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Roman Religion

(3,922 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
1. Definition 1.1. Distinctions In their classic epoch the Romans clearly distinguished their religion—the cultus deorum (cult of the gods), religiones (pl. religions), but also religio (sing.)—from other parts of their culture. Thus they maintained the difference between sacer and profanus (Sacred and Profane), ius divinum and ius humanum (divine and human law), and dies fasti, dies comitiales, and dies nefasti (days for business, for public assemblies, and for neither). The Romans structured religion from different angles: 1. legally, by nature, place, and time, as w…

Orient und Okzident

(877 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[English Version] I. Die Formel 1. Der Ausdruck Orient (Or.)/Okzident (Ok.; »die auf-/untergehende Sonne«; lat. ortus/occasus; griech. α᾿n̆ατολη´/anatolē´/ δυ´σις/dy´sis) bez. a) ein immer relatives Morgenland (vgl. Mt 2,1: »Magier vom Or.«; vgl. Anatolien/Türkei) oder Abendland (vgl. Hesperien) und b) eine Raumfiktion, ein Konstrukt der »mythischen Geographie«, ein weltanschauliches Stereotyp. Klarer ist die röm. Verwaltungssprache. Nach der Neugliederung des Imperium Romanum durch Diokletian verwaltete der p…

Virgil

(711 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[German Version] (Publius Vergilius [later Virgilius] Maro; Oct 15, 70 bce, near Mantua – Sep 21, 19 ce, in Brundisium [Brindisi]; buried in Naples). Virgil was born in humble circumstances. The erudite but sickly poet, a friend of Horace ( Carm. 1.3), was patronized by Asinius Pollio, Maecenas, and Augustus. Virgil’s Eclogae (written between 39 and 37) are 10 bucolic (“lyric”) poems of classical perfection in language, composition, subject matter, and metrics. Faced with an acute threat in the fall of the Roman republic, shepherds, mythical figures, and real figures with much ¶ love an…

Jupiter

(525 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[German Version] I. Name and Image – II. Cult I. Name and Image 1. In the Roman pantheon (II), the name Jupiter denotes the “father of heaven” ( Diespiter, Jovis Pater; vocative: Ju-piter), the highest position, the power and the right (not war and violence), the principle of sovereignty and legitimacy in all spheres of life, the family, the state, history. He is the “grandest and best” ( optimus maximus), the “king,” the “father.” The name and the connection with the light of heaven (cf. dies, “day”) and to divination through the flight of birds ( auspicium) are common to Italian religion…

Orient and Occident

(1,016 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[German Version] I. The Cliché – II. The Classical Paradigms I. The Cliché 1. The words Orient and Occident (“the rising/setting sun”; Lat. ortus/occasus, Gk ἀνατολή/ anatolē/ δύσις/ dýsis) denote either (a) an East (cf. Matt 2:1: “Magi from the East”; also Anatolia/Turkey) or West (cf. the Hesperides), always relative, or (b) a geographical fiction, a construct of “mythic geography,” an ideological stereotype. The administrative language of the Roman Empire was clearer. After the reorganization of the Empire by Diocletian, the praefectus praetorio per Orientem (there was no an…

Progress

(963 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[German Version] I. The Term The word progress, ultimately from Lat. pro-gressus (cf. progressio, processus, profectus) and its Greek prototypes (προκοπή/ prokopḗ, προαγωγ ή/ proagōgḗ, προέρχεσϑαι/ proérchesthai); all have the basic meaning “move forward,” with the figurative sense of “change for the better (through human agency)” (like Ger. Fortschritt). In their figurative sense, these words are very rare in the ¶ Bible (Phil 1:12; 1:25). In the Middle Ages, the lexical field played only a modest role (Zorn, 341). Besides the “image of the road” (Bec…

Linear and Cyclical

(663 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[German Version] I. Metaphor and Stereotype – II. History of Ancient Religion and Ideas I. Metaphor and Stereotype The image of the straight line and the circle is used to describe experiences and conceptions of time and history (History/Concepts of History) in a simple and graphic manner, though not necessarily clearly and correctly. In a “pre-philosophical” system of classification and valuation, thought patterns, artistic styles, and even entire cultures are labeled as linear or cyclical. The history of huma…

