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A circular theatre, i.e. a building in which the space for spectators entirely surrounds that where the spectacle is exhibited. These buildings, designed for combats of gladiators and wild beasts (venationes), were first erected in Italy, but in Campania sooner than at Rome. The first known at Rome were temporary wooden structures, like that of Scribonius Curio, who in B.C. 50 made anamphitheatre out of two revolving theatres by joining them back to back, or that of Caesar in 46. The first stone amphitheatre, erected by Statilius Taurus in B.C.29, was burnt down in the fire of Nero, who then built a wooden one again. A second one of stone was begun by Vespasian, consecrated by Titus, A.D. 80, and finished by Domitian (all three of the Flavian gens). The ruins of this Amphitheatrum Flavium, which was 158 feet high, and accommodated 87,000 spectators, are the famous Colosseum. In the provinces too the large towns had their amphitheatres, of which the best preserved are those of Verona and Capua in Italy, Arles and Nimes in France. Of this last our first two illustrations give the elevation and the ground-plan An amphitheatre was usually an oval building, surrounding an arena of like shape, which sometimes, as at Rome and Capua, was a plank floor resting on deep underground walls, the spaces underneath containing cages and machinery for transformations. The exterior was formed of several arcades, one above the other, the lowest one admitting to a corridor, which ran round the building, and out of which staircases led up to the various rows of seats. In the Colosseum this first arcade is adorned with Doric, the second with Ionic, the third with Corinthian "engaged" columns; the fourth is a wall decorated with Corinthian pilasters, and pierced with windows (see ARCHITECTURE, figs. 8-10). Immediately round the arena ran a high, massive wall, with vaults for the animals and for other purposes. On it rested the podium, protected by its height and by special contrivances from the wild beasts when fighting; here were the seats of honour, e.g. at Rome, those of the imperial family, the officers of state, and the Vestal Virgins. Above the podium rose the seats of other spectators in concentric rows, the lowest ones being for senators and magistrates, the next for knights, and the rest for citizens. Women sat in the highest part of the building, under a colonnade, parts of which were portioned off for the common people. The whole space for seats could be sheltered from sun and rain by an awning supported on masts, which were let into corbels of stone that jutted out of the upper circumference. The arena could also be laid under water for the exhibition of sea-fights, the so-called naumachiae (q.v.).
A name given by the Romans to contests between ships, represented for the amusement of the people, and commemorating naval engagements famous in history. The first representation of this kind was given by Caesar in B.C. 46 in a basin dug out for this purpose on the Campus Martius, on which occasion a Tyrian and an Egyptian fleet fought against each other, each with 2,000 rowers and 1,000 marines on board, In B.C. 2, Augustus, at the dedication of the temple of Mars Ultor, had a seafight between Atheiiians and Persians, represented with thirty ships. The greatest of all naumachioe, was that of Claudius in A.D. 52; it took place on the Fucine Lake, and 19,000 men in the dress of Rhodians and Sicilians fought in two fully armed men-of-war. For similar contests the arena of the amphitheatre was sometimes filled with water. The crews of the ships consisted of gladiators, prisoners and criminals who had been condemned to death.
