Curiate assembly (Comitia curiata) still existed in the royal era.
They were the oldest form of patrician gatherings. During the monarchy, they were convened by the king, or on his order, by the cavalry commander (praefectus celerum), or by interrex. During the republic, this honour fell to consuls, praetors and dictators.
The curiate assembly was convened after consulting the senate and successful fortune-telling. The King, and later the Republican officials mentioned above, sent messengers (praecones) or lictors who went from house to house mentioning the name of the citizen entitled to vote and that of his father.
The congregation met at the Forum Romanum. Voted by belonging to the curia (curiatim). Most of the votes in one curia gave one vote for the entire curia. The first curia (princeps) was the first to vote. The other curiae voted after her, but it was done simultaneously.
The voting results were made public (renuntiatio).
The powers of the curia were:
- election of king and senior officials
- giving the king sovereignty (imperium)
- approving or rejecting a high treason sentence
- handling appeals against officials’ decisions
- matters of war and peace
- the transfer of paternal power to another family member was announced (arrogatio)
- decisions to remove a member from the curia