Vast was the change produced in the Romanâ€™s daily existence by the destruction of the aqueducts. The Thermae being henceforth unsupplied with water, those magnificent resorts of every class of citizen lost their attraction, and soon ceased to be frequented; for all the Romanâ€™s exercises and amusements were associated with the practice of luxurious bathing, and without that refreshment the gymnasium, the tennis-court, the lounge, no longer charmed as before. Rome became dependent upon wells and the Tiber, wretched resource compared with the never-failing and abundant streams which once poured through every region of the city and threw up fountains in all but every street. Belisarius, as soon as the Goths retreated, ordered the repairing of an aqueduct, that which served the transtiberine district, and was indispensable to the working of the Janiculan mills, where corn was ground; but, after his departure, there was neither enough energy nor sufficient sense of security in Rome for the restoration of even one of the greater conduits. Nobles and populace alike lived without the bath, grew accustomed to more or less uncleanliness, and in a certain quarter suffered worse than inconvenience from the lack of good water.
Again Sagaris murmured a negative, and this time with so manifest an air of confusion that Basil stared at him, suspicious, angry.
â€˜You thought you would remain there for long to come?â€™