oxford university press article on Persian WarsNova Scripta! Athens and Sparta!!!!

We will start with Athens.
Athens was the largest city in Greece, and controlled a region called Attica. Between the many mountains were fertile valleys, with many farms. Athens became rich because Attica also had valuable sources of silver, lead and marble.


amicus curiae: "friend of the court" ;
a person or organization that is not a party to a lawsuit but that has a strong interest in the case and wants to participate, usually by filing a brief in support of one party's position. Amicus curiae must be invited by the court or obtain permission from the court before participating.

alibi : "elsewhere" I could not have committed the robbery because I have an alibi. At the time of the robbery,I was at Kellam High School, teaching, and there are 25 children who can attest to it. That would be an alibi. When one can prove one's whereabouts at the time of a crime make it impossible for one to have committed the crime.

demos=people +kratos=power

polis: city state

A polis (plural: poleis) was the typical structure of a community in the ancient Greek world. A polis consisted of an urban centre, often fortified and with a sacred centre built on a natural acropolis or harbour, which controlled a surrounding territory (chora) of land. The term polis has, therefore, been translated as ‘city-state’ as there was typically only one city and because an individual polis was independent from other poleis in terms of political, judicial, legal, religious and social institutions and practices, each polis was in effect a state. Like a state, each polis was also involved in international affairs, both with other poleis and non-Greek states in the areas of trade, political alliances and wars. Other cultures had a similar social and political structure, notably, the Babylonians, Etruscans and Phoenicians, and the latter are believed to be the originators of the polis as a communal unit.

A fundamental idea common to most poleis was that all male citizens had (at least theoretically) equal political rights based on ownership of property. In practice, whatever the political system adopted - tyranny, oligarchy or democracy - political power was dominated by a few aristocratic families who held for themselves all the important positions in the polis such as membership of elite councils, magistracies and the higher military ranks. Also, within these citizen bodies there were richer and poorer citizens. Overtime, and especially following the introduction of money, the richer class, whose status had once been based on land ownership, began to accumulate wealth from investments and loans they made, in effect increasing the difference between rich and poor.
What is a polis?


Despite the only limited equality characteristic of the Greek city-state, the creation of this new form of political organization nevertheless represented a significant break with the past, and the extension of at least some political rights to the poor stands as one of the most striking developments in this process of change. Unfortunately we cannot identify with certainty the forces that led to the emergence of the polis as a political institution in which even poor men had a vote on political matters. The explanation long favored by many makes a so-called hoplite revolution responsible for the general widening of political rights in the city-state, but recent research has undermined the plausibility of this theory as a completely satisfactory explanation. Hoplites were infantrymen clad in metal body armor and they constituted the main strike force of the citizen militias that defended Greek city-states in the period before navies became important. Men armed as hoplites marched into combat shoulder to shoulder in a rectangular formation called a phalanx. Staying in line and working as part of the group was the secret to successful phalanx tactics. A good hoplite, in the words of the seventh-century B.C. poet Archilochus, was “a short man firmly placed upon his legs, with a courageous heart, not to be uprooted from the spot where he plants his feet.” Greeks had fought in phalanxes for a long time, but until the eighth century B.C., only aristocrats and a relatively small number of their non-aristocratic followers could afford the equipment to serve as hoplites. In the eighth century B.C., however, a growing number of men had become sufficiently prosperous to buy metal weapons, especially since the use of iron had made them more readily available. Presumably these new hoplites, since they paid for their own equipment and trained hard to learn phalanx tactics to defend their community, felt they, too, were entitled to political rights. According to the theory of a hoplite revolution, these new hoplite-level men forced the aristocrats to share political power by threatening to refuse to fight and thereby cripple the community's military defense.
The theory correctly assumes that new hoplites had the power to demand an increased political say for themselves, a development of great significance for the development of the city-state as an institution not solely under the power of a small circle of aristocrats. The theory of a hoplite revolution cannot explain, however, one crucial question: why were poor men as well as hoplites given the political right of voting on policy in the city-state?