Architecture of the Etruscans and Romans. In architecture, as well as sculpture, the Romans were long under the influence of the Etruscans, who, though denied the gift of rising to the ideal, united wonderful activity and inventiveness with a passion for covering their buildings with rich ornamental carving. None of their temples have survived, for they built all the upper parts of wood; but many proofs of their activity in building remain, surviving from various ages, in the shape of Tombs and Walls. The latter clearly show how they progressed from piling up polygonal blocks in Cyclopean style to regular courses of squared stone. Here and there a building still shows that the Etruscans originally made vaultings by letting horizontal courses jut over, as in the ancient Greek thesauroi above mentioned; on the other hand, some very old gateways, as at Volterra (fig. 7) and Perugia, exhibit the true Arch of wedge-shaped stones, the invention of which is probably due to Etruscan ingenuity, and from the introduction of which a new and magnificent development of architecture takes its rise. The most imposing monument of ancient Italian arch-building is to be seen in the sewers of Rome laid down in the 6th century B.C. (See CLOACA MAXIMA.) When all other traces of Etruscan influence were being swept away at Rome by the intrusion of Greek forms of art, especially after the Conquest of Greece in the middle of the 2nd century B.C., the Roman architects kept alive in full vigour the Etruscan method of building the arch, which they developed and completed by the inventions of the Cross-Arch (or groined vault) and the Dome. With the Arch, which admits of a bolder and more varied management of spaces, the Romans combined, as a decorative element, the columns of the Greek Orders. Among these their growing love of pomp gave the preference more and more to the Corinthian, adding to it afterwards a still more gorgeous embellishment in what is called the Roman or Composite capital (see ARCHITECTURE, ORDERS OF). Another service rendered by the Romans was the introduction of building in brick (see POTTERY). A more vigorous advance in Roman architecture dates from the opening of the 3rd century B.C., when they began making great military roads and aqueducts. In the first half of the 2nd century they built, on Greek models, the first Basilica, which, besides its practical utility served to embellish the Forum. Soon after the middle of the century, appeared the first of their more ambitious temples in the Greek style. There is simple grandeur in the ruins of the Tabularium, or Record-Office, built B.C. 78 on the slope of the Capitol next the Forum. These are among the few remains of Roman republican architecture; but in the last decades of the Republic simplicity gradually disappeared, and men were eager to display a princely pomp in public and private buildings; witness the first stone theatre erected by Pompey as early as 55 B.C. Then all that went before was eclipsed by the vast works undertaken by Caesar, the Theatre, Amphitheatre, Circus, Basilica Iulia, Forum Caesaris with its Temple to Venus Genetrix. These were finished by Augustus, under whom Roman architecture seems to have reached its culminating point. Augustus, aided bu his son-in-law Agrippa, a man who understood building, not only completed his uncle's plans, but added many magnificent structures--the Forum Augusti with its Temple to Mars Ultor, the Theatre of Marcellus with its Portico of Octavia, the Mansoleum, and others. Augustus could fairly boast that" having found Rome a city of brick, he left it a city of marble." The grandest monument of that age, and one of the loftiest creations of Roman art in general, is the Pantheon (q.v.) built by Agrippa, adjacent to, but not connected with, his Thermae, the first of the many works of that kind in Rome. A still more splendid aspect was imparted to the city by the rebuilding of the Old Town burnt down in Nero's fire, and by the "Golden House" of Nero, a gorgeous pile, the like of which was never seen before, but which was destroyed on the violent death of its creator. Of the luxurious grandeur of private buildings we have ocular proof in the dwelling-houses of Pompeii, a paltry country-town in comparison with Rome. The progress made under the Flavian emperors is evidenced by Vespasian's Amphitheatre (q.v.) known as the Colosseum (figs. 8, 9, 10), the mightiest Roman ruin in the world, by the ruined Thermae, or Baths, of Titus, and by his Triumphal Arch (q.v.), the oldest specimen extant in Rome of this class of monument, itself a creation of the Roman mind (fig. 11). But all previous buildings were surpassed in size and splendour when Trajan's architect Apollodorus of Damascus raised the Forum Traianum with its huge Basilica Ulpia (fig. 12) and the still surviving Column of Trajan. No less extensive were the works of Hadrian, who, besides adorning Athens with many magnificent buildings, bequeathed to Rome a Temple of Venus and Roma, the most colossal of all Roman temples (fig. 13) and his own Mausoleum (q.v.), the core of which is preserved in the Castle of St. Angelo. While the works of the Antonines already show a gradual decline in architectural feeling, the Triumphal Arch of Severus ushers in the period of decay that set in with the 3rd century. In this closing period of Roman rule the buildings grow more and more gigantic, witness the Baths of Caracalla (fig. 14), those of Diocletian, with his palace at Salona (three miles from Spalatro) in Dalmatia, and the Basilica of Constantine breathing the last feeble gasp of ancient life. But outside of Rome and Italy, in every part of the enormous empire to its utmost barbarian borders, bridges, numberless remains of roads and aqueducts and viaducts, ramparts and gateways, palaces, villas, market-places and judgment-halls, baths, theatres, amphitheatres and temples, attest the versatility, majesty, and solidity of Roman architecture, most of whose creations only the rudest shocks have hitherto been able to destroy.
