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Ancient texts

Liv. (4.7-8)

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Spurius Maelius

Tribunes with consular power


Incorrect procedure
Three months after the installation of the first three military tribunes with consular power, the priests "discovered" that the augury that had confirmed their election hadn't been valid.

No consular tribunes but consuls
Gaius Curtius, who had lead the ceremony was said not to have followed the right procedure, when he selected the theatre for the bird watching. And now it had all to be done again. According to Livius it is not certain, but he mentions the election of the 2 consuls L.Papirius Mugillanus and L. Sempronius Attratinus. Certain is that the next year again 2 consuls were elected: M. Geganius Macerinus and T. Quinctius Capitolinus Barbatus.

How to raise taxes
For the sake of raising taxes in a rightful manner and also for the sake of the army it was important to know who much every man in Rome possessed. For this purpose a census should be held. Until then that was a task for the consuls, but usually they were to busy waging wars and for that reason it had been a long time since a census was held. And even now the consuls had not the time to make an estimate of everyone's possessions.

A new office was created: censor (=estimator). It was an patrician office, but the peoples tribunes made no problems. The first censors were L.Papirius Mugillanus and L. Sempronius Attratinus and maybe that is what caused the confusion about the two consuls.


Metropolitan New York


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