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Healing deities, healing cults

(2,358 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) | Heeßel, Nils (Heidelberg) | Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] I. Introduction The healing of illness is, in principle, within the province of any deity or hero in possession of superhuman powers of assistance. But in the reality of cult practice, the healing function came to be concentrated in certain deities and heroes whose powers were particularly strong [1]. Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) Bibliography 1 W. A. Jayne, The Healing Gods of Ancient Civilizations, 1925. [German version] II. Mesopotamia and Syria In Mesopotamia, a series of deities were associated with healing powers through names, epithets, and ref…

Stele

(787 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) | Niemeyer, Hans Georg (Hamburg) | Neudecker, Richard (Rome)
[German version] I. Near East and Egypt Stelae are standing stone slabs with reliefs or inscriptions on one or more sides; in Egypt wooden stelae also survive. In early Mesopotamia their shape can be natural, elsewhere they usually have rounded tops, less often squared tops. From the end of the 4th millennium BC, funeral stelae were used in Egypt at or in tombs (or cenotaphs) as cult places. In the 1st millennium, funeral stelae (mostly wooden) were also placed in the burial chamber: they bear images (…

Curse

(1,191 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) | Krebernik, Manfred (Munich) | Koch, Heidemarie (Marburg) | Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient, Egypt, Old Testament In the ancient Orient, the curse is considered to be a magically effective utterance by which the speaker destroys enemies or objects of their sphere, excludes them from the community or at the very least reduces their vitality. How effective this is depends upon the status of the speaker, the social context and the use of set phrases. There is no evidence of colloquial curses in the Near East and hardly any from Egypt. In the Near East set curse phrases are preserved from the mid 3rd millennium onward i…

Palace

(3,814 words)

Author(s): Nielsen, Inge (Hamburg) | Nissen, Hans Jörg (Berlin) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin)
[German version] I. Terminology and Definition The modern term ‘palace’ is derived from the Palatine (Mons Palatinus), one of Rome’s seven hills, on which the residences of the Roman emperors were located. Palaces are buildings that a ruler uses as a residence and for representation. Depending on additional functions, they could have other names in Antiquity, relating to their respective use. Nielsen, Inge (Hamburg) II. Ancient Near East [German version] A. Structural History In the Ancient Near East and Egypt, the palace was originally a house with considerably expa…

Nomos

(2,285 words)

Author(s): Siewert, Peter (Vienna) | Ameling, Walter (Jena) | Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) | Robbins, Emmet (Toronto) | Klose, Dietrich (Munich)
[German version] [1] Nomos, nomoi (ὁ νόμος/ ho nómos, pl. οἱ νόμοι/ hoi nómoi). Siewert, Peter (Vienna) [German version] A. General In Greek, nómos (pl. nómoi) refers to customary conduct or a behavioural norm observed by members of a community; depending on the context it can be translated with ‘custom’, ‘habit’, ‘practice’, ‘rule’, ‘order’, ‘institution’, ‘constitution’, ‘law’ etc. (cf. [1. 20-54; 2. 14-19]). The size of the communities where a nómos applied could vary considerably: from married couples and families to cult and settlement communities, from cit…

Memnon

(1,680 words)

Author(s): Scherf, Johannes (Tübingen) | Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) | Badian, Ernst (Cambridge, MA) | Meister, Klaus (Berlin)
(Μέμνων; Mémnon). [German version] [1] Mythical King of the Ethiopians Mythical King of the Ethiopians, son of Tithonus and Eos, brother of Emathion (Hes. Theog. 984-5). His entry into Troy as an ally of the Trojans after the death of Penthesilea, his successful single combat with Antilochus, his death at the hands of Achilles and the immortality conferred upon him by Zeus at the behest of Eos were, as the summary of Proclus (Chrestomathia 172) shows, depicted in the lost Cyclic epic Aithiopís . Hom. Od. 4,187-8 and Pind. P. 6,28-39 also refer to his single combat with Antiloc…

Prayer

(2,863 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) | Ego, Beate (Osnabrück) | Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH)
I. Ancient Orient [German version] A. General remarks Several hundred prayers have been preserved from the ancient Orient, dating from as far back as the 3rd millennium BC. In some cases, the history of their texts can be traced back for several centuries. A variety of genres usually classified as lamentations, hymns, etc., are actually prayers, since lamentations or hymns of praise to a deity simply represent the occasion for a following prayer, which constitutes the underlying reason for that hymn or lamentation. Renger, Johannes (Berlin) [German version] B. Egypt Invocations of th…

Demons

(2,953 words)

Author(s): Maul, Stefan (Heidelberg) | Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) | Niehr, Herbert (Tübingen) | Macuch, Maria (Berlin) | Johnston, Sarah Iles (Princeton)
[German version] I. Mesopotamia Mesopotamia did not develop a generic term for demons. A large number of immortal beings was known that each had their own name and acted as servants of the gods and as enemies or helpers of humans. They did not have cults of their own. Since demons were only able to exercise their limited powers, which manifested themselves in physical and psychological illnesses, with the approval of the gods, they were part of the existing world order. Thus, in the Babylonian tale …

Ptolemais

(1,304 words)

