Fannius, Caius

, surnamed Strabo, was consul at Rome in 161 B. C. with Valerius Messala. The law called Fannia was made during his consulate, for regulating the expences of feasts, and empowering the pretors to drive the rhetoricians and philosophers from Rome. This law prohibited more than ten asses to be spent at a common feast, and an hundred at the most solemn, such as those of the Saturnalia, or of the public games; which seems almost incredible, when it is considered that a sheep at that time cost ten asses, and an ox an hundred, according to the opinion of several learned men. Caius Fannius, his son, distinguished himself by his eloquence, and was consul 120 B. C. He opposed the enterprizes of Caius Gracchus, and made a speech against him, which is praised by Cicero. Caius Fannius, cousin-german of this latter, was questor 139 B. C. and pretor ten years after; served under Scipio Africanus the younger in Africa; and, in Spain, under Fabius Maximus Servilianus. He was the disciple of Panetius, a celebrated stoic philosopher; married the youngest daughter of Lelius, and wrote some annals, which are much praised by Cicero. 2


Gen. Dict.