Roman Freedmen in the Late Republic by Susan Treggiari

By Susan Treggiari

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CfnJ~Iaaa8a<. Cf. Badian, J RS 52 (1962), 207. 2 This, like t he suggestion about sons of libertini, was a hypothesis propounded by Mommsen (StR iii, pp. ). • Livy, xlv. IS. I f . 44 LEGAL EFFECTS OF LIBERTINITAS country tribes. h a child1 had presumably been put in the country tribes. In the later census, these were allowed to keep their position (as long as the child which had allowed them to obtain the privilege was still alive), but the precedent was not followed and no new fathers were re-assigned to the rustic tribes.

The usefulness of this mode of manurnission had probably been impaired early, when other modes also began to confer the franchise. Manumissio censu was still alive in 177, when the senatus consultum to prevent Latins fraudulently enslaving themselves to Romans on the understanding that they would be manumitted and thus gain the citizenship, was passed, for censors are there mentioned as magistrates responsible for manurnission. 3 Again, Cicero put it at the head of his list of the formal modes of manumission,4 although this does not necessarily mean that it was used or common in his time.

The tradition regarding the manumission of Vindicius in the first year of the Republic, however, is in apparent conflict with this view. According to Livy, the slave informer against the con~ spiracy to restore the Tarquins was rewarded immediately after the execution of the guilty: praemium indici pecunia ex aerario, libertas et civitas data. Ille primum dicitur vindicta liberatus; quidam vindictae quoque nomen tractum ab illo putant; Vindicio ipsi nomen fuisse. 5 No certainty can be reached on this period, but an attractive case has been made6 for holding that Livy has here confused a genuine 1 M.

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