Under the empire, on the other hand, it had the ordinary magistrates of a colony, the chief being duoviri, charged with the administration of justice, whose place was taken every fifth year by duoviri censoria potestate quinquennales, then quaestores (or financial officials) and then aediles (building officials).
The two quaestores, who appear to have controlled finance in a large number of municipia, cannot be traced in others; and it is probable that in the municipia, as at Rome, the quaestorship was locally instituted, as need arose, to relieve the supreme magistrates of excessive business.
The original quaestors were afterwards distinguished by the title of urban quaestors (quaestores urbani).
In the code of the Twelve Tables they are designated quaestores parricidii, " inquisitors of parricide or murder"; 2 and perhaps originally this was their full title, which was afterwards abbreviated into quaestors when their functions as criminal judges fell into the background.
The subjugation of Italy occasioned the institution (in 267 B.C.) of four new quaestors, who appear to have been called quaestores classici because they were originally intended to superintend the building of the fleet (classes); their functions, however, are very imperfectly known.
3 It is often supposed that the quaestores parricidii were an old magistracy quite distinct from the ordinary quaestors.
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