On the Mos Maiorum

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On the Mos Maiorum

Postby Caeso Cispius Laevus » Sun Jan 29, 2017 10:59 pm

Sal.

Earlier this month an attempt to implement a mos maiorum within the RR was rejected by the citizens.

See the old discussion here -

viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1494

viewtopic.php?f=3&t=1506

viewtopic.php?f=11&t=1488

I would like to discuss here in this group how the mos maiorum should be approached within the RR. How should it be implementmented? Would it provide for a more flexible set of customary rules? Should we even attempt such a system?

I feel having a working mos maiorum could increase the efficiency and scope of our operations. But it would need to be implemented in a careful way with checks and balances.

I hope we can discuss this idea here.
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Re: On the Mos Maiorum

Postby Gaius Curtius Philo » Sun Jan 29, 2017 11:03 pm

Caeso Cispius Laevus wrote:Sal.

Earlier this month an attempt to implement a mos maiorum within the RR was rejected by the citizens.

See the old discussion here -

http://www.romanrepublic.org/forum/view ... f=3&t=1494

http://www.romanrepublic.org/forum/view ... =11&t=1488

I would like to discuss here in this group how the mos maiorum should be approached within the RR. How should be implement a more flexible set of customary rules? Should be even attempt such a system?

I feel having a working mos maiorum could increase the efficiency and scope of our operations. But it would need to be implemented in a careful way with checks and balances.

I hope we can discuss this idea here.


One way to do it that I find attractive is this:

If something is not covered in legislation and there is no prohibition to it, instead of making a law defining a given action that is taken, we simply do it in a way that everyone agrees upon. No law made. Just plain action. And if someone disagrees on said procedures, then we can ask a higher magistrate to make an Edictum on the subject. With that the Edictum becomes a sanctionary and Conflict-Resolving tool, Leges become the Foundation of our Rights and Obligations and everything outside those two spheres become Custom.

Example: Let's say that the Senate wants to send someone to represent the RR to another organization. There is no Law on that possibility. What does the Senate do? It simply decides on a representative informaly without any law. If no one objects, there is no need for any law to be made and we are done.

But what if someone objects? Then a Consul could simply make an Edictum granting the Senate this power. Done.

This way we avoid having to many regulations and act more out of Common Sense then out of a rulebook. The Rulebook comes to play only when NEEDED, not when not asked for.
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Re: On the Mos Maiorum

Postby Caeso Cispius Laevus » Sun Jan 29, 2017 11:05 pm

Sal.

So how does the mos maiorum work relative to what you describe?
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Re: On the Mos Maiorum

Postby Numerius Antonius Paullus » Sun Jan 29, 2017 11:10 pm

Salvete Omnes

The way I have always seen the Mos Maorium was very simple. I break it down to two sections.

I. Don't be a phallus. As in if you wouldn't do it in front of your (insert innocent and pure person or title here) don't do it here.

II. If it is something that needs doing. The senate can do it. If there is an issue there can be debate and end in either an edictum or a lex if necessary.

Thus is my two denarii on the subject.

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Re: On the Mos Maiorum

Postby Gaius Curtius Philo » Sun Jan 29, 2017 11:11 pm

Caeso Cispius Laevus wrote:Sal.

So how does the mos maiorum work relative to what you describe?


Mos Maiorum would be what I called here Customs. It would be simply how we "are acustomed to do things" in which there is no dispute. It could also refer to the Values of our Ancestors and be invoked to defend certain ways of acting, but in practical sense it would be Customs.
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Re: On the Mos Maiorum

Postby Marcus Livius Horatius » Tue Jan 31, 2017 11:53 pm

Gaius Aurelius Victor wrote:
Caeso Cispius Laevus wrote:Sal.

So how does the mos maiorum work relative to what you describe?


Mos Maiorum would be what I called here Customs. It would be simply how we "are acustomed to do things" in which there is no dispute. It could also refer to the Values of our Ancestors and be invoked to defend certain ways of acting, but in practical sense it would be Customs.



So nothing written and no bylaw changes? Just make it "what most people agree with" now and in the past?
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Re: On the Mos Maiorum

Postby Gaius Curtius Philo » Wed Feb 01, 2017 12:18 am

Marcus Livius Horatius wrote:
Gaius Aurelius Victor wrote:
Caeso Cispius Laevus wrote:Sal.

So how does the mos maiorum work relative to what you describe?


Mos Maiorum would be what I called here Customs. It would be simply how we "are acustomed to do things" in which there is no dispute. It could also refer to the Values of our Ancestors and be invoked to defend certain ways of acting, but in practical sense it would be Customs.



So nothing written and no bylaw changes? Just make it "what most people agree with" now and in the past?


They are customs after all. Our system pretty much permits such an implementation. We arent really obligated to legislate on absolutely everything we do so why not simply create a political culture in which we avoid doing so? Laws should be reserved for when they are needed. A simple action by consensus in things that Are consensus should be the norm when not blocked by law.
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Re: On the Mos Maiorum

Postby Publius Sextius Laevus » Wed Feb 01, 2017 5:07 pm

Salvete omnis

The internet is full of articles on the Mos Maiorum as Kaster's on 'Roman Values and Virtues' https://scholar.princeton.edu/sites/def ... ster_0.pdf and separately, in response to what it is not, https://idaostenberg.com/2014/10/18/wha ... s-maiorum/

However, why not read what someone who knew first hand, M. Tullis Cicero, had to say about it. In his De Officiis, 'On Duty' if you search in the Latin text for 'mos' & 'mor' you will find 31 references in Liber I alone. (then look up the paragraph number in a translated version).

You will find a range from honoring promises of protection to vanquished foe to the one in Liber I, paragraph 129 (last paragraph of XXXV): Scaenicorum quidem mos tantam habet vetere disciplina verecundiam, ut in scaenam sine subligaculo prodeat nemo; verentur enim, ne, si quo casu evenerit, ut corporis partes quaedam aperiantur, aspiciantur non decore. - basically 'one of the actor's Mos is to wear underwear when going on stage so that he might not become indecorous.'

I would also heed paragraph 33 of Liber I, "summum ius summa iniuria" - 'more laws less justice'.

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Re: On the Mos Maiorum

Postby Gaius Curtius Philo » Wed Feb 01, 2017 8:28 pm

So basically Mos is custom. Mos Maiorum would be the customs of the higher ones (the ancestors) and the State.
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