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Roman Antiquities, and Ancient Mythology - For Classical Schools (2nd ed)
by Charles K. Dillaway
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[Transcribers' Note:

A detailed listing of changes and anomalies is at the end of this file.]







ROMAN ANTIQUITIES,

AND

ANCIENT MYTHOLOGY;

FOR CLASSICAL SCHOOLS.

BY

CHARLES K. DILLAWAY,

PRINCIPAL OF THE PUBLIC LATIN SCHOOL IN BOSTON.



SECOND EDITION.



BOSTON: LINCOLN, EDMANDS & CO.

CARTER, HENDEE AND CO. BOSTON; COLLINS AND HANNAY, NEW YORK; KEY AND MEILKE, PHILADELPHIA; CUSHING AND SONS, BALTIMORE.

1833.



Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1833, By Lincoln, Edmands & Co. In the Clerk's office of the District Court of Massachusetts.



POSITION OF THE PLATES.

No. 1, before the title page. 2, before page 27. 3, " " 71. 4, " " 78. 5, " " 82. 6, " " 90. 7, " " 106. 8, " " 133.



PREFACE.

The editor has endeavored in the following pages to give some account of the customs and institutions of the Romans and of ancient Mythology in a form adapted to the use of classical schools.

In making the compilation he has freely drawn from all creditable sources of information within his reach, but chiefly from the following: Sketches of the institutions and domestic customs of the Romans, published in London a few years since; from the works of Adams, Kennett, Lanktree, Montfaucon, Middleton and Gesner: upon the subject of Mythology, from Bell, Spense, Pausanias, La Pluche, Plutarch, Pliny, Homer, Horace, Virgil, and many others to whom reference has been occasionally made.

Boston, July, 1832.

* * * * *

In the second edition now offered to the public much has been added to the department of Antiquities. A more comprehensive chapter upon the weights, measures and coins of the Romans has been substituted in the place of the former one, and many other improvements made which it is hoped will be found acceptable. As it was not thought expedient to increase the size of the volume, the additions have been made by excluding the questions.

Boston, May, 1833.



CONTENTS.

Chap. Page.

1. Foundation of Rome and division of inhabitants 9 2. The Senate 13 3. Other divisions of the Roman people 18 4. Gentes and Familiae, Names of the Romans 19 5. Private rights of Roman citizens 21 6. Public rights of Roman citizens 23 7. Places of worship 24 8. Other public buildings 26 9. Porticos, arches, columns, and trophies 30 10. Bagnios, aqueducts, sewers, and public ways 32 11. Augurs and Auguries 33 12. Aruspices, Pontifices, Quindecemviri, Vestals, &c. 34 13. Religious ceremonies of the Romans 37 14. The Roman year 39 15. Roman games 42 16. Magistrates 44 17. Of military affairs 49 18. Assemblies, judicial proceedings, and punishments of the Romans 53 19. Roman dress 57 20. Fine arts and literature 59 21. Roman houses 61 22. Marriages and funerals 63 23. Customs at meals 66 24. Weights, measures, and coins 67

MYTHOLOGY.

1. Celestial Gods 71 2. Celestial Goddesses 77 3. Terrestrial Gods 82 4. Terrestrial Goddesses 87 5. Gods of the woods 94 6. Goddesses of the woods 101 7. Gods of the sea 106 8. Tartarus and its Deities 111 9. The condemned in Hell 123 10. Monsters of Hell 126 11. Dii Indigites, or heroes who received divine honors after death 128 12. Other fabulous personages 146



CHAPTER I.

Foundation of Rome and Division of its Inhabitants.

Ancient Italy was separated, on the north, by the Alps, from Germany. It was bounded, on the east and north-east, by the Adriatic Sea, or Mare Superum; on the south-west, by a part of the Mediterranean, called the Tuscan Sea, or Mare Inferum; and on the south, by the Fretum Siculum, called at present the strait of Messina.

The south of Italy, called Graecia Magna, was peopled by a colony from Greece. The middle of Italy contained several states or confederacies, under the denominations of Etrurians, Samnites, Latins, Volsci, Campanians, Sabines, &c. And the north, containing Gallia Cisalpina and Liguria, was peopled by a race of Gauls.

The principal town of the Latin confederacy was Rome. It was situated on the river Tiber, at the distance of sixteen miles from its mouth.

Romulus is commonly reported to have laid its foundations on Mount Palatine, A. M. 3251, B. C. 753, in the third year of the 6th Olympiad.

Rome was at first only a small fortification; under the kings and the republic, it greatly increased in size; but it could hardly be called magnificent before the time of Augustus Caesar. In the reign of the Emperor Valerian, the city, with its suburbs, covered a space of fifty miles; at present it is scarcely thirteen miles round.

Rome was built on seven hills, viz. the Palatine, Capitoline, Quirinal, Esquiline, Viminal, Caelian, and Aventine; hence it was poetically styled "Urbs Septicollis,"—the seven-hilled city.

The greatest number of inhabitants in Rome was four millions; but its average population was not more than two millions.

The people were divided into three tribes, and each tribe into ten curiae. The number of tribes was afterwards increased to thirty-five.

The people were at first only separated into two ranks; the Patrician and Plebeian; but afterwards the Equites or Knights were added; and at a later period, slavery was introduced—making in all, four classes: Patricians, Knights, Plebeians, and Slaves.

The Patrician order consisted of those families whose ancestors had been members of the Senate. Those among them who had filled any superior office, were considered noble, and possessed the right of making images of themselves, which were transmitted to their descendants, and formed part of their domestic worship.

The Plebeian order was composed of the lowest class of freemen. Those who resided in the city, were called "Plebs urbana;" those who lived in the country, "Plebs rustica." But the distinction did not consist in name only—the latter were the most respectable.

The Plebs urbana consisted not only of the poorer mechanics and laborers, but of a multitude of idlers who chiefly subsisted on the public bounty, and whose turbulence was a constant source of disquietude to the government. There were leading men among them, kept in pay by the seditious magistrates, who used for hire to stimulate them to the most daring outrages.

Trade and manufactures being considered as servile employments, they had no encouragement to industry; and the numerous spectacles which were exhibited, particularly the shows of gladiators, served to increase their natural ferocity. To these causes may be attributed the final ruin of the republic.

The Equestrian order arose out of an institution ascribed to Romulus, who chose from each of the three tribes, one hundred young men, the most distinguished for their rank, wealth, and other accomplishments, who should serve on horseback and guard his person.

Their number was afterwards increased by Tullus Hostilius, who chose three hundred from the Albans. They were chosen promiscuously from the Patricians and Plebeians. The age requisite was eighteen, and the fortune four hundred sestertia; that is, about 14,000 dollars. Their marks of distinction, were a horse given them at the public expense, and a gold ring. Their office, at first, was only to serve in the army; but afterwards, to act as judges or jurymen, and take charge of the public revenues.

A great degree of splendor was added to the Equites by a procession which they made throughout the city every year, on the 15th day of July, from the temple of honor, without the city to the Capitol, riding on horseback, with wreaths of olives on their heads, dressed in the Togae palmatae or trabeae, of a scarlet color, and bearing in their hands the military ornaments, which they had received from their general, as a reward for their valor. At this time they could not be summoned before a court of justice.

If any Eques was corrupt in his morals, or had diminished his fortune, the censor ordered him to be removed from the order by selling his horse.

Men became slaves among the Romans, by being taken in war, by way of punishment, or were born in a state of servitude. Those enemies who voluntarily surrendered themselves, retained the rights of freedom, and were called 'Dedititii.'

Those taken in the field, or in the storming of cities, were sold at auction—"sub corona," as it was called, because they wore a crown when sold; or "sub hasta," because a spear was set up where the auctioneer stood. These were called Servi or Mancipia. Those who dealt in the slave trade were called Mangones or Venalitii: they were bound to promise for the soundness of their slaves, and not to conceal their faults; hence they were commonly exposed for sale naked, and carried a scroll hanging to their necks, on which their good and bad qualities were specified.

Free-born citizens could not be sold for slaves. Parents might sell their children; but they did not on that account entirely lose the right of citizens, for, when freed from slavery, they were called ingenui and libertini. The same was the case with insolvent debtors, who were given up to their creditors.

There was no regular marriage among slaves, but their connexion was called contubernium. The children of any female slave became the property of her master.

Such as had a genius for it were sometimes instructed in literature and liberal arts. Some of these were sold at a great price. Hence arose a principal part of the wealth of Crassus.

The power of the master over his slave was absolute. He might scourge or put him to death at pleasure. This right was often exercised with great cruelty.

The lash was the common punishment; but for certain crimes they were to be branded in the forehead, and sometimes were forced to carry a piece of wood round their necks, wherever they went, which was called furca; and whoever had been subjected to the punishment was ever afterwards called furcifer.

Slaves also, by way of punishment, were often confined in a work-house, or bridewell, where they were obliged to turn a mill for grinding corn. When slaves were beaten, they were suspended with a weight tied to their feet, that they might not move them. When punished for any capital offence, they were commonly crucified; but this was afterwards prohibited under Constantine.

If the master of a family was slain at his own house, and the murderer not discovered, all his domestic slaves were liable to be put to death. Hence we find no less than four hundred in one family punished on this account.

