The History, 22.1

Ammian  translated by C. D. Yonge

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1While the variable events of fortune were bringing to pass these events in different parts of the world, Julian, amid the many plans which he was revolving while in Illyricum, was continually consulting the entrails of victims and watching the flight of birds in his eagerness to know the result of what was about to happen.

2Aprunculus Gallus, an orator and a man of skill as a soothsayer, who was afterwards promoted to be governor of Narbonne, announced these results to him, being taught beforehand by the inspection of a liver, as he affirmed, which he had seen covered with a double skin. And while Julian was fearing that he was inventing stories to correspond with his desires, and was on that account out of humour, he himself beheld a far more favourable omen, which clearly predicted the death of Constantius. For at the same moment that that prince died in Cilicia, the soldier who, as he was going to mount his horse, had supported him with his right hand, fell down, on which Julian at once exclaimed, in the hearing of many persons, that he who had raised him to the summit had fallen.

3But he did not change his plans, but remained within the border of Dacia, still being harassed with many fears. Nor did he think it prudent to trust to conjectures, which might perhaps turn out contrary to his expectations.

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