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[2] Others say that the name was meant to distinguish between possible and impossible functions; the lawgiver enjoining upon these priests the performance of such sacred offices only as were possible, and finding no fault with them if any serious obstacle prevented. But most writers give an absurd explanation of the name; Pontifices means, they say, nothing more nor less than bridge-builders, from the sacrifices which they performed at the bridge over the Tiber, sacrifices of the greatest antiquity and the most sacred character; for ‘pons’ is the Latin word for bridge.

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