Thomas R. Martin, An Overview of Classical Greek History from Mycenae to Alexander

hoplite.jpg Ancient_Greece_hoplite_with_his_hoplon_and_dory.jpg
mens rea:" a guilty mind"
The mental component of criminal liability. To be guilty of most crimes, a defendant must have committed the criminal act in a certain mental state (the mens rea). The mens rea of robbery, for example, is the intent to permanently deprive the owner of his property.

actus reus :"a guilty act"
The actus reus is the act which, in combination with a certain mental state, such as intent or recklessness, constitutes a crime. For example, the crime of theft requires physically taking something (the actus reus) coupled with the intent to permanently deprive the owner of the object (the mental state, or mens rea).

ant/ anti: against
anti ( the prefix)...anti war

draconian: unduly harsh or heavy handed

In Athens, in the 7th century BC, Draco was the first legislator . He replaced the prevailing system of oral law and blood feud by a written code to be enforced only by a court. Draco's written law became known for its harshness, with the adjective "draconian" referring to similarly unforgiving rules or laws.

. The constitution featured several major innovations:

  • Instead of oral laws known to a special class, arbitrarily applied and interpreted, all laws were written, thus made known to all literate citizens (who could make appeal to the Areopagus for injustices): "... the constitution formed under Draco, when the first code of laws was drawn up." (Aristotle: Athenian Constitution, Part 5, Section 41)
  • The laws distinguish between murder and involuntary homicide.

The laws, however, were particularly harsh. For example, any debtor whose status was lower than that of his creditor was forced into slavery. The punishment was more lenient for those owing debt to a member of a lower class. The death penalty was the punishment for even minor offences, such as "stealing a cabbage". Concerning the liberal use of the death penalty in the Draconic code, Plutarch states: "It was a lot for himself, when asked why he had fixed the punishment of death for most offences, answered that he considered these lesser crimes to deserve it, and he had no greater punishment for more important ones."

The Areopagus is the composite form of the Greek name Areios Pagos, translated "Ares Rock" ). It is north-west of the Acropolis in Athens. In classical times, it functioned as the high Court of Appeal for criminal and civil cases. Ares was supposed to have been tried here by the gods for the murder of Poseidon's son Alirrothios (a typical example of an aetiological myth).


thank you to our friends at Yale for their guidance

so what happened to draco?

vide infra (v.i.) = see below

tabula rasa = blank slate; plank paper; blank
arch: chief; first; rule

agoraphobia ( agora+phobia)= abnormal fear of being helpless in an embarrassing or unescapable situation that is characterized especially by the avoidance of open or public places

Agora of Athens: the marketplace and civic center, was one of the most important parts of an ancient city of Athens. In addition to being a place where people gathered to buy and sell all kinds of commodities, it was also a place where people assembled to discuss all kinds of topics: business, politics, current events, or the nature of the universe and the divine. The Agora of Athens, where ancient
Greek democracy first came to life, provides a wonderful opportunity to examine the commercial, political, religious, and cultural life of one of the great cities of the ancient world.


check this out and this too

Solon: In the course of the late seventh and sixth century, when Greece was experiencing rapid social and political changes, many Greek towns were ruled by tyrants or sole rulers. Often, these men were aristocrats who had seized extra powers, sometimes relying on a group of wealthy nouveaux riches. Although the word 'tyrant' sounds very negative to us, this was not the case in ancient Greece.

Athens was no exception. A class of aristocrats ruled the city and excluded the wealthy nouveaux riches. Moreover, there were social conflicts. One would have expected the rise of tyrant, but instead the Athenians appointed a wise man named Solon as lawgiver (594/593).

He is responsible for several measures: for example, he decreed that no Athenian would be sold into slavery, even if he were severely indebted (a hectemoros), and that magistracies were open to all rich people (diminishing the power of the aristocrats). He also took economic measures and founded the Heliaia the people's court. The main result was that people for the first time began to define themselves as Athenians.

After Solon had written these laws, he left Athens for some time.
Solon is reckoned among the Seven Sages.


No Sid Vicious today, kids.

ad litem :
"for the purposes of the lawsuit" Most often the term applies to a parent who files a lawsuit for his or her minor child as "guardian ad litem" (guardian just for the purposes of the lawsuit) or for a person who is incompetent.

corruptio optimi pessima = the corruption of the best is the worst
I thought this was apropos in light of current events.est res pessima et tristissima, et omnes dolores pecuniis.

altiores sunt, durius cadunt

litigation:the contest of a dispute via the courts.
Because they could not settle their disputes otherwise, the parties were forced into litigation.
cosm: universe



Cleisthenes (Kleisthenes) was considered the founder of Athenian democracy, although this is disputed, since Solon is sometimes credited as such. All of those wonderful reforms we discussed above are largely accredited to him.

