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 p74  Album

Article by George Long, M.A., Fellow of Trinity College
on p74 of

William Smith, D.C.L., LL.D.:
A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities, John Murray, London, 1875.

ALBUM is defined to be a tablet of any material on which the praetor's edicts, and the rules relating to actions and interdicts, were written. [Edictum.] The tablet was put up in a public place in Rome, in order that all persons might have notice of its contents. According to some authorities, the album was so called, because it was either a white material, or a material whitened, and of course the writing would be a different colour. According to other authorities, it was so called because the writing was in white letters. If any person wilfully altered or erased (raserit, corruperit, mutaverit) any thing in the album, he was liable to an action albi corrupti, and to a heavy penalty (Dig. 2 tit. I s7, 9).

Probably the word album originally meant any tablet containing any thing of a public nature. Thus, Cicero informs us that the Annales Maximi were written on the album by the pontifex maximus (De Orat. II.12). But, however this may be, it was in course of time used to signify a list of any public body; thus we find the expression, album senatorium, used by Tacitus (Ann. IV.42), to express the list of senators, and corresponding to the word leucoma used by Dion Cassius (LV.3). The phrase album decurionum signifies the list of decuriones whose names were entered on the album of a municipium, in the order prescribed by the lex municipalis, so far as the provisions of the lex extended (Dig. 50, tit. 3). Album judicum is the list of judices (Suet. Claud. 16). [Judex.]

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