A mimic war-dance among the Greeks, representing attack and defence in battle. It originated with the Dorians in Crete, who traced it back to the Curetes, and in Sparta, where it was traced to the Dioscuri. In Sparta where boys of five years old were trained for it, it formed a chief part of the festival of the Gymnopoedia. The war-dance performed at Athens at the Panathenaic festival celebrated Athene as the victor over the Giants. In the Roman imperial times the Pyrrhic dance was a kind of dramatic ballet, which was performed by dancers, male and female, and represented (like the Roman pantomime) mythological subjects, taken frequently from the legend of Dionysus, such as the march of the god against the Indians, the doom of Pentheus, but also from other sources, such as the judgment of Paris and the fate of Icarus. For these performances the emperors frequently brought to Rome from Asia, the home of this dance, boys and girls of noble birth; but there wore also dancers, male and female, who were brought up to it as a regular trade. At times the Pyrrhic dance was performed in the amphitheatre by criminals especially trained for this purpose.
The contests of beasts with one another, or of men with beasts, that formed part of the shows of which the Romans were passionately fond. They were first introduced at the games of Marcus Fulvius Nobilior, 116 B.C. Those who took part in these contests were called bestiarii. They were either criminals and prisoners of war, who were poorly armed or completely unarmed, pitted against wild beasts which had previously been made furious by hunger, branding, and goading; or else hired men who, like gladiators, were trained in special schools and fully armed. Even in the last century of the Republic, and still more under the Empire, incredible expenses were incurred in the collection of the rarest animals from the remotest quarters of the globe, and in the other arrangements for their baiting. Thus Pompey provided a show of 500 lions, 18 elephants, and 410 other African animals; and Caligula caused 400 bears and the same number of animals from Africa to tear each other to pieces. Occasionally at these combats with wild beasts the man condemned to death was attired in an appropriate costume, so as to represent a sanguinary scene from mythology or history, as, for example, Orpheus being torn to pieces by bears. Down to the end of the Republic these shows took place in the Circus, and the greater exhibitions were held there even after that time, until the amphitheatres became the usual places of performance; and indeed, when they were combined with the gladiatorial exhibitions, they took place in the early morning before them. [The repugnance of some of the more cultivated Romans for these exhibitions is shown in a letter of Cicero's, Ad Fam. vii 1 § 3.] They were continued down to the 6th century. Among the Greeks, especially the Athenians, cock-fights and quail-fights were very popular. At Athens cock-fights were held once a year in the theatres at the public expense. The training of fighting cocks was conducted with great care. Certain places, such as Tanagra in Boeotia, Rhodes, and Delos, had the reputation of producing the largest and strongest. To whet their eagerness for the combat, they were previously fed with garlic. Their legs were armed with brass spurs, and they were set opposite to each other on tables furnished with raised edges. Bets, often to an enormous amount, were laid on the fights by the gamesters, as well as by the spectators.
