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Quindecimviri sacris faciundis

(916 words)

Author(s): Linderski, Jerzy (Chapel Hill, NC)
[German version] The collegium of the 'fifteen men for the performance of sacred rites', one of the three (Varro in Aug. Civ. 6,3; Cic. Har. resp. 18; Nat. D. 3,5; Leg. 2,20) or four (Cass. Dio 53,1,5) great Roman priesthoods, along with the pontifices , the augures and the septemviri epulonum , the last of which counted among them from the Augustan period, was said by tradition to have been founded by Tarquinius Superbus as the duoviri sacris faciundis (i.e. consisting of two members Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 4,62; Serv. Aen. 6,73). Its membership was raised to 10 decemviri (five patricians and …

Penates (Di Penates)

(895 words)

Author(s): Linderski, Jerzy (Chapel Hill, NC)
[German version] The Roman gods of the house, the homeland and of oaths ( iurare per Iovem deosque P.: CIL I2 582,18,24; Cic. Acad. 2,65); linked etymologically with penus [2. s.v.], the interior of the house. The ending - ates expresses the sense of ancestry within, or membership of, a local community: thus the Penates are those spirits 'who are inside', or an adjective describing dei/ di, 'the gods of the interior' . They were also the protectors of provisions (Gell. NA 4,1,1-23), as the householder’s provisions were stored in the penus. They were often mentioned with the Lares or e…


(215 words)

Author(s): Linderski, Jerzy (Chapel Hill, NC)
[German version] Technical term of Roman augural language (Gell. NA 7,6), etymologically connected with Latin praepetere (Fest. 224; 286 f. L.; [1. s. v. peto]); it denoted birds that 'flew forwards' high in the observer's field of vision and were of favourable significance (Serv. Auct. Aen. 3,246). Along with birds hovering low ( aves inferae: Nigidius Figulus in Gell. NA 7,6; Serv. Aen. 3,361; [2. 2279]), praepetes belonged to the category of alites (augural term for 'birds') that gave signs by means of their flight (Serv. Auct. Aen. 3,246). In Ennius' descriptio…


(90 words)

Author(s): Linderski, Jerzy (Chapel Hill, NC)
[German version] Roman goddess invoked by the pontifices ( pontifex ; indigitamenta ), primarily at a birth, to expedite delivery (thus Varro in Non. 352). According to Aug. Civ. 4,11 the goddess of calculation in general. She certainly was not a gens divinity (Numerius). Probably related etymologically to the root of the Greek νέμω/ némō, ‘allot’. This would then have N. as a goddess of fate and birth, calculating the lifetime allotted to each mortal. Birth (II); Fate Linderski, Jerzy (Chapel Hill, NC) Bibliography Ernout/Meillet, 450f.  Radke, 233f.  Salomies, 39-41.


(283 words)

Author(s): Linderski, Jerzy (Chapel Hill, NC)
[German version] In Roman law, temple robbery or, more specifically, unlawful removal ( furtum) of (movable): (a) objects ( res) that were sacrae ( sacer ) from a place that was sacer ( aedes, templum: Quint. Inst. 7,3,10), perhaps even from private ownership (Cic. Inv. 1,11); and (b) private property, such as money, that had been deposited in a temple (thus Cic. Leg. 2,22 and 41). However, the latter was controversial: Septimius Severus and Caracalla ruled that such a crime be classified only as furtum (Dig. 48,13,6). The theft of sacra privata was not among the deeds constituting th…

Pax deorum (deum)

(301 words)

Author(s): Linderski, Jerzy (Chapel Hill, NC)
[German version] In the Roman mind PD meant the state of 'peace' between the populus Romanus and their gods or described their 'gracious obligingness' [1. 20-22]. In the area of state religion it was the task of the sacerdotes populi Romani (Priests) and the magistrates to see to the continuation of this state by means of the correct execution and preservation of the prescribed cult activities and ordinances (such as the Vestals' requirement of chastity). The PD could be destroyed at any time by errors in ritual, carelessness or transgression against divine legal norms…


(199 words)

Author(s): Linderski, Jerzy (Chapel Hill, NC)
[German version] Roman goddess whose sacellum was situated at the northern foot of the Aventine (Varro Ling. 5,154; Fest. 134f. L.); hence the Roman place names ad Murciae, vallis Murciae (the valley of the Circus Maximus) and metae Murciae (Liv. 1,33,5; InscrIt 13.3,78; Symmachus, Relat. 9,6; Claud. De consulatu Stilichonis 2,404; Apul. Met. 6,6; Tert. De spectaculis 8,6). M. was probably a deity of locatity, as the Aventine, or rather its southeastern elevation, is said to have been originally called mons Murcus (‘truncated’, i.e. ‘steep’), (Fest. l.c.; Serv. Auct. 8,636).…


(1,051 words)

Author(s): Wiegels, Rainer (Osnabrück) | Linderski, Jerzy (Chapel Hill, NC)
[German version] [1] Sub-tribe of the Franci According to the prevailing view, the S. are considered a sub-tribe of the Franci originally from the north of the Rhine delta, later in Toxandria (modern Belgian Brabant; Amm. Marc. 17,8,3); the Merovingians are also supposed to have begun their rise as kings of the S. or ‘Salian Franks’ [1. 524-541; 2; 4; 5. 55-57 and fig. 39]. The S. are first mentioned by Julian. Ep. 361 for the year AD 358: according to his account, some of the S. subjected themselves t…