reception or audience at court. At first
all visitors were admitted without distinction to the atria
of their wealthy friends. According to Seneca
6.33; de Clem.
Gracchus and Livius Drusus were the first to receive some privately and
others in a limited number, doubtless for political reasons. Afterwards
these distinctions became the rule, and it was the exception for any one to
open his doors to all comers (Cic. Att. 6.2
). Under the empire friends were
distinguished as amici admissionis primae,
&c. The first alone could enter without delay,
and could pay a separate visit. The rest had to await, and some-times to
purchase the favour, of the porter. At the imperial court there was a body
of slaves and freedmen, acting as the introducers of visitors (officium admissionis,
Suet. Vesp. 14; servi ab admissione,
Orell. 2888, or ab officiis et admissione,
and later as admissionales,
Lamprid. Alex. Sev.
4). The head of the officium admissionis
the magister admissionum,
to the magister officiorum.
The magister admissionum
himself introdced the most
exalted visitors, and, at least in the time of Justinian, none were
introduced by the admissionales
but such as
). Hence the admissionales
to have been at this time of a higher rank than most of the attendants on
the court. (Cf. Marquardt, Privatalt.
pp. 149, 231, 264.)