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Dispensātor

A steward in the Roman city household, who had the charge of the accounts and made the payments (Cic. Att. xi. 1; Juv.i. 91; Mart.v. 42). The dispensator was usually, perhaps always, a slave. If there was a procurator in the house, the dispensator was under him and acted simply as cashier. Thus we read in Petronius (c. 30) that the procurator received the rents, while the dispensator paid out the money in the atrium. If there was a dispensator on the country estate, he was nearly the same as the villicus (Dig. 1.16, 166). The imperial procuratores discharged important duties, not only at the court but in Rome and the provinces (Plin. H. N. vii. 129). How valuable was the appointment may be seen from the fact that Otho extorted a million sesterces from a slave whom he had recommended to Galba for the office of dispensator ( Oth. 5).

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