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CORYCUS 100.00%
See BALL, GAMES OF.
 
BALL 100.00%
Games of ball were among the commonest and most popular forms of exercise in antiquity, among the young and old alike. Playing went on in public places, such as the Campus Martius at Rome; and in gymnasia and thermoe a room (sphoeristerium, from the Greek sphaira, a ball) was set apart for the purpose, in which a professional attended to give instruction in the art (sphairistike). During the imperial period country-houses often had a sphoeristerium attached to them. The balls (Lat. piloe) were made of hair, feathers, or fig-seeds, covered with leather or many-coloured cloth. The largest (as, for instance, the Roman follis) were filled with air. At this time there were five sorts of ball: the small, the middlesized, the large, the very large, and the inflated ball. In throwing the little ball the rule was that the arm should not rise above the shoulder. There were games for one, two, three, or a larger number of players. In many of these several small balls were used at once. Two of the games with the little ball may be mentioned, called by the Greeks Urania and Aporraxis. In the urania ("sky-high") the player threw the ball as high as possible, to be caught either by himself or his antagonist. In the aporraxis ("bounce-ball") the ball was thrown obliquely to the ground, and its several rebounds were scored up until another player caught it with the flat of his hand and threw it back. In another form of the game the point was to keep tossing the ball up, as long as possible, with the open hand. A very favourite game at Rome was the trigon ("three-corner"), which required special dexterity with the left hand. The game of episkyros, at first peculiar to Sparta, was played by a large number. It took its name from the line (skyron) which separated the two sides. On this line the player took his stand to throw the ball; another line, behind the players, marked the point beyond which you might not go back in catching it. If you failed to catch the ball when standing within this line, you lost the game. Another game played by a large number was the harpastum (Latin) or phaininda (Greek). In this the player made as though he were going to send the ball to a particular man on the other side, and then suddenly threw it in another direction. The korykos was not so much a game as a trial of strength. The korykos was a large leather bag filled with flour, sand, or fig-seeds. It hung from the ceiling so as to reach to about the middle of the player's body. His business was to keep the bag in increasingly violent motion, beating it back with breast and hands.
 
URANIA 98.50%
A Greek game at ball (q.v.).
 
TRIGON 98.00%
A kind of game with a ball. (See BALL, GAMES OF).
 
PHAININDA 91.46%
A kind of Greek game of ball (q.v.)
 
SPHAERISTERIUM 72.65%
A court for the game of ball in the gymnasia and thermoe. Sphoeristice was the name of the art of playing at ball (q.v.).
 
THERMAE 24.06%
The name given by the Romans to the public buildings, founded in and after the time of Agrippa, which combined, with warm baths, the arrangements of a Greek gymnasium. These included open and covered colonnades for conversation, instruction, and different exercises, especially the game of ball. The most extensive and splendid establishments of the sort were to be found in Rome, and are still to be seen, though, for the greater part, in ruins. Of the existing remains the most important are those of the Thermoe of Caracalla. (Cp. ARCHITECTURE, fig. 14, p. 56; and see BATHS.)
 
HERON 20.83%
A Greek mathematician of Alexandria, about the middle of the 3rd century B.C., the well-known inventor of Heron's ball and Heron's fountain. Of his Introduction to Mechanics, the most comprehensive work of antiquity on the theory of that science, only extracts are preserved in Pappus. We also possess his disquisitions on presses, on the contrivance of automatons, and on the construction of catapults and other engines for projectiles.
 
TYCHE 19.68%
In Greek mythology, originally the goddess of chance; only occasionally mentioned in the older poets. In the course of time she came to be extensively worshipped as a goddess of prosperity, who had cities under her special protection. With the general decay of belief in the gods she became one of the mightiest and most commonly named of all supernatural powers. She is generally represented with a cornucopia as the bestower of blessing, with a rudder as the pilot of destiny, and with wings, wheel, and ball, as emblems of her variability. [For the personified Tyche of Antioch on the Orontes, see SCULPTURE, fig. 15.]
 
SLING 16.90%
A weapon for hurling missiles, consisting of a thong, broad in the middle and growing narrower towards the ends. The missile was either a round stone of the size of a hen's egg, a ball of baked clay, or a leaden bolt cast in the shape of an acorn. It was placed in the broad part of the thong, and the slinger (Gr. sphendonetes; Lat. funditor), holding the thong by both ends in in one hand, swung it several times round his head, and discharged the ball at the mark by means of letting go one end of the thong. The most famous slingers of antiquity were the inhabitants of the Balearic Isles; they carried three slings, made of plaited rushes, hair, and the sinews of wild beasts, for long, short, and intermediate shots respectively. Various leaden slingbolts, bearing marks or characteristic inscriptions, have been preserved. Under the Empire there came into use the sling-staff (Lat. justibalus), a staff four feet in length, to the end of which a leathern sling was fastened. One thong of this reached to the other end of the staff, and was together with this held fast by the fustibalator, who swung the staff several times round his head, and suddenly let go the longer thong, thus throwing a larger missile with much greater force than was possible with a simple sling.
 
