Humanities › History & Culture Ancient Roman History: Salutatio Share Flipboard Email Print The Roman Colosseum. Banar Fil Ardhi/EyeEm/Getty Images History & Culture Ancient History and Culture Rome Figures & Events Ancient Languages Greece Egypt Asia Mythology & Religion American History African American History African History Asian History European History Genealogy Inventions Latin American History Medieval & Renaissance History Military History The 20th Century Women's History View More By N.S. Gill Ancient History and Latin Expert M.A., Linguistics, University of Minnesota B.A., Latin, University of Minnesota N.S. Gill is a Latinist, writer, and teacher of ancient history and Latin. She has been featured by NPR and National Geographic for her ancient history expertise. our editorial process N.S. Gill Updated March 08, 2017 Salutatio is a Latin word from which the word salutation stems from. A salutation is a common greeting utilized throughout the world. It is commonly used to express acknowledgment of one's arrival or departure. Salutations are utilized in numerous cultures throughout the world. In Ancient Rome, a Salutatio was the formal morning greeting of the Roman patron by his clients. The Morning Ritual The salutatio took place every morning in the Roman Republic. It was considered to be one of the central aspects of the start of the day. The morning ritual was reiterated daily throughout the Republic and Empire, and was a fundamental part of Roman interactions between citizens of varying status. It was used as a sign of respect from the patrons to the client. The salutatio only went one way, as the clients greeted the patron, but the patron would not greet the clients back in return. Much of the traditional scholarship on the salutatio in Ancient Rome has interpreted the relationship between the salutatory and salutatee essentially as a system of social acquiescence. In this system, the salutatee was able to accrue significant social esteem, and the salutator was merely a humble client or social inferior. Ancient Roman Social Structure In Ancient Roman culture, Romans could be either patrons or clients. At the time, this social stratification proved mutually beneficial. The number of clients and sometimes the status of clients conferred prestige on the patron. The client owed his vote to the patron. The patron protected the client and his family, gave legal advice, and helped the clients financially or in other ways. A patron could have a patron of his own; therefore, a client, could have his own clients, but when two high status Romans had a relationship of mutual benefit, they were likely to choose the label amicus ('friend') to describe the relationship since amicus did not imply stratification. When enslaved people were manumitted, the liberti ('freedmen') automatically became clients of their former owners and were obligated to work for them in some capacity. There was also patronage in the arts where a patron provided the wherewithal to allow the artist to create in comfort. The work of art or book would be dedicated to the patron. Client King is typically used of non-Roman rulers who enjoyed Roman patronage, but were not treated as equals. Romans called such rulers rex sociusque et amicus 'king, ally, and friend' when the Senate formally recognized them. Braund emphasizes that there is little authority for the actual term "client king." Client kings did not have to pay taxes, but they were expected to provide military manpower. The client kings expected Rome to help them defend their territories. Sometimes client kings bequeathed their territory to Rome.