Century (Nova Roma)
Centuries are voting blocks of the comitia centuriata. Every citizen of Nova Roma is placed into a century determined by two factors: taxpayment and census points. The current number of centuries is 31. Out of these 31 centuries, 30 are reserved for assiduus citizens, the elite of the citizenry, and 1 (the 31st century) is reserved for the capite censi, the masses of inactive citizens or those active citizens who don't have at least 16 census points. Out of the 30 assiduus centuries, 1 (the 1st century) is reserved for the equestrians.
Centuries in Nova Roma are numbered, with the 1st century in the 1st class on the top, down to the 31st century in the 5th class for the capite censi. The more census points a citizen has, the higher century he is placed in. Citizens in higher centuries have more voting weight, as higher centuries have less citizens in them, therefore each citizen's vote carries greater weight.
The centuries are further distributed into 5 classes, the 1st class being the highest. The higher the class, the more centuries it contains, consequently, the more voting weight it has. Similarly, the higher a century is, the less citizens it contains, so each individual in a century has more voting weight in it.
Voting by centuries
Following Roman traditions and practices, when the general assembly of the people of Nova Roma, the comitia centuriata is called to vote, each citizen's vote is counted only within his century. The result within the century determines the vote of each century, and it's the vote of each century that is counted when calculating the results of the voting.
The number of centuries
The number of centuries is determined based on the number of assiduus citizens in Nova Roma, but there are always at least 31 centuries. The addition of new centuries to the comitia centuriata will be structured to coincide to the growth of the number of assidui.
Distribution of centuries among the 5 classes
The censores are tasked to assign a citizen to a class based on his taxpayment and century points (merits, public service). Within each class, the number of citizens must be spread as equitable as possible, with the exception of the equestrian century (century No.1) and the capite census century (century No.31). If there are centuries assigned to classes that do not have the citizens to fill those centuries, then the censores cannot fill those centuries.
The number of census points determines what class citizens are allocated:
- 220 or more census points and admission into the ordo equester: equestrian century within the 1st class
- 140 or more census points: 1st class centuries
- 100 – 139 census points: 2nd class centuries
- 50-99 census points: 3rd class centuries
- 35-49 census points: 4th class centuries
- 17-34 census points: 5th class centuries
- Citizens who do not meet the minimum threshold of 16 census points: capite census century within the 5th class
The number of centuries in each class is set as follows:
- Class I: 49% of the total number of centuries, with one single century (century No1) reserved exclusively for equestrians
- Class II: 10% of the total number of centuries
- Class III: 10% of the total number of centuries
- Class IV: 10% of the total number of centuries
- Class V: 15% of the total number of centuries, with one single century (century No31) reserved for the capite censi only.
Previous system of centuries in the past of Nova Roma
Before the year St. Cornelia C. Aemilio cos. ‡ MMDCCLXVII a.u.c., the censores first assigned a citizen to a century based on his taxpayment and century points (merits, public service), and after having placed the citizen into a century, they distributed the centuries between the five classes. So, while in ancient Rome class determined placement in century, in the previous system of Nova Roma, century determined placement in class. Before the year St. Cornelia C. Aemilio cos. ‡ MMDCCLXVII a.u.c., the number of centuries was determined by dividing the number of assiduus citizens by eight, rounding down. There could be no more than 193 and no less than 51 centuries, but in practice it remained always 51. The assignment of citizens took place before every election by the censores.
The censores were allowed by the lex Octavia altera de comitiis centuriatis to determine the number of centuries in each class by edict, but no censores choose to do so, so the initial proportions set up by the law was adhered to until the new system was introduced. The relative sizes of each class was set as follows:
- Class I: 29% of the assiduus centuries.
- Class II: 24% of the assiduus centuries.
- Class III: 20% of the assiduus centuries.
- Class IV: 16% of the assiduus centuries.
- Class V: 11% of the assiduus centuries, plus 1 century reserved for the capite censi only.
The division of the centuries by the five classes as defineded by the lex Octavia altera de comitiis centuriatis resulted in the following division:
- Centuries 1-14: Class I
- Centuries 15-26: Class II
- Centuries 27-36: Class III
- Centuries 37-44: Class IV
- Centuries 45-50: Class V
- Century 51: Capite Censi