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Barbaron Hyphasmata

(142 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (βαρβάρων ὑφάσματα; barbárōn hyphásmata). The Greeks called the valuable Median-Persian robes, materials, blankets i.a., with colourful  ornaments, detailed figurative decorations, hybrid and fable creatures barbaron hyphasmata (BH ). The BH arrived in Greece through commerce (Aristoph. Vesp. 1132ff.), as loot (Hdt. 9,80) or gifts (Ath. 2,48d). BH were donated as  votive offerings to sanctuaries (Paus. 5,12,4) or they were worn as luxury robes as a demonstration of wealth and power. The BH led to changes in…

Running and catching games

(453 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Running and catching games tended to be played in open areas and streets (e.g., Callim. Epigr. 1,9; Verg. Aen. 7,379) where children could chase one another (Hor. Ars P 455f.; cf. Hor. Ars P 412-415 perhaps races) or engage in the popular pastime of hoop rolling (τροχός/ trochós, trochus), often depicted on Greek vases in particular (also in Ganymedes [1]) (Poll. 10,64). From indications in Roman sources this game was frequently played in the street (Mart. 14,168; 14,169; cf. ibidem 12,168; 14,157) and even on frozen rivers (Ma…

Comb

(385 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ὁ κτείς; ho kteís, Lat. pecten). Combs for wool and for the hair were known already in prehistorical Europe, Egypt and the Near East. They were made from a range of different materials (olive wood, boxwood, ivory, bone, later also from bronze and iron) and could also vary in shape (trapezoid or oblong). In the post-Mycenaean period they had two rows of teeth, with those on one side being more narrowly set teeth. Semi-circular combs appeared in the archaic period. The Classical period …

Bustum

(106 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] The term already defined in the  Tabulae duodecim (Cic. Leg. 2, 64) as ‘tomb’ was, according to Paul. Fest. 6, 78; 25,3; 27,11 and Serv. Aen. 11,201, the place where the corpse was cremated and the remains buried, whilst the place where dead bodies were actually burnt was generally known as   ustrinum . There is a lot of archaeological evidence of this type of funeral.  Burial Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliography T. Bechert, Röm. Germanien zwischen Rhein und Maas, 1982, 244-246 M. Struck (ed.), Römerzeitliche Gräber als Quellen zu Rel., Bevölkerungsstruktu…

Ring

(802 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (δακτύλιος/ daktýlios, ἀκαρές/ akarés; Latin anulus). In the following, ring refers exclusively to finger rings (for earrings, see Ear ornaments). The rings in the Aegina and Thyreatis treasures from the beginning of the 2nd millennium BC already display outstanding technical command and high artistic quality. From the early Mycenaean period, gold wire and silver rings deserve note, along with the so-called shield rings, which developed into a leading form of Mycenaean jewellery. They …

Kausia

(195 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (καυσία; kausía). Primarily Macedonian head cover with a wide brim to protect the wearer from the rays of the sun ( kaûsis), but it could also serve as a helmet (Anth. Pal. 6,335). The kausia was made from leather or felt and sometimes had a chin strap. Depictions on coins of the 5th cent. BC already document the kausia as part of the attire of Macedonian kings. From Alexander [4] the Great (Ath. 12,537e), the kausia, by then scarlet, has become one of the main features of the Macedonian royal costume (Plut. Antonius 54; cf. Arr. Anab. 7,22,2) and is worn with a tiara ( diádēma

Dolls

(293 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (κόρη/ kórē, νύμφη/ nýmphē; Lat. pup[ p] a) were made in antiquity from wood, bone, wax, cloth, clay, precious metals and the like and have been preserved in very large quantities from the early Bronze Age until the end of antiquity. We know of dolls in human as well as animal shape (Gell. NA 10,12,9) and of toys like e.g. items of furniture (beds, tables, chairs) and household objects (crockery, combs, lamps, mirrors, thymiaterion etc.). Human dolls were fitted out with great care. The …

Coae Vestes

(160 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Luxury  clothing from the island of Cos, with a transparent effect. They were known as early as Aristotle (Hist. an. 5,19; cf. Plin. HN 4,62) and received special mention during the Roman Imperial period.They were regarded as luxury clothing for demi-mondaines (e.g. Hor. Sat. 1,2,101; Tib. 2,3,57) but were also worn by men as light summer clothing. The sheen, purple colouring and decoration in gold thread, i.a. were highly esteemed. The fabric was woven from the raw silk of the bombyx ( Silk,  Butterfly), whose cocoons produced only short thread…

Parchment

(379 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Cleaned, depilated and tanned leather was one of the writing materials of Antiquity (Hdt. 5,58,3). Parchment emerged from a refined treatment of animal skin (donkey, calf, sheep, goat), which did not include tanning. Instead, the skin was soaked in a solution of slaked lime (calcium carbonate) for several days, then any remains of flesh, hair and epidermis were scraped off, and the skin was again soaked in a vat of lime for cleansing (calcination). The skin was then stretched over…

Ostrakinda

(162 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ὀστρακίνδα/ ostrakínda). The 'shard game' or 'day and night game', a running and catching game played by Greek boys: of two groups with an equal number of players, one group stands facing east (day) and the other west (night) on a line over which a player throws a shard (ὄστρακον, óstrakon) that is painted white on one side = day (ἡμέρα, hēméra) and black on the other = night (νύξ, nýx); as he does so, the thrower calls 'day or night'. If the disc falls on the black side, the members of the west team attempt to catch the east team who are running a…