Ritual Books (libri rituales)

(647 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[German Version] I. Ritual books are collections of rituals in written form (Rite and ritual), of prescriptive and descriptive texts for use in cult/worship, sometimes during the cultic act. They prescribe “with what animal sacrifices, on which days, in which temples a holy thing is to be made, and whence money might be requested for these expenses” (Livy I 19, 5; Sacrifice : II, 3). The ritual books provide instruction on the relation between action and word in ancient cult and worship, and are a…

Tacitus, Publius Cornelius

(671 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[German Version] (c. 55 – after 116 ce). Life and works. Tacitus was praetor (88) and quindecimvir (?), suffect consul (97), and proconsul of the province of Asia (112/113). The biography of his father-in-law Gnaeus Julius Agricola (d. 93) combines the laudatio funebris (Dead, Cult of the: III) with an ethnography of Britain. The ethnography of the free, i.e. non-Roman (or not yet Roman) Germania (written around 100) draws a typecast and idealizing picture of an unspoiled primitive people and dangerous neighbor. His Dialogus de oratoribus (written around 105) discusses the relat…

Cult Authors

(489 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[German Version] I. The term cult authors refers to a group of authors who collected and explicated the primary documents of the cults of the Greeks and Romans (rituals, calendars, cultic laws, priestly regulations, protocols, etc.). The group, which cannot be easily differentiated from local historians, periegetes, antiquarians, and theologians, includes about 100 authors (5th cent. bce to the end of the 4th cent. ce). Their themes and titles are: a. On Days (Gk perí hēmerón), On Months, On Feasts; b. On Sacrifices (Gk perí thysión), On Mysteries, On Dedications, On Purification…

Rohde, Erwin

(197 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[German Version] (Oct 9, 1845, Hamburg – Jan 11, 1898, Heidelberg), taught classical philology in Kiel, Jena, Tübingen (1878–1886), Leipzig, and Heidelberg (prorector 1894/1895). Starting from novels and romance poetics of the modern period, Rohde, an antimodernist of refined sensitivity, researched the history of the novel in antiquity. Psyche (1890–1894, 9/101925; ET: Psyche: The Cult of Souls and the Belief in Immortality among the Greeks, 1925), his major contribution to the history of religion, offers a comprehensive presentation of the “development” of…

Theologia

(1,653 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[German Version] I. The Term 1. Earliest occurrence. The word ϑεολογ-/ theolog- (and its derivatives) appeared late in the history of the Greek language and was initially rare. The earliest witness dates from the late classical period, where we find the noun ϑεολογία/ theología. Plato criticized using fictional, mendacious, and immoral myths in the education of children. He names Homer, Hesiod, and the other poets who describe theogonies, theomachies, and battles between giants. Philosophers must specify guidelines (“types,” frames, feat…

Paradoxography

(418 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[German Version] (a post-classical coinage) is a genre of classical texts that recount wonders (Gk ϑαύματα/ tháumata; Lat. mirabilia) from the realm of nature and from history – extraordinary phenomena that are incredible and contrary to all expectations (Paradox). Paradoxography is a subdivision of natural history ( naturalis historia) and historiography. Its materials are considered empirical and historical; though unusual and hidden on the fringes of the known world, they are not myths from antiquity. In the Parallela minora of Pseudo-Plutarch, for example, “paradoxica…

Hauer, Jakob Wilhelm

(241 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[German Version] (Apr 4, 1881, Ditzingen – Feb 18, 1962, Tübingen), educated in the Basel Mission and, after 1907, a missionary in India. Hauer was shaped by Wurttembergian Pietism, studied Indology and taught as professor of Indology (and general history of religions) in Marburg after 1925 (cooperation with F. Heiler, R. Otto), then in Tübingen beginning in 1927 ( Glaube und Blut, 1938). Chancellor of the Köngener Bund from 1920, co-founder (1933), then leader of the Deutsche Glaubensbewegung (German Faith Movement) (1934–1936), and editor of the journal Deutscher Glaube (1933–194…

