did he afterwards take any part in the civil war. He set out to join Vespasian, but contrived to protract his journey by various pretexts, lingering or hastening on his way, according to the intelligence he received.

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