Gens Curiatia (Nova Roma)
The gens Curiatia was founded in Nova Roma by Marcus Curiatius Complutensis, first called Marcus Adrianus Complutensis.
The existence of a patrician gens of this name is attested by Livy (i. 30, comp. Dionys. iii. 30), who expressly mentions the Curiatii among the noble Alban gentes, which, after the destruction of Alba, were transplanted to Rome, and there received among the Patres. This opinion is not contradicted by the fact that in B. c. 401 and 138 we meet with Curiatii who were tribunes of the people and consequently plebeians, for this phenomenon may be accounted for here, as in other cases, by the supposition that the plebeian Curiatii were the descendants of freedmen of the patrician Curiatii, or that some members of the patrician gens had gone over to the plebeians. The Alban origin of the Curiatii is also stated in the story about the three Curiatii who in the reign of Tullus Hostilius fought with the three Roman brothers, the Horatii, and were conquered by the cunning and bravery of one of the Horatii., though some writers described the Curiatii as Romans and the Horatii as Albans. (Liv. i. 24, &c. ; Dionys. iii. 11, &c.; Pint. Par all. Gr. et. Rom. 16; Fior. i. 3; Aurel. Vict. de Vir. III. 4 ; Zonar. vii. 6; Niebuhr, Hist, of Rome^ i. p< 348; comp. horatius.) No members of the patrician Curiatia gens, so far as our records go, rose to any eminence at Rome, and there are but few whose names have come down to us. The only cognomen of the gens in the times of the republic is Fistus.
The most commonly used praenomen among members of this gens in ancient times was Publius.
In modern times the most common praenomina have been Marcus and Quintus. The praenomina Gaius, Lucius, Publius, Titus, Tiberius, Sextus, Aulus, Decimus, Gnaeus, Spurius, Manius, Servius, Appius, Numerius, and Vibius have not been used by the Curiatii in the modern era.
1. P. Curiatius, tribune of the people in b. c. 401. The college of tribunes in that year laboured under great unpopularity, as two of them had been appointed by the co-optation of the college under the influence of the patricians. P. Curiatius and two of his colleagues, M. Metilius and M. Minucius, endeavoured to counteract the unpopularity and turn the hatred of the people against the patricians by bringing a charge against Sergius and Virginius, two military tribunes of the year previous, whom they declared to be the authors of all the mischief and the cause of the people's sufferings. Both the accused were condemned to pay a heavy fine, and the tribunes of the people soon after brought forward an agrarian law, and prevented the tribute for the maintenance of the armies being levied from the plebeians. (Liv. v. 11, 12.)
2. C. Curiatius, tribune of the people in b. c. 138, is characterised by Cicero (de Leg. iii. 9) as a homo infimus. He caused the consuls of the year, P. Cornelius Scipio Nasica (whom he nicknamed Serapio) and D. Junius Brutus to be thrown into prison for the severity with which they proceeded in levying fresh troops, and for their disregard to the privilege of the tribunes to exempt certain persons from military service. (Liv. JUpiL 55 ; Val. Max. iii. 7. § 3.)
There are extant several coins, on which we read C. cur. trige. or C. cur. F., and which may belong to this tribune or a son of his; but it is just as probable that they belonged to some patrician C. Curiatius, about whom history furnishes no information. (Eckhel, v. p. 199, &c.) One C. Scaevius Curiatius, who lived in the early period of the empire, is mentioned in an inscription in Orelli (No. 4046) as duumvir in the municipium of Veii. [L. S.]