Caesar, Gaius Julius

(717 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[German Version] The word “Caesar” has three senses: (a) a branch of the Julian clan ( gens Julia), which traced its genealogy through Aeneas back to Aphrodite; (b) a title (cf. Mark 12:13–17; Acts 25:11) and the office of supreme ruler (cf. OHG keisar, Russian Tsar); (c) the personification of a modern conception of antique greatness, drive, and genius, which can be interpreted as the antithesis of Christian humility, passivity, and “foolishness” (F. Nietzsche: “Caesar figure,” “Jesus figure”; Gundolf). The best-known representative of the gens Julia is C. Julius Caesar (100–44 bce).…

Ritualbücher

(557 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[English Version] (libri rituales). I. R. sind Sammlungen von verschrifteten Ritualen (Ritus/Ritual), von präskriptiven und deskriptiven Texten zum Gebrauch für den Kult, ggf. während des Kultaktes. Sie schreiben vor, »mit welchen Schlachttieren, an welchen Tagen, bei welchen Tempeln Heiliges gemacht werden soll, und woher für diese Aufwendungen Geld angefordert werden könnte« (Liv. I 19, 5; Opfer: II., 3.). Die R. belehren über das Verhältnis von Handlung und Wort im antiken Kult und sind ein Indiz…

Varro

(623 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[English Version] Varro, Marcus Terentius (116–27 v.Chr.). Leben und Werk: Röm. Beamter (Praetor 68), wahrscheinlich Quindecimvir (Cichorius), weit gereister Polyhistor und Poet, konservativer Republikaner, Anhänger der (alten) Akademie, vf. mehr als 70 Werke über alle Gebiete der röm. Kultur in mehr als 500 Bänden. Das gewaltige Oeuvre umfaßt philol. und literarhist. Arbeiten (Theaterwesen, Gesch. der Buchstaben u.a.), hist., antiquarische (Zeitrechnung), überdies die artes liberales, juristische (Verw…

Theologia

(1,438 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[English Version] I. Wort und Begriff 1.Der Erstbeleg. Das Wort ϑεολογ-/theolog- (mit Ableitungen) erscheint spät und zunächst selten in der Gesch. der griech. Sprache. Das früheste Zeugnis kommt aus spätklassischer Zeit und belegt das Nomen ϑεολογι´α/theología. Plato kritisiert die Erziehung der Kinder mit fiktiven, lügnerischen, unmoralischen Mythen. Er nennt Homer, Hesiod und die anderen Dichter, die Theogonien, Theomachien, Gigantenkämpfe erzählen. Die Philosophen müssen Richtlinien (»Typen«, Rahmen, Grundzüge) bzgl. dessen…

Rohde

(156 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[English Version] Rohde, Erwin (9.10.1845 Hamburg – 11.1.1898 Heidelberg), lehrte klassische Philol. in Kiel, Jena, Tübingen (1878–1886), Leipzig und Heidelberg (Prorektor 1894/95). Im Anschluß an Romane und Romanpoetik der Moderne untersuchte R., durchaus ein feinsinniger Antimodernist, die Gesch. des antiken Romans. Das religionsgesch. Hauptwerk »Psyche« (1890–1894, 9/101925) stellt umfassend die »Entwicklung« der Vorstellungen der Griechen von der »Seele«, ihrer Unsterblichkeit, ja Göttlichkeit dar. Die anhaltende und breite Wirkung di…

Verfall

(735 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert
[English Version] I. Allgemein V. (vgl. Dekadenz, Degeneration; inclinatio; engl. decline) bez. einen Prozeß allmählicher Verschlechterung, der in einer plötzlichen Katastrophe (griech. καταστροϕη´), in Zerstörung, Zersetzung, langsamem Erlöschen, Ruin endet (griech. ϕϑορα´/phthorá), falls er nicht durch Reformen oder Renaissance abgewendet wird. V. ist das Pendant zu Fortschritt, ein – oft polemisch gebrauchtes – Bild für die Beschreibung, Gliederung (Epochenbildung) und Bewertung von gesch. Bewegung wie »linear/zyklisch«, …
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