The Latin name for the combatants who fought each other for life or death at the public shows. They first appear in Rome in 264 B.C., and only at the celebrations of private funerals, or in games given in memory of a private individual. Entertainments of this kind were often provided for in wills. The custom, like others of the same kind, seems to have come from Etruria, where it was a survival of the human sacrifices formerly usual at funerals. These gladiatorial contests soon became a very favourite form of popular entertainment, and in the last century of the republic were hold to be an excellent means of winning the favour of the populace at elections. Indeed, custom at length imposed an obligation on some magistrates, for instance on the aediles, to give gladiatorial games on their assumption of office; and they would try to outbid each other in the number of contending couples and in general expenditure. From Rome the fashion soon spread into the provinces. Campania was the part of Italy where it most prevailed. It was not, however, till the time of Domitian that quaestors designate were regularly compelled to give the great gladiatorial ex-ibitions, which occupied ten days in the month of December. In the Western Empire they survived at least down to the beginning of the 5th century A.D. They were at first given in the forum, but afterwards generally in the amphitheatres (see AMPHITHEATRE, and in the circus, if the exhibition was to be on a very large scale. The gladiators were sometimes condemned criminals; but it must be remembered that originally Roman citizens could not be sentenced to the arena, and it was not till later times that this punishment was extended to criminals of low condition. Sometimes they were prisoners of war, slaves, or volunteers. Under the Empire it was not so uncommon, even in the upper classes, to volunteer as a gladiator. Sometimes the step was the last refuge of a ruined man; sometimes the emperor would force a man to it. These volunteers were called auctorati (=bound over), to distinguish them from the rest; their pay was termed auctoramentum. Troops of gladiators were sometimes owned by Romans in good society, who often, towards the end of the republican age, employed them in streetfights against their political opponents. Sometimes they were the property of speculators, who often carried on at the same time the disreputable trade of a fencing master (lanista). These men would hire out or sell their gladiators to persons who were giving their shows, or would exhibit them for money to the public on their own account. The gladiators were trained in special schools (ludi). Under the Empire things went so far that the emperors kept schools of their own under the supervision of procuratores of equestrian rank. After Domitian's time there were four of these in Rome. A building for this purpose, large enough for a hundred gladiators, is preserved in Pompeii. To strengthen their muscles they were put on a very nourishing diet. Every style of fighting had its special professor (doctor or mdgister), and the gladiator was usually instructed only in one style. The novice (tiro) began with fence-practice against a wooden stake, at first with light wooden arms, but afterwards with weapons of full weight. If a man were intending to give a show of gladiators (manus gladiatorium) he advertised it by notices (programmata ) put up on the walls of houses, numerous copies of these being at the same time widely distributed. These notices stated the date and occasion of the show, the name of the giver (editor), the number of pairs of gladiators, and the different kinds of combats. The performance began with a gala procession (pompa) of the gladiators to the arena and through it. Then came the testing of the weapons by the editor, who, though he might be a private individual, had the right of wearing the insignia of a magistrate during the show. A preliminary skirmish or prolusio, with wooden swords and darts, next took place, till the trumpets sounded, and the serious fighting began. This took place to the accompaniment of music in a space, measured out by the fencing master. The gladiators sometimes fought, not in pairs, but in troops. The timid were driven on with whips and red-hot irons. If a gladiator was wounded in single combat, he raised his fore-finger to implore the mercy of the people, with whom, after the last years of the republic, the giver of the games usually left the decision. The sign of mercy (missio ) was the waving of handkerchiefs: the clenched fist and downward thumb indicated that the combat was to be fought out till death. Condemned criminals had no chance of mercy. The slain, or nearly slain, were carried on the biers which stood ready for them, to a particular door (porta Libitinensis), into a place where they were, stripped ( spoliarium). There, if they had not actually expired, they were put to death. The victors received palms, with branches adorned with fillets. Under the Empire they sometimes got presents of money a& well. If a gladiator, by repeated proofs of cleverness and bravery, succeeded in gaining the favour of the people, he was, at the public request, presented with a kind of wooden rapier (rudis),[1] as a token that he was now free from all further service. In this case he was called rudiarius. This did not make him an absolutely free man; but if he chose to fight