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LUDI PLEBE´II These were certainly held in the Circus Flaminius (V. Max. 1.7, 4), and are mentioned as early as 216 B.C. (Liv. 23.30, 17). Now as the Circus Flaminius was built in 220 B.C. (Liv. Epit. xx.), we may assign the establishment of the Ludi Plebeii to the same date, and also the Jovis epulum on the Ides (for all Ides are sacred to Jupiter) which is connected with these games (Liv. 25.2, 10; 27.3, 9). This is a more probable view than that of Cicero, who (de Orat. 3.19, 73) makes the Epulum Jovis to exist in the time of Numa, or that of the Pseudo-Asconius (p. 143, 12), who supposes the Ludi Plebeii to have been established either after the expulsion of the kings, or after the secession of the plebs. (See Marquardt, Staatsverw. 3.349.) We find from the Calendar of Philocalus (354 A.D.) that the Ludi Plebeii lasted till the fourth century; cf. also Lampr. Alex. Sev. 37. The date of them was originally Nov. 15 (the Equorum probatio being on the 14th), just as that of the Ludi Romani was Sept. 15 (C. I. L. 1.401). They were celebrated by the plebeian aediles; and already in 207 B.C. they lasted for more than one day (Liv. 28.10, 7). In some early calendars, e. g. the Fasti Maffeiani, they are put [p. 2.91]down as lasting from Nov. 4 to Nov. 17: in the Calendar of Philocalus, from Nov. 12 to 16 (C. I. L. l.c.). That plays were acted at the Ludi Plebeii is proved from the didascalia to the Stichus of Plautus (Ritschl, Parerga zu Plaut. p. 261).


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