Confarreatio was one of the modes of solemnizing marriage among the ancient Romans. The parties were joined in marriage by the Pontifex Maximus, or Flamen Dialis, in presence of at least ten witnesses, by a set form of words, and by tasting a cake made of salt, water, and flour, called far or panis farreus, which was offered with a sheep in sacrifice to the gods. A marriage effected in this way brought the woman into the possession or power of her husband by the sacred laws. She thus became partner of all his substance and sacred rites, those of the penates as well as of the lares. If he died intestate and without children she inherited his whole fortune. If he died leaving children, she shared equally with them. If she committed any fault, the husband judged of it along with her relations, and punished her at pleasure. The children of this kind of marriage were called patrimi and matrimi. From these were chosen the flamina of Jupiter and the vestal virgins. SEE MARRIAGE.

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