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Quote of the day: Lucius Tarquitius, a member of a patrici
Notes
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Historiae by Tacitus
Translated by Alfred John Church and William Jackson Brodribb
Book II Chapter 69: Vitellius emperor. The soldiers are sent back[AD 69]
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The next day Vitellius, after giving audience to the envoys from the Senate whom he had ordered to wait for him there, proceeded to the camp, and actually bestowed high praise on the loyalty of the soldiers. The auxiliary troops loudly complained that such complete impunity, such privileged arrogance, was accorded to the legions. The Batavian cohorts were sent back to Germany, lest they should venture on further violence. Destiny was thus simultaneously preparing the occasions of civil war and of foreign war. The Gallic auxiliaries were sent back to their respective states, a vast body of men, which in the very earliest stage of the revolt had been employed to make an idle show of strength. Besides this, in order to eke out the imperial resources, which had been impaired by a series of bounties, directions were given that the battalions of the legions and the auxiliary forces should be reduced, all recruiting being forbidden. Discharges were offered without distinction. This measure was disastrous to the State, and distasteful to the soldier, who found that the same duty was distributed among a smaller number, and that his toils and risks came round in a more frequent succession. Their vigour too was undermined by luxury, a luxury that transgressed our ancient discipline and the customs of our ancestors, in whose days the power of Rome found a surer foundation in valour than in wealth.

Event: Vitellius emperor

Postero die Vitellius senatus legatione, quam ibi opperiri iusserat, audita transgressus in castra ultro pietatem militum conlaudavit, frementibus auxiliis tantum impunitatis atque adrogantiae legionariis accessisse. Batavorum cohortes, ne quid truculentius auderent, in Germaniam remissae, principium interno simul externoque bello parantibus fatis. reddita civitatibus Gallorum auxilia, ingens numerus et prima statim defectione inter inania belli adsumptus. ceterum ut largitionibus adfectae iam imperii opes sufficerent, amputari legionum auxiliorumque numeros iubet vetitis supplementis; et promiscae missiones offerebantur. exitiabile id rei publicae, ingratum militi, cui eadem munia inter paucos periculaque ac labor crebrius redibant: et vires luxu corrumpebantur, contra veterem disciplinam et instituta maiorum apud quos virtute quam pecunia res Romana melius stetit.