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Such was the end of Cremona, 286 years after its foundation. It was built in the consulship of Tiberius Sempronius and Cornelius Scipio, when Hannibal was threatening Italy, as a protection against the Gauls from beyond the Padus, or against any other sudden invader from the Alps. From the number of settlers, the conveniences afforded by the rivers, the fertility of the soil, and the many connexions and intermarriages formed with neighbouring nations, it grew and flourished, unharmed by foreign enemies, though most unfortunate in civil wars. Ashamed of the atrocious deed, and aware of the detestation which it was inspiring, Antonius issued a proclamation, that no one should detain in captivity a citizen of Cremona. The spoil indeed had been rendered valueless to the soldiers by a general agreement throughout Italy, which rejected with loathing the purchase of such slaves. A massacre then began; when this was known, the prisoners were secretly ransomed by their friends and relatives. The remaining inhabitants soon returned to Cremona; the temples and squares were restored by the munificence of the burghers, and Vespasian gave his exhortations.

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