Publilius Syrus (fl. 85–43 BC), was a Latin writer, best known for his sententiae. He was a Syrian who was brought as a slave to Roman Italy. By his wit and talent, Syrus won the favour of his master, who granted him manumission and educated him. He became a member of the Publilia gens. Publilius' name, due to thepalatalization of 'l' between two 'i's in the Early Middle Ages, is often presented by manuscripts (and some printed editions) in corrupt form as 'Publius'. Publius being a very common Roman praenomen.