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Please note that Mommsen uses the AUC chronology (Ab Urbe Condita), i.e. from the founding of the City of Rome. You can use this reference table to have the B.C. dates


V. The Establishment of the Military Monarchy

From: The History of Rome, by Theodor Mommsen
Translated with the sanction of the author by William Purdie Dickson

The History of Old Rome

Chapter XI - The Old Republic and the New Monarchy


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Page 61

"A plain simple defendant," says a Roman advocate of much experience at this period, "may be accused of any crime at pleasure which he has or has not committed, and will be certainly condemned." Numerous pleadings in criminal causes have been preserved to us from this epoch; there is hardly one of them which makes even a serious attempt to fix the crime in question and to put into proper shape the proof or counterproof.(31)

31. -Plura enim multo-, says Cicero in his treatise De Oratore (ii. 42, 178), primarily with reference to criminal trials, -homines iudicant odio aut amore aut cupiditate aut iracundia aut dolore aut laetitia aut spe aut timore aut errore aut aliqua permotione mentis, quam veritate aut praescripto aut iuris norma aliqua aut iudicii formula aut legibus-. On this accordingly are founded the further instructions which he gives for advocates entering, on their profession.

That the contemporary civil procedure was likewise in various respects unsound, we need hardly mention; it too suffered from the effects of the party politics mixed up with all things, as for instance in the process of Publius Quinctius (671-673), where the most contradictory decisions were given according as Cinna or Sulla had the ascendency in Rome; and the advocates, frequently non-jurists, produced here also intentionally and unintentionally abundance of confusion.

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