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Unregistered, lower class or casual prostitutes fell under the broad category prostibulae. A girl puella, a term used in poetry as a synonym for "girlfriend" or meretrix and not necessarily an age designation might live with a procuress or madame lena or even go into business under the management of her mother,  though mater might sometimes be a mere euphemism for lena. Most prostitutes seem to have been slaves or former slaves. They could not give evidence in court,  and Roman freeborn men were forbidden to marry them. A convicted adulteress of citizen status who registered herself as a meretrix could thus as least partly mitigate her loss of rights and status. The dictator Sulla is supposed to have built his fortune on the wealth left to him by a prostitute in her will. Charming, artistic, and educated, such women contributed to a new romantic standard for male-female relationships that Ovid and other Augustan poets articulated in their erotic elegies. The possible reasons for this remain a subject of modern scholarly speculation. Togas were otherwise the formal attire of citizen men, while respectable adult freeborn women and matrons wore the stola. This crossing of gender boundaries has been interpreted variously. Nudity was associated with slavery, as an indication that the person was literally stripped of privacy and the ownership of one's own body. Naked she stood on the shore, at the pleasure of the purchaser; every part of her body was examined and felt. Would you hear the result of the sale? The pirate sold; the pimp bought, that he might employ her as a prostitute. Satyr and Maenad ; Roman fresco from the Casa degli Epigrammi in Pompeii Most prostitutes were slaves or freedwomen, and it is difficult to determine the balance of voluntary to forced prostitution. Because slaves were considered property under Roman law, it was legal for an owner to employ them as prostitutes. The penalty was aimed at providing the owner compensation for the "damage" of his property. There is some evidence that slave prostitutes could benefit from their labor;  in general, slaves could earn their own money by hiring out their skills or taking a profit from conducting their owner's business. Sometimes the seller of a female slave attached a ne serva clause to the ownership papers to prevent her from being prostituted. The ne serva clause meant that if the new owner or any owner afterwards used the slave as a prostitute she would be free. The law was abolished in Once entered there, the name could never be removed, but must remain for all time, an insurmountable bar to repentance and respectability. Caligula inaugurated a tax upon prostitutes the vectigal ex capturis , as a state impost: A clause was also added to the law directing that women who had practiced prostitutery and men who had practiced procuration should be rated publicly; and furthermore, that marriages should be liable to the rate". Lupanar Pompeii Roman brothels are known from literary sources, regionary lists, and archaeological evidence. A brothel is commonly called a lupanar or lupanarium, from lupa, "she-wolf", slang  for "prostitute," or fornix, a general term for a vaulted space or cellar. According to the regionaries for the city of Rome,  lupanaria were concentrated in Regio II ;  the Caelian Hill , the Suburra that bordered the city walls, and the valley between the Caelian and Esquiline Hills. The Great Market macellum magnum was in this district, along with many cook-shops, stalls, barber shops, the office of the public executioner, and the barracks for foreign soldiers quartered at Rome. Regio II was one of the busiest and most densely populated quarters in the entire city — an ideal location for the brothel owner or pimp. Rent from a brothel was a legitimate source of income. Hair dressers were on hand to repair the ravages wrought by frequent amorous conflicts, and water boys aquarioli waited by the door with bowls for washing up. The licensed houses seem to have been of two kinds: In the former, the owner kept a secretary, villicus puellarum, or an overseer for the girls. This manager assigned a girl her name, fixed her prices, received the money and provided clothing and other necessities. Over the door of each cubicle was a tablet titulus upon which was the name of the occupant and her price; the reverse bore the word occupata "occupied, in service, busy" and when the inmate was engaged the tablet was turned so that this word was out. Plautus  speaks of a less pretentious house when he says: The cubicle usually contained a lamp of bronze or, in the lower dens, of clay, a pallet or cot of some sort, over which was spread a blanket or patch-work quilt, this latter being sometimes employed as a curtain. Some brothels may have had their own token coin system, called spintria. Because intercourse with a meretrix was almost normative for the adolescent male of the period, and permitted for the married man as long as the prostitute was properly registered,  brothels were commonly dispersed around Roman cities, often found between houses of respected families. These arcade dens were called " fornices ", from which derives the English word "fornication". The taverns were generally regarded by the magistrates as brothels and the waitresses were so regarded by the law. This passage, it should be remarked, is the only one in all his works in which he is absolutely sincere in what he says of women. The bill for the services of a girl amounted to 8 asses. This inscription is of great interest to the antiquary, and to the archeologist. That bakers were not slow in organizing the grist mills is shown by a passage from Paulus Diaconus: For, as the mill stones were fixed in places under ground, they set up booths on either side of these chambers and caused prostitutes to stand for hire in them, so that by these means they deceived very many, some that came for bread, others that hastened thither for the base gratification of their wantonness. According to Ovid,  prostitutes joined married women matronae in the ritual cleansing and reclothing of the cult statue of Fortuna Virilis. The date coincided with the Vinalia , a wine festival. According to the Christian writer Lactantius , "in addition to the freedom of speech that pours forth every obscenity, the prostitutes, at the importunities of the rabble, strip off their clothing and act as mimes in full view of the crowd, and this they continue until full satiety comes to the shameless lookers-on, holding their attention with their wriggling buttocks".
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