The Patria Potestas in Roman Law

By: Anavitarte, E. J.*

In the Roman law, patria potestas or patria potestad is the institution of civil law that represents the power of paterfamilias over the people and property that are part of your family.

All the people who live in his house, his non-emancipated male children, his unmarried daughters, and in general his descendants or filius, fell within his parental authority.

Filius was understood not only to be the children of the pater but also the grandchildren or great-grandchildren under his authority, and both the paterfamilias and the filiate had to be Roman citizens.

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