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Sagmen

(69 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt)
[German version] Sagmina (pl.) were the herbs which were pulled out of the ground with their soil in Rome on the Arx on behalf of the fetiales (Plin. HN 22,5; 25,105; Fest. 424-426 L.). These herbs were used during the appointment ritual of the pater patratus (Liv. 1,24,4-6); the fetiales also took them along on their missions (Liv. 30,43,9). Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt) Bibliography J. Rüpke, Domi militiae, 1990, 100-103.

Polytheism

(1,339 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin)
I. In general and in classical antiquity [German version] 1. History of the term The adjective πολύθεος/ polýtheos refers in poetic Greek to that which pertains to many deities: the altar as the seat ( hédra) of many gods (Aesch. Suppl. 424) or the divine assembly attended by many gods (Lucian. Iuppiter Tragoedus 14). It is only in Jewish and Christian literature (Apologists) that this concept is used to justify the rule ( monarchía) of a single deity. Philo [12] of Alexandria coined the terms δόξα πολύθεος/ dóxa polýtheos (Phil. De decalogo 65) and πολυθεΐα/ polytheḯa (Phil. De mutatione…

Manalis lapis

(296 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt)
[German version] The object and function were already obsolete in the 1st cent. BC, and therefore required explanation. Paul Fest. 115 l. knows of two explanations: (1) the manalis lapis (ML) was an entrance to the underworld through which the souls of the subterraneans, alias Di Manes, ‘streamed ( manāre) into the upper world; (2) the ML was a stone (or a water jug: Varro in Non. 547 with dubious rationalization) located at the temple of Mars outside the Porta Capena in Rome which the pontifices ( Pontifex) pulled into the city in times of drought (cf. Paul Fest. 2 l., associating ML with aquaeli…

Moon deities

(1,252 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt) | Röllig, Wolfgang (Tübingen) | von Lieven, Alexandra (Berlin)
[German version] I. General The status of the moon in ancient mythological speculation and cult worship reflected its central position in the calendar cycles, agricultural cycles and monthly cycles with respect to their various aspects. The moon (personified) could be the addressee of the cult; the cult also included the male and female deities embedded in the traditional panthea and associated with the moon as moon deities (MD) with regard to their particular aspect. Whilst e.g. Selene/Luna just li…

Lua

(389 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt)
[German version] Goddess probably of Italian (Sabin.: [4. 166, 186]) origin. In 167 BC, after the victory over Perseus of Macedonia, L. Aemilius [I-32] Paullus burnt the weapons of the enemies for her and other deities (Liv. 45,33,1f.: L. mater; 8,1,6, L. mater as the addressee of a weapon-burning in 341 BC is presumably an annalistic fiction). The choice of the goddess may be explained by the derivation of her name from Latin luere: the weapon-burning after a successfully concluded battle marks the phase of demilitarization as a rite de passage; it symbolizes not only the ‘destructi…

Intertextuality

(1,180 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt)
[German version] A. Concept In the 1960s, criticism of the work-immanent interpretation of literary texts as closed systems was voiced in the aesthetics of reception of H. R. Jauss and in intertextuality as shaped by the semiotician Julia Kristeva. Kristeva was influenced by Mikhail Bakhtin's concept of the literary text as an open system: no text originates in a socio-historical vacuum; even at the very moment of its production it represents a dialogue with other literary and non-literary texts and…

Ritual

(8,221 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt) | von Lieven, Alexandra (Berlin) | Böck, Barbara (Madrid) | Haas, Volkert (Berlin) | Podella, Thomas (Lübeck) | Et al.
[German version] I. Term Ritual refers to an elaborate sequence of individual rites which, following an established ritual syntax, are logically connected within a certain functional context. Rituals are not limited to religious contexts but exist in other cultural contexts, political as well as social. The significance of rituals for those who participate in them can be reduced neither to an integrative function (legitimation ritual) nor to a temporary disabling of the regular structure - the two e…