In order to bring about greater opportunity and equality Cleisthenes eliminated the earlier kinship clan system that was not only exclusive but conducive to domination by a single family.

Whereas the city-state was previously divided into four clans along bloodlines, known as the Ionic tribes, Cleisthenes established a new system of 10 tribes that were based on one’s locale of residency, or what was known as one’s deme.

The entire city-state was divided into three major regions: the city region (asty), the coastal region (paralia), and the inland region (mesogeia). These regions were each subdivided into 10 sections known as trittyes, or thirds. The 30 trittyes of the city-state consisted of the numerous demes, which seem to have numbered roughly 139 or 140.

All male citizens at the age of 18 and older registered within their deme and this became an important association, more important than the previous phratria, or familial association, which further served to undermine strict blood ties.

So, what were the institutions of government in Athens which Cleisthenes was so busy refining?

The second important institution was the boule, or Council of Five Hundred. The boule was a group of 500 men, 50 from each of ten Athenian tribes, who served on the Council for one year. Unlike the ekklesia, the boule met every day and did most of the hands-on work of governance. It supervised government workers and was in charge of things like navy ships (triremes) and army horses. It dealt with ambassadors and representatives from other city-states. Its main function was to decide what matters would come before the ekklesia. In this way, the 500 members of the boule dictated how the entire democracy would work.
Positions on the boule were chosen by lot and not by election. This was because, in theory, a random lottery was more democratic than an election: pure chance, after all, could not be influenced by things like money or popularity. The lottery system also prevented the establishment of a permanent class of civil servants who might be tempted to use the government to advance or enrich themselves. However, historians argue that selection to the boule was not always just a matter of chance. They note that wealthy and influential people–and their relatives–served on the Council much more frequently than would be likely in a truly random lottery.



quasi = as if: A person exercising powers similar to those of a judge is sitting in a Quasi-Judicial capacity

advocatus diaboli = devil's advocate
When one take's position one does not necessarily agree with for the sake of argument...playing "devil's advocate"

diabolical: devilish; evil
Ostracism: prevented a politician from becoming too powerful; "exile light" ostracism in Ancient Greece
in modern use, it is when a person is shunned by general consent from any group, denied privledges and ignored.

There was the Assembly aka as the ekklesia, the sovereign governing body of Athens. Any member of the demos–any one of those 40,000 adult male citizens–was welcome to attend the meetings of the ekklesia, which were held 40 times per year in a hillside auditorium west of the Acropolis called the Pnyx. (Only about 5,000 men attended each session of the Assembly; the rest were serving in the army or navy or working to support their families.) At the meetings, the ekklesia made decisions about war and foreign policy, wrote and revised laws and approved or condemned the conduct of public officials. (Ostracism, in which a citizen could be expelled from the Athenian city-state for 10 years, was among the powers of the ekklesia.) The group made decisions by simple majority vote.


The third important institution was the popular courts, or dikasteria. Every day, more than 500 jurors were chosen by lot from a pool of male citizens older than 30. Of all the democratic institutions, Aristotle argued that the dikasteria “contributed most to the strength of democracy” because the jury had almost unlimited power. There were no police in Athens, so it was the demos themselves who brought court cases, argued for the prosecution and the defense, and delivered verdicts and sentences by majority rule. (There were also no rules about what kinds of cases could be prosecuted or what could and could not be said at trial, and so Athenian citizens frequently used the dikasteria to punish or embarrass their enemies.)

In ancient Greece the chief magistrate in various Greek city states was called Archon. The term was also used throughout Greek history in a more general sense, ranging from "club leader" to "master of the tables" at syssitia.
In Athens a republican system of nine concurrent Archons evolved, led by three respective remits over the civic, military, and religious affairs of the state: the three office holders being known as the Eponymos archon (Ἐπώνυμος ἄρχων; the "name" ruler, who gave his name to the year in which he held office), the Polemarch ("war ruler"), and the Archon Basileus ("king ruler").[1] The six others were the Thesmothétai, Judicial Officers. Originally these offices were filled from the wealthier classes by elections every ten years. During this period the eponymous Archon was the chief magistrate, the Polemarch was the head of the armed forces, and the Archon Basileus was responsible for some civic religious arrangements, and for the supervision of some major trials in the law courts. After 683 BC the offices were held for only a single year, and the year was named after the Archōn Epōnymos. (Many ancient calendar systems did not number their years consecutively.)