Slaves were not esteemed as persons, but as things, and might be transferred from one owner to another, like any other effects. They could not appear in a court of justice as witnesses, nor make a will, or inherit anything, or serve as soldiers, unless first made free.

At certain times they were allowed the greatest freedom, as at the feast of Saturn, in the month of December, when they were served at table by their masters, and on the Ides of August.

The number of slaves in Rome and through Italy, was immense. Some rich individuals are said to have had several thousands.

Anciently, they were freed in three different ways:—1st, Per censum, when a slave with his master's knowledge inserted his name in the censor's roll. 2d, Per vindictam, when a master, taking his slave to the praetor, or consul, and in the provinces to the pro-consul or pro-praetor, said, "I desire that this man be free, according to the custom of the Romans"—and the praetor, if he approved, putting a rod on the head of the slave, pronounced,—"I say that this man is free, after the manner of the Romans." Wherefore, the lictor or master turning him round in a circle, and giving him a blow on the cheek, let him go; signifying that leave was granted him to go, wherever he pleased. 3d, Per testamentum, when a master gave his slaves their liberty by his will.



CHAPTER II.

The Senate.

The Senate was instituted by Romulus, to be the perpetual council of the republic, and at first consisted only of one hundred, chosen from the Patricians. They were called Patres, either on account of their age or the paternal care they had of the state. After the Sabines were taken into the city, another one hundred was chosen from them by the suffrages of the curiae.

Such as were chosen into the Senate by Brutus, after the expulsion of Tarquin the proud, to supply the place of those whom that king had slain, were called Conscripti; that is, persons written or enrolled together with the Senators, who alone were properly called patres.

Persons were chosen into the Senate first by the kings, and after their expulsion, by the consuls, and by the military tribunes; but from the year of the city 310, by the censors. At first, only from the Patricians, but afterwards, also from the Plebeians—chiefly, however, from the Equites.

Besides an estate of 400, or after Augustus, of 1200 sestertia, no person was admitted to this dignity but one who had already borne some magistracy in the Commonwealth. The age is not sufficiently ascertained, probably not under 30.

The dictator, consuls, praetors, tribunes of the commons and interrex, had the power of assembling the Senate.

The places where they assembled were only such as had formerly been consecrated by the augurs—and most commonly within the city. They made use of the temple of Bellona, without the walls, for the giving audience to foreign ambassadors, and to such provincial magistrates as were to be heard in open Senates, before they entered the city, as when they petitioned for a triumph, and in similar cases. When the augurs reported that an ox had spoken, which we often meet with among the ancient prodigies, the Senate was presently to sit, sub dio, or in the open air.

The regular meetings (senatus legitimus) were on the Kalends, Nones, and Ides in every month, until the time of Augustus, who confined them to the Kalends and Ides. The senatus indictus was called for the dispatch of business upon any other day except the dies Comitialis, when the Senate were obliged to be present at the Comitia.

The Senate was summoned anciently by a public officer, named viator, because he called the Senators from the country—or by a public crier, when anything had happened about which the Senators were to be consulted hastily and without delay: but in latter times by an edict, appointing the time and place, and published several days before. The cause of assembling was also added.

If any one refused or neglected to attend, he was punished by a fine, and by distraining his goods, unless he had a just excuse. The fine was imposed by him who held the Senate, and pledges were taken till it was paid—but after 60 years of age, Senators might attend or not, as they pleased.

No decree could be made unless there was a quorum. What that was is uncertain. If any one wanted to hinder the passing of a decree, and suspected there was not a quorum, he said to the magistrate presiding, "Numera Senatum," count the Senate.

The magistrate who was to preside offered a sacrifice, and took the auspices before he entered the Senate house. If they were not favorable, or not rightly taken, the business was deferred to another day. Augustus ordered that each Senator, before he took his seat, should pay his devotions with an offering of frankincense and wine, at the altar of that god in whose temple the Senate were assembled, that they might discharge their duty the more religiously. When the consuls entered, the Senators commonly rose up to do them honor.

The consuls elect were first asked their opinion, and the praetors, tribunes, &c. elect, seem to have had the same preference before the rest of their order. He who held the Senate, might consult first any one of the same order he thought proper.

Nothing could be laid before the Senate against the will of the consuls, unless by the tribunes of the people, who might also give their negative against any decree by the solemn word "Veto," which was called interceding. This might also be done by all who had an equal or greater authority than the magistrate presiding. If any person interceded, the sentence was called "Senatus auctoritas," their judgment or opinion.

The Senators delivered their opinions standing; but when they only assented to the opinion of another, they continued sitting.

It was not lawful for the consuls to interrupt those who spoke, although they introduced in their speeches many things foreign to the subject, which they sometimes did, that they might waste the day in speaking. For no new reference could be made after the tenth hour, that is, four o'clock in the afternoon, according to our mode of reckoning.

This privilege was often abused, but they were forced to stop by the noise and clamour of the other Senators. Sometimes magistrates, when they made a disagreeable motion, were silenced in this manner.

The Senators usually addressed the house by the title of "patres conscripti:" sometimes to the consul, or person who presided, sometimes to both.

A decree of the Senate was made, by a separation of the Senators, to different parts of the house. He who presided, said, "Let those who are of such an opinion pass over to that side, those who think differently, to this." Those Senators who only voted, but did not speak, or as some say, had the right of voting, but not of speaking, were called pedarii, because they signified their opinion by their feet, and not by their tongues. When a decree was made without any opinion being asked or given, it was called "senatus consultum per discessionem." But if the contrary, it was simply called "Senatus consultum."

In decreeing a supplication to any general, the opinion of the Senators was always asked. Hence Cicero blames Antony for omitting this in the case of Lepidus. Before the vote was put, and while the debate was going on, the members used to take their seats near that person whose opinion they approved, and the opinion of him who was joined by the greatest number was called "Sententia maxime frequens."

When affairs requiring secrecy were discussed, the clerks and other attendants were not admitted: but what passed, was written out by some of the Senators, and the decree was called tacitum.

Public registers were kept of what was done in the Senate, in the assemblies of the people, and courts of justice; also of births and funerals, of marriages and divorces, &c. which served as a fund of information for historians.

In writing a decree, the time and place were put first; then, the names of those who were present at the engrossing of it; after that, the motion with the name of the magistrate who proposed it; to all which was subjoined what the Senate decreed.

The decrees were kept in the public treasury with the laws and other writings, pertaining to the republic. Anciently they were kept in the temple of Ceres. The place where the public records were kept was called "Tabularium." The decrees of the Senate concerning the honors conferred on Caesar were inscribed in golden letters, on columns of silver. When not carried to the treasury, they were reckoned invalid. Hence it was ordained under Tiberius, that the decrees of the Senate, especially concerning the capital punishment of any one, should not be carried there before the tenth day, that the emperor, if absent from the city, might have an opportunity of considering them, and if he thought proper of mitigating them.

Decrees of the Senate were rarely reversed. While a question was under debate, every one was at freedom to express his dissent; but when once determined, it was looked upon as the common concern of each member to support the opinion of the majority.

The power of the Senate was different at different times. Under the regal government, the Senate deliberated upon such affairs as the king proposed to them, and the kings were said to act according to their counsel as the consuls did afterwards according to their decrees.

Tarquin the proud, dropped the custom handed down from his predecessors, of consulting the Senate about everything; banished or put to death the chief men of that order, and chose no others in their room; but he was expelled from the throne for his tyranny, and the regal government abolished, A. U. 243. Afterwards the power of the Senate was raised to the highest. Everything was done by its authority. The magistrates were in a manner only its ministers. But when the Patricians began to abuse their power, and to exercise cruelty on the Plebeians, especially after the death of Tarquin, the multitude took arms in their own defence, made a secession from the city, seized on Mons Sacer, and created tribunes for themselves, who attacked the authority of the Senate, and in process of time greatly diminished it.

Although the supreme power at Rome belonged to the people, yet they seldom enacted anything without the authority of the Senate. In all weighty matters, the method usually observed was that the Senate should first deliberate and decree, and then the people order.

The Senate assumed to themselves exclusively, the guardianship of the public religion; so that no new god could be introduced, nor altar erected, nor the Sybiline books consulted without their order. They had the direction of the treasury, and distributed the public money at pleasure. They appointed stipends to their generals and officers, and provisions and clothing to the armies. They settled the provinces which were annually assigned to the consuls and praetors, and when it seemed fit, they prolonged their command. They nominated, out of their own body, all ambassadors sent from Rome, and gave to foreign ambassadors what answers they thought proper. They decreed all public thanksgivings for victories obtained, and conferred the honor of an ovation or triumph with the title of imperator on their victorious generals. They could decree the title of king to any prince whom they pleased, and declare any one an enemy by a vote. They inquired into all public crimes or treasons, either in Rome or other parts of Italy; and adjusted all disputes among the allied and dependent cities. They exercised a power not only of interpreting the laws, but of absolving men from the obligation of them. They could postpone the assemblies of the people, and prescribe a change of habit to the city, in cases of any imminent danger or calamity.

