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Senatus consultum

(910 words)

Author(s): Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne) | Klose, Dietrich (Munich)
[German version] [1] A formal resolution of the Roman Senate (SC; sometimes senatus sententia: ILS 18; 35a; 8208; informally also senatus decretum, e.g. Cic. Mil. 87; Cic. Sest. 32, or in archaic form sena…

Scriba

(604 words)

Author(s): Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne)
In Rome, scribae (plural) were professional literates with higher qualifications; they were thus not simple copiers ( librarii) but secretaries and accountants, in the early period even authors (Fest. p. 446). Scribae worked in both private and public spheres. [German version] I. Scribae in private households Slaves who assisted their masters in writing tasks were generally called (servi) librarii (Plin. HN 7,91; ILS 7398; 7401) or amanuenses (Suet. Nero 44,1; ILS 7395). The expression s. librarius is only rarely attested (CIL VI 8881). Secretaries entrusted with more …

Lucretius

(3,448 words)

Author(s): Elvers, Karl-Ludwig (Bochum) | Fündling, Jörg (Bonn) | Nadig, Peter C. (Duisburg) | Müller, Christian (Bochum) | Eck, Werner (Cologne) | Et al.
Italian surname (on its Etruscan connection cf. [1. 182f.]). In the 5th and 4th cents. BC we encounter the patrician family of the Lucretii Tricipitini (among others with the rare

Volumnia

(194 words)

Author(s): Müller, Christian (Bochum) | Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne)
[German version] [1] Wife of Marcius Coriolanus According to a much-related story about Marcius Coriolanus (in which V. plays only a subordinate role, however), when he and a Volsci army are outside Rome, the pleas of his wife V. and his mother Veturia cause him to refrain from a…

Annales maximi

(268 words)

Author(s): Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne)
[German version] Synonymous with annalespontificum maximorum (Cic. Leg. 1,6). Annales maximi is what the Romans called a chronicle-like work of history, which is based on the records of the pontifex maximus (Paul. Fest. p. 113 L; Macrob. Sat. 3,2,17; Serv. Aen. 1,373; implicitly already in Cic. De or. 2,52). The content was apparently identical to that of the tabula apud pontificem maximum (Cato orig. fr. 77 HRR), which in addition to details about dearths and eclipses surely also contained reports about prodigies ( pace [3]), temple dedications, additions to the priestly colleges, probably also the founding of colonies, the …

Progenitors

(1,342 words)

Author(s): Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | von Lieven, Alexandra (Berlin) | Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne)
[German version] I. Ancient Near East Knowledge of one's own progenitors in the ancient Near East legitimized one's status and material and immaterial rights in the individual and societal spheres. Such knowledge was based on patriarchal relationships of kinship. Evidence for this comes, for example, from lineage lists (Genealogies; OT: Gn 5; 11:10-32; 22:20-24; 25:1-9; Judges 4:18-22: progenitors of David [1]; 1 Sam 9:1-2: progenitors of Saul; Mt 1:1-17: progenitors of Jesus), the Assyrian Kings' Lis…

Mummius

(1,428 words)

Author(s): Elvers, Karl-Ludwig (Bochum) | Blänsdorf, Jürgen (Mainz) | Nadig, Peter C. (Duisburg) | Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne) | Eck, Werner (Cologne)
Name of a Roman plebeian family of little political significance except for L. M. [I 3], the destroyer of Corinth. Elvers, Karl-Ludwig (Bochum) I. Republican period [German version] [I 1] Author of Atellan farces, propably Augustan According to Pomponius Bononiensis and Novius [I 1], who presumably lived about 90 BC, M. revived the atellan farces, which had laid dormant for some time (Macrob. Sat. 1,10,3). His Old Latin metre (use of iambic shortening) and language (abl. testu) suggest that he probably did not write later than the Augustan period, during which other …

Fenestella

(270 words)