again, he did so as a free man, and could accordingly claim a high remuneration. Gladiators were armed in various styles, as the pairs of combatants were usually armed, not with the same, but with different weapons, The weapons of gladiators, and notably their helmets, were quite different in form from the arms of soldiers (see fig. 1). Gladiators were classed according to their equipment. Thus the retiarius was armed with a net, was bareheaded, and had nothing on but a short tunic and a girdle; his left arm was in a sleeve; his arms were a net (iaculum), a trident (fuscina), and a dagger. The net he tried to throw over his pursuing adversary, and to despatch him with dagger or trident, if successful. The secutor, or pursuer, was so called, because he was generally set to fight with the retiarius, who retired before him (fig. 2). He was as lightly equipped as his adversary, but armed with helmet, sword, and shield. The myrmillo (fig. 3), who was also often matched against the retiarius, was armed in Gallic fashion with helmet, sword and shield, and named after the figure of a fish (mormylos, which adorned his helmet. The Samnis, or Samnite, was so called after his Samnite equipment. This consisted of a large shield (scutum), a sleeve of leather or metal on the right arm, with a shoulder piece (galerus), rising above the shoulder, a girdle, a greave on the left foot, a visored helmet with crest and plume, and a short sword. The Thrax, or Thracian, wore, like his countrymen, a small round shield (parma) and a dagger (sica) curved in the form of a sickle, or bent at right angles. In other respects his equipment was more complete than the Samnite's, for he had greaves on both legs.The hoplomachus, or heavily armed gladiator, wore a breastplate, as well as visored helmet, and greaves. In later times the place of the retiarius was sometimes taken by the laquearius, who wore the same light armour, but carried a short sword and a noose (laqueus), which he threw over his adversary and pulled him to the ground. The dimachaeri, or men who fought with two swords, are also apparently the production of a later time. The essedarii (from essedum, a British war-car with two horses) fought in chariots. The andabatoe (fig. 4) fought on horseback, armed with small round shield and spear (spiculum), and a visored helmet without eyeholes, and charged each other in the dark. There are many representations of gladiatorial combats in works of art, the most comprehensive of which is a large bas-relief in Pompeii. [Overbeck's Pompeii, figs. 106-112; or Schreiber's Bilderatlas , I xxx figs. 2-8.]
In the earliest times the rooms of the Greeks were lighted by means of pans filled with dried chips of logs, and strips of resinous wood, or long deal staves tied together with bands of bast, and the like. In later times torches were made of metal or clay cases filled with resinous substances. Or again, wooden staves dipped in pitch, resin, or wax were tied close together and inclosed in a metal casing, inserted in a saucer to catch the ashes and drops of resin. These torches were either carried by a handle under the saucer, or had a long shaft and a stand to set them up on. Resinous torches were in use among the Romans also, in early and later times. They used besides a dry wick of linen or oakum dipped in wax or tallow. Oil lamps, however, were no sooner invented than they became the most general medium of illumination among both Greeks and Romans. The lamp consisted of two parts: (1) A saucer for the oil, sometimes round,sometimes oval, sometimes angular, with a hole in the top for pouring in the oil, often shut with a lid. (2) The wick-holder, a projecting socket (Gr. myxa; Lat. rostrum). Sometimes there was a second hole on the surface of the oil-vessel, through which the wick could be pushed up by means of a needle. If the lamp was to be carried, it had a handle; if to be hung up, it was furnished with one or more ears, to which chains were attached. There were lamps with two, three, four, and sometimes as many as twenty wicks; these were hung upon the roof or set up on a high stand. The material of ancient lamps was clay, mostly of the red sort, and the manufacture of clay lamps formed a principal branch of Italian pottery. (Greek lamps of this material are represented in figs. 1, 2.) The next in frequency is bronze; it is not so common to find lamps of other metals, alabaster or glass. The numerous Roman lamps still preserved generally exhibit ornaments in relief of the most various kinds on the surface and on the handle: images of gods, stories from mythology, scenes of warlike and domestic life, of the circus and the amphitheatre, animals, arabesques, etc. (fig. 3). Some lamps are themselves formed in the shape of gods, men, or objects of different kinds (e.g. fig. 3, b, i). The bronze lamps are specially distinguished by elegance and variety. The opening through which the oil was poured in being small, they had vials specially made for the purpose, with thin necks and a narrow mouth. Special instruments were made for trimming and pulling up the wick · little tongs, or hooked pins, which were sometimes fastened by a chain to the handle. No method of preventing the smoking of the lamps was known to the ancients. Lanterns were made of transparent materials, such as horn, oiled linen, and bladders: the use of glass came in later. (see also CANDELABRUM.)