Actus Dei Nemini Facit Injuriam:" an act of God causes injury to no one";
The loss from an injury caused thereby must be borne by the one who suffered it.
Ad damnum: to the damage

The ad damnum part of a petition or a claim will usually suggest an amount in dollars that the plaintiff asks the court to award.

anthrop: human

derm: skin

THE PERSIAN WAR (490-479 B.C.)
horizontal rule
horizontal rule

In the first stage of the war between Persia and Greece the Persian armies were led by king Darius I (550-486 B. C.). The Persians lost to the Athenians and their Greek allies. In the famous land battle of Marathon in 490 B.C. the Persians were defeated by the Athenians and the Plataeans. News of the victory was delivered by a messenger who ran the 26 miles from Marathon to Athens, and who died afterwards. This is the origin of the modern Olympic event of the marathon.
The second stage of the war saw the Persians arrive on the Greek shore with perhaps as many as 2,000,000 men, between their army and navy, under the command of king Xerxes I (519-465 B.C.), son of the deceased Darius I. An advance party of only 5,000 Greeks, including Spartans, Phocians and Locrians, under the command of one of the Spartan kings, Leonidas (a descendant of Hercules), held off the advancing Persian forces at the narrow pass between the cliffs and the sea at Thermopylae (the famous "Pass of Thermopylae"). They were eventually defeated after the Persian soldiers were shown a secret mountain way around the pass, although every last Spartan fought until he was killed. However, the in naval battle at Salamis in 480 B.C., which was masterminded by the Athenian general Themistocles, the Athenian navy defeated the Persian navy. Then, in the land battle at Plataea in 479 B.C., the Spartan-led army defeated the Persian army. The Persians were driven from Greece. Insofar as Athens had masterminded the naval victory of Salamis, which was the decisive victory in the war, the Athenians could rightly be said to have saved all Greece from Persian domination.


xerxes and leonides 300

Certiorari: more certain (IOR!!!!)
A formal request to a court challenging a legal decision of an administrative tribunal, judicial office or organization (eg. government) alleging that the decision has been irregular or incomplete or if there has been an error of law.
For example, a certiorari may be used to wipe out a decision of an administrative tribunal which was made in violation of the rules of natural justice, such as a failure to give the person affected by the decision an opportunity to be heard.

Ceteris Paribus: all things being equal or unchanged.
it is most often used in law and economics:

Example of Ceteris Paribus in Economics

An increase in interest rates will ‘ceteris paribus’ cause demand for loans to fall. Higher interest rates increase the cost of borrowing so there will be less demand for loans. However, if confidence was high, people might still want to borrow more. Ceteris paribus assumes things like confidence remain the same.

dyna: power

graph: write/draw

The so-called golden age of Athenian culture flourished under the leadership of Pericles (495-429 B.C.), a brilliant general, orator, patron of the arts and politician—”the first citizen” of democratic Athens, according to the historian Thucydides. Pericles transformed his city’s alliances into an empire and graced its Acropolis with the famous Parthenon. His policies and strategies also set the stage for the devastating Peloponnesian War, which would embroil all Greece in the decades following his death.
life of Pericles
famous quotes of Pericles
" Pericles Boyd." 2012. Biography.com 09 Oct 2012, 05:27 [[/people/pericles-9437722|http://www.biography.com/people/pericles-9437722]]

Aspasia: Pericles' famous ( and at the time, infamous) concubine and confidant...oohlala....Aspasia and Pericles sitting in a tree..


Utile Dulci: the useful with the agreeable.

In Ars Poetica, Horace offered this advice:

"He who joins the useful with the agreeable, wins every vote, by delighting and at the same time instructing the reader."
In other words, the successful poet – or more broadly, communicator – combines the edifying with the enjoyable, turns business into pleasu

CASTIGAT RIDENDO MORES: laughing corrects morals;

the best way to change the rules is by pointing out how absurd they are.

