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Ear ornaments

(960 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient see  Jewellery Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) [German version] II. Classical Antiquity Ear ornaments (ἐνώτια/ enṓtia, ἐνωτάρια/ enōtária, ἐνωτίδιον/ enōtídion, Lat. inaures) are seldom mentioned in Gr. myth (Hom. Il. 14,183; Hom. Od. 18,298; Hymn. Hom. ad Ven. 8), but numerous finds and representations attest that already in early times they formed part of the  jewellery of men (Hom. Od. 18,298) and women. In the classical period and later, the wearing of ear ornaments by men was regarded…

Kanoun

(237 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (τὸ κανοῦν; tò kanoûn). Flat - sometimes quite small - basket woven from willow twigs, round or oval in shape, with three handles; a kanoun could sometimes also be made from bronze (e.g. Hom. Il. 630) or gold (Hom. Od. 10,355; Eur. IA 1565). Mentioned already by Homer (Hom. Il. 9,217; Hom. Od. 1,148) as a household item in which bread, onions (Hom. Il. 11, 630) etc. are placed on the table during meal times (wastebasket in Hom. Od. 20,300 ?). Also mentioned by Homer as a sacrificial implement for cult sa…

Lucanian vases

(332 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] The production of red-figure Lucanian vases (LV) begins around 430 BC with the Pisticci Painter, named after a place where his vases were discovered. He is still wholly within the Attic tradition, which is visible in the stylistic treatment of his figures, the ornaments and forms of the vessels. He prefers bell craters, which he ornaments with scenes of pursuit and of everyday life or with Dionysiac images. His successors, the Amycus and the Cyclops Painters, apparently settled in Metapontium and founded a workshop here, which was in operation until c. 380-370 BC. The …

Papyrus

(2,017 words)

Author(s): Dorandi, Tiziano (Paris) | Quack, Joachim (Berlin) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
I. Material [German version] A. Term and manufacture The term papyrus was adopted into the European languages via the Greek πάπυρος/ pápyros, lat. papyrus, and ultimately is the source of the modern terms for paper, Papier, papier, etc.  Papyrus is hypothetically derived from an (unattested) Egyptian * pa-prro ('that of the king'). Papyrus, an aquatic plant with a long stem and a triangular cross-section ( Cyperus papyrus L.), was in its processed form a widespread writing material ('paper') in the ancient cultures of the Mediterranean. Papyrus is produced by p…

Labrum

(398 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (from lavabrum, diminutive labellum, Greek λουτήριον/ loutḗrion and λεκάνη/ lekánē). The labrum, a large shallow basin with a raised, thickened rim and resting on a high pedestal, served various purposes. As materials used for the labrum, marble, porphyry, clay, stone and others are cited. In the Greek realm, the labrum is a washbasin where men and women cleansed themselves with water; on vases in Lower Italy this often takes place in the presence of Eros, with waterfowl (swans or geese) sometimes cavorting in the water of the labrum. It also often appears in love o…

Zeira

(99 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ζειρά/z eirá). A loose colourful cloak, reaching to the feet and belted in the middle, worn by Arabs (Hdt. 7,69) and Thracians (Hdt. 7,75), which gave protection from the cold and, unlike the chlamýs , was long enough to keep the feet warm when on horseback (Xen. An. 7,4,4). In depictions of Thracians in Attic vase painting it can be identified from its length and ornamental decorations. Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliography W. Raeck, Zum Barbarenbild in der Kunst Athens, 1981, 69-72 I. Mader, Thrakische Reiter auf dem Fries des Parthenon?, in: F. Blakolmer (ed.), …

Jewellery

(2,921 words)

Author(s): Rehm, Ellen (Frankfurt/Main) | Niemeyer, Hans Georg (Hamburg) | Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
Material and motifs indicate that jewellery in antiquity could be thought of as warding off evil or bringing luck. Not only men, women and children, but also idols wore jewellery. Jewellery was also often used as grave goods. [German version] I. Near East Beads made of shell and bone (later also wood) are again and again found in graves from the 7th/6th millennia BC. Gold and silver jewellery is known from the middle of the 3rd millennium BC from the Near East, sometimes with inlaid semiprecious stones, and in a great variety of forms (p…

