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Inauguratio

A Roman ceremony by which the augurs obtained, or endeavoured to obtain, the sanction of the gods to something which had been decreed by man—e. g. to the election of the magistrates, who continued to be inaugurated under the Republic (Dionys. ii. 6), and for this purpose were summoned by the augurs (condictio, denuntiatio) to appear on the Capitol on the third day after their election (Serv. ad Verg. Aen. iii. 117). The inauguratio conferred no priestly dignity upon the magistrates, but was merely a method of obtaining the sanction of the gods to their election, and gave them the right to take the auspicia; and in important emergencies it was their duty to make use of this privilege. At the time of Cicero, however, this duty was scarcely ever observed (De Div. ii. 36, 76).

A building was “inaugurated” only when it was to be used for meetings of the Senate, or when the rites to be performed there required it should be a templum. The inauguratio hallowed the site, and the consecratio the building. Thus the Aedes Vestae was consecrated, but not inaugurated, and meetings of the Senate were never held there. See Augur; Templum.

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