He was also the first, they say, to build temples to Faith and Terminus; and he taught the Romans their most solemn oath by Faith, which they still continue to use. Terminus signifies boundary
, and to this god they make public and private sacrifices where their fields are set off by boundaries; of living victims nowadays, but anciently the sacrifice was a bloodless one, since Numa reasoned that the god of boundaries was a guardian of peace and a witness of just dealing, and should therefore be clear from slaughter.
And it is quite apparent that it was this king who set bounds to the territory of the city, for Romulus was unwilling to acknowledge, by measuring off his own, how much he had taken away from others. He knew that a boundary, if observed, fetters lawless power; and if not observed, convicts of injustice. And indeed the city's territory was not extensive at first, but Romulus acquired most of it later with the spear.
All this was distributed by Numa among the indigent citizens. He wished to remove the destitution which drives men to wrongdoing, and to turn the people to agriculture, that they might be subdued and softened along with the soil they tilled. For there is no other occupation which produces so keen and quick a relish for peace as that of a farmer's life, where so much of the warrior's daring as prompts a man to fight for his own, is always preserved, while the warrior's licence to indulge in rapacity and injustice is extirpated.
Numa, therefore, administering agriculture to his citizens as a sort of peace-potion, and well pleased with the art as fostering character rather than wealth, divided the city's territory into districts, to which he gave the name of
‘pagi,’ and in each of them he set overseers and patrols. But sometimes he would inspect them in person, and judging of the characters of the citizens from the condition of their farms, would advance some to positions of honour and trust; while others, who were indolent and careless, he would chide and reproach, and so try to make them sensible.