But their power was chiefly conspicuous in civil dissension or dangerous tumults within the city, in which that solemn decree used to be passed; "That the consuls should take care that the republic should receive no harm." By which decree an absolute power was granted to them to punish and put to death whom they pleased without a trial; to raise forces and carry on war, without the order of the people.

Although the decrees of the Senate had not properly the force of laws, and took place chiefly in those matters which were not provided for by the laws, yet they were understood always to have a binding force, and were therefore obeyed by all orders. The consuls themselves were obliged to submit to them. They could be annulled or cancelled only by the Senate itself. In the last ages of the republic, the authority of the Senate was little regarded by the leading men and their creatures, who by means of bribery obtained from a corrupted populace what they desired, in spite of the Senate.

Augustus, when he became master of the empire, retained the forms of the ancient republic, and the same names of the magistrates; but left nothing of the ancient virtue and liberty. While he pretended always to act by the authority of the Senate, he artfully drew everything to himself.

The Senators were distinguished by an oblong stripe of purple sewed on the forepart of their Senatorial gown, and black buskins reaching to the middle of the leg, with the letter C in silver on the top of the foot.

The chief privilege of the Senators was their having a particular place at the public spectacles, called orchestra. It was next the stage in the theatre, or next the arena or open space in the amphitheatre.

The messages sent by the emperor to the Senate were called epistolae or libelli, because they were folded in the form of a letter or little book. Caesar was said to have first introduced these libelli, which afterwards were used on almost every occasion.



CHAPTER III.

Other Divisions of the Roman People.

That the Patricians and Plebeians might be connected together by the strictest bonds, Romulus ordained that every Plebeian should choose from the Patricians any one he pleased, for his patron or protector, whose client he was called.

It was the duty of the patron to advise and defend his client, and to assist him with his interest and substance. The client was obliged to pay the greatest respect to his patron, and to serve him with his life and fortune in any extremity.

It was unlawful for patrons and clients to accuse or bear witness against each other, and whoever was found to have done so, might be slain by any one with impunity as a victim to Pluto, and the infernal gods.

It was esteemed highly honorable for a Patrician to have numerous clients, both hereditary and acquired by his own merit. In after times, even cities and whole nations were under the protection of illustrious Roman families.

Those whose ancestors or themselves had borne any curule magistracy, that is, had been Consul, Praetor, Censor or Curule Edile, were called nobiles, and had the right of making images of themselves, which were kept with great care by their posterity, and carried before them at funerals.

These images were merely the busts of persons down to the shoulders, made of wax, and painted, which they used to place in the courts of their houses, enclosed in wooden cases, and seem not to have brought out, except on solemn occasions. There were titles or inscriptions written below them, pointing out the honors they had enjoyed, and the exploits they had performed. Anciently, this right of images was peculiar to the Patricians; but afterwards, the Plebeians also acquired it, when admitted to curule offices.

Those who were the first of their family, that had raised themselves to any curule office, were called homines novi, new men or upstarts. Those who had no images of themselves, or of their ancestors, were called ignobiles.

Those who favored the interests of the Senate were called optimates, and sometimes proc{)}eres or principes. Those who studied to gain the favor of the multitude, were called populares, of whatever order they were. This was a division of factions, and not of rank or dignity. The contests between these two parties, excited the greatest commotions in the state, which finally terminated in the extinction of liberty.



CHAPTER IV.

Gentes and Familiae; Names of the Romans, &c.

The Romans were divided into various clans, (gentes,) and each clan into several families. Those of the same gens were called gentiles, and those of the same family, agnati. But relations by the father's side were also called agnati, to distinguish them from cognati, relations only by the mother's side.

The Romans had three names, to mark the different clans and families, and distinguish the individuals of the same family—the praenomen, nomen and cognomen.

The praenomen was put first, and marked the individual. It was commonly written with one letter; as A. for Aulus: C. for Caius—sometimes with two; as Ap. for Appius.

The nomen was put after the praenomen, to mark the gens, and commonly ended in ius; as Cornelius, Fabius. The cognomen was put last, and marked the family; as Cicero, Caesar.

Sometimes there was also a fourth name, called the agnomen, added from some illustrious action, or remarkable event. Thus, Scipio was called Africanus, from the conquest of Carthage and Africa: for a similar reason, his brother was called Asiaticus.

These names were not always used; commonly two, and sometimes only the sirname. But in speaking to any one, the praenomen was generally used as being peculiar to citizens, for slaves had no praenomen.

The sirnames were derived from various circumstances, either from some quality of the mind; as Cato, from catus, wise: or from the habit of the body; as Calvus, Crassus, &c.: or from cultivating particular fruits; as Lentulus, Piso, &c. Quintus Cincinnatus was called Serranus, because the ambassadors from the senate found him sowing, when they brought him word that he was made dictator.

The praenomen was given to boys on the ninth day, which was called dies lustr{)i}cus, or the day of purification, when certain religious ceremonies were performed. The eldest son of the family usually received the praenomen of his father. The rest were named from their uncles or other relations.

When there was only one daughter in the family, she was called by the name of the gens: thus, Tullia, the daughter of Cicero; and retained the same after marriage. When there were two daughters, one was called major, and the other minor. If there were more than two, they were distinguished by their number; thus—prima, secunda, tertia, &c.

Those were called liberi, free, who had the power of doing what they pleased. Those who were born of parents who had been always free, were called ingenui. Slaves made free were called liberti, in relation to their masters; and libertini, in relation to free born citizens.



CHAPTER V.

Private Rights of Roman Citizens.

The right of liberty comprehended not only liberty from the power of masters, but also from the dominion of tyrants, the severity of magistrates, the cruelty of creditors, and the insolence of more powerful citizens. After the expulsion of Tarquin, a law was made by Brutus, that no one should be king at Rome, and that whoever should form a design of making himself a king, might be slain with impunity. At the same time the people were bound by an oath that they would never suffer a king to be created.

Citizens could appeal from the magistrates to the people, and the persons who appealed could in no way be punished, until the people determined the matter; but they were chiefly secured by the assistance of the tribunes.

None but the whole Roman people in the comitia centuriata could pass sentence on the life of a Roman citizen. No magistrate could punish him by stripes or capitally. The single expression, "I am a Roman citizen," checked their severest decrees.

By the laws of the twelve tables, it was ordained, that insolvent debtors should be given up to their creditors, to be bound in fetters and cords, and although they did not entirely lose the rights of freemen, yet they were in actual slavery, and often more harshly treated than even slaves themselves.

To check the cruelty of usurers, a law was afterwards made that no debtors should be kept in irons, or in bonds; that the goods of the debtor, not his person, should be given up to his creditors.

The people, not satisfied with this, as it did not free them from prison, demanded an entire abolition of debt, which they used to call new tables; but this was never granted.

Each clan and family had certain sacred rights, peculiar to itself, which were inherited in the same manner as effects. When heirs by the father's side of the same family failed, those of the same gens succeeded in preference to relations by the mother's side of the same family. No one could pass from a Patrician family to a Plebeian, or from a Plebeian to a Patrician, unless by that form of adoption which could only be made at the comitia curiata.

No Roman citizen could marry a slave, barbarian or foreigner, unless by the permission of the people.

A father among the Romans had the power of life and death over his children. He could not only expose them when infants, but when grown up he might imprison, scourge, send them bound to work in the country, and also put them to death by any punishment he pleased.

A son could acquire no property but with his father's consent, and what he thus acquired was called his peculium as of a slave.

Things with respect to property among the Romans were variously divided. Some were said to be of divine right, and were held sacred, as altars, temples, or any thing publicly consecrated to the gods, by the authority of the Pontiffs; or religious, as sepulchres—or inviolable, as the walls and gates of a city.

Others were said to be of human right, and called profane. These were either public and common, as the air, running water, the sea and its shores; or private, which might be the property of individuals.

None but a Roman citizen could make a will, or be witnesses to a testament, or inherit any thing by it.

The usual method of making a will after the laws of the twelve tables were enacted, was by brass and balance, as it was called. In the presence of five witnesses, a weigher and witness, the testator by an imaginary sale disposed of his family and property to one who was called familiae emptor, who was not the heir as some have thought, but only admitted for the sake of form, that the testator might seem to have alienated his effects in his life time. This act was called familiae mancipatio.

Sometimes the testator wrote his will wholly with his own hand, in which case it was called hologr{)a}phum—sometimes it was written by a friend, or by others. Thus the testament of Augustus was written partly by himself, and partly by two of his freedmen.

Testaments were always subscribed by the testator, and usually by the witnesses, and sealed with their seals or rings. They were likewise tied with a thread drawn thrice through holes and sealed; like all other civil deeds, they were always written in Latin. A legacy expressed in Greek was not valid.

They were deposited either privately in the hands of a friend, or in a temple with the keeper of it. Thus Julius Caesar is said to have intrusted his testament to the oldest of the vestal virgins.

A father might leave whom he pleased as guardian to his children;—but if he died, this charge devolved by law on the nearest relation by the father's side. When there was no guardian by testament, nor a legal one, the praetor and the majority of the tribunes of the people appointed a guardian. If any one died without making a will, his goods devolved on his nearest relations.

Women could not transact any business of importance without the concurrence of their parents, husbands, or guardians.



CHAPTER VI.

Public Rights of Roman Citizens.

