The Ancient Library

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On this page: Magna Mater – Magnes – Maia – Maiestas – Mamers – Mamertinus – Mamurius – Mana Genita – Mancipatio



trary to the laws. The officials elected to an office vacated before the end of the year (suffecti) simply held it for the remainder of that year. The only thing that could legally compel a magistrate to resign before the end of his time was a formal error in the taking of the auspices at the elections.

The magistrates received no salaries whatsoever, but they were indemnified for official expenses within the town (e.g. for the games) or without it; those officials more especially who were going to the provinces as procurators received a suffi­cient sum from the treasury for their equipment and the support of themselves and their suite. Under the Empire the old magistracies continued to exist, though their authority was considerably limited; cp. the several articles, and for their election, see comitia (end). Besides these, numerous new offices came into existence, especially the various prcefecti (q.v.), gome of whom received an actual salary.

The magistracies were completely re­modelled by Diocletian and Constantine, especially with regard to their pay; all imperial officials received salaries, while the municipal did not. Cp. the several articles mentioned in the beginning.

Uagna Hater. A Roman name of the goddess Rhea (q.v.).

Magnes. One of the first founders of Attic Comedy. (See comedy.)

Maia. Daughter of Atlas and PleJSne, one of the Pleiads (q.v.), mother of Hermes by Zeus. The Romans identified her with an old Italian goddess of spring, Maia Maiestas (also called Fauna, B6na Dea, Ops), who was held to be the wife of Vulcan, and to whom the flameu of that god sacrificed a pregnant sow on the 1st of May.

Uaiestas. Denoted among the Romans the sovereign power of the people and the State, or that of the emperor. To detract from this sovereign power was a crime (crimen mlnutce maiestatis). Originally the term perduellio (q.v.) included all offences of this kind ; distinctions were first made in B.C. 100 by the Lex Apfillla, which declared some offences to be treason that had previously been regarded as perduellio, such as hindering the tribunes and exciting to sedition. The idea of treason was con­siderably extended by the Lex Cornelia of the dictator Sulla in b.c. 80, which made it include inciting to sedition, hindering a magistrate in the exercise of his functions, and acting in a manner prejudicial to the

Roman prestige or beyond the limits of one's authority. It also instituted a per­manent lawcourt (see qo^estio perpetua) to take cognisance of such cases; and made exile (interdictio aqua; et ignis) the penalty. (See exilium.) Csesar's Lex lulia, b.c. 46, made perduellio pass over into crimen maiestatis, which was held to cover all actions prejudicial to the State and the existing constitution (such as treason, plots, conspiracies, sedition, illegal assumption of authority). The Julian Law also formed the basis for punishing offences of this kind under the Empire ; to these were now added all those against the person and the authority of the emperor. The term was very elastic, and received whatever in­terpretation the emperor preferred, so that when a charge, e.g. that of embezzlement (see repetundarum crimen), was brought against a man, he could often be also charged with the crimen maiestatis, espe­cially as the accusers were rewarded if the offence was proved. After the closing of the qucestiones these cases were decided by the senate; later still, the emperor waa judge, or entrusted them to the pratfectut urbi. The regular penalty was confisca­tion, and sometimes banishment or death. Charges of treason could be brought or the trial could be continued, even after the death of the accused; and in the most serious cases the penalty had to be borne by the children, in accordance with a decree of the emperor, and even with the law at a later period.

Mamers. See mars.

MamertinuB (Claudius). A Latin pane­gyrist, the author of a speech addressed to the emperor Julian on January 1st, A.D. 362, at Constantinople, thanking him for conferring the consulate on him. It gives a pretty accurate picture of the personality of the emperor and of his administration. An older Mamertinus is assumed to be the author of two panegyrics in praise of Maxi-minianus, co-regent with Diocletian, which were delivered in 289 and 291 at Treves.

Maniurius. The mythical maker of the ancilia. (See ancile.)

Mana Geulta. See mania.

Manclpatlo (lit. a taking with the hand). A formal mode of purchase among the Romans, which seems to go back to a time when the price of purchase was weighed out in bars of copper. In the pre­sence of six Roman citizens of the age of puberty, one of whom, called the librlpens (weigher), held a copper balance, the pur-

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All non-public domain material, including introductions, markup, and OCR © 2005 Tim Spalding.