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The pro

consuls,

that inanimate people, which, according to the extravagant computation of an old writer, was scarcely inferior in number to the living inhabitants of Rome. About thirty years after the foundation of Constantinople, a similar magistrate was created in that rising metropolis, for the same uses, and with the same powers. A perfect equality was established between the dignity of the two municipal, and that of the four prætorian prefects.

Those who, in the imperial hierarchy, were vice-pre- distinguished by the title of Respectable, formed fects, &c. an intermediate class between the illustrious

prefects and the honourable magistrates of the provinces. In this class the proconsuls of Asia, Achaia, and frica, claimed a pre-eminence, which was yielded to the remembrance of their ancient dignity; and the appeal from their tribunal to that of the prefects was almost the only mark of their dependance. But the civil government of the empire was distributed into thirteen great diocesses, each of which equalled the just measure of a powerful kingdom. The first of these diocesses was subject to the jurisdiction of the count of the east; and we may convey some idea of the importance and variety of his functions, by observing, that six hundred apparitors, who would be styled at present either secretaries, or clerks, or ushers, or messengers, were employed in his immediate office.' The place of Augustal prefect of Egypt was no longer filled by a Roman knight; but the name was retained; and the extraordinary powers which the situation of the country, and the temper of the inhabitants, had once made indispensable, were still continued to the governor. The eleven remaining diocesses, of Asiana,

p Besides our usual guides, we may observe, that Felix Cantelorius has written a separate treatise, De Præfecto Urbis; and that many curious details concerning the police of Rome and Constantinople are contained in the fourteenth book of the Tbeodosian Code.

9 Eunapius affirms, that the proconsul of Asia was independent of the prefect; which mast, however, be understood with some allowance; the jurisdiction of the vice-prefect he most assuredly disclaimed. Pancirolus, p. 161.

The proconsul of Africa had four hundred apparitors; and they all received large salaries, either from the treasury or the province. See Pancirol. p. 26. and Cod. Justinian. lib. 12. tit. 56, 57.

The go

vernors of the provinces.

Pontica, and Thrace; of Macedonia, Dacia, and Pannonia or Western Jllyricum; of Italy and Africa; of Gaul, Spain, and Britain ; were governed by twelve vicars or vice-prefects,' whose name sufficiently explains the nature and dependance of their office. It may

be added, that the lieutenant-generals of the Roman armies, the military counts and dukes, who will be hereafter mentioned, were allowed the rank and title of Respectable.

As the spirit of jealousy and ostentation prevailed in the councils of the emperors, they proceeded with anxious diligence to divide the sub

stance, and to multiply the titles of power. The vast countries which the Roman conquerors had united under the same simple form of administration, were imperceptibly crumbled into minute fragments; till at length the whole empire was distributed into one hundred and sixteen provinces, each of which supported an expensive and splendid establishment. Of these, three were governed by proconsuls, thirty-seven by consulars, five by correctors, and seventy-one by presidents. The appellations of these magistrates were different; they ranked in successive order, the ensigns of their dignity were curiously varied, and their situation, from accidental circumstances, might be more or less agreeable or advantageous. But they were all (excepting only the proconsuls) alike included in the class of honourable persons; and they were alike intrusted, during the pleasure of the prince, and under the authority of the prefects or their deputies, with the administration of justice and the finances in their respective districts. The ponderous volumes of the codes and pandects' would furnish ample materials for a minute inquiry into the system of provin

• In Italy there was likewise the Vicar of Rome. It has been much disputed, whether his jurisdiction measured one hundred miles from the city, or whether it stretched over the ten southern provinces of Italy.

Among the works of the celebrated Ulpian, there was one in ten books, concerning the office of a proconsul, whose duties in the most essential articles were the same as those of an ordinary governor of a province.

cial government, as in the space of six centuries it was improved by the wisdom of the Roman statesmen and lawyers. It may be sufficient for the historian to select two singular and salutary provisions intended to restrain the abuse of authority. 1. For the preservation of peace and order, the governors of the provinces were armed with the sword of justice. They inflicted corporal punishments, and they exercised, in capital offences, the power

of life and death. But they were not authorized to indulge the condemned criminal with the choice of his own execution, or to pronounce a sentence of the mildest and most honourable kind of exile. These prerogatives were reserved to the prefects, who alone could impose the heavy fine of fifty pounds of gold: their vicegerents were confined to the trifling weight of a few ounces.* This distinction, which seems to grant the larger while it denies the smaller degree of authority, was founded on a very rational motive. The smaller degree was infinitely more liable to abuse. The passions of a provincial magistrate might frequently provoke him into acts of oppression, which affected only the freedom or the fortunes of the subject; though, from a principle of prudence, perhaps of humanity, he might still be terrified by the guilt of innocent blood. It may likewise be considered, that exile, considerable fines, or the choice of an easy death, relate more particularly to the rich and the noble; and the persons the most exposed to the avarice or resentment of a provincial magistrate, were thus removed from his obscure persecution to the more august and impartial tribunal of the prætorian prefect. 2. As it was reasonably apprehended that the integrity of the judge might be biassed, if his interest was concerned, or his affections were engaged, the strictest regulations were established to exclude any person, without the special