The jus militiae, was the right of serving in the army, which was at first peculiar to the higher order of citizens only, but afterwards the emperor took soldiers not only from Italy and the provinces, but also from barbarous nations.

The jus tributorum was the payment of a tax by each individual through the tribes, in proportion to the valuation of his estates.

There were three kinds of tribute, one imposed equally on each person; another according to his property; and a third exacted in cases of emergency. There were three other kinds of taxes, called portorium, decumae and scriptura.

The portorium was paid for goods exported and imported, the collectors of which were called portitores, or for carrying goods over a bridge.

The decumae were the tenth part of corn and the fifth part of other fruit, exacted from the cultivators of the public lands, either in Italy or without it.

The scriptura was paid by those who pastured their cattle upon the public lands. The jus saffragii was the right of voting in the different assemblies of the people.

The jus honorum was the right of being priests or magistrates, at first enjoyed only by the Patricians. Foreigners might live in the city of Rome, but they enjoyed none of the rights of citizens; they were subject to a peculiar jurisdiction, and might be expelled from the city by a magistrate. They were not permitted to wear the Roman dress.



CHAPTER VII.

Places of Worship.

Templum was a place which had been dedicated to the worship of some deity, and consecrated by the augurs.

AEdes sacrae were such as wanted that consecration, which, if they afterwards received, they changed their names to temples.

Delubrum comprehended several deities under one roof. The most celebrated temples were the capitol and pantheon.

The capitol or temple of Jupiter Capitolinus, was the effect of a vow made by Tarquinius Priscus, in the Sabine war. But he had scarcely laid the foundation before his death. His nephew Tarquin the proud, finished it with the spoils taken from the neighboring nations.

The structure stood on a high ridge, taking in four acres of ground. The front was adorned with three rows of pillars, the other sides with two. The ascent from the ground was by a hundred steps. The prodigious gifts and ornaments with which it was at several times endowed, almost exceed belief. Augustus gave at one time two thousand pounds weight of gold, and in jewels and precious stones to the value of five hundred sestertia.

Livy and Pliny surprise us with accounts of the brazen thresholds, the noble pillars that Scylla removed thither from Athens, out of the temple of Jupiter Olympius; the gilded roof, the gilded shields, and those of solid silver; the huge vessels of silver, holding three measures—the golden chariot, &c.

This temple was first consumed by fire in the Marian war, and then rebuilt by Sylla. This too was demolished in the Vitellian sedition. Vespasian undertook a third, which was burnt about the time of his death. Domitian raised the last and most glorious of all, in which the very gilding amounted to twelve thousand talents—on which Plutarch has observed of that emperor, that he was, like Midas, desirous of turning every thing into gold. There are very little remains of it at present, yet enough to make a Christian church.

The capitol contained in it three temples: one to Jupiter, one to Juno, and one to Minerva. Jupiter's was in the centre, whence he was poetically called "Media qui sedet aede Deus"—the god who sits in the middle temple.

The pantheon was built by Marcus Agrippa, son-in-law to Augustus Caesar, and dedicated most probably to all the gods in general, as the name implies. The structure is a hundred and fifty-eight feet high, and about the same breadth. The roof is curiously vaulted, void places being here and there for the greater strength. The rafters were pieces of brass of forty feet in length. There are no windows in the whole edifice, only a round hole at the top of the roof, which serves very well for the admission of light. The walls on the inside are either solid marble or incrusted. The front, on the outside, was covered with brazen plates, gilt, the top with silver plates, which are now changed to lead. The gates were brass, of extraordinary work and magnitude.

This temple is still standing, with little alteration, besides the loss of the old ornaments, being converted into a Christian church by Pope Boniface III. The most remarkable difference is that where they before ascended by twelve steps, they now go down as many to the entrance.

There are two other temples, particularly worth notice, not so much for the magnificence of the structure, as for the customs that depend upon them, and the remarkable use to which they were put. These are the temples of Saturn and Janus.

The first was famous on account of serving for the public treasury—the reason of which some fancy to have been because Saturn first taught the Italians to coin money; but most probably it was because this was the strongest place in the city. Here were preserved all the public registers and records, among which were the libri elephantini, or great ivory tables, containing a list of all the tribes and the schemes of the public accounts.

The other was a square building, some say of entire brass, so large as to contain a statue of Janus, five feet high, with brazen gates on each side, which were kept open in war, and shut in time of peace.



CHAPTER VIII.

Of other public Buildings.

Theatres, so called from the Greek {theaomai}, to see, owe their origin to Bacchus.

That the theatres and amphitheatres were two different sorts of edifices, was never questioned, the former being built in the shape of a semicircle; the other generally oval, so as to make the same figure as if two theatres should be joined together. Yet the same place is often called by these names in several authors. They seem, too, to have been designed for quite different ends: the theatres for stage plays, the amphitheatres for the greater shows of gladiators, wild beasts, &c. The following are the most important parts of both.

Scena was a partition reaching quite across the theatre, being made either to turn round or draw up, to present a new prospect to the spectators.

Proscenium was the space of ground just before the scene, where the pulpitum stood, into which the actors came from behind the scenes to perform.

The middle part, or area of the amphitheatre, was called cavae, because it was considerably lower than the other parts, whence perhaps, the name of pit in our play houses was borrowed; and arena, because it used to be strown with sand, to hinder the performers from slipping.

There was a threefold distinction of the seats, according to the ordinary division of the people into senators, knights, and commons. The first range was called orchestra, from {orcheisthai}, because in that part of the Grecian theatres, the dances were performed; the second equestria; and the other popularia.



The Flavian amphitheatre, now better known by the name of the Colisaeum, from its stupendous magnitude, excites the astonishment of the world. It was five hundred fifty feet in length, and four hundred seventy in breadth, and one hundred sixty in height. It was surrounded to the top by a portico resting on eighty arches, and divided into four stories. The arrangement of the seats was similar to that in the theatres; but there was a large box projecting from one side, and covered with a canopy of state for the accommodation of the emperor and the magistrates, who were surrounded with all the insignia of office.

As combats of wild beasts formed a chief part of the amusements, they were secured in dens around the arena or stage, which was strongly encircled by a canal, to guard the spectators against their attacks. These precautions, however, were not always sufficient, and instances occurred in which the animals sprung across the barrier.

This huge pile was commenced by Vespasian, and was reared with a portion of the materials of Nero's golden palace: its form was oval, and it is supposed to have contained upwards of eighty thousand persons. A large part of this vast edifice still remains.

Theatres, in the first ages of the commonwealth, were only temporary, and composed of wood. Of these, the most celebrated was that of Marcus Scaurus—the scenes of which were divided into three partitions, one above another, the first consisting of one hundred and twenty pillars of marble; the next, of the like number of pillars, curiously wrought in glass. The top of all had the same number of pillars adorned with gilded tablets. Between the pillars were set three thousand statues and images of brass. The cavca would hold eighty thousand men.

Pompey the great was the first who undertook the raising of a fixed theatre, which he built nobly of square stone. Some of the remains of this theatre are still to be seen at Rome.

The circi were places set apart for the celebration of several sorts of games:—they were generally oblong or almost in the shape of a bow, having a wall quite round, with ranges of seats for the convenience of spectators. At the entrance of the circus stood the carceres or lists, whence they started, and just by them, one of the metae or marks—the other standing at the farther end to conclude the race.

The most remarkable, was the circus maximus, built by Tarquinius Priscus:—the length of it was four stadia, or furlongs, the breadth the same number of acres, with a trench of ten feet deep, and as many broad, to receive the water, and seats enough for one hundred fifty thousand men. It was extremely beautiful and adorned by succeeding princes, and enlarged to such a prodigious extent as to be able to contain in their proper seats two hundred and sixty thousand spectators.

The naumachiae or places for the shows of sea-engagements are no where particularly described; but we may suppose them similar to the circi and amphitheatres.

The stadia were places in the form of circi, for the running of men and horses. A beautiful one was built by Domitian. The xysti were places constructed like porticos, in which the wrestlers exercised.

The Campus Martius, famous on so many accounts, was a large plain field, lying near the Tiber, whence we find it sometimes under the name of Tiberinus:—it was called Martius, because it had been consecrated by the old Romans to the god Mars. Besides the pleasant situation and other natural ornaments, the continual sports and exercises performed there, made it one of the most interesting sights near the city. Here the young noblemen practised all kinds of feats of activity, and learned the use of arms. Here were the races either with chariots or single horses. Besides this, it was nobly adorned with the statues of famous men, with arches, columns and porticos, and other magnificent structures. Here stood the villa publica or palace, for the reception and entertainment of ambassadors from foreign states, who were not allowed to enter the city.

The Roman curiae were of two sorts, divine and civil. In the former, the priests and religious orders met for the regulation of the rites and ceremonies belonging to the worship of the gods. In the other, the senate used to assemble, to consult about the public concerns of the commonwealth. The senate could not meet in such a place, unless it had been solemnly consecrated by the augurs, and made of the same nature as a temple.

The Roman forums were public buildings about three times as long as they were broad. All the compass of the forum was surrounded by arched porticos, some passages being left as places of entrance.