Throne

(613 words)

Author(s): Nissen, Hans Jörg (Berlin) | Niemeyer, Hans Georg (Hamburg) | Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient and Egypt Ceremonially decorated piece of furniture for gods and rulers to sit on, with a high back and often with arm-rests. The sides were often shaped as animals or animal protomae; the legs were often worked in the shape of animal legs. Apart from a few fragments in stone, most thrones were probably made of wood and hence in the area of the Near East have not been preserved, but are known from numerous depictions. Thrones were presumably usually provided with metal (gold) or ivory embellishments (cf. the numerous surviving examples from Egypt). Nissen, H…

Owl Pillar Group

(183 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Group of red-figured Campanian vases, named after one of its motifs (an owl standing on a column or pillar), dating from the 2nd and 3rd quarters of the 5th cent. BC. The primary pottery form is the Attic ('Nolan') amphora (Pottery, shapes and types of, fig. A 5), while kalpis (Pottery, shapes and types of, fig. B 12), krater and jug are much rarer. In their adoption of the particular shapes of amphora and kalpis, as well as in their style, the painters of the OPG attempted to imi…

Razor

(222 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ξυρόν/ xyrón; Lat. novacula, cultellus, culter tonsorius). Razors were used from the early Greek period on for shaving the  beard and cutting hair from the head when in mourning, for example; numerous examples survive. They could easily exceed 20 cm in length; materials used for blades were iron and bronze; for handles bronze, ivory and wood. Razors are instanced in various forms: they could be shaped like a spatula or a crescent, long and slender with a straight or curved blade, broad…

Lanx

(191 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] A plate or flat Roman bowl of varying size, form (oval, rectangular or multiangular) and function; it was used in kitchen work (e.g. Petron. Sat. 28,8), but more often for the serving of dishes like fish, meat and poultry (Mart. 7,48,3; 11,31,19); drinking-cups were served on it. It also found use in Roman legal relations. It is mentioned further as a torture instrument, and the head of John the Baptist was presented on a lanx. In religious ritual , lanx generally designates the sacrificial vessel (e.g. Verg. G. 2,194; Verg. Aen. 213-214). Materials for the lanx included pr…

Phlyax vases

(191 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Even before the end of the 5th cent. BC, Greek vase painters had begun to depict grotesque comic scenes of the phlyakes' burlesques. The c. 250 extant vases and vase fragments show a rich repertoire of burlesques of the gods and heroes (e.g. Zeus and Hermes on an amorous adventure, Heracles at sacrifice), travesty of myth (Oedipus and the Sphinx) and daily life (punishment of a thief, love scenes, wedding). In Greece itself, PV are quite rare, although they are common in Apulian and Paestan vase painting…

Acacia

(187 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ἀκακία [ akakía], Dioscorides 1,133; ἄκανθα [ ákantha], Theophr. Hist. pl. 6,1,3). The Egyptian shittah or rubber tree, already mentioned in Hdt. 2,96, belongs to the genus of mimosa plants widespread in the Mediterranean. The sap ( kommì, gum) secreted by the tree was used by the Egyptians for embalming corpses (Hdt. 2,86), but then also in human medical applications (ophthalmology) and was traded at high prices in Roman times (Plin. HN 13,63). The acacia sap was processed into mouth pastilles (Plin. HN 24,109) for…

Hairstyle

(2,326 words)

Author(s): Colbow, Gudrun (Liege) | Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] I. Ancient Orient In the Ancient Orient differences existed between male and female hairstyles as well as human and divine hairstyles. Ancient Oriental hairstyles were usually based on long hair. With the exception of goddesses who were portrayed en face with long curls, braided hairstyles were usually worn up to the 1st millennium. Men preferred knots and women braided crown styles. The form and size of knots and braided crowns were used to differentiate between gods and humans. Shaved heads as a special style were fr…

