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Sextus Julius Frontinus

Liber Alter

64. Persecutus ea quae de modulis dici fuit necessarium, nunc ponam, quem modum quaeque aqua, ut principum commentariis comprehensum est, usque ad nostram curam habere visa sit quantumque erogaverit; deinde quem ipsi scrupulosa inquisitione praeeunte providentia optimi diligentissimique Nervae principis invenerimus. Fuerunt ergo in commentariis in universo quinariarum decem duo milia septingentae quinquaginta quinque, in erogatione decem quattuor milia decem et octo: plus in distributione quam in accepto computabatur quinariis mille ducentis sexaginta tribus. Huius rei admiratio, cum praecipuum officii opus in exploranda fide aquarum atque copia crederem, non mediocriter me convertit ad scrutandum, quemadmodum amplius erogaretur, quam in patrimonio, ut ita dicam, esset. Ante omnia itaque capita ductuum metiri adgressus sum, sed longe, id est circiter quinariarum decem milibus, ampliorem quam in commentariis modum inveni, ut per singulas demonstrabo.

65. Appiae in commentariis adscriptus est modus

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Aqueducts Of Rome, II

Book II

Having detailed those facts which it was necessary to state with reference to the ajutages, I will now set down what discharge each aqueduct, according to the imperial records, was thought to have up to the time of my administration, and also how much it actually did deliver; then the true measure, which I reached by careful investigation, acting on the suggestion of that best and most industrious emperor, Nerva.1 Now there were, in the aggregate, 12,755 quinariae set down in the records,2 but 14,018 quinariae actually delivered; that is, 1,263 more quinariae were reported as delivered than were reckoned as received.3 Since I considered it the most important function of my office to determine the facts concerning the water-supply, my astonishment at this state of affairs stirred me profoundly and led me to investigate how it happened that more was being delivered than belonged to the property, so to speak. Accordingly, I first of all undertook measurements of the intakes of the conduits and discovered a total supply far greater—that is, by about 10,000 quinariae—than I found in the records, as I shall explain in connection with each aqueduct.

In the records Appia is credited with 841 quinariae.4 water supply in the imperial records; (2) the difference between the amount of water recorded as received and that delivered; (3) the difference between the amount proved by measurement and that delivered. In some cases, where the waters were received in catch-basins, or reservoirs (cf. 19), he computes separately the amounts lost before the water reached the basin, and that lost afterwards.

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DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.frontinus-aqueducts_rome.1925