GYMNASIUM 12.69%
The Greek name for the place where the youths who had alreadyreat variety of gymnastic exercises, and the increasing inclination of grown men to look on at them and take part in them, the gymnasia often adorned with beautiful sculptures, grow in extent and splendour of equipment. (Seecut.) The great court comprised a number of spaces serving a variety of purposes: for instance, the ephebeion, or hall where the ephebi practised, rooms for dressing and anointing, sanding or dusting the body, cold-water baths and dry sudatoria, spaces for playing at ball, open and covered passages for running, wrestling, or walking. Attached to the colonnades on the outside were semicircular niches, furnished with stone seats, called exedra,. In these philosophers and rhetoricians would sit and talk with their disciples. A stadion, with a space for spectators to look on, and walksplanted with trees, were often attached to the gymnasium. The whole was under the superintendence of a gymnasiarchos. The conduct of the youths was under the supervision of sophronistoe. At Athens these officers were ten in number, and elected annually. The exercises were directed by the gymnastoe. For similar arrangements under the Roman empire see THERMAe.
 
LYSIPPUS, OF SICYON 8.56%
One of the most famous Greek artists, a contemporary of Alexander the Great; was originally a worker in metal, and taught himself the art of the sculptor by studying nature and the canon of Polyclitus (q.v.). His works, which were said to amount to 1,500, were all statues in bronze, and were remarkable for their lifelike characterization and their careful and accurate execution, shown particularly in the treatment of the hair. He aimed at representing the beauty and harmony more especially of the male human body; and substituted for the proportions of Polyclitus a new ideal, which kept in view the effect produced, by giving the body a more slender and elegant shape, and by making the head smaller in comparison with the trunk, than is the case with the actual average man. The most famous among his statues of gods were the colossal forms of Zeus and Heracles, at Tarentum (of which the former was second in size only to that at Rhodes, while the latter was afterwards brought to the Capitol at Rome, and then to the Hippodrome at Constantinople, where it was melted down in A.D. 1022), and, lastly, the sungod on the four-horse chariot at Rhodes [Pliny, N. H., xxxiv § § 40, 63]. The first example of pure allegory in Greek art was his Cairos, the Favourable Moment; a delicate youth with modest look standing on a ball, with his feet winged, and holding shears and a balance in his hands. The hair hung down in front, while it was so short behind that it could not be grasped [Anthol. Gr. ii 49, 13; Callistratus, Statuae, 6]. By far the greater number of his statues were portraits; of these the various representations of Alexander the Great from boyhood onwards were of marked excellence [Pliny, l.c. 64). Indeed, the king would have no sculptor but Lysippus to represent him, even as he would have no other painter than Apelles [Pliny, N. H., vii 125 ; Horace, Epist. ii 1,240; Cicero, Ad Fam. v 12, 13]. Among his large groups were Craterus saving the life of Alexander chasing the lion [Pliny, xxxiv 64], and the portraits of twenty-five horsemen and nine foot soldiers who fell at the first assault in the battle of the Granicus [Arrian, Anab. i 16 § 7; Plutarch, Alex. 16]. The excellent copy in marble, at the Vatican, of the Apoxyomenos, a youth removing the dust of the palaestra with a strigil, affords an idea of his skill in representing beautiful and perfectly developed bodies of delicate elasticity and graceful suppleness [Pliny, xxxiv 62].
 
ARTILLERY 6.76%
The machines used for sending large missiles to a great distance were supposed to have been invented in the East, and appear in Greece since 400 B.C. or thereabouts. They attained their highest perfection in the age of the Diadochi, and were adopted by the Romans after the Punic wars. There were two chief varieties, both imitations of the crossbow; but the elasticity of the bow is exchanged for elasticity in the twist of the cord. Consequently all pieces of heavy artillery were called by the Romans tormenta. The machine consisted of three parts: the stand, the groove for the shot, and the apparatus representing the bow. This consisted of a frame in three divisions, through the midmost of which passed the groove for the shot (fig. 1). In each of the lateral divisions was stretched, in a vertical direction, a set of strong elastic cords, made of the sinews of animals, or the long hair of animals or of women. These were stretched tight, and between each of them was fixed a straight unelastic arm of wood. The arms were joined by a cord, which was pulled back by a winch applied at the end of the groove. On letting this go, the arms, and with them the string and the object in front of it, were driven forward by the twisting of the vertical cords. The effectiveness of the engine thus depended on the power and twist of the cords, which may be said roughly to express its calibre. The engines were divided into two kinds. (1) Catapultae, or scorpions (fig. 2). In these the groove for the shot was horizontal; and they projected missiles of length and thickness varying according to the calibre. (2) Ballistae(fig.3), which shot stones, beams, or balls up to 162 lbs. weight, at an angle of 50 degrees. The calibre of the ballista was at least three times as great as that of the catapult. The average range of the catapult was about 383 yards, that of the ballista from about 295 to 503 yards.
 
GAMES 3.23%
(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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