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FLavius Valerius Constantinus

Telling Speaker

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Today I was reading the back of my Latin book for the fun of it, which is where I learned a great deal about Roman civilization and the info they give me is certainly not the regular stuff. One thing I came by that was interesting about religion was this:


" In 390 B.C. a citizen heard a voice telling him to inform the consuls that the Gauls were approaching Rome. On the spot where the voice was heard, the city dedicated an altar to Aius Locutius (Telling Speaker), a god hitherto unknown and never heard from again."


So can anyone give me info on this unknown god.

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Hello Flavius,


I suspect that this "god" was a one time only Deity, and not a deity at all but a personification. The Romans ignored the warning of this fellow causing the relatively easy victory and occupation of the Gauls, who did indeed arrive. This event was burned into the minds of the Romans, changed the culture and foreign policy of the Republic, was an event the Romans could not contend with easily and forever after sought prevention of recurrence. I am sure this cryer of doom shouted high and long before and after the occupation that HE knew the Gauls were on war footing and moving, HE gave warning as instructed by the mysterious voice, yet no one gave heed. After the fact, he must have seemed very attuned to the gods indeed, and in true bargaining Roman religious practice the Consuls and Priests decided to annoit a new alter to this seemingly helpful new god. However, this is not a god per se and should be viewed as more of a personification. Personifcations often achieved the status of demi-god, embodying an attribute that the Romans wished to honor. In this case, that of listening to fair warnings and acting accordingly to never allow the city of Rome to be occupied by foreign aggressors again. As seen on Roman coins, there are many personifications of virtues the Romans wished to receive boon from and or aspired to. For instance, Fortuna - Fortune, Jusititia-Justice, Abundantia-Abundance, Annona-Corn Harvest, Fides-Faith, Hilaritas-Mirth, and of course Pax-Peace are commonly seen. Before this instance, Aius Locutius did not exist as a personification, and only as a result of the bargaining nature of Roman religion was this alter raised. Raise an alter in exchange for warning. Unfortunate that the alter did not appease the slighted demi-god, Rome needed fair warning from Telling Speaker again, 866 years later. Having never assisted Rome again, and associated as it is with an event horrible, it is no surprise that Aius Locutius has but one footnote in Roman mythology, at least, only one that I am aware of. Pax

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