17When Claudius now became consul again, for the third time, he abolished many days of thanksgiving and many holidays. For the greater part of the year was being given up to them, with no small detriment to the public business. 2Besides thus curtailing the holidays, he retrenched in all other ways that he could. What had been given away by Gaius without any justice or reason he demanded back from the recipients; but he gave back to the highway commissioners the amount of the fines they had paid in the reign of Gaius at the instigation of Corbulo. 3Moreover, he gave notice to the governors chosen by the lot, since they were slow even now about leaving the city, that they must begin their journey before the middle of April. He reduced the Lycians to servitude because they had revolted and slain some Romans, and he incorporated them in the prefecture of Pamphylia. 4During the investigation of this affair, which was conducted in the senate, he put a question in Latin to one of the envoys who had originally been a Lycian, but had been made a Roman citizen; and when the man failed to understand what was said, he took away his citizenship, saying that it was not proper for a man to be a Roman who had no knowledge of the Romans’ language. 5A great many other persons unworthy of citizenship were also deprived of it, whereas he granted citizenship to others quite indiscriminately, sometimes to individuals and sometimes to whole groups. For inasmuch as Romans had the advantage over foreigners in practically all respects, many sought the franchise by personal application to the emperor, and many bought it from Messalina and the imperial freedmen. 6For this reason, though the privilege was at first sold only for large sums, it later became so cheapened by the facility with which it could be obtained that it came to be a common saying, that a man could become a citizen by giving the right person some bits of broken glass. 7For his course in this matter, therefore, Claudius brought ridicule upon himself; but he was praised for his conduct in another direction. It seems that information was being laid against many of the new citizens, in some instances to the effect that they were not adopting Claudius’ name, and in others that they were not leaving him anything at their death—it being incumbent, they said, upon those who obtained citizenship from him to do both these things. Claudius now forbade that any one should be called to account on these grounds. 8Messalina and his freedmen kept offering for sale and peddling out not merely the franchise and military commands, procuratorships, and governorships, but also everything in general, to such an extent that there was a scarcity of all wares; and as a result Claudius was compelled to muster the populace in the Campus Martius, and there from a raised platform to fix the prices of the various articles. 9Claudius also gave a gladiatorial contest at the camp, on which occasion he wore a military cloak. His son’s birthday was observed by the praetors on their own initiative with a spectacle and dinners. This was also done on later occasions, at least by such of them as chose to do so.