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date: 07 December 2023



  • Ernst Badian


Vocal expressions of approval and good wishes in ritual form were an important part of Roman life, both private (e.g. at weddings) and public (for actors and the presiding magistrate at public performances, and above all at a *triumph). The title of *imperator was based on the soldiers' acclamation. A magistrate leaving for his province was escorted by crowds shouting ritual acclamations, and his return was received in a corresponding way. (see provincia §2.) Under the empire, these rituals were magnified, but confined to the emperor and approved members of his family. They were also ritually greeted at public appearances, especially at games and on their birthdays. By the 4th cent. ce such greetings had been made mandatory for certain high officials (Cod. Theod. 1. 6. 6, 6. 9. 2). By the late republic, rhythmical shouting at games, sometimes organized, expressed approval or disapproval of politicians. Cicero takes it very seriously, as expressions of public opinion (which of course counted only in the city of Rome), and P.


  • Roman History and Historiography

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