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Article

devotio  

H. S. Versnel

Ritual to devote either enemies or oneself (or both) to gods of the Underworld and death. *Macrobius (Sat. 3. 9. 9 ff.) records that in ancient times enemy cities were devoted (devoveri) to gods of the Underworld (Dis pater, *Ve(d)iovis, *manes), after the *evocatio (calling out) of their protective deities. The prayer (carmen devotionis) he quotes on the occasion of the devotio of *Carthage calls the enemies substitutes (vicarios) for the Roman commander and his army, who are thus saved. A better-known variant of this genuine votum is the type of devotio only attested for P. *Decius Mus (1) (and less unequivocally for his son and grandson, around 300 bce). Here, the Roman commander linked the sacrifice of his own life, through an act of self-*consecratio, with the devotio of the enemies. Livy (8.

Article

Diana  

Herbert Jennings Rose and John Scheid

Diana (root †dyw-‘the bright one’ (cf. *Jupiter), originally a moon goddess, contraAltheim, Griechische Götter im alten Rom (1930), 93 ff.), an Italian goddess anciently identified with *Artemis, from whom she took over the patronage of margins and savageness. But the modalities of this evolution remain puzzling (moonlight as the contrary of daylight, and so of civilized life?). Her cult was widespread; see Birt in Roscher, Lex. 1. 1003–4 for details. One of her most famous shrines was on Mt. Tifata near *Capua (Vell. Pat. 2. 25. 4 and elsewhere in literature, supported by much inscriptional evidence); the name Tifata means ‘holm-oak grove’ (Festus (Paul) Glos. Lat. 54), which suits Diana's character as a goddess of the wilderness. Most famous of all was her ancient cult near *Aricia (on the shore of the volcanic lake known as the Mirror of Diana, Speculum Dianae, below the modern Nemi, i.

Article

Wolfram Kinzig

Didascalia Apostolorum (The Catholic Teaching of the Twelve Apostles of the Redeemer), a Church order originally written in Greek, but completely preserved only in Syriac translation. It claims apostolic authorship, but was, in fact, written probably by a bishop in northern Syria in the first half of the 3rd cent. ce for a Gentile Christian community.

Article

Dido  

Cyril Bailey and Philip Hardie

Legendary queen of *Carthage, daughter of a Phoenician king of Tyre, called Belus by *Virgil. According to *Timaeus (2), the earliest extant source for her story, her *Phoenician name was Elissa, and the name Dido (‘wanderer’) was given to her by the Libyans. Her husband, called Sychaeus by Virgil, was murdered by her brother *Pygmalion (2), now king of Tyre, and Dido escaped with some followers to Libya where she founded Carthage. In the earlier tradition, in order to escape marriage with a Libyan king (Iarbas in Virgil) Dido built a pyre as though for an offering and leapt into the flames. The story of the encounter of *Aeneas and Dido (chronologically difficult given the traditional dating of Carthage's foundation four centuries after the destruction of Troy) probably appeared in *Naevius' epic Bellum Poenicum. According to *Varro it was Dido's sister Anna who killed herself for love of Aeneas.

Article

Didyma  

David Potter

Oracular shrine of *Apollo (see oracles), located about 16 km. (10 mi.) south of *Miletus. In the Archaic period, it was administered by a priestly clan, the Branchidae, and rose to great prominence in the 6th cent. bce. Three prose oracular responses survive from this period, as does one dedication. In 494 the shrine was destroyed by *Darius I and the Branchidae themselves were exiled to Sogdiana.The oracle was refounded in the time of *Alexander (3) the Great (probably in 331 bce), and rapidly re-emerged as an extremely important site. It made significant contact with the Seleucids, and, during the brief Ptolemaic control of Miletus, with the Ptolemies as well. (See Ptolemy (1).) In the imperial period, it ranked with *Claros as one of the great oracular centres of Asia Minor.Excavations have revealed a massive structure begun when the oracle was refounded. The total building measures 118×60 m. (129×66 yds.) at the krēpidōma (platform).

