Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Forum. The word signifies an open space, and is connected probably with foris - out of doors (cf. Ovpa, and door). The Forum Romanum (called later magnum or veins) lay between the Palatine, the Capitoline, and the Quirinal hills. It was originally a swamp; and the memory of this fact was preserved by the legend of the Lacus Curtius (Livy, i. 12). When drained it was set apart for the administration of justice. It included the comitium, where the curite or patrician house met, which was separated by the Rostra, or platforms, from the meeting-place of the plebeian assembly or comitia tributa. The word Forum was sometimes applied to this latter space alone. In the period between Julius Ceesar and Trajan five additional fora were made. The sites of various markets at Rome also bore this name.