Gradually there would arise the idea of proportionate punishment, of which the characteristic type is the lex talionis, 1 " an eye for an eye."
This last conception lay beyond the horizon of Caesar, as of all ancient statesmen, but his first act on gaining control of Italy was to enfranchise the Transpadanes, whose claims he had consistently advocated, and in 45 B.C. he passed the Lex Julia Municipalis, an act of which considerable fragments are inscribed on two bronze tables found at Heraclea near Tarentum.3 This law deals inter alia with the police and the sanitary arrangements of the city of Rome, and hence it has been argued by Mommsen that it was Caesar's intention to reduce Rome to the level of a municipal town.
Caesar made no far-reaching modifications in the government of the city, such as were afterwards carried out by Augustus, and the presence in the Lex Julia Municipalis of the clauses referred to is an example of the common process of "tacking" (legislation per saturam, as it was called by the Romans).
His censorship - which he retained for five years, in spite of the lex Aemilia which limited the tenure of that office to eighteen months - was remarkable for the actual or attempted achievement of several great constitutional changes.
In the Cluniac circle was coined the principle: Canonica auctoritas Dei lex est, canon law being taken in the Pseudo-Isidorian sense.