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Latin. Among the Romans, if the parties could make no private agreement, they both went before the Praetor. Then the plaintiff proposed the action which he intended to bring against the defendant, and demanded a writ (actionem postulabat), from the Praetor for that purpose. For there were certain forms (formula), or set word (verba concepta) necessary to be used in every cause - (Formula de omnibus rebut constitute. Cic. Rose. Com. 8) - i. e. forms (of writs) were settled for all things. At the same time the defendant requested that an advocate or lawyer should assist with his counsel. There were several actions for the same thing. The prosecutor chose which he pleased, and the Praetor usually granted it, (actionem vel judicium dabat vel reddebat,) i. e. giving or rendering him a suit or judgment. Cic. pro Cacin, &c.; but he might also refuse it. The plaintiff, having obtained his writ, offered it to the defendant, or dictated to him the words. This writ it was unlawful to change, (mutare formulam non licebat,) i. e. it was unlawful to change its form. Senec. de Ep. 117. The greatest caution was necessary in drawing up the writ (in ...

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