Article

C. Robert Phillips

Roman festival on 21 December to the goddess *Angerona. The Fasti Praenestini describe her statue's mouth as bandaged and connect this with Rome's ‘secret name’.

Article

J. Linderski

All divination stems from the belief that gods send meaningful messages. These messages were classified in a variety of intersecting ways: according to the character of signs through which the message was conveyed, and whether these signs were sent unasked or were actively sought; the time-frame to which a sign was taken to refer (future, present, past) and the content of the message itself (prediction, warning, prohibition, displeasure, approval); and, most importantly, whether the message pertained to the private or public sphere, the observation and interpretation of the latter category of signs forming part of Roman state religion.The divine message was either intuitively conveyed or required interpretation. *Cicero (Div. 1. 12) adopts the division of divination (elaborated by the Stoics, see Stoicism) into two classes, artificial (external) and natural (internal). The latter relied upon divine inspiration (instinctus, adflatus divinus), and was characteristic of prophets (vaticinantes) and dreamers (somniantes).

Article

divisio  

M. Winterbottom

Divisio, Gk. diairesis, was, in declamation, the teacher's separation of a case into its constituent arguments. The process could be very intricate, as we see in the Diairesis zētēmatōn (‘Division of Questions’) of *Sopater (2) (4th cent. ce?), who for each type of case identifies a variety of subheadings according to a system not unlike that of *Hermogenes (2). In Latin, the sermones of the so-called Minor Declamations (see Declamationes Pseudo-Quintilianeae) are far less formal and detailed; and L. *Annaeus Seneca (1) normally gives the simplest of headings (especially ius and aequitas, the letter and spirit of the law) when he analyses the speeches of his declaimers. Declaimers would not necessarily insert a formal division in their speeches (though they might sketch one in advance: Sen. Controv. 1 pref. 21); if they did, it would naturally follow the narration, as did the partitio in judicial oratory (Quint.

Article

John Frederick Drinkwater

Divitiacus (1) (1st cent. bce), an Aeduan Druid, whose career typifies the political division that exposed Gaul to conquest. His policy of inviting Roman aid against aggressors (unsuccessfully in 61 bce against *Ariovistus alone, successfully in 58 against both the Helvetii and Ariovistus) enabled him to emerge victorious over his bitter rival, his brother *Dumnorix.

Article

Emma Cole

Ancient drama has had a vast influence upon the literary, performance, and intellectual culture of modernity. From ancient Greece thirty-two tragedies, eleven comedies, and one satyr play survive, and from ancient Rome ten tragedies and twenty-seven comedies remain, alongside countless fragments from all genres. Many of the surviving plays are staged in contemporary theatre in both literal translation and more liberal adaptation, and today more ancient drama is seen in professional theatres than at any point since antiquity. Although all ancient dramatic genres have a rich reception history, Greek tragedy dominates the field, particularly in the 20th and 21st centuries. Productions of Greek tragedy today range from masked performances in the original language through to radical, avant-garde, immersive, and postdramatic reinventions. Greek tragedy is also frequently used as a touchstone within literary theory and broader intellectual discourse, from the theorisation of the ideal form of performance (Wagner’s Gesamtkuntswerk) to the development of psychoanalytic theory (Freud’s Oedipus complex) and structuralism (Lévi-Strauss). Ancient drama has also provided inspiration for entirely new dramatic forms; the influence of Roman tragedy, for example, can be felt within the revenge tragedies of the Elizabethan and Jacobean eras, while traces of Roman comedy can be felt in slapstick comedy and Italian commedia dell’arte. Current growth areas within both artistic practice, and academic research into the reception of ancient drama, include the performance reception of dramatic fragments, an increased interest in forms such as burlesque and pantomime, and the use of ancient drama as a tool of resistance against oppressive political regimes.