-onym: name


artlce about Athenian democracy under Pericles

The golden age of Athenian culture is usually dated from 449 to 431 B.C., the years of relative peace between the Persian and Peloponnesian wars. After the second Persian invasion of Greece in 479, Athens and its allies throughout the Aegean formed the Delian League, a military alliance focused on the Persian threat. Following a failed Athenian attack on the Persians in Egypt in 454, Athens’ leaders pushed to transfer the League’s treasury from Delos to Athens. Three years later, a coinage decree imposed Athenian weights and measures throughout the league. By the time Pericles was elected strategos, the league was well on its way to becoming an Athenian empire.
During the 440s and 430s Pericles tapped the league’s treasury to fund vast cultural projects in Athens, most notably a series of structures on the city’s hilltop Acropolis: the the Erechtheum and the towering Parthenon. Built to the highest standards of aesthetics, engineering and mathematics, these white marble structures were decorated with intricate statues and friezes carved by the era’s greatest sculptors.
Pericles’ social innovations were equally important to the era. He worked to democratize the fine arts by subsidizing theater admission for poorer citizens and enabled civic participation by offering pay for jury duty and other civil service. Pericles maintained close friendships with the leading intellects of his time. The playwright Sophocles and the sculptor Phidias were among his friends. Pericles’ consort Aspasia, one of the best-known women of ancient Greece, taught rhetoric to the young philosopher Socrates. Pericles himself was a master orator. His speeches and elegies (as recorded and possibly interpreted by Thucydides) celebrate the greatness of a democratic Athens at its peak.

Temple of Athena Nike
temple athena nike.jpg the Erectheum ( this is my favorite!!!)erechtheum.jpg

athens-parthenon-01.jpgand, the Parthenon

in loco parentis : the the place of the parents
modus operandi (m.o.): method of operating; the manner in which a crime is executed

pan: all

path: feeling; disease

Sparta history

The Peloponnesian War

The Golden Age of Greece was short lived. Athens and Sparta were both powerful poli, and each wanted to spread their way of life. Sparta attacked Athens in 431BC, beginning the brutal 27-year-long Peloponnesian War.

Sparta was a warrior society in ancient Greece that reached the height of its power after defeating rival city-state Athens in the Peloponnesian War (431-404 B.C.). Spartan culture was centered on loyalty to the state and military service. At age 7, Spartan boys entered a rigorous state-sponsored education, military training and socialization program. Known as the Agoge, the system emphasized duty, discipline and endurance. Although Spartan women were not active in the military, they were educated and enjoyed more status and freedom than other Greek women. Because Spartan men were professional soldiers, all manual labor was done by a slave class, the Helots. Despite their military prowess, the Spartans’ dominance was short-lived: In 371 B.C., they were defeated by Thebes at the Battle of Leuctra, and their empire went into a long period of decline.

One out four people in Athens died shortly after the war began, but not because they were defeated in battle. When Sparta attacked, the Athenian people crowded behind the walls of the city. The cramped and dirty living conditions were an easy target for disease. A plague, or great sickness, spread through the city. Sickness claimed the life of Pericles, the leader of Athens. Once Pericles died, the people began to listen to demagogues.They were bad leaders who appealed to people’s emotions rather than logic.

Sparta eventually defeated Athens by building blockade around the walls of the city. The people of Athens could not leave to get supplies or food from the countryside. Faced with starvation, Athens surrendered to Sparta in 404BC.

The Peloponnesian robbed Athens of its Golden Age. Great thinkers and teachers lived in Athens during and after the war but the era of support for new ideas and the spirit of democracy had passed.
athens and the death of Pericles

in camera: in chambers; in private, in the judge's chamber
in flagrante delicto: in the blazing crime; caught in the act

philos: love


Sparta, also known as Lacedaemon, was an ancient Greek city-state located primarily in the present-day region of southern Greece called Laconia. The population of Sparta consisted of three main groups: the Spartans, or Spartiates, who were full citizens; the Helots, or serfs/slaves; and the Perioeci, who were neither slaves nor citizens. The Perioeci, whose name means “dwellers-around,” worked as craftsmen and traders, and built weapons for the Spartans.

All healthy male Spartan citizens participated in the compulsory state-sponsored education system, the Agoge, which emphasized obedience, endurance, courage and self-control. Spartan men devoted their lives to military service, and lived communally well into adulthood. A Spartan was taught that loyalty to the state came before everything else, including one’s family.

