In England the lessons of experience have shown that the abuses of this business are best regulated by a system of registration coupled with relief to debtors against harsh and unconscionable bargains.
The relief of debtors, and the steps which he took to restore Italian agriculture, were of the nature of palliatives) those which have a permanent significance as indicating his grasp of imperial problems. The Social War had brought to the inhabitants of Italy as far as the Po the privileges of Roman citizenship; it remained to extend this gift to the Transpadane Italians, to establish a uniform system of local administration and to devise representative institutions by which at least some voice in the government of Rome might be permitted to her new citizens.
The emperor Isaac Angelus had not only the old grudge of all Eastern 1 The "economic" motive for taking the cross was strengthened by the papal regulations in favour of debtors who joined the Crusade.
The renewed excesses of the Circumcelliones, among whom were ranged fugitive slaves, debtors and political malcontents of all kinds, had given to the Donatist schism a revolutionary aspect; and its forcible suppression may therefore have seemed to Constans even more necessary for the preservation of the empire than for the vindication of orthodoxy.
The feast, which on that occasion lasted for eight (or seven) days, was also celebrated by private individuals; the citizens kept open house, quarrels were forgotten, debtors and prisoners were released, and everything done to banish sorrow.