There were two kinds, fora civilia and fora venalia. The first were designed for the ornaments of the city, and for the use of public courts of justice. The others were erected for the necessities and conveniences of the inhabitants, and were no doubt equivalent to our markets. The most remarkable were the Roman forum, built by Romulus, and adorned with porticos on all sides, by Tarquinius Priscus: This was the most ancient and most frequently used in public affairs.

The Julian forum, built by Julius Caesar, with the spoils taken in the Gallic war; the area alone, cost one hundred thousand sesterces, equal to 3570 dollars.

The Augustan forum, built by Augustus Caesar, containing statues in the two porticos, on each side of the main building. In one were all the Latin kings, beginning with AEneas: in the other all the Roman kings, beginning with Romulus, and most of the eminent persons in the commonwealth, and Augustus himself among the rest, with an inscription upon the pedestal of every statue, expressing the chief actions and exploits of the person it represented.

The forum of Trajan, erected by the emperor Trajan, with the foreign spoils he had taken in the wars; the covering was all brass, and the porticos exceedingly beautiful.

The chief fora venalia or markets, were boarium, for oxen and beef, suarium, for swine, pistorium, for bread, cupedinarium, for dainties, and holitorium, for roots, sallads and similar things.

The comitium was only a part of the Roman forum, which served sometimes for the celebration of the comitia; here stood the rostra, a kind of pulpit, adorned with the beaks of ships taken in a sea fight, from the inhabitants of Antium in Italy; here causes were pleaded, orations made, and funeral panegyrics delivered.



CHAPTER IX.

Porticos, Arches, Columns and Trophies.

The porticos are worthy of observation: they were structures of curious work and extraordinary beauty annexed to public edifices, sacred and civil, as well for ornament as use.

They generally took their names either from the temples which they stood near, from the builders, from the nature and form of the building, or from the remarkable paintings in them.

They were sometimes used for the assemblies of the senate; sometimes the jewellers and such as dealt in the most precious wares took their stand here to expose their goods for sale; but the general use they were put to, was the pleasure of walking or riding in them, like the present piazzas in Italy.

Arches were public buildings designed for the encouragement and reward of noble enterprises, erected generally to the honor of such eminent persons as had either won a victory of extraordinary consequence abroad, or had rescued the commonwealth, at home, from any considerable danger.

At first they were plain and rude structures, by no means remarkable for beauty or taste: but in latter times no expense was thought too great to render them in the highest manner splendid and magnificent. The arches built by Romulus were only of brick, that of Camillus of plain square stone, but those of Caesar, Drusus, Titus, &c. were all of marble.

Their figure was at first semicircular, whence probably they took their names; afterwards they were built four square, with a spacious arched gate in the middle, and small ones on each side. Upon the vaulted part of the middle gate, hung little winged images representing victory, with crowns in their hands, which, when they were let down, they put upon the conqueror's head, as he passed under the triumphal arch.

The columns or pillars, over the sepulchres of distinguished men, were great ornaments to the city: they were at last converted to the same design as the arches, for the honorable memorial of some noble victory or exploit. The pillars of the emperors Trajan and Antoninus deserve particular attention for their beauty and curious workmanship.

The former was set up in the middle of Trajan's forum, being composed of twenty-four great stones of marble, but so skilfully cemented as to appear one entire stone. The height was one hundred forty-four feet; it is ascended on the inside by one hundred eighty-five winding stairs, and has forty little windows for the admission of light. The whole pillar is incrusted with marble, in which are expressed all the noble actions of the emperor, and particularly the Decian war.

But its noblest ornament was the gigantic statue of Trajan on the top, being no less than twenty feet high; he was represented in a coat of armour proper to the general, holding in his left hand a sceptre, in his right a hollow globe of fire, in which his own ashes were deposited after his death.

The column of Antoninus was raised in imitation of this, which it exceeded only in one respect, that it was one hundred seventy six feet high—for the work was much inferior to the former, being undertaken in the declining age of the empire. The ascent on the inside was by one hundred six steps, and the windows, in the sides, fifty-six; the sculpture and the other ornaments were of the same nature as those of the first, and on the top stood a colossal statue of the emperor, naked, as appears from his coins.

Both of these columns are still standing at Rome; the former almost entire: but Pope Sixtus the first, instead of the two statues of the emperors, set up St. Peter's on the column of Trajan, and St. Paul's on that of Antoninus.

There was likewise a gilded pillar in the forum, called the milliarium aureum, erected by Augustus Caesar, at which all the highways of Italy met and were concluded; from this they counted their miles, at the end of every mile setting up a stone, whence came the phrase primus ab urbe pisla.

But the most remarkable was the columna rostrata, set up to the honor of Caius Duilius, when he had gained a victory over the Carthaginian and Sicilian fleets, four hundred ninety-three years from the foundation of the city, and adorned with the beaks of the vessels taken in the engagement. This is still to be seen at Rome; the inscription on the basis is a noble example of the old way of writing, in the early times of the commonwealth.

Trophies were spoils taken from the enemy, and fixed upon any thing as signs or monuments of victory: they were erected usually in the place where it was gained and consecrated to some divinity, with an inscription.



CHAPTER X.

Bagnios, Aqueducts, Sewers and public Ways.

The Romans expended immense sums of money on their bagnios. The most remarkable were those of the emperors Dioclesian and Antonius Caracalla—great part of which are standing at this time, and with the high arches, the beautiful and stately pillars, the abundance of foreign marble, the curious vaulting of the roofs, and the prodigious number of spacious apartments, may be considered among the greatest curiosities of Rome.

The first invention of aqueducts, is attributed to Appius Claudius, four hundred forty-one years from the foundation of the city, who brought water into the city, by a channel of eleven miles in length—but afterwards several others of greater magnitude were built: several of them were cut through the mountains, and all other impediments for about forty miles together, and of such a height that a man on horseback might ride through them without the least difficulty. But this is meant only of the constant course of the channel, for the vaults and arches were in some places one hundred and nine feet high. It is said that Rome was supplied with five hundred thousand hogsheads every twenty-four hours by means of these aqueducts.

The cloacae or sewers were constructed by undermining and cutting through the seven hills upon which Rome stood, making the city hang, as it were, between heaven and earth, and capable of being sailed under.

Marcus Agrippa in his edileship, made no less than seven streams meet together under ground, in one main channel, with such a rapid current, as to carry all before them, that they met with in their passage. Sometimes in a flood, the waters of the Tiber opposed them in their course, and the two streams encountered each other with great fury: yet the works preserved their old strength, without any sensible damage: sometimes the ruins of whole buildings, destroyed by fire or other casualties, pressed heavily upon the frame: sometimes terrible earthquakes shook the foundation: yet they still continued impregnable.

The public ways were built with extraordinary care to a great distance from the city on all sides; they were generally paved with flint, though sometimes, and especially without the city, with pebbles and gravel.

The most noble was the Appian way, the length of which was generally computed at three hundred and fifty miles: it was twelve feet broad, made of huge stones, most of them blue. Its strength was so great, that after it had been built two thousand years, it was, in most places, for several miles together, perfectly sound.



CHAPTER XI.

Of Augurs and Auguries.

The business of the augurs or soothsayers was to interpret dreams, oracles, prodigies, &c. and to tell whether any action should be fortunate or prejudicial to any particular persons, or to the whole commonwealth.

There are five kinds of auguries mentioned in authors—1st. From the appearances in heaven,—as thunder, lightning, comets and other meteors; as, for instance, whether the thunder came from the right or left, whether the number of strokes was even or odd, &c.

2d. From birds, whence they had the name of auspices, from avis and specio; some birds furnished them with observations from their chattering and singing,—such as crows, owls, &c.—others from their flying, as eagles, vultures, &c.

To take both these kind of auguries, the observer stood upon a tower with his head covered in a gown, peculiar to his office, and turning his face towards the east, marked out the heavens into four quarters, with a short, straight rod, with a little turning at one end: this done, he staid waiting for the omen, which never signified anything, unless confirmed by another of the same sort.

3d. From chickens kept in a coop for this purpose. The manner of divining from them was as follows:—early in the morning, the augur, commanding a general silence, ordered the coop to be opened, and threw down a handful of crumbs or corn: if the chickens did not immediately run to the food, if they scattered it with their wings, if they went by without taking notice of it, or if they flew away, the omen was reckoned unfortunate, and to portend nothing but danger or mischance; but if they leaped directly from the pen, and eat voraciously, there was great assurance of happiness and success.

4th. From beasts, such as foxes, wolves, goats, heifers, &c.; the general observations about these, were, whether they appeared in a strange place, or crossed the way, or whether they ran to the right or the left, &c.

The last kind of divination was from unusual accidents, such as sneezing, stumbling, seeing apparations, hearing strange voices, the falling of salt upon the table, &c.



CHAPTER XII.

Of the Aruspices, Pontifices, Quindecemviri, Vestals, &c.

The business of aruspices was to look upon the beasts offered in sacrifices, and by them to divine the success of any enterprise.

They took their observations, 1st. From the beasts before they were cut up. 2d. From the entrails of those beasts after they were cut up. 3d. From the flame that used to rise when they were burning. 4th. From the flour of bran, from the frankincense, wine and water, which they used in the sacrifice.