Author(s): Ameling, Walter (Jena) | Harmon, Roger (Basle) | Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Huß, Werner (Bamberg) | Et al.
(Πτολεμαίς; Ptolemaís). [German version] [1] Daughter of Ptolemaeus [1] I and Eurydice [4] Daughter of Ptolemaeus [1] I and Eurydice [4]; presumably married to a descendant of the pharaoh Nectanebus [2]; from 298 BC betrothed, and from 287 married to Demetrius [2] Poliorcetes. PP VI 14565. Ameling, Walter (Jena) Bibliography W. Huß, Das Haus des Nektanebis und das Haus des Ptolemaios, in: AncSoc 25, 1994, 111-117  J. Seibert, Historische Beiträge zu den dynastischen Verbindungen in hellenistischer Zeit, 1967, 30 ff. 74 f. [German version] [2] P. from Cyrene Ancient scholar of m…

Divination

(6,021 words)

Author(s): Maul, Stefan (Heidelberg) | Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) | Haas, Volkert (Berlin) | Niehr, Herbert (Tübingen) | Wiesehöfer, Josef (Kiel) | Et al.
[German version] I. Mesopotamia While attention in old Egyptian culture was largely centred on existence after death, the concerns of Mesopotamia were almost exclusively with the present. A significant part of the cultural energy of ancient Mesopotamia was devoted to keeping human actions in harmony with the divine, so as to ward off such misfortunes as natural catastrophes, war, sickness and premature death. As such, heavy responsibility rested on the ruler as mediator between the world of gods and that of men. In Mesopotamia everything which is and happens was seen as a man…

Arsinoe

(1,871 words)

Author(s): Graf, Fritz (Columbus, OH) | Harder, Ruth Elisabeth (Zürich) | Ameling, Walter (Jena) | Bieberstein, Klaus (Fribourg) | Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) | Et al.
(Ἀρσινόη; Arsinóē). I. Myth [German version] [I 1] Daughter of Leukippos Daughter of Leucippus, sister of the Leucippids, who were abducted by the Dioscuri, she was the mother by Apollo of the Messenian Asclepius (Hes. fr. 50; Apollod. 3,117f.; Paus. 2,26,7; 4,3,2). In Sparta A. had a shrine (Paus. 3,12,8); on the agora of Messene there was an A. spring (Paus. 4,31,6), in the Messenian Asclepieum there was, amongst other things, a painting of A. (Paus. 4,31,11f.). The relationship of the Messenian to the …

Alexandria

(1,725 words)

Author(s): Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) | Schwertheim, Elmar (Münster) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Treidler, Hans (Berlin) | Brentjes, Burchard (Berlin) | Et al.
(Ἀλεξάνδρεια; Alexándreia). Name of numerous cities founded by Alexander the Great, including nine in eastern Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India. [German version] [1] in Egypt This item can be found on the following maps: Egypt | Caesar | Christianity | Wine | Zenobia | | Diadochi and Epigoni | Alexander | Commerce | Hellenistic states | Hellenistic states | India, trade with | Legio | Legio | Limes | Pilgrimage | Pompeius | Rome | Rome | Athletes | Education / Culture | Egypt Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) [German version] A. Topography City on the Egyptian Mediterranean coast foun…

Historiography

(6,587 words)

Author(s): Frahm, Eckart (Heidelberg) | Jansen-Winkeln, Karl (Berlin) | Wiesehöfer, Josef (Kiel) | Meister, Klaus (Berlin) | Hose, Martin (Munich) | Et al.
I. Ancient Orient [German version] A. Introduction Judged by the principles of modern historiography, this discipline did not exist in the Ancient Orient. Nevertheless, the past has been treated in the literature in various ways, which indicates that history was an essential source of political and religious identity in the Ancient Orient. Frahm, Eckart (Heidelberg) [German version] B. Mesopotamia Records with a historical orientation do not emerge until the middle of the 3rd millennium BC in the form of royal inscriptions of Lagaš. Deeds are reported f…

Menelaus

(2,514 words)

Author(s): Visser, Edzard (Basle) | Zahrnt, Michael (Kiel) | Ameling, Walter (Jena) | Wandrey, Irina (Berlin) | Folkerts, Menso (Munich) | Et al.
(Μενέλαος/Menélaos, Attic Μενέλεως/Menéleos; Latin Menelaus). [German version] [1] Ruler of Sparta, married to Helena A significant character in the cycle of myths about the Trojan War ( Troy: Cycle of myths). A younger brother of Agamemnon, who ruled the most significant power centre in Greek myth, Mycene, by marriage to Zeus's daughter Helen ( Helene [1]; their only child was a daughter, Hermione) M. became king of a region in the Eurotas valley with its capital Sparta and Amyclae [1], which was significant…

Neapolis

(2,079 words)

Author(s): von Bredow, Iris (Bietigheim-Bissingen) | Muggia, Anna (Pavia) | Meyer, Ernst (Zürich) | Kaletsch, Hans (Regensburg) | Olshausen, Eckart (Stuttgart) | Et al.
(Νέα πόλις/ Néa pólis, Νεάπολις/ Neápolis, ‘New City’). [German version] [1] Town on the northern coast of the Aegean This item can be found on the following maps: | Macedonia, Macedones | Moesi, Moesia Town on the northern coast of the Aegean to the west of the mouth of the Nestus river, across from the island of Thasos, modern Kavalla (Str. 7a,1,36; Ps.-Scyl. 67), probably a Thasian colony but the exact period of foundation is unknown. Early in the 6th cent. BC, autonomous silver coinage modelled on that of Eretria [1] (HN 196…
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