For he permitted any who wished to enter the lists and sue for the consulship. But before the installation of his colleague, not knowing who he would be, but fearing an opposition due to some jealousy or ignorance, he used his sole authority for the enactment of his best and most important measures. In the first place, he filled up the senate, which was much reduced in numbers; for some had long before been put to death by Tarquin, and others had recently fallen in the battle with the Tuscans.
Those who were enrolled in this body by him amounted, they say, to a hundred and sixty-four. After this he enacted several laws, one of which especially strengthened the position of the commons by allowing a defendant to appeal to the people from the judgement of the consuls. A second made it a capital offence to assume a magistracy which the people had not bestowed.
A third, following these, came to the relief of the poor; it lifted the taxes from the citizens, so that all engaged more zealously in manufactures and commerce. And the one which was enacted against disobedience to the consuls was thought to be no less popular in its character, and to be in the interest of the many rather than of the powerful.
For the fine which it imposed on disobedience was only the worth of five oxen and two sheep. Now the value of a sheep was ten obols and that of an ox, a hundred, for the Romans at that time did not use much coined money, but their wealth consisted in flocks and herds. Therefore to this day they call their substance
; and their oldest coins are stamped with time figure of an ox, a sheep, or a hog. And they actually gave their own sons such surnames as Suillius, Bubulcus, Caprarius, and Porcius; the last two from
,’ their words for goat