Article

dreams  

Simon Price

Dreams fascinated the ancients as much as they do us, though it is illegitimate to employ Freudian categories in interpreting ancient dreams: their categories must not be subverted by our own culturally relative theories. Most ancients accepted that there were both significant and non-significant dreams (e.g. Hom. Od. 19. 562–7: true dreams come from gates of horn, delusory dreams from gates of ivory; cf. Verg. Aen. 6. 893–6). This basic division might itself be subdivided, most elaborately into a fivefold classification: non-predictive dreams, subdivided into enhypnia caused by the day's residues and phantasmata or distorted visions that come between sleeping and waking states; predictive dreams subdivided into: oneiroi that need symbolic interpretation, horamata or prophetic visions, and chrēmatismata or advice from a god (e.g. Macrob. In Somn. 1. 3). The last category is well attested epigraphically by votives put up by people as the result of successful advice or instructions from a god received in a dream, and in the remarkable diary kept by *Aelius Aristides which included numerous visions of *Asclepius and other gods.

Article

ecstasy  

H. S. Versnel

In classical Greek the term ἔκστασις may refer to any situation in which (part of) the mind or body is removed from its normal place or function. It is used for bodily displacements, but also for abnormal conditions of the mind such as madness, unconsciousness, or ‘being beside oneself’. In the Hellenistic and later periods the notion is influenced by the Platonic concept of ‘divine madness’, a state of inspired possession distinct from lower forms of madness and as such providing insights into objective truth. Ekstasis now acquires the notion of a state of trance in which the soul, leaving the body, sees visions (Acts 10: 10; 22: 17). In later, especially Neoplatonist theory (Plotinus, Porphyry), ekstasis is the central condition for escape from restraints of either a bodily or a rational-intellectual nature and thus becomes the gateway to the union with the god (unio mystica); see dionysus.

Article

Egeria  

C. Robert Phillips

Egeria, water goddess, worshipped with *Diana at Aricia (V. Aen. 7. 762–4, 775), apparently with the *Camenae outside the porta Capena in Rome (see Rodríguez Almeida below). Her name may be connected with egerere (‘to deliver’: Festus Gloss. Lat. 192) or with the gens Egeria (Livy 1. 21. 3, 38. 1, with Ogilvie's notes; Cato, II.28 Chassignet; cf. Festus Gloss.

Article

Richard Gordon

The Graeco-Roman view of Egyptian religion is sharply fissured. Despite Herodotus 2. 50. 1 (comm. A. B. Lloyd, 1975–88), many writers of all periods, and probably most individuals, found in the Egyptians' worship of animals a polemical contrast to their own norms (though cf. Cic. Nat. D. 1. 29. 81 f.), just as, conversely, the Egyptians turned animal-worship into a symbol of national identity (cf. Diod. Sic. 1. 86–90). The first Egyptian divinity to be recognized by the Greek world was the oracular *Ammon of the *SiwaOasis (Hdt. 2. 54–7); but *oracles have a special status. The only form of Late-period Egyptian religion to be assimilated into the Graeco-Roman world was to a degree untypical, centred on anthropomorphic deities—*Isis, *Sarapis, and Harpocrates—and grounded in Egyptian vernacular enthusiasm quite as much as in temple ritual. The other gods which became known in the Graeco-Roman world, *Osiris, *Anubis, *Apis, *Horus, *Bubastis, Agathodaemon (see agathos daimon), Bes, etc.

Article

Jean Turfa

The study of the inscriptions written in the Etruscan language and alphabet, usually texts incised on stone, pottery, or metal objects, or occasionally on more fragile media such as ink-on-cloth. Dipinti (painted inscriptions) appear on vases and frescoes, especially from tombs at Tarquinia, Chiusi, and Vulci. The unique characteristics of the non-Indo-European Etruscan language and its seminal place in transmission of the “Roman” alphabet and numerals make it impractical to divorce linguistic, historical, and social considerations from the study of Etruscan epigraphy. The gradual replacement of Etruscan with Latin characters and language may serve as an index of the political and social domination of the Roman state.The alphabet reached Etruria during the 8th centurybce; the earliest exemplar is a set of rocchetti (spools/tablet-weaving weights) incised with the letter A, in a woman’s burial at Veii, implying the involvement of women weavers in its dissemination.1 Early examples (7th-century, especially abecedaria or sample alphabets) retain letter forms developed in western Greek colonies such as Pithekoussai, including letters not used in the pronunciation of Etruscan.

