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The name given to the six authors of biographies of the Roman emperors, united at an uncertain date into a single collection. The biographies extend from Hadrian to Numerian, 117-284 A.D. (with the exception of the years 244-253). Of the six biographers, Aelianus Spartianus, Volcatius Gallicanus, and Trebellius Pollio wrote under Diocletian;Flavius Vopiscus Syracusius, Aelius Lampridius, and Julius Capitolinus under Constantius Chlorus and Constantine the Great. The biographies are merely dry compilations from the lost writings (1) of Marius Maximus (who at the beginning of the 3rd century, under Alexander Severus, continued the work of Suetonius by writing the lives of the emperors from Nerva to Elagatbalus); and (2) of his contemporary Junius Cordus, who wrote biographies of the less famous emperors. In spite of their deficiencies in style and spirit, they are of value as authorities for history.
One of the Scriptores Historioe Augustoe (q.v.).
AELIUS 24.12%
Aelius Lampridius and Aelius Spartianus, Roman historians of the Empire. (See SCRIPTORES HIST. AUG.)
SALUS 12.05%
The personification of health and prosperity among the Romans. As godess of health, she was identified with the Greek Hygieia (q.v.), the daughter of Asclepius, and represented in the same way. As the deity representing the welfare of the Roman people (Salus Publica Populi Romani) she had from the year 302 B.C. a temple on the Quirinal. Under the Empire, she was also worshipped as guardian goddess of the emperors (<illegible>Salus Augusta</illegible>). Prayers were frequently made to her by the priestly colleges and the political bodies, especially at the beginning of the year, in times of sickness, and on the birthdays of the emperors. As her counterpart among the Sabines, we have the goddess Strenia. (See STRENAe.)
The Latin personification of concord or harmony, especially among Roman citizens. Shrines were repeatedly erected to Concordia during the republican period after the cessation of civil dissensions. The earliest was dedicated by Camillus in 367 B.C. The goddess Concordia was also invoked, together with Janus, Salus, and Pax, at the family festival of the Caristia, on the 30th March, and, with Venus and Fortuna, by married women on the 1st of April (see MANES). During the imperial period Concordia Augusta was worshipped as the protectress of harmony, especially of matrimonial agreement; in the emperor's household.
The act of placing a human being among the gods, of which the Greeks have an instance as early as Homer, but only in the single case of Leucothea. The oldest notion was that of a bodily removal; then arose the idea of the mortal element being purged away by fire, as in the case of Heracles. There was a kind of deification which consisted in the decreeing of heroic honours to distinguished men after death, which was done from the time of the Peloponnesian War onwards, even in the case of living men (see HEROES). The successors of Alexander the Great, both the Seleucidae and still more the Ptolemies, caused themselves to be worshipped as gods. Of the Romans, whose legend told of the translation of Eneas and Romulus into heaven, Caesar was the first who claimed divine honours, if not by building temples to himself, yet by setting his statue among the gods in every sanctuary at Rome and in the empire, and by having a special flamen assigned to him. The belief in his divinity was confirmed by the comet that shone several months after his death, as long as his funeral games lasted; and under the triumvirate he was formally installed among the deities of Rome, as Divus Iulius, by a decree of the senate and people. His adopted son and successor Octavian persistently declined any offer of public worship, but he accepted the title of Augustus (the consecrated), and allowed his person to be adored in the provinces. On his death the senate decreed divine honours to him under the title of Divus Augustus, the erection of a temple, the founding of special games, and the establishment of a peculiar priesthood. After this, admission to the number of the Divi, as the deified emperors were called, becomes a prerogative of the imperial dignity. It is, however, left dependent on a resolution of the senate moved in honour of the deceased emperor by his successor. Hence it is not every emperor who obtains it, nor does consecration itself always lead to a permanent worship. Empresses too were often consecrated, first Augustus' wife Livia as Diva Augusta, and even other members of the imperial house. The ceremony of Apotheosis used from the time of Augustus was the following. After the passing of the senate's decree a waxen image of the dead, whose body lay hidden below, was exhibited for seven days on an ivory bed of state in the palace, covered with gold-embroidered coverlets; then the bier was borne by knights and senators amidst a brilliant retinue down the Via Sacra to the ancient Forum, where the funeral oration was delivered, and thence to the Campus Martius, where it was deposited in the second of the four stories of a richly decorated funeral pile of pyramid shape. When the magistrates sacred and secular, the knights, lifeguard, and others concerned, had performed the last honours by processions and libations, the pile was set on fire, and as it burned up, an eagle soared from the topmost storey into the sky, a symbol of the ascending soul.
