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lībella , ae, f. dim. libra.
I. An as, a small silver coin, the tenth part of a denarius: “nummi denarii decuma libella, quod libram pondo aeris valebat, et erat ex argento parva,Varr. L. L. 5, § 174 Müll.: “librales, unde etiam nunc libella dicitur et dupondius, appendebantur asses,Plin. 33, 3, 13, § 42; Cato, R. R. 15, 1: sunt enim in sestertio libellae decem, singulae viginti, teruncii quadraginta, Volus. Maec. 66.—
B. In gen.
1. Prov. for a very small sum of money, as with us a farthing, groat, cent: “una libella liber possum fieri,Plaut. Cas. 2, 5, 8; cf. id. Capt. 5, 1, 27: “tibi libellam argenti numquam credam,id. Ps. 2, 2, 34: “quoi neque libellai spes sit usquam gentium,id. ib. 1, 1, 96: “quom libella nusquamst, nisi, etc.,id. ib. 4, 7, 47: “quis Volcatio unam libellam dedisset?Cic. Verr. 2, 2, 10, § 26.—Hence, ad libellam, i. q. ad assem, to a farthing, to a cent, exactly, Cic. Rosc. Com. 4, 11.—
2. In inheritances: ex libella, i. q. ex asse, sole heir: “Curius fecit palam te ex libella, me ex teruncio,Cic. Att. 7, 2, 3.—
II. An instrument for detecting any variation from a perfectly horizontal surface, a level, water-level, plummetline: “libella aliqua si ex parti claudicat hilum,Lucr. 4, 515: “collocare et expolire aliquid ad regulam et libellam,Vitr. 1, 6, 6; cf. Plin. 36, 25, 63, § 188: “structuram (parietis) ad normam et libellam fieri, et ad perpendiculum respondere oportet,id. 36, 22, 51, § 172: “locus qui est ad libellam aequus,quite, perfectly level, Varr. R. R. 1, 6 fin.
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