Sunday, October 24, 2010

297/365 Justinian

written in sharpie on the underside of a sink cabinet drawer

The famous decree of Justinian, promulgated in 539 (Novella 78 of the Digest), conferring upon freedmen the right of wearing gold rings, runs as follows :

If a master, on freeing- his slave, has declared him to be a Roman citizen (and he is not allowed to do otherwise), let it be known that, according to the present law, he who shall have received his liberty shall have the right to gold rings and to regeneration, and shall not need to solicit the right of the prince, or to take any other steps to secure it. It will be his as a consequence of his liberation, in virtue of the present law, whichgoes into effect from this day.

-text from Rings For the Finger, published in 1917.

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