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Thucydidis de Bello Peloponnesiaco Libri VIII. Recens. et Explic. F. H. Bothe. Tom. I. Fasc. 2, Libros III. et Iv. contin. Lipsiæ. 8vo. 3s.

Voeabularius Optimus. Zur Begriissung der in Basel versammeltem Philologen und Schulmänner im Auftr. der Universität hrsg. von W. Wackermagel. Basel. 4to. 3s.

Wal, J. de, Mythologiae Septentrionalis Monumenta Epigraphica Latina. Traj. ad Rhen. 8vo.

Zestermann, A. C. A., De Basilicis Libri Tres. Ex Comment. ab

Acad. Regia Belgica præmio Donat. ad a. 1846. Tom. XXI. Brux. 4to. 7 plates. 10s. 6d.

THE

CLASSICAL MUSEUM.

IX.
ON THE COMITIA CURIATA.

NIEBUHR has done service to the early Roman history, (against the admirers of Dionysius,) by establishing that the Curies were essentially patrician. The fact is so very clear to one who studies Livy only, that probably nothing but the attempt to reconcile him with Dionysius can have misled previous inquirers. Nor does it appear requisite in this matter to affect to learn more out of Livy's words, than Livy himself knew. Nothing at least is let drop by him which would imply that he, as Dionysius, looked on the Curiate assembly as plebeian and democratical. On the contrary, the very first time he refers to the auctoritas patrum, he uses words which seem distinctly to imply that he understood by it “the assent of the Curies.” It has reference to the election of Numa, Liv. I. 17. He says: “Patres decreverunt, ut cum populus regem jussisset, id sic ratum esset, si Patres auctores fierent.” Then, in order to explain the last words, he subjoins: “Hodieque in legibus magistratibusque rogandis usurpatur idem jus, viademta: priusquam populus suffragium ineat, in incertum comitiorum eventum Patres auctores fivnt.” It is perfectly clear, first, that this illustration is his own, and is not slavishly copied from an old annalist; and next, that he refers to the shadowy assembly of the Curies, (of which Cicero speaks, In Rullum, II. 11,) as the existing body which, before the Comitia voted, gave the “auctoritas patrum” to that which was about to be proposed; for no one can imagine that he meant the senate. It may almost

Thucydidis de Bello Peloponnesiaco Libri VIII. Recens. et Explic. F. H. Bothe. Tom. I. Fasc. 2, Libros III. et Iv. contin. Lipsiæ. 8vo. 3s.

Voeabularius Optimus. Zur Begrüssung der in Basel versammelten Philologen und Schulmänner im Auftr. der Universität hrsg. von W. Wackermagel. Basel. 4to. 3s.

Wal, J. de, Mythologiae Septentrionalis Monumenta Epigraphica Latima. Traj. ad Rhen. 8vo.

Zestermann, A. C. A., De Basilicis Libri Tres. Ex Comment. ab Acad. Regia Belgica præmio Donat. ad a. 1846. Tom. XXI. Brux. 4to. 7 plates. 10s. 6d.

THE

CLASSICAL MUSEUM.

IX.
ON THE COMITIA CURIATA.

NIEBUHR has done service to the early Roman history, (against the admirers of Dionysius,) by establishing that the Curies were essentially patrician. The fact is so very clear to one who studies Livy only, that probably nothing but the attempt to reconcile him with Dionysius can have misled previous inquirers. Nor does it appear requisite in this matter to affect to learn more out of Livy's words, than Livy himself knew. Nothing at least is let drop by him which would imply that he, as Dionysius, looked on the Curiate assembly as plebeian and democratical. On the contrary, the very first time he refers to the auctoritas patrum, he uses words which seem distinctly to imply that he understood by it “the assent of the Curies.” It has reference to the election of Numa, Liv. I. 17. He says: “Patres decreverunt, ut cum populus regem jussisset, id sic ratum esset, si Patres auctores fierent.” Then, in order to explain the last words, he subjoins: “Hodieque in legibus magistratibusque rogandis usurpatur idem jus, viademta: priusquam populus suffragium ineat, in incertum comitiorum eventum Patres auctores fivnt.” It is perfectly clear, first, that this illustration is his own, and is not slavishly copied from an old annalist; and next, that he refers to the shadowy assembly of the Curies, (of which Cicero speaks, In Rullum, II. 11,) as the existing body which, before the Comitia voted, gave the “auctoritas patrum” to that which was about to be proposed: for no one can imagine that he meant the senate. It may almost

be inferred, that in Livy's day, the beadles of the Curies gave the assent of that body by the formula, “Patres auctores sumus:” and if so, it is unreasonable to question that the law of the dictator Publilius (Liv. VIII. 12,) was well understood by the historian who reports it in the words, “ut legum, quae comitiis centuriatis ferrentur, ante initum suffragium Patres auctores fierent.” It is farther manifest, that the Curiata in later times had a peculiar reference to certain patrician interests; as, when a patrician was to be adopted into another family, we know by the case of Clodius, that a lex curiata was essential. Yet we cannot suppose that any assembly became more patrician as time went on; and every thing which indicates that the Curiata in later times was patrician, is an à fortiori proof for the early ages. Lastly, it will be admitted that the political rights of the plebeians were first established by Servius; and that, in order to do this, he constructed a new assembly. But nothing would have been thereby gained, if they already had votes in the Curiata; on the contrary, a loss would have been incurred, if, as Dionysius supposed, the Curies had voted by the head. It is therefore only consistent in him to represent Servius as deceiving the people by a sham assembly, which was intended to lower their political position. This however no one surely will receive. On the whole, without entangling ourselves in any disputable hypotheses, the prima facie evidence is so clear, as at least to throw the burden of proof on one who denies that the Curies were patrician, and that it was their business to give the auctoritas Patrum.” While thus far acceding to Niebuhr's view, and acknowledging its importance, I find it impossible to follow him in much beside which he maintains, concerning the functions and activity of the Curiate Assembly after the legislation of Servius. In this paper it is intended to exhibit a simpler view of the subject, which alone, it is believed, our sources of knowledge justify; and afterwards to show, that the passages on which Nie

* In the passage quoted from Liv. 1. to the senate. It would be hardy to 17, by populus Livy must have meant maintain that he was correct in supthe mass of the community, (whether posing this multitude to receive formal called clients or plebeians,) as he con- | authority to elect a king; and perhaps trasts them to the patrician curies and we must necessarily impute error here.

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