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whetstone and razor, and told Navius that the thing contemplated was that he

should cut the stone in two without injury to the razor. Nothing daunted, the

confident augur took the articles, and immediately divided the one with the

other, thus attesting the divinity of the omens wherewith the king's political

projects were interdicted.

Thus baffled in his purpose in making radical changes in the constitution of

Roman society, the king determined to maintain the old forms with certain

practical modifications. He accordingly doubled the number of the noble houses in

each of the three tribes. Those who were thus added were to be known as the

Younger Ramnes, Titienses, and Luceres. The number of the knights and senators

was also doubled; so that each tribe, while retaining its own name, embraced

twice as many representatives of the upper ranks as hitherto.

These changes having been accomplished, Tarquin next devoted himself to the

building of a temple to Jupiter. The Capitoline Hill was selected as the most

suitable site. A part of the summit was leveled for the foundation. While engaged

in this work, the diggers exhumed a human head, which was interpreted as a sign

that that spot should become the head of the whole earth. The pontiffs were,

therefore, instructed to remove the old sanctuaries from the hill, which was

accordingly done. In this work the altar of Terminus, the god of boundaries, and

that of Apollo, the god of youth, were excepted from the demolition and included

within the precincts of the new temple. For it was held that the boundaries of

Rome should never recede, and that the race of Romulus should have a perpetual


Tarquinius Priscus occupied the throne for thirty-seven years, and was greatly

renowned both in peace and war. It was decreed, however, by the immortals, that

one not of his household should succeed him in the government. Among the maid-

servants of the king's house was a certain Ocrisia, whose duty it was to attend

the fire on the family altar. While engaged in this duty, the god whom she served

appeared to her in a flame. She became the mother of a son, who grew up in the

household, and was named Servius, for he was a slave.

One day while he slept in his chamber, the queen, Tanaquil, beheld playing about

his head a flame of fire. This was interpreted as meaning that the boy should

rise to greatness. He was recognized as a member of the family of the king.

Tarquin presently gave him his daughter in marriage, and made him one of the

royal counselors. It will be remembered that on assuming the throne, the king had

excluded the two sons of Ancus Martius. When these youths learned of the favor

shown to Servius, they rightly conjectured that Tarquin would make him his

successor. Angered at this prospect, they determined to seek revenge by the

murder of the king. They accordingly hired two assassins to go into the royal

presence under pretense of asking the settlement of a quarrel. While the

attention of Tarquin was given to the matter in hand, one of the murderers struck

him down with an axe. The villains then escaped. A tumult arose in the city, but

Tanaquil, ordering the gates to be shut, spoke to the people from an upper

window. She told them that the king was only wounded, and that he had appointed

Servius to conduct the affairs of government. After some days, however, it became

known that Tarquin was dead, and the Senate was greatly agitated respecting the

choice of a successor. But the friends of Servius increased