The name of Circus was given at Rome par excellence to the Circus Maximus>. This was a recreation ground laid out by king Tarquinius Priscus in the valley between the Palatine and Aventine hills, south of the Capitol. Its centre was marked by the altar of Consus. A second circus, called the Circus Flaminius , was built by the censor C. Flaminius on the Campus Martius in 220 B.C. Several more were built during the imperial period, some of which can still be recognised in their ruined state. Such is the Circus of Maxentius, erroneously called Circo di Caracalla (fig. 1). Similar racecourses existed in many other cities of the empire, e.g., that still remaining amid the ruins of the town of Bovillae. The length ofthe Circus Maximus, as enlarged by Caesar, was some 1,800 feet, its breadth some 350. The seats, which rose in a series of terraces, rested on a substructure consisting of three stories of arched vaults. The lower seats were of stone, the upper of wood. Round the out side of the circus ran a building, containing booths and seats, as well as the entrances to the seats, the number of which amounted, in Caesar's time, to 150,000, and in the 4th century, after the building had been repeatedly enlarged, to 385,000. The podium, or lowest row of seats running immediately above the race-course, was protected from the wild animals by a railing and a trench (euripus) ten feet in width and depth. This trench was, however, filled up at the command of Nero. The end of the circus, at which were the gate of entrance and the partitions in which the chariots stood, was flanked by two towers (oppida) occupied by bands of music.Between these was the loggia of the presiding magistrate. The opposite end of the building was semicircular, and had a gate called the porta triumphalis, which seems to have been used only on extraordinary occasions. The senators and e quites had separate places allotted them, as in the theatre. The seats assigned to the common people were divided according to tribes, and the sexes were not separated. The eight or twelve openings (carceres ) from which the chariots issued lay, as we have already mentioned, at both sides of the entrance, and were closed with bars. They were arranged in slanting lines, so that the distance from the carceres to the startingpoint was equalized for all. The startingpoint was marked by three conical pillars (metae), standing on a substructure. Three other similar metae, corresponding to them, stood at the other or semicircular end of the circus. Between the two points where the metae stood was built a low wall (spina), extending through the whole length of the course. On this there used to stand the mast of a ship, which, after Augustus' time, gave place to an obelisk. The spina was adorned with pillars, little shrines, and statues of the gods, especially of Victory. A second and loftier obelisk was added by Constantine. The obelisk of Augustus now stands in the Piazza del Popolo, that of Constantine on the square in front of the Lateran. There was also an elevated substructure, supporting seven sculptured dolphins spouting water, and a pedestal with seven egg-shaped objects upon it, the use of which will be explained below. The games were generally opened by a solemn procession from the Capitol through the forum to the circus, and through the whole length of the circus round the spina. At the head of the procession came to giver of the games, sitting on a car of triumph in triumphal costume. He was followed by the images of the gods borne on litters or carriages, and escorted by the collegia and priestly corporations. In the imperial age the procession included the images of the deceased emperors and empresses, to whom divine honours were paid. The procession moved through the entrance, while the crowd rose up, cheered, and clapped their hands. The president dropped a white handkerchief into the arena, and the race began. Four, sometimes as many as six, chariots drove out from behind the barriers at the right hand of the spina. Then they rushed along the spina as far as the further posts, rounded these, and drove back down the left side to the starting-posts. They made the circuit seven times, and finally drove off the course through the barriers on the left of the spina. Seven circuits constituted one heat, or missus. A chalk line was drawn across the ground near the entrance, and the victory was adjudged to the driver who first crossed it. During the republican period the number of missus or heats amounted to ten or twelve, and after the time of Caligula to twenty-four, taking up the whole day. To keep the spectators constantly informed how many of the seven heats had been run, one of the egg-shaped signals, mentioned above, was taken down after each heat, and probably also one of the dolphins was turned round. The chariots had two wheels, were very small and light, and were open behind. The team usually consisted either of two (bigae) or of four horses ( quadrigoe). In the latter case the two middle horses only were yoked together. The driver (auriga or agitator, fig. 2) stood in his chariot, dressed in a sleeveless tunic strapped round the upper part of his body, a helmet-shaped cap on his head, a whip in his hand, and a knife with a semi-circular blade in his girdle, to cut the reins with in case of need, for the reins were usually attached to his girdle. The main danger lay in turning