In early Rome the notion of patria is a byword of the occupation of a specific geographical space by the populus, associated with a political identity of its occupants. In this way the notion of patria designates two distinct features: territorial (the city of Rome) and social (Roman cives). In the Roman collective memory the figure of Romulus, patria’s legendary founder, i.e. the (initial and) ultimate pater patriae, remained vivid until the last century of the Respublica. Subsequently all the leading politicians who contributed to the establishment of the Principate, used the notion of pater patriae as an ideological tool aiming at the establishment of a new form of patriotism, which would substitute the republican institutions by a bond of parenthood attaching the populus to the new pater patriae. In the literature of the classical jurisprudence this bond finds its correspondence to aspects of private law’s pater familias: the Emperor, i.e. the incarnation of the notion of Rome, is depicted as a reflection of this privatization (appropriation) of the Respublica.