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DELA´TIO NO´MINIS

DELA´TIO NO´MINIS In Roman criminal procedure the first step was to apply to the praetor to allow the accusation to be made (postulare), the next formally to arraign the defendant (nomen deferre). Some writers (e. g. Rein in Pauly, s. v.) have not marked this distinction with sufficient clearness. The two steps of the process are sometimes separated by an appreciable interval; while Dolabella was prosecuting Ap. Claudius, his wife Fabia left him inter postulationem et nominis delationem (Caelius to Cicero, Cic. Fam. 8.6),--a divorce which cleared the way for Dolabella's marriage with Tullia. Elsewhere we find delationem nominis postulare (Cic. Div. in Caecil. 20, § 64). The judge might himself take the initiative and declare his readiness to receive a nominis delatio; this, however, is mentioned among the oppressive proceedings of Verres (Cic. in Verr. 2.38, § 94; 4.19.40).

The postulatio and nominis delatio occur most frequently in prosecutions of magistrates and provincial governors for misconduct in office [REPETUNDAE]; especially under the Lex Servilia, passed by the tribune Glaucia (B.C. 106 or 105) in spite of the opposition of the senate, which greatly improved the chances of redress. The fragments of this law are collected by Orellius, and have been separately edited by Klenze. (Cf. Rein, ap. Pauly; Long, Excursus on Repetundae in his Cicero, 1.38-41; Lex Servil. ed. Klenze, pp. 5, 33 ff. For the use of the phrase in charges of murder, Cic. pro Rosc. Am. 3, § 8; pro Cluent. 8.23; pro Cael. 23.56: in other cases, in Verr. 2.28.68; ad Q. Fr. 2.4.)

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