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Bill Thayer

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 p539  Tribunal Aurelium

Article on pp539‑540 of

Samuel Ball Platner (as completed and revised by Thomas Ashby):
A Topographical Dictionary of Ancient Rome,
London: Oxford University Press, 1929.

Tribunal Aurelium: a tribunal, or platform, evidently named after some Aurelius, in the forum, which is mentioned four times by Cicero in connection with a levy of slaves in 58 B.C. (pro Sest. 34, in Pis. 11: pro  p540 tribunali Aurelii; de domo 54, post red. ad Quir. 13: in tribunali Aurelii).

In two other passages Cicero speaks of gradus Aurelii, once in connection with the trial of C. Iunius in 74 B.C. (pro Clu. 93: gradus illi Aurelii tum novi quasi pro theatro illi iudicio aedificati videbantur; quos ubi accusator concitatis hominibus complerat, non modo dicendi ab reo, sed ne surgendi quidem potestas erat), and again in 59 B.C. (pro Flacc. 66: hoc nimirum est illud quod non longe a gradibus Aurelii haec causa dicitur). These gradus, being new (novi), were probably built by M. Aurelius Cotta, consul in that year (74), and as they were occupied by those in attendance upon the jury trials, gradus and tribunal probably belonged together. Either the terms were used without distinction, or the gradus led up to the tribunal. These tribunalia were usually temporary structures of wood (cf. Plut. Caes. 68; Suet. Caes. 84; App. B. C. II.148): this one, or at least the gradus, was certainly of stone. There is no indication of its site, and since it is not mentioned after the time of Cicero, it was probably removed during the changes carried out by Caesar and Augustus (Jord. I.2, 405; Thédenat, 148; RE II.2430; Bulletin of the University of Wisconsin, 1904, 178‑182, where, however, the identification of the gradus Aurelii and the so‑called hemicycle of the rostra is erroneous).

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Page updated: 13 Mar 08