Unlike such Greek city-states as Athens, a center for the arts, learning and philosophy, Sparta was centered on a warrior culture. Male Spartan citizens were allowed only one occupation: solider. Indoctrination into this lifestyle began early. Spartan boys started their military training at age 7, when they left home and entered the Agoge. The boys lived communally under austere conditions. They were subjected to continual physical, competitions (which could involve violence), given meager rations and expected to become skilled at stealing food, among other survival skills.
The teenage boys who demonstrated the most leadership potential were selected for participation in the Crypteia, which acted as a secret police force whose primary goal was to terrorize the general Helot population and murder those who were troublemakers. At age 20, Spartan males became full-time soldiers, and remained on active duty until age 60.
The Spartans’ constant military drilling and discipline made them skilled at the ancient Greek style of fighting in a phalanx formation. In the phalanx, the army worked as a unit in a close, deep formation, and made coordinated mass maneuvers. No one soldier was considered superior to another. Going into battle, a Spartan soldier, or hoplite, wore a large bronze helmet, breastplate and ankle guards, and carried a round shield made of bronze and wood, a long spear and sword. Spartan warriors were also known for their long hair and red cloaks.

agoge insanity


Spartan women had a reputation for being independent-minded, and enjoyed more freedoms and power than their counterparts throughout ancient Greece. While they played no role in the military, female Spartans often received a formal education, although separate from boys and not at boarding schools. In part to attract mates, females engaged in athletic competitions, including javelin-throwing and wrestling, and also sang and danced competitively. As adults, Spartan women were allowed to own and manage property. Additionally, they were typically unencumbered by domestic responsibilities such as cooking, cleaning and making clothing, tasks which were handled by the helots.
Marriage was important to Spartans, as the state put pressure on people to have male children who would grow up to become citizen-warriors, and replace those who died in battle. Men who delayed marriage were publically shamed, while those who fathered multiple sons could be rewarded.
In preparation for marriage, Spartan women had their heads shaved; they kept their hair short after they wed. Married couples typically lived apart, as men under 30 were required to continue residing in communal barracks. In order to see their wives during this time, husbands had to sneak away at night.

horrible histories spartan parent teacher conference

horrible histories spartan bride

and now to Rome, and their democracy:
Rome was founded by Romulus, the first king who, being a king ,set up a monarchy. That went swimmingly and all kinds of wonder things were accomplsihed under the rule of the kings until the last king who not only ruined it for himself, but was such a putz that after his ovethrow, Rome vowed never again to have kings, and generally regarded a monarchy as the worst thing that could befall them and something they would have to be forever vigilant in avoiding. So, what was so very awful? Rape with impunity.
The last king of Rome, a man named Tarquinius Superbus, had a son, whom we will refer to as Tarquin the Loser, who wanted to have sex with his cousin, a woman named Lucretia, who did not want to have sex with him for two reasons: she was married, and he was, as we will soon see, a loser. He would not take no for an answer, so he showed up at her house, unannouced and univited, when he knew her husband would not be home, and he demanded that she sleep with him. She refused. He told her that if she did not submit to him, she would kill her, kill a slve, put them in bed together and say he found them in flagrante delicto and that he killed them, defending his family's honor. So, she tearfully submitted. Later, after he husband came home, she told he and his friends what had happened, and killed herself. The Romans, led by a man named Lucius Brutus ( the ancestor of the Brutus of Caesar fame) led a posse to the king's house, where they demanded his son for retribution. The king refused to hand him over...and thus became a tyrant. No one should be above the law, and so, the Romans revolted and drove the king from the throne into the kingdom of the Etruscans nearby.
lucretia.jpgWhat an illegitimus. lucretia1.jpgUnfair.
lucretia2.jpgGo get that worthless piece of....

lucius brutus.jpgLucius Brutus, our hero. Do not mess with him. He looks as serious as a heart attack.