The offices of the pontifices were to give judgment in all cases relating to religion, to inquire into the lives of the inferior priests, and to punish them if they saw occasion; to prescribe rules for public worship; to regulate the feasts, sacrifices, and all other sacred institutions. The master or superintendent of the pontifices was one of the most honorable offices in the commonwealth.

The quindecemviri had the charge of the sibylline books; inspected them by the appointment of the senate in dangerous junctures, and performed the sacrifices which they enjoined.

They are said to have been instituted on the following occasion: A certain woman called Amalth{=e}a is said to have come to Tarquin the proud, wishing to sell nine books of sibylline or prophetic oracles: but upon Tarquin's refusal to give her the price she asked, she went away and burnt three of them. Returning soon after, she asked the same price for the remaining six: whereupon, being ridiculed by the king, she went and burnt three more; and coming back, still demanded the same price for those which remained. Tarquin, surprised at this strange conduct of the woman, consulted the augurs what to do; they, regretting the loss of the books which had been destroyed, advised the king to give the price required. The woman therefore, having delivered the books and directed them to be carefully kept, disappeared, and was never afterwards seen.

These books were supposed to contain the fate of the Roman empire, and therefore, in public danger or calamity, they were frequently inspected; they were kept with great care in a chest under ground, in the capitol.

The institution of the vestal virgins is generally attributed to Numa; their office was to attend upon the rites of Vesta, the chief part of it being the preservation of the holy fire: they were obliged to keep this with the greatest care, and if it happened to go out, it was thought impiety to light it by any common flame, but they made use of the pure rays of the sun.

The famous palladium brought from Troy by AEneas, was likewise guarded by them, for Ulysses and Diomedes stole only a counterfeit one, a copy of the other, which was kept with less care.

The number of the vestals was six, and they were admitted between the years of six and ten. The chief rules prescribed by their founder, were to vow the strictest chastity for the space of thirty years;—the first ten they were only novices, being obliged to learn the ceremonies and perfect themselves in the duties of their religion; the next ten years they discharged the duties of priestesses, and spent the remaining ten in instructing others.

If they broke their vow of virginity, they were buried alive in a place without the city wall, allotted for that purpose.

This severe condition was recompensed with several privileges and prerogatives: their persons were sacred: in public they usually appeared on a magnificent car, drawn by white horses, followed by a numerous retinue of female slaves, and preceded by lictors; and if they met a malefactor going to punishment, they had the power to remit his sentence.

The septemviri were priests among the Romans, who prepared the sacred feasts at games, processions, and other solemn occasions: they were likewise assistants to the pontifices.

The fratres ambarvales, twelve in number, were those priests who offered up sacrifices for the fertility of the ground. The curiones performed the rites in each curia.

Feciales (Heralds) were a college of sacred persons, into whose charge all concerns relating to the declaration of war or conclusion of peace, were committed.

Their first institution was in so high a degree laudable and beneficial, as to reflect great honour on Roman justice and moderation. It was the primary and especial duty of the heralds, to inquire into the equity of a proposed war: and if the grounds of it seemed to them trivial or unjust, the war was declined—if otherwise, the senate concerted the best measures to carry it on with spirit.

Feciales were supreme judges in every thing relating to treaties. The head of their college was called Pater Patratus.

All the members of this college, while in the discharge of their duty, wore a wreath of vervain around their heads; and bore a branch of it in their hands, when they made peace, of which it was an emblem.

Their authority and respectability continued until the lust of dominion had corrupted the policy of the Romans; after which their situations were comparative sinecures, and their solemn deliberations dwindled into useless or contemptible formalities.

Among the flamines or priests of particular gods, were, 1st. flamen dialis the priest of Jupiter. This was an office of great dignity, but subjected to many restrictions; as that he should not ride on horseback, nor stay one night without the city, nor take an oath, and several others.

2d. The salii, priests of Mars, so called, because on solemn occasions they used to go through the city dancing, dressed in an embroidered tunic, bound with a brazen belt, and a toga pretexta or trabea; having on their head a cap rising to a considerable height in the form of a cone, with a sword by their side, in their right hand a spear or rod, and in their left, one of the ancilia or shields of Mars.—The most solemn procession of the salii was on the first of March, in commemoration of the time when the sacred shield was believed to have fallen from heaven in the reign of Numa.

3d. The luperci, priests of Pan, were so called, from a wolf, because that god was supposed to keep the wolves from the sheep. Hence the place where he was worshipped was called lupercal, and his festival lupercalia, which was celebrated in February, at which the luperci ran up and down the city naked, having only a girdle of goat skin round their waists, and thongs of the same in their hands, with which they struck those they met.

It is said that Antony, while chief of the luperci, went according to concert, it is believed, almost naked into the forum, attended by his lictors, and having made an harangue to the people from the rostra, presented a crown to Caesar, who was sitting there, surrounded by the whole senate and people. He attempted frequently to put the crown upon his head, addressing him by the title of king, and declaring that what he said and did was at the desire of his fellow citizens; but Caesar perceiving the strongest marks of aversion in the people, rejected it, saying, that Jupiter alone was king of Rome, and therefore sent the crown to the capitol to be presented to that God.



CHAPTER XIII.

Religious Ceremonies of the Romans.

The Romans were, as a people, remarkably attached to the religion they professed; and scrupulously attentive in discharging the rites and ceremonies which it enjoined.

Their religion was Idolatry, in its grossest and widest acceptation. It acknowledged a few general truths, but greatly darkened these by fables and poetical fiction.

All the inhabitants of the invisible world, to which the souls of people departed after death, were indiscriminately called Inferi. Elysium was that part of hell (apud Inferos,) in which the good spent a spiritual existence of unmingled enjoyment, and Tartarus (pl. -ra) was the terrible prison-house of the damned.

The worship of the gods consisted chiefly in prayers, vows, and sacrifices. No act of religious worship was performed without prayer; while praying, they stood usually with their heads covered, looking towards the east; a priest pronounced the words before them;—they frequently touched the altars or knees of the images of the gods; turning themselves round in a circle towards the right, sometimes putting their right hand to their mouth, and also prostrating themselves on the ground.

They vowed temples, games, sacrifices, gifts, &c. Sometimes they used to write their vows on paper or waxen tablets, to seal them up, and fasten them with wax to the knees of the images of the gods, that being supposed to be the seat of mercy.

Lustrations were necessary to be made before entrance on any important religious duty, viz. before setting out to the temples, before the sacrifice, before initiation into the mysteries, and before solemn vows and prayers.

Lustrations were also made after acts by which one might be polluted; as after murder, or after having assisted at a funeral.

In sacrifices it was requisite that those who offered them, should come chaste and pure; that they should bathe themselves, be dressed in white robes, and crowned with the leaves of the tree which was thought most acceptable to the god whom they worshipped.

Sacrifices were made of victims whole and sound (Integrae et sanae.) But all victims were not indifferently offered to all gods.

A white bull was an acceptable sacrifice to Jupiter; an ewe to Juno; black victims, bulls especially, to Pluto; a bull and a horse to Neptune; the horse to Mars; bullocks and lambs to Apollo, &c. Sheep and goats were offered to various deities.

The victim was led to the altar with a loose rope, that it might not seem to be brought by force, which was reckoned a bad omen. After silence was proclaimed, a salted cake was sprinkled on the head of the beast, and frankincense and wine poured between his horns, the priest having first tasted the wine himself, and given it to be tasted by those that stood next him, which was called libatio—the priest then plucked the highest hairs between the horns, and threw them into the fire—the victim was struck with an axe or mall, then stabbed with knives, and the blood being caught in goblets, was poured on the altar—it was then flayed and dissected; then the entrails were inspected by the aruspices, and if the signs were favorable, they were said to have offered up an acceptable sacrifice, or to have pacified the gods; if not, another victim was offered up, and sometimes several. The parts which fell to the gods were sprinkled with meal, wine, and frankincense, and burnt on the altar. When the sacrifice was finished, the priest, having washed his hands, and uttered certain prayers, again made a libation, and the people were dismissed.

Human sacrifices were also offered among the Romans: persons guilty of certain crimes, as treachery or sedition, were devoted to Pluto and the infernal gods, and therefore any one might slay them with impunity.

Altars and temples afforded an asylum or place of refuge among the Greeks and Romans, as well as among the Jews, chiefly to slaves from the cruelty of their masters, and to insolvent debtors and criminals, where it was considered impious to touch them; but sometimes they put fire and combustible materials around the place, that the person might appear to be forced away, not by men, but by a god: or shut up the temple and unroofed it, that he might perish in the open air.



CHAPTER XIV.

The Roman Year.

Romulus divided the year into ten months; the first of which was called March from Mars, his supposed father; the 2d April, either from the Greek name of Venus, ({Aphrodita}) or because trees and flowers open their buds, during that month; the 3d, May, from Maia, the mother of Mercury; the 4th, June, from the goddess Juno; 5th, July, from Julius Caesar; 6th, August, from Augustus Caesar; the rest were called from their number, September, October, November, December.

Numa added two months—January from Janus, and February because the people were then purified, (februabatur) by an expiatory sacrifice from the sin of the whole year: for this anciently was the last month in the year.

