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Translated by Rev. Canon Roberts
Book II Chapter 36: Latinius and the games.[491 BC]
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It so happened that preparations were being made for a repetition of the Great Games. The reason for their repetition was that early in the morning, prior to the commencement of the Games, a householder after flogging his slave had driven him through the middle of the Circus Maximus. Then the Games commenced, as though the incident had no religious significance. Not long afterwards, Titus Latinius, a member of the plebs, had a dream. Jupiter appeared to him and said that the dancer who commenced the Games was displeasing to him, adding that unless those Games were repeated with due magnificence, disaster would overtake the City, and he was to go and report this to the consuls. Though he was by no means free from religious scruples, still his fears gave way before his awe of the magistrates, lest he should become an object of public ridicule. This hesitation cost him dear, for within a few days he lost his son. That he might have no doubt as to the cause of this sudden calamity, the same form again appeared to the distressed father in his sleep, and demanded of him whether he had been sufficiently repaid for his neglect of the divine will, for a more terrible recompense was impending if he did not speedily go and inform the consuls.|
Though the matter was becoming more urgent, he still delayed, and while thus procrastinating he was attacked by a serious illness in the form of sudden paralysis. Now the divine wrath thoroughly alarmed him, and wearied out by his past misfortune and the one from which he was suffering, he called his relations together and explained what he had seen and heard, the repeated appearance of Jupiter in his sleep, the threatening wrath of heaven brought home to him by his calamities. On the strong advice of all present he was carried in a litter to the consuls in the Forum, and from there by the consuls' order into the Senate-house. After repeating the same story to the senators, to the intense surprise of all, another marvel occurred. The tradition runs that he who had been carried into the Senate-house paralysed in every limb, returned home, after performing his duty, on his own feet.
Event: Latinius and the Games