Religion

(13,714 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Assmann, Jan (Heidelberg) | Podella, Thomas (Lübeck) | Colpe, Carsten (Berlin) | Et al.
I. Introduction [German version] A. Definition of the concept 'Religion', the substantive for describing the religious, denotes a system of common practices, individual ideas about faith, codified norms and examples of theological exegesis whose validity is derived chiefly from an authoritative principle or being. For the academic study of religion, conversely, the word is a purely heuristic category in which those practices, ideas, norms and theological constructs are examined historically; however, the…

Nicander

(1,519 words)

Author(s): Meier, Mischa (Bielefeld) | Günther, Linda-Marie (Munich) | Fornaro, Sotera (Sassari) | Fantuzzi, Marco (Florence) | Damschen, Gregor (Halle/Saale) | Et al.
(Νίκανδρος; Níkandros). [German version] [1] Spartan king, c. 715 BC Spartan king, Eurypontid, the father of Theopompus (Hdt. 8,131). N. led the raid of Spartans and Asinaeans into Argolis, in retaliation for which the Argives destroyed Asine [1] ( c. 715 BC). The settlement was refounded a few years later on the Messenian Gulf (Asine [2]; Paus. 2,36,4f.; 3,7,4; 4,14,3f.). Meier, Mischa (Bielefeld) Bibliography M. Meier, Aristokraten und Damoden, 1998, 74f., 93, 96. [German version] [2] Strategos in the Aetolian League, 190/189, 184/3 and 177/6 BC Son of Bittus of Trichonium (Syll.3 5…

Maiesta

(147 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt)
[German version] According to Calpurnius Piso fr. 42 Peter = 10 Forsythe the wife of Volcanus, no other references. Assumed Oscian origin [1] contributes little to clarification. It is possible that Piso, against a contemporary identification of Maia as the wife of Volcanus and eponym of the month of May (conceivable with Gell. NA 13,23; Cincius fr. 8 GRF in Macrob. Sat. 1,12,18; Ov. Fast. 5,81-106), derives the name of the month from a goddess M., with M. for her part probably coming from Latin maiestas (Ov. Fast. 5,11-53 mentions the latter as a possible eponym of the name of …

Moneta

(635 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt)
[German version] Epithet of Juno. According to tradition, her Roman temple on the Arx (Capitolium) was vowed by L. Furius ([I 11], probably not [I 12]) Camillus in 345 BC (Liv. 7,28,4) and dedicated on 1 June 344 (Liv. 7,28,5f.; Ov. Fast. 6,183f.; Fasti Venusini, InscrIt 13,2, p. 58). The traditional story that the shrine was erected at the site of the house of M. Manlius [I 8] Capitolinus (e.g. Liv. 6,20,13; 7,28,5; Ov. Fast. 6,185f.) is based on its erroneous localization on the Arx. The source …

Scapegoat rituals

(740 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt)
[German version] 'SR' take their name from an ancient Israelite ritual sequence described in Lv 16,5-10 and 20-22, in which every year at Yom Kippur a ram was sacrificed to Yahweh and a second, on to which all the guilt of the people of Israel had been transferred, was driven into the wilderness "to take away divine anger"( ăzāzēl: [1. 159-162]). Post-Exile and, later, Jewish Rabbinic tradition explain Azazel as a demon or fallen angel, whereas early Christian theology interprets the ram as an allegory for Christ, who by his death is supposed to hav…

Volcanus

(1,070 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt)
[German version] is the original form of the name of the Roman god (CIL I2 453; Vetter No. 200B 6b; Volchanus: CIL I2 1218; Volganus: CIL I2 364; Volkanus: CIL IX 6349), the form Vulcanus is more recent. Attempts to trace this name back through the Etruscan Velch(ans) [1. 289-409] to a Cretan ελχάνος ( Welchános, or Zeus Velchanos) [1. 155-287] and thus to identify its origin in the eastern Mediterranean region are based primarily on linguistic similarities; the conclusion that Volcanus was therefore originally a god of vegetation is hypothetical …

