riests, declared the laws and decided lawsuits. For some time also under the Republic, when a vote was to be taken in the Comitia upon a proposed law, the question was thus put: "Is this your pleasure, O Quirites, and do you hold it to be the will of the gods?" Under the Empire, despite the reasoning of many philosophers and lawyers that the Emperor derived from the people his power to make laws and declare the law in any given case, he assumed and was assumed to have derived the power and inspiration solely from the gods.
The early Christian Church also preached the doctrine that the ruling power in the state, however established, was ordained of God and as such was entitled to the obedience of the pious. This belief that justice and judgment were simply the will of God, to be ascertained, not by reason but by other means, was so general and deep that such crude devices as trials by ordeal and battle were often resorted to for determining guilt or innocence and other questions of fact. Indeed, resort
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