Blanket

(252 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (Greek στρῶμα, strṓma; Lat. stragulum). Blankets were usually made of linen or wool, but also from the moleskin (Plin. HN 8, 226) and from furs ( Textile art). They were part of the  household equipment; owning many of them was a sign of wealth (Hom. Il. 16,224; Hom. Od. 3,348). Blankets were placed over the mattresses of the dining sofas and were used as cover during sleep (Hom. Il. 9,661; Hom. Od. 6,38; 11,189; 13,73). Blankets, like pillows and furs, were also placed on chairs. Sim…

Sponge

(311 words)

Author(s): Hünemörder, Christian (Hamburg) | Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] I. Science Σπόγγος/ spóngos, σπογγία/ spongía (Attic σπογγιά/ spongiá), Latin spongia (with the special names peniculus in comedies of such as Plautus and Terence, penicillus in Colum. 12,18,5 and Pliny) is the Bath Sponge ( Euspongia officinalis Bronn.), which grows in the Mediterranean. Four geographical subspecies, three black and one white (ἀπλυσία/ aplysía of the genus Sarcotragus Schmidt), are distinguished by Aristotle in his accurate description (Hist. an. 5,16,548a 30-549a 13; cf. Plin. HN 9,148-150) and a further one by Diosco…

Dice (game)

(530 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (κυβεία/ kybeía; Lat. alea). Allegedly invented by the Lydians (Hdt. 1,94,3),  Palamedes [1] before Troy (Paus. 2,20,3; 10,31,1) or the Egyptian god Thot (Pl. Phdr. 274c-d). Dice are occasionally mentioned in mythology (Hdt. 2,122,1), e.g., Eros plays with Ganymede (Apoll. Rhod. 3,114-126), Hercules with a temple guard (Plut. Romulus 5,1 f.) and Patroclus with Clysonymus (Hom. Il. 23,87 f.). Either four-sided knuckle bones ( astragalos [2], Lat. also talus) that had inscribed on them the values one and six as well as three and four, or six-sided dice (κύβοι/ kýboi;…

Paenula

(233 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Roman cape of different lengths, produced from a semi-circular cut. It was sewn together at the front, had an opening for the head to slip in and a sewn-on hood. If required, the seam at the front could be unpicked from the bottom end in order to give the arms more room to move. The paenula was made of leather, linen or (sheep's) wool and was worn by men and women of all classes, slaves and soldiers, in particular as a travelling and bad-weather coat for protection against the cold and rain; it was white or gray, or dyed in various sh…

Tettix

(214 words)

Author(s): Bowie, Ewen (Oxford) | Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
(Τέττιξ, lit. “cicada”). [German version] [1] Founder of a city at the entrance to Hades A Cretan said to have founded a city on the Taenarum near the supposed entrance to Hades: there the man who killed Archilochus in battle, Callondas, nicknamed Corax, was sent by Delphi to placate Archilochus' ghost (Plut. De sera 17.615E, whence Suda α 4112, probably via Ael. (fr. 80)). The hypothesis of [1] that Archilochus called himself T. remains unproven, in spite of Lucian, Pseudol. 1 and Archil. fr. 223  West. Bowie, Ewen (Oxford) Bibliography 1 Göber, s. v. T. (1), RE 5 A, 1111. [German version] [2…

Salutatio

(446 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] ('Greeting'). The morning reception allowed clients ( cliens, clientes ) to pay their respects to their patronus , and to receive advice (Hor. Epist. 2,1,102) and support, e.g. money ( sportula ). It took place during the first two hours of the morning (Mart. 4,8); the client ( salutator) had to attend in toga (Juv. 3,126 f.); hence Martial (3,46,1) calls the clients' duties the togata opera. The visitors gathered in the vestibulum or atrium of the house of their patronus and awaited admission (Hor. Epist. 1,5,31). Friends and prominent individuals were grant…
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