* The presidents, or consulars, could impose only two ounces; the vice-prefects, three ; the proconsuls, count of the east, and prefect of Egypt, six. See Heineccii Jur. Civil. tom. 1. p. 75. Pandect. lib. 48. tit. 19. n. 8. Cod. Justinian. lib. 1. tit. 54. leg. 46.

dispensation of the emperor, from the government of the province where he was born;' and to prohibit the governor or his son from contracting marriage with a native or an inhabitant;" or from purchasing slaves, lands, or houses, within the extent of his jurisdiction. Notwithstanding these rigorous precautions, the emperor Constantine, after a reign of twenty-five years, still deplores the venal and oppressive administration of justice, and expresses the warmest indignation that the audience of the judge, his dispatch of business, his seasonable delays, and his final sentence, were publicly sold, either by himself, or by the officers of his court. The continuance, and perhaps the impunity, of these crimes, is attested by the repetition of impotent laws, and ineffectual menaces.

All the civil magistrates were drawn from the fession of profession of the law. The celebrated institutes

of Justinian are addressed to the youth of his dominions who had devoted themselves to the study of Roman jurisprudence; and the sovereign condescends to animate their diligence, by the assurance that their skill and ability would in time be rewarded by an adequate share in the government of the republic. The rudiments of this lucrative science were taught in all the considerable cities of the east and west; but the

The pro

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y Ut nulli patriæ suæ administratio sine speciali principis permissu permittatur. Cod. Justinian. lib. 1. tit. 41. This law was first enacted by the emperor Marcus, after the rebellion of Cassius. (Dion. lib. 71.) The same regulation is observed in China, with equal strictness, and with equal effect. z Pandect. lib. 23. tit. 2. n. 38. 57. 63.

In jure continetur, ne quis in administratione, constitutus aliquid compararet. Cod. Theod. lib. 8. tit. 15. leg. 1. This maxim of common law was enforced by a series of edicts (see the remainder of the title) from Constantine to Justin. From this probibition, which is extended to the meanest otfices of the governor, they ex. cept only clothes and provisions. The pu chase within five years may be recovered; after wbich, on information, it devolves to the treasury.

6 Cessent rapaces jam nunc officialium manus; cessent, inquam; nam si moniti non cessaverint, gladiis præcidentur, &c. Cod. Theod. lib. 1 lit. 7. leg. 1. Zeuo enacted that all governors should remain in the province to answer any accusations, fifty days after the expiration of their power. Cod. Justinian. lib. 2. tit. 49. leg. 1.

© Summâ igitur ope, et alacri studio bas leges nostras accipite ; et vosmetipsos sic eruditos ostendite, ut spes vos pulcherrima foveat; toto legitimo opere perfecto, posse etiam nostram rempublicam in partibus ejus vobis credendis gubernari. Justinian. in proem. Institutionum.

most famous school was that of Berytus,' on the coast of Phænicia, which flourished above three centuries from the time of Alexander Severus, the author, perhaps, of an institution so advantageous to his native country. After a regular course of education which lasted five years, the students dispersed themselves through the provinces, in search of fortune and honours; nor could they want an inexhaustible supply of business in a great empire, already corrupted by the multiplicity of laws, of arts, and of vices. The court of the prætorian prefect of the east could alone furnish employment for one hundred and fifty advocates, sixty-four of whom were distinguished by peculiar privileges, and two were annually chosen, with a salary of sixty pounds of gold, to defend the causes of the treasury. The first experiment was made of their judicial talents, by appointing them to act occasionally as assessors to the magistrates; from thence, they were often raised to preside in the tribunals before which they had pleaded. They obtained the government of a province; and, by the aid of merit, of reputation, or of favour, they ascended, by successive steps, to the illustrious dignities of the state. In the practice of the bar, these men had considered reason as the instrument of dispute; they interpreted the laws according to the

The splendour of the school of Berytus, which preserved in the east the language and jurisprudence of the Romans, may be computed to have lasted from the third to the middle of the sixth century.—Heinec. Jur. Rom. Hist. p. 351-356.

e As in a former period I bave traced the civil and military promotion of Pertinar, I shall here insert the civil honours of Mallius Theodorus." 1. He was distin. guished by his eloquence, while he pleaded as an advocate in the court of the prætorian prefect. 2. He governed one of the provinces of Africa, either as president or consular, and deserved, by his administration, the honour of a brass statue. 3. He was appointed vicar, or vice-prefect of Macedonia. 4. Quæstor. 5. Count of the sacred largesses. 6. Prætorian perfect of the Gauls; whilst he might yet be represented as a young man. 7. After a retreat, perbaps a disgrace, of many years, which Mallius (confounded by some critics with the poet Manlius, see Fabricius Bibliothec. Latin edit. Ernest. tom. 1. c. 18. p. 501.) employed in the study of the Grecian philosophy, he was named prætorian prefect of Italy in the year 397. 8. While he still exercised that great office, he was created, in the year 399, consul for the west ; and his name, on account of the infamy of his colleague, the eunuch Eutropius, often stands alone in the Fasti. 9. In the year 408, Mallius was appointed a second time prætorian prefect of Italy. Even in the venal panegyric of Claudian, we may discover the merit of Mallius Theodorus, who, by a rare felicity, was the intimate friend both of Symmachus and of St. Augustin. See Tillemont, Hist. des Emp. tom. 5. p. 1110-1114.

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