Article

Stephen Hodkinson

Putative Spartan *ephor. According to Plutarch, Agis 5, he introduced, some time after the *Peloponnesian War, a law authorizing the gift or bequest of property, thereby undermining Sparta's ‘single-heir’ inheritance system and her equality of landholding. Its context and historicity are controversial. Some scholars identify Epitadeus with the lawgiver to whom *Aristotle (Pol. 2. 1270a) ascribes the rules concerning all forms of alienation, or (rather implausibly) with an officer (Epitadas) killed in 425 bce. Others argue that Epitadeus and his law were invented, perhaps following a Platonic model (see plato (1)), by supporters of the late 3rd-cent. reforming kings to ‘explain’ the corruption of the fictional ‘Lycurgan equality’ (see lycurgus (2)) they claimed to be restoring. The ‘single-heir’ system is implausible; and gift and bequest were probably longstanding rights. Bequest is attested historically c.400 bce, before Plutarch's dating for Epitadeus.

Article

J. Linderski

Each deity had its name, but this name could be hidden (cf. Brelich) or unknown (hence the formula in addresses ‘whether god or goddess’, sive deus, sive dea, cf. Alvar). If it was known, and could be uttered (as the hidden name could not), it was often accompanied by epithets and surnames (cognomina). They are either descriptions used informally or true names occurring in actual cult (attested in formulas, dedications, and names of temples), although strict distinction is not always possible. We can distinguish several classes of epithets and surnames: (1) Purely literary descriptions, e.g. of *Mars by *Virgil as harsh, wicked, untamed, savage, or powerful in arms, durus, impius, indomitus, saevus, armipotens (Ecl. 10. 40; G. 1. 511; Aen. 2. 440, 11. 153, 9. 717). (2) Popular descriptions derived either from a special feature (often iconographic) of a deity, e.g. *Hercules Bullatus, ‘Wearing a bulla’ (an amulet worn by young boys), Puerinus ‘Youthful’, Pusillus, ‘Small’, (CIL 6.

Article

Epona  

James Rives

A Celtic goddess known from dedications that are found from Spain to the Balkans, and northern Britain to Italy. Her name derives from the Celtic word for ‘horse’, and the most common iconography of the goddess shows her seated side-saddle on a horse; Latin writers mention her as the goddess of the stable (Juv. 9. 157; Apul. Met. 3. 27). She is also at times depicted with fruits or a cornucopia, attributes that link her with the mother goddesses. Her original cult area was in NE Gaul, and monuments are very frequent in the regions of the *Aedui (near Dijon), the *Treveri (around the Mosel), and east of the Rhine to the border. The wider dispersal is due largely to devotees in the army, often members of the cavalry, but she also has a festival in a civic calendar of 27 bce from northern Italy. See religion, celtic.

Article

C. Robert Phillips

Two Roman festivals of horse-racing on 27 February and 14 March (Ov. Fast. 2. 857 ff., 3. 517 ff.). The first was founded by *Romulus (Varro, Ling. 6. 13) and the second was connected with the martial festival of the October Horse: U. Scholz, Studien zum altitalischen und altrömischen Marskult und Marsmythos (1970), 115 ff.

Article

Richard Gordon

In the Classical period, religious eunuchs are a feature of several Anatolian cults of female deities, extending across to Scythia (Hdt. 4. 67: not shamans) and to the southern foothills of the Taurus mountains, but independent of Babylonian and Phoenician (Euseb. Vit. Const. 3. 55. 2 f.) practices (see anatolian deities). As a whole the institution created a class of pure servants of a god (Matt. 19: 12). Its significance derives from a double contrast, with the involuntary castration of children for court use and the normal obligation to marry. The adult self-castrate expressed in his body both world-rejection and -superiority.Two forms may be distinguished. (1) A senior, or even high, priest in a temple, e.g. the eunuchs of *Hecate at Lagina in *Caria (Sokolowski, LSAM no. 69. 19, etc.); the Megabyz(x)us of *Artemis at *Ephesus (Strabo 14. 1. 23; Vett. Val., 2. 21. 47); the *Attis and Battaces, the high priests of Cybele at *Pessinus.