Author(s): Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne)
[German version] Roman historian of the early Imperial period. The exact dates of his life are uncertain: according to Jerome he died at the age of 70 in AD 19 (Chron. p. 172 Helm), according to Pliny only ‘late in the reign of Tiberius’ (

Vennonius

(183 words)

Author(s): Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne) | Fündling, Jörg (Bonn)
[German version] [1] Roman historian, 2nd cent. BC Roman historian of the late 2nd cent. BC (in Cic. Leg. 1,6 ordered after C. Fannius [I 1]); nothing is known of him as a person. His presumably annalistic work (Annalists) began with stories of the founding of Rome and the period of the kings (Origo gentis Romanae 20,1; Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 4,15,1), but its scope and end point are unknown. Cicero felt the need of it in 46 BC in his literary work in Tusculum (Cic. Att. 12,3,1). Fr. in HRR I2 142 and [1]. Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne) Bibliography 1 M. Chassignet (ed.), L'annalistique romain…

Cato

(1,353 words)

Author(s): Elvers, Karl-Ludwig (Bochum) | Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne)
Roman cognomen perhaps of Etruscan origin [1. 310, 315, 418], in conjunction with catus (‘astute’, ‘crafty’ [2; 3. 250]. In Republican times widespread in the families of the Hostilii and Valerii, prominent among the Porcii, according to whose model C. is used now and again as a synonym for a conservative Roman; quite rarely also as gentilicium [1. 303].  Porcius Elvers, Karl-Ludwig (Bochum) [German version] [1] Porcius C., M. Cato the Elder, 234-149 BC (234-149 BC), ‘Cato the Elder’, ‘Censorius’, energetic politician and founder of Roman prose literature, is the b…

Sempronius

(6,399 words)

Author(s): Elvers, Karl-Ludwig (Bochum) | Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne) | Müller, Christian (Bochum) | Bartels, Jens (Bonn) | Schmitt, Tassilo (Bielefeld) | Et al.
Name of a Roman family. According to tradition, its members of the 5th cent. BC (Atratini, S. [I 3-8]) are supposed to have been patricians and champions of patrician privileges (Dion. Hal. Ant. Rom. 10,41,5…

Prothesis

(231 words)

Author(s): Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne)
[German version] (πρόθεσις/ próthesis, first [1. 22B], 6th century BC; first in literature Pl. Leg. 947b 3; 959e 5). Term for the laying out of a corpse, which was an indispensable part of every burial in Greece from the earliest times. The dead person was laid on a

Conclamatio

(176 words)

Author(s): Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne)
[German version] An old element in Roman mortuary customs: when the eyes of the deceased were closed the attending relatives repeatedly called his name (Serv. Aen. 6,218; Luc. 2,23; Sen. Dial. 9,11,7; with the same meaning Ov. Tr. 3,3,43 clamor supremus ; Ps.-Quint. Decl. mai. 8,10 conclamata suprema). Since this word also describes the ordinary death lament (e.g., Tac. Ann. 3,2,2; Oratio imperatoris Hadriani in…

Fabius

(6,346 words)

Author(s): Elvers, Karl-Ludwig (Bochum) | Dorandi, Tiziano (Paris) | Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne) | Scholz, Udo W. (Würzburg) | Eck, Werner (Cologne) | Et al.
Roman patrician family name, probably derived from Etruscan fapi [1. 162]. According to ancient etymology, however, either from faba ‘(broad)bean’ (‘legume grower’: Plin. HN 18,10; [2]) or from the original ‘Fodius’, ‘Fovius’ (‘wolf pit hunter’: Plut. Fabius 1,2; Fest. 77 L.) because the Fabii with the Quinctii originally appointed the priesthood of the Luperci; the  Lupercalia were also the family celebration of the Fabii (Ov. Fast. 193ff.). Early Imperial pseudogenealogy, which perhaps arose in the literary ci…

Pomponius

(5,501 words)

