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E´CDICUS (ἔκδικος), the name of an officer in many of the towns of Asia Minor under the Roman dominion. The word is translated in the ancient glossaries by cognitor, “agent” or “attorney.” The ecdicus was the agent of a city in its foreign business and its relations with the central government, and especially in prosecuting its claims against debtors. In Cicero's time the office seems to have been occasional, and something like that of an ambassador; but Cicero says that if ecdici are sent from Mylasa to Rome instead of legati, more business will be done (ad Fam. 13.56). Under the empire the office was placed on a permanent footing (Plin. Ep. 10.111). An inscription at Cibyra is in honour of a man who had gone four times as ambassador to Rome at his own expense, and brought many important public suits to a successful issue (ἐγδικήσαντα δημοσίας ὑποθέσεις πολλὰς καὶ μεγάλας, Waddington, No. 1212). The DEFENSOR CIVITATIS of the later empire was also called ἔκδικος in Greek. (Marquardt, Staatsverw. 1.214.)

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