Numa in imitation of the Greeks divided the year into twelve lunar months, according to the course of the moon, but as this mode of division did not correspond with the course of the sun, he ordained that an intercalary month should be added every other year.

Julius Caesar afterwards abolished this month, and with the assistance of Sosig{)e}nes, a skilful astronomer of Alexandria, in the year of Rome 707, arranged the year according to the course of the sun, commencing with the first of January, and assigned to each month the number of days which they still retain. This is the celebrated Julian or solar year which has been since maintained without any other alteration than that of the new style, introduced by pope Gregory, A. D. 1582, and adopted in England in 1752, when eleven days were dropped between the second and fourteenth of September.

The months were divided into three parts, kalends, nones and ides. They commenced with the kalends; the nones occurred on the fifth, and the ides on the thirteenth, except in March, May, July, and October, when they fell on the seventh and fifteenth.

In marking the days of the month they went backwards: thus, January first was the first of the kalends of January—December thirty-first was pridie kalendas, or the day next before the kalends of January—the day before that, or the thirtieth of December, tertio kalendas Januarii, or the third day before the kalends of January, and so on to the thirteenth, when came the ides of December.

The day was either civil or natural; the civil day was from midnight to midnight; the natural day was from the rising to the setting of the sun.

The use of clocks and watches was unknown to the Romans—nor was it till four hundred and forty-seven years after the building of the city, that the sun dial was introduced: about a century later, they first measured time by a water machine, which served by night, as well as by day.

Their days were distinguished by the names of festi, profesti, and intercisi. The festi were dedicated to religious worship, the profesti were allotted to ordinary business, the days which served partly for one and partly for the other were called intercisi, or half holy days.

The manner of reckoning by weeks was not introduced until late in the second century of the christian era: it was borrowed from the Egyptians, and the days were named after the planets: thus, Sunday from the Sun, Monday from the Moon, Tuesday from Mars, Wednesday from Mercury, Thursday from Jupiter, Friday from Venus, Saturday from Saturn.

A Table of the Kalends, Nones, and Ides.

Days of Apr, June, Jan, August, March, May, Month. Sept, Nov. December. July, Oct. February.

1 Kalendae. Kalendae. Kalendae. Kalendae. 2 IV. Nonas. IV. Nonas VI. IV. Nonas. 3 III. III. V. III. 4 Pridie. Pridie. IV. Pridie. 5 Nonae. Nonae. III. Nonae. 6 VIII. Idus VIII. Idus. Pridie. VIII. Idus. 7 VII. VII. Nonae. VII. 8 VI. VI. VIII. Idus. VI. 9 V. V. VII. V. 10 IV. IV. VI. IV. 11 III. III. V. III. 12 Pridie. Pridie. IV. Pridie. 13 Idus. Idus. III. Idus. 14 XVIII. Kal. XIX. Kal. Pridie. XVI. Kal. 15 XVII. XVIII. Idus. XV. 16 XVI. XVII. XVII. Kal. XIV 17 XV. XVI. XVI. XIII. 18 XIV. XV. XV. XII. 19 XIII. XIV. XIV. XI. 20 XII. XIII. XIII. X. 21 XI. XII. XII. IX. 22 X. XI. XI. VIII. 23 IX. X. X. VII. 24 VIII. IX. IX. VI. 25 VII. VIII. VIII. V. 26 VI. VII. VII. IV. 27 V. VI. VI. III. 28 IV. V. V. Prid. Kal. 29 III. IV. IV. Martii. 30 Prid. Kal. III. III. 31 Mens. seq. Prid. Kal. Prid. Kal. Mens. seq. Mens. seq.



CHAPTER XV.

Roman Games.

The Roman Games formed a part of religious worship, and were always consecrated to some god: they were either stated or vowed by generals in war, or celebrated on extraordinary occasions; the most celebrated were those of the circus.

Among them were first, chariot and horse races, of which the Romans were extravagantly fond. The charioteers were distributed into four parties or factions from the different colours of their dresses. The spectators favored one or other of the colours, as humor or caprice inclined them. It was not the swiftness of their horses, nor the art of the men that inclined them, but merely the dress. In the times of Justinian, no less than thirty thousand men are said to have lost their lives at Constantinople, in a tumult raised by contention among the partizans of the several colours.

The order in which the chariots or horses stood, was determined by lot, and the person who presided at the games gave the signal for starting, by dropping a cloth; then the chain of the hermuli being withdrawn, they sprung forward, and whoever first ran seven times round the course, was declared the victor; he was then crowned, and received a prize in money of considerable value.

Second; contests of agility and strength, of which there were five kinds; running, leaping, boxing, wrestling and throwing the discus or quoit. Boxers covered their hands with a kind of gloves, which had lead or iron sewed into them, to make the strokes fall with greater weight; the combatants were previously trained in a place of exercise, and restricted to a particular diet.

Third; what was called venatio, or the fighting of wild beasts with one another, or with men, called bestiarii, who were either forced to this by way of punishment, as the primitive christians often were, or fought voluntarily, either from a natural ferocity of disposition, or induced by hire. An incredible number of animals of various kinds, were brought from all quarters, for the entertainment of the people, at an immense expense; and were kept in enclosures called vivaria, till the day of exhibition. Pompey, in his second consulship, exhibited at once five hundred lions, and eighteen elephants, who were all despatched in five days.

Fourth; naumachia, or the representation of a sea fight; those who fought, were usually composed of captives or condemned malefactors, who fought to death, unless saved by the clemency of the emperors.

In the next class of games were the shows of gladiators; they were first exhibited at Rome by two brothers called Bruti, at the funeral of their father, and for some time they were only exhibited on such occasions; but afterwards, also by the magistrates, to entertain the people, chiefly at the saturnalia and feasts of Minerva.

Incredible numbers of men were destroyed in this manner; after the triumph of Trajan over the Dacians, spectacles were exhibited for one hundred twenty-three days, in which eleven thousand animals, of different kinds, were killed, and ten thousand gladiators fought, whence we may judge of other instances. The emperor Claudius, although naturally of a gentle disposition, is said to have been rendered cruel by often attending these spectacles.

Gladiators were at first composed of slaves and captives, or of condemned malefactors, but afterwards also of free born citizens, induced by hire or inclination.

When any gladiator was wounded, he lowered his arms as a sign of his being vanquished, but his fate depended on the pleasure of the people, who, if they wished him to be saved, pressed down their thumbs; if to be slain, they turned them up, and ordered him to receive the sword, which gladiators usually submitted to with amazing fortitude.

Such was the spirit engendered by these scenes of blood, that malefactors and unfortunate christians, during the period of the persecution against them, were compelled to risk their lives in these unequal contests; and in the time of Nero, christians were dressed in skins, and thus distinguished, were hunted by dogs, or forced to contend with ferocious animals, by which they were devoured.

The next in order were the dramatic entertainments, of which there were three kinds. First; comedy, which was a representation of common life, written in a familiar style, and usually with a happy issue: the design of it was, to expose vice and folly to ridicule.

Second; tragedy, or the representation of some one serious and important action; in which illustrious persons are introduced as heroes, kings, &c. written in an elevated style, and generally with an unhappy issue.

The great end of tragedy was to excite the passions; chiefly pity and horror: to inspire a love of virtue, and an abhorrence of vice.

The Roman tragedy and comedy differed from ours only in the chorus: this was a company of actors who usually remained on the stage singing and conversing on the subject in the intervals of the acts.

Pantomimes, or representations of dumb show, where the actors expressed every thing by their dancing and gestures, without speaking.

Those who were most approved, received crowns, &c. as at other games; at first composed of leaves or flowers, tied round the head with strings, afterwards of thin plates of brass gilt.

The scenery was concealed by a curtain, which, contrary to the modern custom, was drawn down when the play began, and raised when it was over.



CHAPTER XVI.

Magistrates.

Rome was at first governed by kings, chosen by the people; their power was not absolute, but limited; their badges were the trabea or white robe adorned with stripes of purple, a golden crown and ivory sceptre; the curule chair and twelve lictors with the fasces, that is, carrying each a bundle of rods, with an axe in the middle of them.

The regal government subsisted at Rome for two hundred and forty-three years, under seven kings—Romulus, Numa Pompilius, Tullus Hostilius, Ancus Marcius, Lucius Tarquinius Priscus, Servius Tullius, and Lucius Tarquinius Superbus, all of whom, except the last, may be said to have laid the foundation of Roman greatness by their good government.

Tarquin being universally detested for his tyranny and cruelty, was expelled the city, with his wife and family, on account of the violence offered by his son Sextus to Lucretia, a noble lady, the wife of Collatinus.

This revolution was brought about chiefly by means of Lucius Junius Brutus. The haughtiness and cruelty of Tarquin inspired the Romans with the greatest aversion to regal government, which they retained ever after.

In the two hundred and forty-fourth year from the building of the city, they elected two magistrates, of equal authority, and gave them the name of consuls. They had the same badges as the kings, except the crown, and nearly the same power; in time of war they possessed supreme command, and usually drew lots to determine which should remain in Rome—they levied soldiers, nominated the greater part of the officers, and provided what was necessary for their support.

