An ''album'' (
Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally a dialect spoken in the lower Tiber area (then known as Latium) around present-day Rome, but through the power of ...
: ''albus'', "white"), in
ancient Rome In modern historiography, ancient Rome refers to Roman civilisation from the founding of the city of Rome in the 8th century BC to the collapse of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century AD. It encompasses the Roman Kingdom (753–50 ...
, was a board chalked or painted white, on which decrees, edicts and other public notices were inscribed in black.


The '' Annales Maximi'' of the '' Pontifex Maximus'', the annual edicts of the praetor, the lists of Roman and municipal senators (decuriones) and jurors (album indicum) were exhibited in this manner. The '' Acta Diurna'', a sort of daily
government gazette A government gazette (also known as an official gazette, official journal, official newspaper, official monitor or official bulletin) is a periodical publication that has been authorised to publish public or legal notices. It is usually establis ...
, containing an officially authorized narrative of noteworthy events in Rome was also published this way.


The medieval and modern meaning of album, as a book of blank pages in which verses, autographs, sketches, photographs and the like are collected, derives from the Roman use. This in turn led to the modern meaning of an
album An album is a collection of audio recordings issued on compact disc (CD), vinyl, audio tape, or another medium such as digital distribution. Albums of recorded sound were developed in the early 20th century as individual 78 rpm records co ...
as a collection of audio recordings issued as a single item on CD, record, audio tape or another medium. Another deviation is also applied to the official list of matriculated students in a university, and to the roll in which a bishop inscribes the names of the diocese's clergy. In law, the word is the equivalent of '' mailles blanches'', for rent paid in silver ("white") money.



* * Attribution * Society of ancient Rome Latin words and phrases {{AncientRome-stub