Ceremonial dress

(491 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Wearing the ceremonial dress (CD) distinguished persons in society and identified them in their official roles. This holds true particularly for priestesses, state officials, but also for delegates (herald's staff) and others. In Greece, priests wore a white robe (Pl. Leg. 12,965a), the ungirded  chiton, which could also be red, or, less often, dyed with saffron or purple. Another characteristic was the  wreath ( stephanophóroi, ‘wearers of the wreath’, was thus the name of priests in e.g. Miletus); less commonly, priests displayed the attribu…

Loculi

(185 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (also lucellus). Loculi refer to boxes of different size that are divided into several compartments, such as caskets, cabinets, coffers etc. The loculi were used to hold the counting stones ( calculi) of students for class as well as to store jewellery or money (Hor. Sat. 1,3,17; 2,3,146; Frontin. Aq. 118); for the latter use, one could even carry them around as a purse (Juv. 11,38; Mart. 14,12f., cf. Petron. Sat. 140); holding spaces for any kind of animal in agriculture could also be referred to as loculi, as could the urns for voting. In the funerary practices, loculus desi…

Delphica

(70 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] The round decorative table on three legs ( Household equipment;  Furniture) was called delphica by the Romans in imitation of the Delphic tripod (Procop. Vand. 1,21). The delphicae mentioned in literature (Mart. 12,66f.; Cic. Verr. 2,4,131) are probably to be identified with surviving tables from, in particular, the cities around Vesuvius. Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliography G. M. A. Richter, The Furniture of the Greeks, Etruscans and Romans, 1966, 111-112.

Xenon group

(245 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] A special group of South Italian vases, named after a label on a pot in Frankfurt with the charioteer Xenon preparing to start [1]. The decoration of XG vases was applied with red slip to a pot covered with dark glaze (Gnathia ware). The pots (Pottery) used are quite small in scale. Decoration is chiefly limited to ornamentation (Ornaments) such as ivy and laurel branches, rod ornaments, wavy lines, meanders etc.; in contrast, representations of animals or people are distinctly ra…

Cradle

(193 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (λίκνον/ líknon, σκάφη/ skáphē; Lat. cunae, cunabula, n. pl.). The líknon, actually the ‘grain rocker’, was used as a cradle (H. Hom. 4,150; 254; 290; 358; [1. 298, fig. 285]; cf. Callim. H. 1,48). A container similar to a tub served as a second form of the cradle (Soph. TrGF IV, 385; Ath. 13,606f; 607a;   scáphē ). There were often notches or small struts on the frame of the cradle for attaching cords. Safety belts could be drawn crosswise over the cradle. From time to time two children could be accommodated in them (Plut. Romulus 3,4). Depictions of infants in skáphai are know…

Ephedrismos

(156 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ἐφεδρισμός; ephedrismós). A game where a target (δίορος; díoros) on the ground is to be hit with a rock or a ball; the loser had to carry the winner, who covered the loser's eyes, on his back until he touched the target with his foot. Boys and girls participated in ephedrismos, which according to the evidence of monuments became popular in the 5th cent. BC and is depicted in various stages. The representations also show satyrs and Erotes playing ephedrismos. The piggyback motif is very widespread in the Greek and Roman art (intaglios, sculpture; group in Ro…

Kemos

(92 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (κημός; kēmós, late Ancient Greek χάμος; chámos; Lat. c[h]amus, -um). Kemoi cover a variety of objects that apparently relate to the basic concept of wrapping, covering, etc. Part of these are nosebags for horses, from which they take their fodder (Hesych. s.v.), as well as bow nets for fish, and the type of cloth that bakers tied around their mouth and nose (Ath. 12,548c) and that women wore in public to cover the lower part of their face. Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliography H. Schenkl, s.v. K., RE 11, 157-162.

Tarantinon

(79 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ταραντῖνον; tarantînon). A light diaphanous luxury garment with fringes, first recorded in literature in the 4th century BC (Men. Epitr. 272); the original place of production was Tarentum (Taras), cf. Poll. 7,76. Hetaerae wore it without undergarments (Aristaen. 1,25,  cf.  Ael. VH 7,9). In  Ath. 14,622b male participants in a Dionysian festal procession wear tarantina. Barbaron Hyphasmata; Coae Vestes; Fimbriae; Clothing Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliography U. Mandel, Zum Fransentuch des Typus Colonna, in: MDAI(Ist) 39, 1989, 547-554.

Kottabos

(302 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (κότταβος; kóttabos, verb: κοτταβίζειν; kottabízein). Greek party game, probably of Sicilian origin (schol. Aristoph. Pax 1244; Anac. fr. 41 D), played by women (hetaerae) and men during a symposium ( Banquet). Kottabos is frequently mentioned in ancient literature (since Anac. fr.. 41 D = Ath. 10,427d) and has especially been captured in vase images from the end of the 6th cent. BC on. The goal was to strike a metal disk, resting on a construction similar to a lamp stand, with wine dregs, shot from a drinking …

Nails

(331 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ἧλος/ hḗlos, Lat. clavus, more rarely πάτταλος/ páttalos, γόμφος/ gómphos, Lat. palus). Nails have survived in abundance from the Early Bronze Age onwards; they have shanks that are rounded or angular in section and heads of various forms (round, pointed, flat, globular, spherical, etc.). Surviving nails are made of bronze or iron, though decorative nails may be made of gold or silver, or only have a head made of precious metal, but in antiquity wooden nails were also used. Nails were used …
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