habeas corpus:" you may have the body"
" A prisoner files a petition for writ of habeas corpus in order to challenge the authority of the prison or jail warden to continue to hold him or her. If the judge orders a hearing after reading the writ, that becomes the prisoner's opportunity to argue that the confinement is illegal. Habeas corpus is an important protection against illegal confinement, once called "the great writ." For example, it can be used in cases where a person is being held without charges, or when due process obviously has been denied, bail is excessive, parole has been granted, an accused has been improperly surrendered by the bail bondsman, or probation has been summarily terminated without cause. A particularly frequent use of habeas writs is by convicted prisoners arguing that the trial attorney failed to prepare the defense and was incompetent. Prisoners sentenced to death also file habeas petitions challenging the constitutionality of the state death penalty law. Note that habeas writs are different from and do not replace appeals, which are arguments for reversal of a conviction based on claims that the judge conducted the trial improperly. Often, convicted prisoners file both."


sine qua non: "without which not"

A description of a requisite or condition that is indispensable.
In the law of torts, a causal connection exists between a particular act and an injury when the injury would not have arisen but for the act. This is known as the but for rule or sine qua non rule.
Example: if Charlie Careless had not left the keys in the ignition, his
10-year-old son could not have started the car and backed it over Polly
Playmate. So Charlie's act was the sine qua non of the injury to Playmate.

indispensable: extremely important and necessary; She was an indispensable part of the team, without her they would definately lose.
corpulent: having a large bulky body : obese

Nearly 3000 years ago, a tribe of people called the Latins lived in a small village on the Tiber River. This village grew to become the famous city of Rome.
Around 900 BCE, a mysterious group of people arrived on the Italian peninsula. Nobody knows where they come from, but archaeologists believe they probably arrived from Asia Minor.
The Etruscans must have known the Greeks. Their alphabet was based on the Greek alphabet. Their gods looked like humans, just like the Greek gods. But the Etruscans were not Greeks. From the artifacts they left behind, scientists are fairly certain that in the Etruscan culture, women and men were fairly equal in status. That was certainly not the Greek way of life.
The Etruscans organized their towns into city-states, each ruled by a king. The city-states worked together in a league - the Etruscan League.
The league began to trade with people in the east and people along the African coastline. Their trade routes included the tiny village on the Tiber River. Even in very early times, Rome was a busy place. The early Romans (the Latins) learned a great deal from the Etruscan traders.
While the Etruscans were building their own civilization, the city of Rome grew more powerful. Soon, Rome was a center of trade and commerce. Some of Rome's early kings were Etruscans.

"Etruscans - Ancient Rome for Kids." Etruscans - Ancient Rome for Kids. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Oct. 2012. http://rome.mrdonn.org/etruscans.html.
Easybib.com is my friend and can be yours too.

etruscan kings and rape of Lucretia

Cicero.jpg Cicero addressing Catiline Curia_Iulia.jpgCuria Julia
Senate: The Roman Senate (Senatus) from the Latin Senex (for elder or council of elders)

was a deliberative governing body. Its important to note the difference between

deliberative and legislative, in that the Senate itself didn't propose

legislation; though magistrates with the Senate, such as Consuls, did.

curia.jpgRome reborn
info on the roman senate

ad valorem: "according to the value"; and ad valorem tax ; imposed at a rate percent of value <ad valorem tax on goods>;

pro rata: for a rate; in proportion to the value
proportionately according to an exactly calculable factor (as share or liability)

prorate: to divide, distribute, or assess proportionately; to make a pro rata distribution
valorous: full of value ( valor)

Consul: chief executive of the Roman Republic; elected annually

"The Roman republic was led by two Consuls who were joint heads of the Roman state and commanders-in-chief of the army. They were elected only for one year and thereafter could not be re-elected again for 10 years, in order to prevent any form of tyranny. Until 367 BC plebeians were barred from the office of consul. The first plebeian consul followed immediately after the change in 367 BC.The main role of consuls was to prepare and propose new laws. Though this required co-operation between the two consuls, as either had the power to veto any proposals by the other. (The first plebeian consul was appointed in 366 BC, L. Sextius)."

