Ernst Badian and Tony Honoré

in Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Classics

Published online March 2016 | e-ISBN: 9780199381135 | DOI:

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Quaestores parricidii (see parricidium) are said to have been appointed by the kings. Under the republic there were two, who prosecuted some capital cases before the people. They fade from our record by the 2nd cent. bce.Financial quaestors (perhaps not connected with them) were at first appointed by the consuls, one by each; after 447 bce (Tac.Ann. 11. 22) they were elected by the tribal assembly. Two were added when plebeians were admitted (421), to administer the *aerarium in Rome (hence urbani) under the senate's direction. Four more were instituted in 267 (Tac. loc. cit.; Livy, Per.15), perhaps called classici and stationed in various Italian towns, notably *Ostia (see food supply). More (we do not know how many and when) were added as various provinces were organized (Sicily even had two), until *Sulla, finding nineteen needed for all these duties, added one for the *water supply and raised the total to twenty.

Article.  662 words. 

Subjects: Economic History ; Greek and Roman Law

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