aedile

aedileship, n.aedilitian /eed'l ish"euhn/, adj.
/ee"duyl/, n. Rom. Hist.
one of a board of magistrates in charge of public buildings, streets, markets, games, etc.
Also, edile.
[1570-80; < L aedilis, equiv. to aedi- (s. of aedes; see AEDICULE) + -ilis -ILE]

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▪ Roman official
Latin  Aedilis,  plural  Aediles 

      (from Latin aedes, “temple”), magistrate of ancient Rome who originally had charge of the temple and cult of Ceres. At first the aediles were two officials of the plebeians, created at the same time as the tribunes (494 BC), whose sanctity they shared. These magistrates were elected in the assembly of the plebeians. In 366 two curule (“higher”) aediles were created. These were at first patricians; but those of the next year were plebeians and so on year by year alternately until, in the 2nd century BC, the system of alternation between classes ceased. They were elected in the assembly of the tribes, with the consul presiding. The privileges of the curule aediles included a fringed toga, a curule chair, and the right to ancestral masks—privileges perhaps extended to the plebeian aediles after 100 BC. Aediles ranked between tribunes and praetors, a greater proportion of the curule ones attaining the consulship, but the office was not necessary for advancement in a senatorial career.

      The functions of the aediles were threefold: first, the care of the city (repair of temples, public buildings, streets, sewers, and aqueducts; supervision of traffic; supervision of public decency; and precaution against fires); second, the charge of the provision markets and of weights and measures and the distribution of grain, a function for which Julius Caesar added two plebeian aediles called ceriales; third, organization of certain public games, the Megalesian and the Roman games being under the curule aediles and the Plebeian games as well as those of Ceres and Flora being under the plebeian. They had judicial powers and could impose fines.

      Augustus transferred the care of the games and the judicial functions to the praetors and the care of the city to appointed boards and to the prefects of the watch and of the city. Under the imperial regime the office became a step in the senatorial career for plebeians until it disappeared after the reign of Alexander Severus in the 3rd century AD.

      In Roman municipalities aediles were regular magistrates and are recorded as officials in associations and clubs.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • AEdile — [AE] dile, n. [L. aedilis, fr. aedes temple, public building. Cf. {Edify}.] A magistrate in ancient Rome, who had the superintendence of public buildings, highways, shows, etc.; hence, a municipal officer. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • aedile — [ē′dīl΄] n. [L aedilis < aedes, building: see EDIFY] in ancient Rome, an official in charge of buildings, roads, sanitation, public games, etc …   English World dictionary

  • Aedile — Ancient Rome This article is part of the series: Politics and government of Ancient Rome Periods …   Wikipedia

  • aedile —   n. head of ancient Roman office of works.    ♦ aedility, n. aedile s office …   Dictionary of difficult words

  • aedile — noun Etymology: Latin aedilis, from aedes temple more at edify Date: 1540 an official in ancient Rome in charge of public works and games, police, and the grain supply …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • aedile — noun An elected official who was responsible for the maintenance of public buildings and the regulation of festivals; also supervised markets and the supply of grain and water …   Wiktionary

  • aedile — n. official of ancient Rome who was in charge of public works the streets and games who supervised markets and water and grain supply …   English contemporary dictionary

  • aedile — [ i:dʌɪl] noun (in ancient Rome) either of two (later four) magistrates responsible for public buildings and other matters. Derivatives aedileship noun Origin C16: from L. aedilis concerned with buildings , from aedes building …   English new terms dictionary

  • aedile — ae·dile …   English syllables

  • aedile — ae•dile or edile [[t]ˈi daɪl[/t]] n. anh a magistrate in ancient Rome in charge of public buildings, streets, services, markets, games, and the distribution of grain • Etymology: 1570–80; < L aedīlis=aed(ēs) temple, shrine + īlis ile II… …   From formal English to slang

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