Board games

(916 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt) | Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] A. Ancient East Attested since the 2nd half of the 4th millennium, board games were used as a pastime but also for divination purposes ( Divination; in conjunction with models of the liver [3]). The playing boards of 5 × 4 squares were made from wood (carved or with coloured inlays), stone (painted or with inlays) or baked clay; the playing pieces and dice, from ivory or bone; no information is available on the way the games were played. There is probably no connection with the Egypt…

Septerion

(307 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt)
[German version] (Σεπτήριον/ Septḗrion), not Stepterion (Στεπτήριον/ Steptḗrion), was the name of a nine-yearly sequence of festivals and rituals, in the course of which a boy would set fire to a wooden construction beneath the temple of Apollo in Delphi, would then himself be led in a procession into the Thessalian Tempe valley to be ritually purified there of his 'offence' with accompanying sacrifices in the river Peneius. A central constituent was the plucking at the sanctuary to Apollo there of a l…

Nomioi Theoi

(181 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt)
[German version] (Νόμιοι Θεοί; Nómioi Theoí). As an adjunct to νομεύς/ nomeús, ‘shepherd’, νόμιος/ nómios is a poetic apostrophe or actual cult invocation for the identification of groups of gods (anon. NT in Rome: IG XIV 1013) and individual gods in their function as pastoral deities. The following are addressed as Νόμιος/ Nómios: Hermes (Aristoph. Thesm. 977f.); Pan (Hom. H. 19,5; Paus. 8,38,11: cult of Lycosura in Arcadia); the Nymphs (Orph. H. 51,11f.); Aristaeus [1] in Cyrene (Pind. Pyth. 9,65); Dionysus (Anth. Pal. 9,524); Zeus (Stob. 53,13…

Volturnus

(583 words)

Author(s): Vanotti, Gabriella (Novara) | Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt) | Hünemörder, Christian (Hamburg)
[German version] [1] River in southern Italy River in southern Italy (approximately 185 km in length) with a catchment area of approximately 5,677 km2. It rises on the south-eastern slopes of Monte Metuccia (near Aesernia) from a large karst spring, absorbs tributaries from the Monti del Matese and ultimately the Calor (modern Calore) to the west of mons Taburnus, before breaking to the north of the Tifata mons through to the Mare Tyrrhenum, where its alluvial deposits have created the plain of Campania (Str. 5,4,4;…

Deification

(1,408 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | von Lieven, Alexandra (Berlin) | Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient In the Ancient Orient the deification of  rulers always occurred in the context of the legitimization and exercise of  rulership. Deified rulers and proper gods were always differentiated on principle. Renger, Johannes (Berlin) [German version] A. Mesopotamia References to the deification of living rulers are geographically restricted to Babylonia and temporally to the late 3rd and early 2nd millennium BC: a) individual rulers claimed divine descent for themselves as a means of legitimizing their rule…

Personification

(3,673 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt) | Shapiro, H. Alan (Baltimore)
I. Terminology [German version] A. Personification in Rhetoric and Poetry The early modern term personificatio expresses the Hellenistic, rhetorical concept of προσωποποιία/ prosōpopoiía , which refers to the representation of fictive persons, concrete (inanimate) items or abstract concepts as speakers and actors (Latin, conformatio: Rhet. Her. 4,66; personarum ficta inductio: Cic. De or. 3,205; prosopopoeia: Quint. Inst. 9,29-37). As a fictional personalisation, primarily of concepts, prosōpopoiía was considered by Greek literary theory to be an element of a…

Vates

(519 words)

Author(s): Bendlin, Andreas (Erfurt)
[German version] Lat. 'announcer' of vaticinationes, 'prophecies', which occur by means of divine inspiration and are, according to Cicero, part of the 'natural' divination (Cic. Div. 1,4; 1,34 et passim; Divination VII: ill. of the communication pattern); occasionally, however, representatives of the 'artificial' divination (Haruspices; Augures) are also called vates (such as Liv. 2,42,10). The vates speaks in verse ( canere since Enn. Ann. 207; carmina: Sall. Hist. 1,77,3 et passim) and is thus part of a general ancient tradition of prophetically inspired text p…
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