round the pillars. To come into collision with them was fatal, not only to the driver himself, but to the driver immediately behind him. The chariots, and probably also the tunics and equipments of the drivers, were decked with the colours of the different factions, as they were called. Of these there were originally only two, the White and the Red. At the beginning of the imperial period we hear of two more, the Green and the Blue. Two more, Gold and Purple, were introduced by Domitian, but probably dropped out of use after his death. Towards the end of the 3rd century A.D. the White faction joined with the Green, and the Red with the Blue. Accordingly in the late Roman and Byzantine period we generally hear only of Blue and Green. It was the party feeling thus engendered which was the mainspring of the passionate interest, often amounting almost to madness, which the people took in the games of the circus. The necessary attendants, the horses, and the general equipment of the games were provided, at the cost of the giver, by special Companies, with one or more directors at their head. These companies were distinguished by adopting the different colours of the factions. The drivers were mostly slaves, or persons of low position. The calling was looked down upon; but at the same time a driver of exceptional skill would be extraordinarily popular. The victors, besides their palms and crowns, often received considerable sums of money; and thus it would often happen that a driver would rise to the position of a contractor, or become director of a company of contractors. Numerous monuments survive to commemorate their victories. Sometimes, indeed, a Celebrated horse would have a monument put up to him. A contest of riders, each with two horses, was often added to the chariot-races. These riders were called desultores, because they jumped from one horse to another while going at full gallop. The circus was also used for boxing-matches, wrestlingmatches, and foot-racing; but during the imperial period separate buildings were usually appropriated to these amusements. Gladiatorial contests, and wild-beast hunts, were originally held in the circus, even after the building of the amphitheatre. Besides these games, the circus was sometimes used for military reviews. The cavalry manaeuvres, for instance, of the six divisions of the knights ( ludi sevirales), with their six leaders (Seviri), and an imperial prince as princeps iuventutis at their head, would occasionally be held there. Under the emperors of the Julian dynasty a favourite pastime was the Troia or ludus Troite . This consisted in a number of manceuvres performed by boys belonging to senatorial and other respectable families. They rode on horseback in light armour in separate divisions, and were practised for the purpose by special trainers.
GAMES 15.00%
(1) Public. Among the Romans public games were intimately connected with religious worship. (For the public games of the Greeks, see ISTHMIAN, NEMEAN, OLYMPIAN, PYTHIAN GAMES.) The Roman ludi, originally races, appear first in the worship of Mars and Consus, the tutelary deities of horses and mules. But it was also a very ancient custom to celebrate ludi votivi, or games vowed on special occasions, particularly in time of war. Such games were usually vowed to Jupiter, the greatest deity of the Romans. These exceptional celebrations were so often repeated that they at length passed into regular annual festivals (ludi stati). The number of these games gradually increased, and so did their duration. At the end of the republican period there were seven sets of games, which occupied 65 days; in the middle of the 2nd century A.D. 135 days were given up to them, and in 354 A.D. as many as 176. In old times the games only lasted part of the day; but they gradually began to take up the whole day from early morning onwards. At a later period they went on in many cases into the night, requiring artificial illumination. The Roman ritual was very strict, and it happened pretty often that in consequence of some accidental interruption or trivial oversight, an instauratio or repetition of the spoiled day, if not of the whole festival, would be ordered, lest the gods should have any cause for anger. The different collegia of the priests were responsible for superintending the games, prescribed in honour of their respective divinities. But in the case of festivities vowed by the State, this duty fell to the high magistrates; at first to the consuls, afterwards (and almost exclusively) to the aediles, and after Augustus to the praetors. The expenses were provided for by a certain sum of money paid over from the public treasury to the giver of italics>the games. For the Ludi Romani, the greatest of all the festivals, this sum amounted, during the period preceding the Punic wars, to about £1,800. After this period it reached some £3,000, and by 51 A.D. had risen to £8,750. At the same time the givers of the games had to make larger supplementary contributious. The demands of the public were so extravagant that in course of time the amount of this private expenditure increased enormously, especially in the last century B.C. Augustus, indeed, tried to check it; but he was obliged to allow his praetors to spend three times as much on the games as was paid for the public treasury. Under the Empire many enactments were issued to restrict the expenditure