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A term which, throughout the time of the Roman Republic, signifies a person who has been invested with the consulship; but under the Empire a mere title for the higher class of officers, who thereby obtained permission to have the insignia of a consul, without ever having actually been consuls. Hence the title was almost equivalent to that of an “honorary consul” (consul honorarius; Cod. Theod. vi. tit. 19, s. 1). The title was given especially to generals, as formerly persons after their consulship had usually undertaken the command of an army in the provinces. Consularis gradually became the established name for those intrusted with the administration of imperial provinces. During the second century A.D., the title consularis always denotes a governor who had actually held the office of consul or had received the title from the emperor; but by the fourth century it had become a mere title of a particular class of provincial governors. The emperor Hadrian divided Italy into four districts, and over each he placed an officer who likewise bore the title of consularis. At Constantinople the title was given to the superintendents of the aqueducts (consulares aquarum), who seem to have been analogous to the curatores aquarum of Rome.

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