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Quote of the day: The dark complexion of the Silures, thei
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Annals by Tacitus
Translated by Alfred John Church and William Jackson Brodribb
Book VI Chapter 12: On Sibylline books[AD 32]
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A motion was next brought forward in the Senate by Quintilianus, a tribune of the people, respecting an alleged book of the Sibyl. Caninius Gallus, a member of the College of the Fifteen, had asked that it might be received among the other volumes of the same prophetess by a decree on the subject. This having been carried by a division, the emperor [Note 1] sent a letter in which he gently censured the tribune, as ignorant of ancient usage because of his youth. Gallus he scolded for having introduced the matter in a thin Senate, notwithstanding his long experience in the science of religious ceremonies, without taking the opinion of the College or having the verses read and criticised, as was usual, by its presidents, though their authenticity was very doubtful. He also reminded him that, as many spurious productions were current under a celebrated name, Augustus had prescribed a day within which they should be deposited with the city-praetor, and after which it should not be lawful for any private person to hold them. The same regulations too had been made by our ancestors after the burning of the Capitol in the social war, when there was a search throughout Samos, Ilium, Erythrae, and even in Africa, Sicily and the Italian colonies for the verses of the Sibyl (whether there were but one or more) and the priests were charged with the business of distinguishing, as far as they could by human means, what were genuine. Accordingly the book in question was now also submitted to the scrutiny of the College of the Fifteen.

Note 1: emperor = Tiberius