Remarks on the origin of 'Legis Actio Sacramento in Rem'
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The aim of the present study is merely to highlight a possibility which will not consider the motifs of sacredness and private fight contradictory in the structure of 'legis actio sacramento in rem' but will mingle them as organically complementing components. The sacred element can be clearly traced in the 'vindicatio' procedure in the requirement of the verbatim recital of both the oath, the 'sacramentum' and the 'carmen'. The motif of the fight appears both in the etymology of the word 'vindicatio' and in the employment of the spear. However, it is precisely the 'hasta' that carries a religious extra semantic load in Roman imagination which cannot be disregarded in the case of archaic civil law trial. Adapting to the rules of the genre, Plautus presents a quasiproperty trial, the result of which is decided by restricted and controlled personal fight, employing the drawing of lots, thus calling for divine judgement. Based on all these, it can be rightly assumed that originally it was the 'ordalium', fought with weapons, that brought 'legis actio sacramento in rem' to its form known today.
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