on the games by law, but no permanent effect was produced. Even after the 4th century A.D. the expense rose to as large a sum as from £50,000 to £150,000. The oldest games were those of the circus, consisting mainly of horse-races and chariot-races, with gymnastic contests, to which others were added in course of time. (See CIRCUS.) After 364 B.C. dramatic representations were introduced from Etruria. These were in 240 B.C., and onwards, exchanged for regular theatrical performances (See LIVIUS ANDRONIOUS). Contests of gladiators, also from Etruria, were fashionable after 264 B.C. But these were only exhibited, during the republican period, at funeral games, private and other entertainments (see GLADIATORES). The following regular festivities were introduced in the republican period, and continued in existence until the latest times: (1) The Ludi Romani. These were the oldest games of all, and were, in strictness, celebrated in honour of Jupiter by victorious generals at their triumphs; hence it was that they included, as a special feature, a procession (pompa) from the Capitol to the Circus; a part of the performance which seems afterwards to have been embodied in the other games of the circus. Originally they lasted only one day; but in course of time they absorbed more and more time, till in the Ciceronian age they went on for fifteen (September 4-19). After the death of Caesar another day was added in his honour. After the introduction of theatrical performances, several days were taken up with them. The curule aediles were, in the republican period, responsible for the management. (2) Ludi plebei. These originally lasted one day, but afterwards fourteen, November 4-17. They were given in the Circus Flaminius under the direction of the plebeian aediles, and early included dramatic entertainments. (3) Ludi Cereales, given under the direction of the plebeian aediles in honour of Ceres, the tutelary goddess of the plebs. The date was originally April 19, afterwards April 12-19. (4) Ludi Apollinares, or in honour of Apollo. These were introduced during the Second Punic War, and celebrated originally on July 13, continuing afterwards from July 6-13. On the last day only were there any performances in the circus; the rest of the festival was given up to the drama. These were the only games for which, in the republican period, the praetor was responsible. (5) Ludi Megalenses, in honour of the Magna Mater, introduced 204 B.C. and held at first on April 4, afterwards from April 4-10. (See RHEA .) They included performances both in the theatre and in the circus. They were under the management of the curule aediles, and the same remark applies to (6) the Ludi Florales, from April 28 to May 3. (See FLORA.) During the imperial period the number of permanent festivals was largely increased. The birthday of Augustus, for instance (September 23), was regularly celebrated with ludi circenses, and the ludi Augustales (October 3-12) were instituted in honour of his memory. Side by side with the public games, private performances were often given by societies, families, and individuals on special occasions, such as those of births, marriages, or funerals. Sometimes the object would be merely to please the public: sometimes to raise money. The giver of the entertainment had, like the superintendent of the public games, the privilege of lictors and the toga proetexta. Charges for admission were made or not according to the occasion. But the admission to the public games was free, it being always understood that special seats were reserved for the magistrates, priests, senators, equites, and particular families and individuals. (See AMPHITHEATRE, CIRCUS, GLADIATORES, SEA-FIGHTS, THEATRE, WILD BEASTS.) Of social games the ancients, and especially the Greeks, had plenty. The cottabus, so popular at Greek banquets, the games of ball, of which both Greeks and Romans were fond, and the games with dice, are described in separate articles. A game of draughts (petteia) appears as early as Homer, and was said to have been the invention of Palamedes. But we have no knowledge of its nature and rules, and have very scanty information about the similar games played in later times. The "game of cities" seems to have resembled our chess or draughts. The board was divided into spaces, and movements made upon it with stones; the object being to get your opponent into check. The Romans had several games of the sort, among which the ludus latrunculorum, or game at soldiers, is to a certain extent known. This was a game of siege. The men (calculi) were divided into privates (mandroe) and officers (latrones), and the object was to take or to get your adversary's stones in check. In the ludus duodecim scriptorum, or game of 12 lines, dice were used. The dice-board was divided into 24 spaces by 12 parallel lines intersected by a line at right angles. Each side had 15 men, one set being black and the other white. Before each move the dice were thrown, and the move determined by the number which turned up. A very favourite game was Odd and Even (Gk. artiasmos, Lat. ludere par impar). You held out so many fingers, and put so many coins, pebbles, or nuts in your hand, and made your adversary guess whether the number was odd or even. The Roman children, and indeed their elders, were very fond of various games with nuts.
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