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TERMINUS 100.00%
The Roman god of bounds, under whose special protection were the stones (termini) which marked boundaries. The regulations respecting these stones and the religious customs and institutions connected with them went back to the time of king Numa. At the setting of such a stone every one living near the boundary assembled; and in their presence the hole prepared for the reception of the stone was watered with the blood of a sacrificial animal; incense, field-produce, honey, and wine were sprinkled over it, and a victim sacrificed. The stone, anointed and decked with garlands and ribbons, was then placed upon the smouldering bones and pressed into the earth. Whoever pulled up the stone was cursed, together with his draught-cattle, and any one might kill him with impunity and without being defiled by his blood. In later times the punishment of fines was instituted instead. The festival of the Terminalia was celebrated in Rome and in the country on the 23rd of February. The neighbours on either side of any boundary gathered round the landmark, with their wives, children, and servants; and crowned it, each on his own side, with garlands, and offered cakes and bloodless sacrifices. In later times, however, a lamb, or sucking pig, was sometimes slain, and the stone sprinkled with the blood. Lastly, the whole neighbourhood joined in a general feast. A lamb was also sacrificed in the grove of Terminus, which was six Roman miles from Rome, near the ancient border of the town of Laurentum. On the Capitol there was a stone dedicated to Terminus, which had originally stood in the open air, but when the temple of Jupiter was founded by the last king, Tarquinius Superbus, it was inclosed within the building, as the augurs would not allow it to be removed.
The act of the Roman pontifices, in virtue of which a thing was pontifices as sacer, i.e. belonging to, or forfeited to, the gods. (On the rite of consecratio associated with the solemn dedication of a sanctuary, see DEDICATIO; on consecratio as the apotheosis of the emperor, see APOTHEOSIS.) In case of certain offences, sentence of consecratio capitis et bonorum was pronouned upon the offender, whose person and property were then made over as a sacrifice, to some deity. A married man who sold his wife was devoted to the gods below; a son who beat his father, to the household gods; one who removed his neighbour's landmark to Terminus; a patronus who betrayed his client, or a client who betrayed his patronus, to Jupiter; one who stole rorn in the ear, to Ceres. To kill a homo sacer was riot accounted as murder, but as the fulfilment of the divine vengeance.
PAGUS 25.25%
In Italy, in ancient times, the pagus was a country district with scattered hamlets (vici). The same name was given to its fortified centre, which protected the sanctuaries of the district and served as a refuge in time of war. The separate districts were members of a larger community. After cities had developed out of the places where the people of these districts assembled, the pagi were either completely merged in their territorium, or continued to exist merely as geographical districts, without importance for administration, or as subordinate village communities. In Rome the earliest population consisted of the montani, the inhabitants of the seven hills of the city, and the pagani, the inhabitants of the level ground of the city. Out of the two Servius Tullius made the four city tribes. The country tribes doubtless arose similarly out of pagi, the names of which were in some cases transferred to them. Like the old division into pagani and montani, the old districts under the authority of magistri long continued to exist for sacred purposes. They had their special guardian deities, temples, and rites, which survived even the introduction of Christianity. To the district festivals belonged especially the Paganalia (q.v.), the Ambarvalia (q.v.), at which the festal procession carefully traversed the old boundaries of the district; and, lastly, the Terminalia (see TERMINUS).
Type: Standard
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