From an early date the Greeks employed in the production of books a paper prepared from the Egyptian papyrus plant. This was probably manufactured as follows: as many strips as possible of equal size were cut out of the cellular tissue of the stalk; these were laid side by side, and crossed by a second layer. The layers were firmly fastened together by being damped with size and pressed. The breadth of the scroll depended on the height of the stalk, while its length could be extended at pleasure. After the time of Augustus, the preparation of the papyrus by a process of bleaching was brought to such perfection that the best Egyptian kind took only the third place. Under the Empire eight different kinds were distinguished, the two best of which were called the charta Augusta (only used for letters), and the charta Livia; these were 10 ½ inches broad. The worst kind was only used for packing. As a rule the papyrus-rolls of moderate length were written only on one side, and the writing was divided into columns. [Pliny, N. H. xiii 68-83]. For the binding of the papyrus-rolls, see BOOKS. The use of skins for the purposes of writing was at least as old as that of papyrus. The finer method of preparing them was, however, first discovered during the first half of the 2nd century B.C. at Pergamum, whence the name charta Pergamena, "parchment." But as late as the 1st century A.D. papyrus was more generally employed, probably on account of its greater cheapness; and it was not till the 4th century that parchment came into more general use, as being more durable, and admitting of being written upon on both sides. The pen was a split reed (calamus), the best being supplied by Egypt and Cnidus in Caria. The ink (atramentum) employed was a preparation resembling Indian ink, made of soot and gum, or of the juice of the cuttle-fish. Both of these could be erased with a sponge, whereas ink made of oxide of iron and gallnuts, which appears to have been introduced later, and to have been the only kind capable of being used for parchment, left more or less clear traces behind, even if rubbed out with pumice-stone. In ordinary life people used for letters, notices, and despatches, as also in schools, wooden tablets (tabelloe) with a raised rim, within which was spread a thin layer of wax. On this the characters were scratched with the point of a metal or ivory instrument called a stilus; they could be effaced with the other end of the instrument, which was bent or flattened out like a paper-folder. Two or more such tablets could be fastened together in the form of a book. (See DIPTYCHON.) The writing materials most commonly employed among the Greeks and Romans are shown in our cuts. <picture> <name> INK-STAND WITH REED PEN, ROLL WITH CORNUA AND PARCHMENT LABEL, STILUS, WAX TABLET, AND ACCOUNT BOOK. (Mural Painting from Pompeii; Museo Borbonico i 12, 2.) </name> </picture> <picture> <name> BUNDLE OF REED-PENS, WAX TABLET, AMD STILUS. (Sepnlchral relief from Perret, Catacombes de Rome, lxxiii 6. Xanthus. A Greek historian. (See LOGOGRAPHI.)
The goddess of good luck, worshipped from remote antiquity in Italy. Her worship was supposed to have been introduced into Rome by king Servius. Tullius, popularly believed to be her favourite and confidant. He was said to have founded her oldest sanctuaries, as, for instance, that of Fors Fortuna, or lucky chance, on the right bank of the Tiber below Rome. To this a pilgrimage was made down the stream by land and water on the anniversary of its foundation (June 26). As time went on, the worship of Fortuna became one of the most popular in Italy. She was worshipped at a great number of shrines under various titles, given according to various circumstances of life in which her influence was supposed to have effect. These titles were Fortuna Primigenia, who determines the destiny of the child at its birth; Fortuna Publica or Populi Romani, the tutelary goddess of the state; Fortuna Coesaris or Augusta, the protectress of the emperor; Fortuna privata, or of family life; Fortuna patricia, plebeia, equestris, of the different orders, classes, and families of the population; Fortuna liberum, of children; virginalis, of maidens, muliebris, of women; Fortuna virilis was the goddess of woman's happiness in married life, of boys and of youths, who dedicated to her the first cuttings of their beards, calling her from this Fortuna barbata. Other epithets of Fortuna were victrix, or giver of victory; dux or comes, the leader or attendant; redux, who brings safe home; tranquilla, the giver of prosperous voyages. This Fortuna was worshipped with Portunus in the harbour of Rome. There were also Fortuna bona and mala, good and evil Fortune; blanda or flattering, obsequens or yielding, dubia or doubtful, viscata or enticing, brevis or fickle, and manens or constant. Trajan at last founded a special temple in her honour as the all-pervading power of the world. Here an annual sacrifice was offered to her on New Year's Day. In works of art she was represented with the same attributes as the Greek Tyche (see TYCHE). Fortuna, in her general character as a goddess of Nature and Fate, had an ancient and celebrated in which oracles were delivered, at Praeneste and Antium. (see cut).
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