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magister libellorum


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(‘master of petitions’), originally a libellis (‘secretary for petitions’), an officer on the Roman emperor's staff whose duty was to deal with written petitions from private persons to the emperor and draft replies to them, known as rescripts. From Hadrian onwards the office was entrusted to an equestrian, and, since many petitions concerned points of law, the holder was often a lawyer, such as Papinian or Ulpian.

Subjects: Classical Studies.


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