Census (Nova Roma)

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The census was a register of Roman citizens and of their property, first established by Servius Tullius, the fifth king of Rome. After the expulsion of the kings it was taken by the consules, until censores were appointed for the purpose of taking it in 443 B.C.

The census, the first and principal duty of the censors, for which the proper expression is censum agere (Liv. III. 3, 22, IV.8), was always held in the Campus Martius, and from the year B.C. 435 in a special building called Villa Publica, which was erected for that purpose by the second pair of censors, C. Furius Pacilus and M. Geganius Macerinus (Liv. IV.22; Varr. R. R. III.2).

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Nova Roma census requirements

The requirement to conduct a census is naturally aligned with the election of the censors. Under article IV.A.1. of the lex Cornelia Domitia de re publica constituenda (the constitution), censors are elected once in every thirty months to serve a maximum of eighteen months. It is not necessary to immediately elect new censors exactly every thirty-months, although any increasing delay to the election of new censors reduces the available allowance before the required start of the next census.

The census itself is to be initiated no later than in the thirtieth month after the official end (lustrum) of the previous census, observing that one in two censuses be completed before the end of every fifth calendar year of Nova Roma. Note that it is not necessary for the newly elected censors to commence a census right away, as they have their whole term of office to decide when it may be conducted. The period of a census may vary but all are required to be at least 3 months in duration.

Citizens who fail to register for the census are called cives incensi (unregistered citizens, disappeared citizens). Failure to register on the census is considered a dereliction of the one and only obligatory civic duty, and it involves loss of certain rights and other consequences.

Example five-year timeframe of the election of censors and the subsequent periods of census that could occur in that time.

Conduct of the census

The census of the Nova Roman People shall last for at least three months. The censors will announce the start across all public forums of Nova Roma. The censors will publish an edictum de legibus censui censendo in which they set the all and any rules for the current census, deadlines and mechanisms of registration. All magistrates and governors should do their part to ensure the message of the census is delivered to all citizens.

Registration of existing citizens

The primary duty for citizens in the census is to respond to the censors' call, which is normally done by sending an email to the designated address set by the censors. Besides confirming citizenship, citizens can (and should) also use this correspondence to update and confirm their personal contact details.

Besides citizens, the census is also conducted for the cives Latini, socii and "friends of Nova Roma".

Citizens who register themselves on the census are called cives censi (registered citizens, i.e. citizens registered on the actual census). The following individuals are automatically registered for the census:

a. Citizens who obtained citizenship after the conclusion of the last census.
b. Citizens who have paid taxes for the current calendar year.
c. Magistrates of the current calendar year and any current officers or priests of Nova Roma, except senators.

All other individuals have to register for the census personally, or by an official or personal representative:

a. Official representatives can ex officio assess the availability, responsiveness and attendance of a citizen regarding the census, and they can ex officio report the registration of a citizen. The following persons qualify as an official representative: the pater familias (or mater familias) of the individual, the provincial governor of the individual, or an officer of the Censorial Office.
b. Personal representatives are personally entrusted by the citizens. If a citizen knows of an extended period of unavailability that will coincide with the census, the citizen can entrust a personal representative to register him or her on the census. This type of personal representative is distinct from the official representative above. The personal representative can be anyone the citizen selects, but this type of representative must produce evidence (for example an email) of being chosen as a citizen's representative for the census.

Classification and evaluation of all citizens

As part of the census, the censors will classify the citizens and distribute them across the classes and the tribes. They will also perform the recognitio et probatio equitum (the revision of the membership of the official, public Equestrian Order), the lectio senatus (the revision of the membership of the senate), and they may publicly praise and reprimand citizens and that of current customs according to their function as guardians of public morals, good traditions and Roman virtues. Censorial awards shall be distributed at this time.


To conclude a census, the censors shall perform the lustrum to purify the Nova Roman people and Nova Roma. Only after the performance of the lustrum is the census completed.

Previous census outcomes

The following is the list of all completed censuses of Nova Roma:

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