In dangerous conjunctures, they were armed by the senate with absolute power, by the solemn decree that the consuls should take care the Republic receives no harm. In any serious tumult or sedition they called the Roman citizens to arms in these words, "Let those who wish to save the republic follow me"—by which they easily checked it.

Although their authority was very much impaired, first by the tribunes of the people, and afterwards upon the establishment of the empire, yet they were still employed in consulting the senate, administering justice, managing public games and the like, and had the honor to characterize the year by their own names.

To be a candidate for the consulship, it was requisite to be forty-three years of age: to have gone through the inferior offices of quaestor, aedile, and praetor—and to be present in a private station.

The office of praetor was instituted partly because the consuls being often wholly taken up with foreign wars, found the want of some person to administer justice in the city; and partly because the nobility, having lost their appropriation of the consulship, were ambitious of obtaining some new honor in its room. He was attended in the city by two lictors, who went before him with the fasces, and six lictors without the city; he wore also, like the consuls, the toga pretexta, or white robe fringed with purple.

The power of the praetor, in the administration of justice, was expressed in three words, do, dico, addico. By the word do, he expressed his power in giving the form of a writ for trying and redressing a wrong, and in appointing judges or jury to decide the cause: by dico, he meant that he declared right, or gave judgment; and by addico, that he adjudged the goods of the debtor to the creditor. The praetor administered justice only in private or trivial cases: but in public and important causes, the people either judged themselves, or appointed persons called quaesitores to preside.

The censors were appointed to take an account of the number of the people, and the value of their fortunes, and superintend the public morals. They were usually chosen from the most respectable persons of consular dignity, at first only from among the Patricians, but afterwards likewise from the Plebeians.

They had the same ensigns as the consuls, except the lictors, and were chosen every five years, but continued in office only a year and a half. When any of the senators or equites committed a dishonorable action, the censors could erase the name of the former from the list, and deprive the knight of his horse and ring; any other citizen, they degraded or deprived of all the privileges of a Roman citizen, except liberty.

As the sentence of censors (Animadversio Censoria,) only affected a person's character, it was therefore properly called Ignominia. Yet even this was not unchangeable; the people or next censors might reverse it.

In addition to the revision of morals, censors had the charge of paving the streets—making roads, bridges, and aqueducts—preventing private persons from occupying public property—and frequently of imposing taxes.

A census was taken by these officers, every five years, of the number of the people, the amount of their fortunes, the number of slaves, &c. After this census had been taken, a sacrifice was made of a sow, a sheep, and a bull—hence called suove-taurilia. As this took place only every five years, that space of time was called a lustrum, because the sacrifice was a lustration offered for all the people; and therefore condere lustrum, means to finish the census.

The title of censor was esteemed more honorable than that of consul, although attended by less power: no one could be elected a second time, and they who filled it were remarkable for leading an irreproachable life; so that it was considered the chief ornament of nobility to be sprung from a censorian family.

The appointment of tribunes of the people, may be attributed to the following cause; the Plebeians being oppressed by the Patricians, on account of debt, made a secession to a mountain afterwards called mons sacer, three miles from Rome, nor could they be prevailed on to return, till they obtained from the Patricians a remission of debts for those who were insolvent, and liberty to such as had been given up to serve their creditors: and likewise that the Plebeians should have proper magistrates of their own, to protect their rights, whose person should be sacred and inviolable.

They were at first five in number, but afterwards increased to ten; they had no external mark of dignity, except a kind of beadle, called viator, who went before them.

The word veto, I forbid it, was at first the extent of their power; but it afterwards increased to such a degree, that under pretence of defending the rights of the people, they did almost whatever they pleased. If any one hurt a tribune in word or deed, he was held accursed, and his property confiscated.

The ediles were so called from their care of the public buildings; they were either Plebeian or curule; the former, two in number, were appointed to be, as it were, the assistants of the tribunes of the commons, and to determine certain lesser causes committed to them; the latter, also two in number, were chosen from the Patricians and Plebeians, to exhibit certain public games.

The quaestors were officers elected by the people, to take care of the public revenues; there were at first only two of them, but two others were afterwards added to accompany the armies; and upon the conquest of all Italy, four more were created, who remained in the provinces.

The principal charge of the city quaestors was the care of the treasury; they received and expended the public money, and exacted the fines imposed by the people: they kept the military standards, entertained foreign ambassadors, and took charge of the funerals of those who were buried at the public expense.

Commanders returning from war, before they could obtain a triumph, were obliged to take an oath before the quaestors, that they had written to the senate a true account of the number of the enemy they had slain, and of the citizens who were missing.

The office of the provincial quaestors was to attend the consuls or praetors into their provinces; to furnish the provisions and pay for the army; to exact the taxes and tribute of the empire, and sell the spoils taken in war.

The quaestorship was the first step of preferment to the other public offices, and to admission into the senate: its continuation was for but one year, and no one could be a candidate for it until he had completed his twenty-seventh year.

Legati were those next in authority to the quaestors, and appointed either by the senate or president of the province, who was then said to aliquem sibi legare.

The office of the legati was very dignified and honorable. They acted as lieutenants or deputies in any business for which they were appointed, and were sometimes allowed the honor of lictors.

The dictator was a magistrate invested with royal authority, created in perilous circumstances, in time of pestilence, sedition, or when the commonwealth was attacked by dangerous enemies.

His power was supreme both in peace and war, and was even above the laws; he could raise and disband armies, and determine upon the life and fortune of Roman citizens, without consulting the senate or people; when he was appointed, all other magistrates resigned their offices except the tribunes of the commons.

The dictator could continue in office only six months; but he usually resigned when he had effected the business for which he had been created. He was neither permitted to go out of Italy, nor ride on horseback, without the permission of the people; but the principal check against any abuse of power, was that he might be called to an account for his conduct, when he resigned his office.

A master of horse was nominated by the dictator immediately after his creation, usually from those of consular or praetorian rank, whose office was to command the cavalry, and execute the orders of the dictator.

The decemviri were ten men invested with supreme power, who were appointed to draw up a code of laws, all the other magistrates having first resigned their offices.

They at first behaved with great moderation, and administered justice to the people every tenth day. Ten tables of laws were proposed by them, and ratified by the people at the comitia centuriata.

As two other tables seemed to be wanting, decemviri were again appointed for another year, to make them. But as these new magistrates acted tyrannically, and seemed disposed to retain their command beyond the legal time, they were compelled to resign, chiefly on account of the base passion of Appius Claudius, one of their number, for Virginia, a virgin of plebeian rank, who was slain by her father to prevent her falling into the decemvir's hands. The decemviri all perished, either in prison or in banishment.

The consuls and all the chief magistrates, except the censors and the tribunes of the people, were preceded in public by a certain number, according to their rank of office, called lictors, each bearing on his shoulders as the insignia of office, the fasces and securis, which were a bundle of rods, with an axe in the centre of one end; but the lictors in attendance on an inferior magistrate, carried the fasces only, without the axe, to denote that he was not possessed of the power of capital punishments.

They opened a way through the crowd for the consul, saying words like these—"cedite, Consul venit," or "date viam Consuli." It was their duty also to inflict punishment on the condemned.



CHAPTER XVII.

Of Military Affairs.

According to the Roman constitution, every free-born citizen was a soldier, and bound to serve if called upon, in the armies of the state at any period, from the age of seventeen to forty-six.

When the Romans thought themselves injured by any nation, they sent one or more of the priests, called feciales, to demand redress, and if it was not immediately given, thirty-three days were granted to consider the matter, after which war might be justly declared; then the feciales again went to their confines, and having thrown a bloody spear into them, formally declared war against that nation.

The levy of the troops, the encampment, and much of the civil discipline, as well as the temporary command of the army, was intrusted to the military tribunes, six of whom were appointed to each legion.

During the early period of the republic, the standing army in time of peace usually consisted of only four legions, two of which were commanded by each consul, and they were relieved by new levies every year, the soldiers then serving without any pay beyond their mere subsistence. But this number was afterwards greatly augmented, and the inconvenience of raw troops having been experienced, a fixed stipend in money was allowed to the men, and they were constantly retained in the service.

The legion usually consisted of three hundred horse, and three thousand foot: the different kinds of infantry which composed it were three, the hastati, principes, and triarii. The first were so called because they fought with spears: they consisted of young men in the flower of life, and formed the first line in battle. The principes were men of middle age who occupied the second line. The triarii were old soldiers of approved valor, who formed the third line.

There was a fourth kind of troops, called vel{)i}tes from their swiftness and agility: these did not form a part of the legion, and had no certain post assigned them, but fought in scattered parties, wherever occasion required, usually before the lines.

The imperial eagle was the common standard of the legion; it was of gilt metal, borne on a spear by an officer of rank, styled, from his office, aquilifer, and was regarded by the soldiery with the greatest reverence. There were other ensigns, as A. B. C. D. in the frontispiece.

The only musical instruments used in the Roman army, were brazen trumpets of different forms, adapted to the various duties of the service.

The arms of the soldiery varied according to the battalion in which they served. Some were equipped with light javelins, and others with a missile weapon, called pilum, which they flung at the enemy; but all carried shields and short swords of that description, usually styled cut and thrust, which they wore on the right side, to prevent its interfering with the buckler, which they bore on the left arm.

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