Noctes Atticae

A. Gellius

Ut "terram movisse" nuntiari solet eaque res procuratur, ita in veteribus memoriis scriptum legimus nuntiatum esse senatui in sacrario in regia "hastas Martias movisse." Eius rei causa senatus consulum factum est M. Antonio A. Postumio consulibus, eiusque exemplum hoc est: "Quod C. Iulius, L. filius, pontifex nuntiavit in sacrario in regia hastas Martias movisse, de ea re ita censuerunt, uti M. Antonius consul hostiis maioribus Iovi et Marti procuraret et ceteris dis, quibus videretur, lactantibus. Ibus uti procurasset satis habendum censuerunt. Si quid succidaneis opus esset, robiis succideret.

Not only was an earthquake regularly reported, and expiatory offerings made on that account, but I also find it mentioned in early records, that report was made to the senate when the spears of Mars had moved in the sanctuary in the Regia. Because of such an occurrence, a decree of the senate was passed in the consulship of Marcus Antonius and Aulus Postumius, of which this is a copy: "Whereas Gaius Julius, son of Lucius, the pontifex, has reported that the spears of Mars have moved in the sanctuary in the Regia, the senate has therefore decreed with reference to that matter, that Marcus Antonius the consul should make expiation to Jupiter and Mars with full-grown victims, and with unweaned victims to such of the other gods as he thought proper. They decided that it should be regarded as sufficient for him to have sacrificed with these. If there should be any need of additional victims, the additional offerings should be made with red victims."

Reprinted by permission of the publishers and the Trustees of the Loeb Classical Library from Aulus Gellius: Noctes Atticae (Volume I. Books 1-5), Loeb Classical Library Vol. 195, translated by J.C. Rolfe, Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, © 1927, by the President and Fellows of Harvard College. The Loeb Classical Library ® is a registered trademark of the President and Fellows of Harvard College.

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