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DECOCTOR a bankrupt (Plin. Nat. 33.133), was used in popular language to signify any spendthrift. The Romans were a frugal people, and spendthrifts were not only condemned by public opinion (Catull. 41.4; Cic. Cat. 2.3, 5; Sen. Ep. 36, 5; de Ben. 4.26, 3), but punished by the censors with the nota censoria, which carried with it certain legal disabilities. [CENSOR p. 401 b.] By the Lex Roscia (B.C. 67) a certain place in the theatre was assigned to spendthrifts (Cic. Phil. 2.18, 44; Juv. 3.153). According to Spartianus, Hadrian ordered that spendthrifts should be flogged ignominiously (catomidiari) in the amphitheatre and turned out (Spart. Hadrian. 18). The Roman law against persons who would not pay borrowed money was very severe, and is explained under NEXUM Its severity was mitigated by the BONORUM CESSIO By a constitution of the emperors Valentinian, Theodosius, and Arcadius, any decurio who had dissipated the funds of the city (decoctor pecuniae publicae) was to be scourged (plumbatarum ictibus, Cod. Just. 10.31, 40; Humbert in Daremberg and Saglio, s. v.).


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  • Cross-references from this page (3):
    • Cicero, Against Catiline, 2.3
    • Cicero, Philippics, 2.18
    • Cicero, Philippics, 2.44
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