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Propraetor

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Dedication to propraetor Gavius Macer, Lepcis Magna. Photo Marco Prins.
A dedication to Gavius Macer,
commander of III Augusta,
from Lepcis Magna; it mentions
 his propraetorian powers
Propraetor: Roman magistrate, former praetor in charge of a province.

Like a proconsul, the propraetor was someone who acted as if (pro) he were an official magistrate. He had all the powers of a praetor, but was, in fact, a former praetor whose term in office was prolonged (prorogatio).

The oldest known propraetor was in 241 BCE; the office became popular after the war against Hannibal. After the age of Sulla, all praetors were supposed to leave the city after their year in office, and to rule a province as propraetor. From then on, propraetor was a normal rank of the governor of a Roman province.

The emperor Augustus was, officially, governor of many provinces, which he ruled through envoys, who were called legatus Augusti pro praetore. They served typically thirty-six months.

The commanders of the Roman legions were called legatus legionis, and could have propraetorian powers.

Related subjects
Aedile
Censor
Consul
Cursus honorum
Dictator
Pontifex maximus
Praetor
Praetorian prefect
Prefect
Proconsul
Procurator
Quaestor
Tribune
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