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quaestĭo, ōnis, f. [quaero], a seeking.

I. In gen. (Plautin.): cave, fuas mi in quaestione, lest you suffer yourself to be to seek, lest I have to look after you, Plaut. Pers. 1, 1, 52: tibi ne in quaestione essemus, id. Capt. 2, 2, 3; id. Ps. 2, 2, 68.—

II. In partic., an inquiry, investigation, a questioning, question, subject of inquiry: quaestio est appetitio cognitionis, quaestionisque finis inventio, Cic. Ac. 2, 8, 26; 2, 36, 115: quae veri simillima (sententia sit), magna quaestio est, id. Tusc. 1, 11, 23; id. Fin. 2, 11, 34: rem in disceptationem quaestionemque vocare, to investigate, id. de Or. 3, 32, 129: res in quaestione versatur, is under investigation, id. Clu. 58, 159: de moribus ultima fiet quaestio, Juv. 3, 141: res in quaestionem venit, comes under investigation, Quint. 5, 14, 16: modo aliquam quaestionem poëticam ei proponeret, Nep. Att. 20, 2; cf. Cic. Att. 7, 19 fin.; Sen. Ben. 5, 8, 6; id. Ep. 48, 1; Suet. Tib. 56: quaestionem instituere, to institute an investigation, Quint. 7, 1, 6: quaestionem solvere, Sen. Ep. 48, 11; Quint. 5, 10, 26.—

2. A public judicial investigation, examination by torture, a criminal inquiry, inquisition; the crime is usu. constr. with de: cum praetor quaestionem inter sicarios exercuisset, instituted a trial for assassination, Cic. Fin. 2, 16, 54: verberibus ac tormentis quaestionem habuit pecuniae publicae, id. Phil. 11, 2, 5: quaestionem mortis paternae de servis paternis habere, id. Rosc. Am. 28, 78: quaestionem fugitare, id. ib. 28, 78: servos in quaestionem polliceri, id. ib. 28, 77: quaestionem ferre in aliquem, to appoint, institute, make a motion for, id. de Or. 1, 53, 227: habere ex aliquo, Liv. 33, 28: facere alicui, against any one, Dig. 34, 3, 20: quaestionem de furto constituere, Cic. Clu. 64, 181: quaestionem instituere de morte alicujus, id. ib. 64, 181: quaestionem de morte viri habere, id. ib. 65, 182; 63, 176: quaestionem habere de servis in caput filii, id. ib. 63, 176: ad quaestionem abripi, to examination by torture, id. ib. 33, 89: alicui servum in quaestionem ferre, id. ib. 64, 181: postulare servum in quaestionem, id. ib. 64, 181: quaestiones severius exercere, Liv. 9, 34: quaestioni praeesse, to conduct a trial as judge, Cic. Rosc. Am. 4, 11: quaestiones perpetuae, the inquisitions concerning certain crimes (repetundarum, majestatis, de falso, de sicariis, de injuriis, etc.), conducted annually, after 605 A. U. C., by a standing commission, and presided over by the prætor, Cic. Brut. 27, 106: judex quaestionis, the director of the criminal court under the presidency of the prætor, id. Clu. 54, 148; 33, 89; id. Brut. 76, 264: quaestiones extraordinariae, trials out of the common course, held under a special commission, Liv. 39, 14; so, quaestio nova, Cic. Mil. 5, 13: A QVAESTIONIBVS, an attendant in examinations, a torturer, inquisitor, Inscr. Grut. 545, 6; 560, 1. —

B. Transf.

1. The court, the judges: dimittere eo tempore quaestionem, Cic. Verr. 2, 2, 30, 74: totam quaestionem a severitate ad clementiam transtulit, Val. Max. 8, 1, 6.—

2. The subject of investigation, the matter, case, question: perdifficilis et perobscura quaestio est de naturā deorum, Cic. N. D. 1, 1, 1: dividere totam de dis immortalibus quaestionem in partis quattuor, id. ib. 2, 1, 3: quaestio proposita, Quint. 9, 2, 39.—

b. In partic., in rhet.

(a). The rhetorical subject of debate: quaestionum duo sunt genera: alterum infinitum, alterum definitum. Definitum est, quod ὑπόθεσιν Graeci, nos causam: infinitum, quod θέσιν illi appellant, nos propositum possumus nominare, Cic. Top. 21, 79. —

(b). The main point in a disputed matter, the issue in a cause: quaestio est quae ex conflictione causarum gignitur controversia, hoc modo: Non jure fecisti: jure feci. Causarum autem haec est conflictio, in quā constitutio constat; ex eā igitur nascitur controversia, quam quaestionem dicimus, hoc modo: jurene fecerit, Cic. Inv. 1, 13, 18; cf. id. ib. 1, 6, 8.—

(g). A question, a disputed point, quaestio est, it is doubtful, may be disputed: sapientia efficit sapientis sola per se: beatos efficiat necne sola per se quaestio est, Cic. Top. 15, 60; id. Tusc. 4, 13, 29; id. Inv. 2, 20, 60: quaestio est, an, etc., Quint. 7, 3, 22; cf.: nulla quaestio est, Aug. Retract. 1, 19, 6; cf. also: in quaestione est, Plin. 11, 17, 18, 57; 10, 22, 27, 52: quaestionis est immensae, id. 7, 28, 29, 101; 28, 2, 3, 10.