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Vibia gens

The meaning of «vibia gens»

The gens Vibia was a plebeian family at ancient Rome. Although individuals named Vibius appear in history during the time of the Second Punic War, no members of this gens are found at Rome until the final century of the Republic. The first of the Vibii to obtain the consulship was Gaius Vibius Pansa in 43 BC, and from then until imperial times the Vibii regularly filled the highest offices of the Roman state. The emperors Trebonianus Gallus and Volusianus each claimed descent from the family.[1]

The nomen Vibius is a patronymic surname, derived from the praenomen Vibius, which must have belonged to an ancestor of the gens. The name is generally regarded as an Oscan praenomen, and it is found extensively in Campania, but it was also used in Latium, and appears at Rome from a very early period, being used by the patrician Sestii, and occasionally by members of several prominent plebeian families. The Vibian gens itself was probably Oscan.[2]

The main praenomina of the Vibii were Gaius, Lucius, and Quintus. A family of imperial times used the praenomen Titus, while individual examples of Aulus and Sextus are known.

The cognomina of the Vibii under the Republic were Pansa and Varus, each of which occurs on coins. Both surnames derive from the physical characteristics of the persons to whom they originally applied; Pansa translates as "splay-footed", while Varus is "knock-kneed".[1][3]

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