Author(s): Elvers, Karl-Ludwig (Bochum) | Nadig, Peter C. (Duisburg) | Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne) | Schmitt, Tassilo (Bielefeld) | Eder, Walter (Berlin) | Et al.
Name of a Roman plebeian family probably deriving from the Italic praenomen Pompo, tracing back, like the Aemilii, Calpurnii and Pinarii, to one of the sons of Numa Pompilius (Plut. Numa 21,2; cf. Nep. Att. 1,1). In the 3rd century BC the Mathones (cf. P. [I 7-9]) achieved consulship, but later the family was insignificant. The most prominent member was a friend of Cicero, T. P. [I 5] Atticus. I. Republican Period [German version] [I 1] P., Cn. People's tribune in 90 BC People's tribune in 90 BC, killed in the Civil War in 82; Cicero quite often heard him in his youth; his judgment of the orator fluctuates (Cic. De or. 3,50; Cic. Brut. 182; 207; 221; 308; 311). Elvers, Karl-Ludwig (Bochum) [German version] [I 2] P., M. People's tribune in 167 BC, praetor in 161 BC As people's tribune in 167 BC he thwarted with his veto the plans of the praetor M'. Iuventius [I 6] Thalna to declare war on the Rhodians (Liv. 45,21,2). As praetor in 161 he put into effect a Senate resolution banishing philosophers and rhetors from Rome (Suet. Gram. 1; Gell. NA 15,11,1). Nadig, Peter C. (Duisburg) [German version] [I 3] P., M. Friend of C. Sempronius Gracchus Roman equestrian and friend of C. Sempronius Gracchus, addressee of a work by Gracchus (Cic. Div. 2,62). At first P. and P. Laetorius [2] prevented Gracchus' suicide in 121 and protected him on his flight, until P. himself took his own life  (Vell. 2,6,6 f.; Plut. Gracchus 37-38; Val. Max. 4,7,2). Possibly identical with the author P. Rufus (Val. Max. 4,4 pr.). Elvers, Karl-Ludwig (Bochum) [German version] [I 4] P., T. Roman tax collector, in 312 BC praefectus socium From Veii, Roman tax collector…

Cassius

(5,432 words)

Author(s): Elvers, Karl-Ludwig (Bochum) | Eder, Walter (Berlin) | Eck, Werner (Cologne) | Giaro, Tomasz (Frankfurt/Main) | Birley, A. R. (Düsseldorf) | Et al.
Name of a plebeian gens (cf. Tac. Ann. 6,15,1), the representatives of whom have been known historically since the middle of the 3rd cent. BC. The most important family, especially in the 1st cent. B…

Tanusius Geminus

(126 words)

Author(s): Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne)
[German version] (the cognomen only in Suet. Iul. 9,2). Roman historian of the Late Republic of whose life nothing is known. It is also unclear whether his work, which (because of Plut. Caesar 22,3) was not finished until after 55 BC and contained acco…

Laudatio funebris

(1,002 words)

Author(s): Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne)
[German version] A. General According to Roman linguistic usage, laudatio funebris (LF; Quint. Inst. 3,7,2; Gell. NA 13,20,17; mostly just laudatio: Cic. Mil. 33; Liv. 27,27,13; Tac. Ann. 13,3,1; explanatory laudatio pro rostris: Tac. Ann. 3,76,2 et passim) means the eulogy for the deceased, held in connection with the burial ( funus). At upper class funerals, the funeral procession stopped (probably from the end of the 4th cent. BC) at the forum, where a son or other close relative gave the speech from the rostrum ( pro rostris: Sen. Dial

Memmius

(1,801 words)

Author(s): Elvers, Karl-Ludwig (Bochum) | Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne) | Frigo, Thomas (Bonn) | Eck, Werner (Cologne)
Roman plebeian gens name, whose bearers may have originated from the territory of the Volscians and who rose to prominence (in several branches) during the 2nd and 1st centuries BC. They rose to consular rank only with M. [I 4]. The descent of the gens from the Trojan Mnestheus (Verg. Aen. 5,117) is a late-Republican construction. An aedile called M. supposedly instituted the Cerealia (before 211 BC; RRC 427).…
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