Appius Claudius Caecus, a Roman censor, son of Claudius Appius Crassus or Crassinus, who was named dictator 337 B. C, but resigned the office because the augurs did not consider his appointment valid. Claudius Caucus was twice curule aidile, but the odium which attaches to his name arises mainly from the arbitrariness with which he administered the censorship from 312 to 308. In order to form in the senate and among the people a party subservient to his designs, he filled up the vacancies in the senate with low plebeians and sons of freedmen (who were, however, set aside the next year), and enrolled a large number of the latter among all the tribes. After resigning his censorship, he was elected consul in 307. He was appointed interrex in the years 298 and 297. In the following year he was again chosen consul, and gained with Volumnius a decisive victory over the Etruscans and Sam-nites. He was praetor in 295, and once (in what year is unknown) he was elected dictator. The Appian road to Capua and the Appian aqueduct were built under his administration. It is believed that his secretary published the calendar and the Legis Actiones at his instigation. His eloquence is extolled by Livy. One of his speeches was extant in Cicero's time.

He became blind (whence his surname) and crippled in his old age, and in that condition was carried into the senate, and prevailed on it to reject the terms of peace offered by Cin-eas, an envoy of Pyrrhus. He was one of the earliest Roman writers known to us. Besides a poem, of which some fragments remain, he wrote a legal treatise De Usurpationibus, and probably also the Actiones, published by Fla-vius. He left four sons and five daughters.