The Praetor(of which there were six after 197 BC) was in charge of the judiciary of Rome. He was in effect the chief law officer. He acted as the chief judge, apart from the consuls who possessed higher authority, should they choose to use it.He also acted as a deputy to the consuls, in particular regarding the administration of the provinces. And it is therefore that provincial governors were either drawn from former consuls (proconsul) or from former praetors (propraetor).The office of praetor was created in 366 BC, within about a century the post was held by two. The first plebeian praetor took up office 337 BC.
roman offices


onus probandi: the burden of proof; In the US, it is on the prosecution...you, if you are accused of a crime, have the right to reamin silent...use it.

prima facie: at first sight;
based on what is known or seen when something is first considered or dealt with
▪ a prima facie case▪ There is strong prima facie evidence that she committed perjury. [=when we look at the situation now, there is strong evidence that she committed perjury, although it is possible that we will find out that she did not commit perjury when we learn more]

onerous: burdensome;
  • The government imposed onerous taxes on imports.
  • <had the onerous and stressful job of notifying the families of soldiers killed in action

probative:for the purpose of proving
There is no dearth of probabtive evidence for the theory of evolution

Continuing with the Roman offices:
"(of which there were two) was in his main duty the registrar of Rome. But he also oversaw the finances, including taxation, inspected the quality of public works and - more controversially - oversaw public morality. In his role as registrar of Rome, he and his staff compiled lists of all Roman citizens, recording their name, age, ancestry, families, wealth as well as which one of the three tribes of Rome they belonged to. If the initial purpose of the census, the counting of the people, was to allow for the military strength of Rome to be assessed, then it was naturally the censor, during the time of conscription, were in charge of assigning men, according to their status, to the various types of infantry or cavalry. In their role of inspectors of public works, they oversaw the maintenance of the temples, roads, water systems. Their powers of moral guardians were sweeping ones. Not only were they charged to discourage unmarried couples living together and to punish anyone who did not properly maintain his land, but they even possessed the power to bar a senator from the senate.Simply for not seeing to his lands properly a citizen could be reduced to the lowest rank of citizenship.Equestrians too would be punished,if they were found to have neglected their horse, provided to them by public funds."

"The Aedile (of which there were four after 421 BC) was the supervisor of public works. He oversaw the public works, temples and markets. Therefore there must have been some cooperation with the censors who had similar or related duties.) Also he oversaw the organization of festivals and games, which made this a very sought after office for a career minded politician of the late republic, as it was a good means of gaining popularity by stagingspectacles", except that you had to use your own money, or the money of your supporters to put on the spectacles...est pretiosissma!


affidavit: he has sworn

A written statement of facts voluntarily made by an affiant under an oath or affirmation administered by a person authorized to do so by law.


An affidavit is voluntarily made without any cross-examination of the affiant and, therefore, is not the same as a deposition, a record of an examination of a witness or a party made either voluntarily or pursuant to a subpoena, as if the party were testifying in court under cross-examination. A pleading—a request to a court to exercise its judicial power in favor of a party that contains allegations or conclusions of facts that are not necessarily verified—differs from an affidavit, which states facts under oath.


An affidavit is based upon either the personal knowledge of the affiant or his or her information and belief. Personal knowledge is the recognition of particular facts by either direct observation or experience. Information and belief is what the affiant feels he or she can state as true, although not based on firsthand knowledge.

The Affiant

Any person having the intellectual capacity to take an oath or make an affirmation and who has knowledge of the facts that are in dispute may make an affidavit. There is no age requirement for an affiant. As long as a person is old enough to understand the facts and the significance of the oath or affirmation he or she makes, the affidavit is valid. A criminal conviction does not make a person incapable of making an affidavit, but an adjudication of Incompetency does.


malo animo: with a bad mind; with evil intent : maliciously —used in English law esp. with respect to forgery


affiant: one swearing an oath

pusillanimous: ( pusillis; weak +animus) lacking courage or resolution;cowardly;faint-hearted;timid.

It's not a compliment.

Tribune of the Plebes: elected buy the Plebeian Assembly, very powerful office; elected to protect the rights of the plebes
Can propose law, presides over concilium plebis( the Plebian Assembly)can veto any act by any magistrate or any assembly
The Quaestor (of which there were four after 421 BC, and ten after 267 BC) was in charge of the military and civic treasury of Rome as well as keeping records. (Therefore there must have been some cooperation with the censors who had similar or related duties.) Further the quaestors also acted as aides to the consuls. This office was the lowest of the magistracies, the beginning of the 'ladder of honour' which would lead to the office of consul. The minimum age at which one could stand for this office was 25, allowing time for service in the legion. The first ever plebeian to take office as quaestor did so in 409 BC.