Res Publica

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Res Publica is a famous Latin phrase meaning “public thing.” However, in common, people translate it as public affairs or public matters. The term first appeared back in Ancient Greece and Rome. An opposite phrase is Res Privata – private ownership.

In a broader sense, it is something that the public owns and what the state (governing bodies) manages. For example, roads, parks, or city halls belong here.

Furthermore, it is the root for the words republic and commonwealth. The logic behind this is simple. Everything in public ownership is Res Publica. Therefore, altogether it creates the state.

The word “republic” derives from this famous phrase too! There are presidential, parliamentary, or semi-presidential republics! Hence, it is logically the root word of the theory of republicanism.

Res Publicae
Res Publica, the public affairs

The idea of Res Publica disappeared when Western Roman Empire fell in 395 AD. The following hundreds of years were typical for monarchies and empires. However, it once again resurfaced many centuries later. Today, a republic is the most common form of government.

Rei Publicae is the plural form of this phrase. It is commonly translated as “state.” Thus, it is obvious why we named our page like so!

Another essential word you should know is politeia!