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In Ancient Rome, the vicus (plural vici) was a neighbourhood or settlement. During the Republican era, the four regiones of the city of Rome were subdivided into vici. In the 1st century BC, Augustus reorganized the city for administrative purposes into 14 regions, comprising 265 vici.[1] Each vicus had its own board of officials who oversaw local matters. These administrative divisions are recorded as still in effect at least until the mid-4th century.[2][3]

The Latin word vicus was also applied to the smallest administrative unit of a provincial town within the Roman Empire. It is also notably used today to refer to an ad hoc provincial civilian settlement that sprang up close to and because of a nearby military fort or state-owned mining operation.

Local government in Rome

Each vicus elected four local magistrates (vicomagistri) who commanded a sort of local police force chosen from among the people of the vicus by lot. Occasionally the officers of the vicomagistri would feature in certain celebrations (primarily the Compitalia) in which they were accompanied by two lictors.[4]