The Ancient Library

Scanned text contains errors.

On this page: Crimen – Crinis – Crista – Critae – Crobylus – Crocota


language, are called criminal offences among the Romans ; and this defect appears in other systems of jurisprudence. Crimen has been also defined by modern writers to be that which is capitalis, as murder, &c. ; delictum, that which is a private injury (privata noxa) ; a distinction founded ap­parently on Dig. 21. tit. 1. s. 17. § 15.

Delicts (delicta) were maleficia, wrongful acts (Dig. 47. tit. 1. s. 3), and the foundation of one class of obligationes: these delicts, as enumerated by Gains (iii. 182), are furtuin, rapina, damnum, injuriae ; they gave a right of action to the indi­vidual injured, and intitled him to compensation. These delicts were sometimes called crimina (cri-men furti, Gaius, iii. 197). Crimen therefore is sometimes applied to that class of delicta called privata (Dig. 47. tit. 1. De Privatis Delictis) ; and accordingly crimen may be viewed as a genus, of which the delicta enumerated by Gains are a species. But crimen and delictum are sometimes used as synonymous. (Dig. 48. tit. 19. s. 1.) In one passage (Dig. 48. tit. 19. s. 5) we read of rnajora delicta (a term implying that these are minora delicta), which expression is coupled with the expression omnia crimina in such a way that the inference of crimen containing delictum is, so far as concerns this passage, necessary; for the omnia crimina comprehend (in this passage) more than the delicia majora.

Some judicia publica were capitalia, and some were not. (Dig. 48. tit. 1. s. 2.) Judicia, which concerned crimina, were not, for that reason only, publica. There were, therefore, crimina which were not tried in judicia publica. This is con­sistent with what is stated above as to those cri­mina (delicta) which were the subject of actions. Those crimina only were the subject of judicia publica, which were made so by special laws ; such as the Julia de adulteriis, Cornelia de sicariis et \reneficis, Pompeia de parricidiis, Julia peculatus, Cornelia de testamentis, Julia de vi privata, Julia de vi publica, Julia de ambitu, Julia repetundarum, Julia de annona. (Dig. 48. tit. 1. s. 1.) So far as Cicero {De Orat. ii. 25) enumerates causas criini-num, they were causae publici judicii; but he adds (ii. 31), " criminum est multitude infinita." Again, infamia was not the consequence of every crimen, but only of those crimina which were " publici judicii." A condemnation, therefore, for a crimen, not publici judicii, was not followed by infamia, unless the crimen laid the foundation of an actio, in which, even in the case of a privatum judicium, the condemnation was followed by infamia ; as furtum, rapina, injuriae. (Dig. 48. tit. 1. s. 7.)

Most modern writers on Roman law have con­sidered delicta as the general term, which they have subdivided into delicta publica and privata. The division of delicta into publica and privata had partly its origin in the opinion generally enter­tained of the nature of the delict; but the legal distinction must be derived from a consideration of the form of obtaining redress for, or punishing, the wrong. Those delicta which were punishable ac­cording to special leges, senatus-consulta, and con-stitutiones, and were prosecuted in judicia publica by an accusatio publica, were more especially called crimina ; and the penalties, in case of conviction, were loss of life, of freedom, of civitas, and the con­sequent infamia, and sometimes pecuniary penalties also. Those delicta not provided for as above men­tioned, were prosecuted by action, and were the



subjects of judicia privata, in which pecuniary com­pensation was awarded to the injured party. At a later period we find a class of crimina extraor-dinaria (Dig. 47. tit. 11), which are somewhat vaguely denned. Thejr are offences which in the earlier law would have been the -foundation of actions, but were assimilated, as to their punish­ment, to crimina publici judicii. This new class of crimina (new as to the form of judicial proceed­ings) must have arisen from a growing opinion of the propriety of not limiting punishment, in certain cases, to compensation to the party injured. The person who inquired judicially extra ordinem, might affix what punishment he pleased, within reason­able limits. (Dig. 48. tit. 19. s. 13.) Thus, if a person intended to prosecute his action, which was founded on maleficium (delict), for pecuniary compensation, he followed the jus ordinarium ; but if he wished to punish the offender otherwise (extra ordinem ejus rei poenam exerceri (e?) velit), then he took criminal proceedings, " subscripsit in crimen." (Dig. 47. tit. 1. s. 3.)

The forty-seventh book of the Digest treats first of delicta privata properly so called (Tit 1—10), and then of extraordinaria crimina. The forty- eighth book treats of crimina, and the first title is De Publicis Judiciis. Compensation might be de­ manded by the heredes of the injured person, and .of the heredes of the wrong-doer ; but the heredes of the wrong-doer were not liable to a penal action (poenalis actio, Dig. 47. tit. 1. s. 1). Compensa­ tion could be sued for by the party injured: a penalty, which was not a direct benefit to the in­ jured party, was sued for by the state, or by those to whom the power of prosecution was given, as in the case of the lex Julia de adulteriis, &c. In the case of delicta publica, the intention of the doer was the main thing to be considered: the act, if done, was not for that reason only punished ; nor if it remained incomplete, was it for that rea­ son only unpunished. In the case of delicta pri­ vata, the injury, if done, was always compensated, even if it was merely culpa. [G. L.]

CRINIS. [coma.]

CRISTA. [galea.]

CRITAE (/cpfrcw), judges. This name was applied by the Greeks to any person who did not judge of a thing like a Si/cacrr^s, according to positive laws, but according to his own sense of justice and equity. (Herod, iii. 160 ; Demostb. Olynili. i. p. 17, c. Mid. p. 520.) But at Athens a number of icpirai was chosen by ballot from a number of selected candidates at every celebration of the Dionysia, and were called ol /cpirat, /car' e|o%^v. Their office was to judge of the merit of the different choruses and dramatic poems, and to award the prizes to the victors. (Isocr. Trapez. p. 365, c. with Coraes' note.) Their number is stated by Suidas (s, v. 'Ez> TreVre Kpir&v yovvacri) to have been five for comedies, and G. Hermann has supposed, with great probability," that there were on the whole ten Kpirai, five for comedy, and the same number for tragedy, one being taken from every tribe. The expression in Aristophanes (Av. 421), viKav iraffi rots Kpircus., signifies to gain the victory by the unanimous consent of the five judges. For the complete literature of this subject, see K. F. Hermann's Manual of the Pal. Ant. of Greece, § 149. n. 13. [L. S.]


CROCOTA (sc.vestis; Kpotcwrbv sc. t

B 13

About | First | English Index | Classified Index | Latin Index | Greek Index



page #  
Search this site
All non-public domain material, including introductions, markup, and OCR © 2005 Tim Spalding.
Ancient Library was developed and hosted by Tim Spalding of