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Article

Philip de Souza

Diekplous (διέκπλους), a Greek naval term meaning ‘a sailing through and out’, is used by ancient authors to describe a common manœuvre in which individual ships, sailing together in line abreast, would attempt to break through a line of enemy ships in similar formation. The purpose was to achieve a better position from which to attack the vulnerable flanks of opposing warships. It could be counteracted by forming circles (Thuc.

Article

diolkos  

John Salmon

Stone trackway across the isthmus of *Corinth for transporting ships and/or cargoes between the Saronic and the Corinthian gulfs. Archaeology suggests a date under *Periander; there is literary evidence that he considered a canal. Wheeled wagons (see transport, wheeled) ran in carved grooves c.1.5 m. (5 ft.) apart; traffic probably moved in one direction at a time. *triremes used it during the *Peloponnesian War, perhaps after modifications; but it was probably constructed for merchant vessels.

Article

Dipylon  

Robin Osborne

The name used to refer to the double gateway in Athens' city wall leading into the *Ceramicus and to the cemetery immediately outside the wall in that area. The gateway comprised a rectangular courtyard open on the land side, closed by two double doors on the city side; each corner was enlarged to form a tower; a fountain-house adjoined the gateway on the city side. The complex dates from immediately after the *Persian Wars, but was rebuilt in the 3rd cent. bce. The road from the *agora to the *Academy passed through this gate. Some 75 m. (82 yds.) south-west a similar smaller gateway protected the passage of the Sacred Way to *Eleusis. Between the two gates stood the Pompeion, the marshalling-place for the Panathenaic procession (see Panathenaea). From the 11th cent. bce onwards the area was the principal burial-ground of Athens, and the whole area has been well excavated by German archaeologists. The best impression of the cemetery is given by *Pausanias (3) (1.

Article

discus  

Robert Leslie Howland and Stephen Instone

Throwing the discus developed from throwing the solos or weight (cf. Il. 23. 826–49), and resembled a combination of modern discus-throwing and shot-put. Surviving examples of ancient discuses vary in weight from 1.245 kg. to about 8.5 kg. (2 ¾–18 ¾ lb.). (the men's shot is nowadays 7.26 kg (16 lb.); the men's discus is 2 kg. (4.4 lb.)) and in diameter from 16.5 cm. to 34 cm. (6 ½–13 ¼ in.), though some of these were perhaps intended as dedicatory offerings or for training purposes only. The throwing action differed from modern discus technique, showing a resemblance to that now used in the shot-put: instead of making two or three complete turns before throwing, the athlete simply swung his arm back and then forwards while rotating his upper body. The throw was made from a balbis, a space defined by lines in front and at the sides but not at the back (suggesting that the athlete might move forwards before releasing the discus). The method of throwing is illustrated in vase-paintings and by statues, notably the Discobolus statue by *Myron (1).

Article

dress  

Hero Granger-Taylor

In classical antiquity, items of clothing and jewellery were major personal possessions. The prominence of drapery, i.e. clothing, in Greek and Roman art reflects the importance of dress in daily life.Most garments were made of *wool, though *linen was used for some tunics and underclothing and *silk was worn by richer women; most frequently, the fibre was left undyed, though women's clothes were more colourful than men's; the clothing of both sexes commonly had areas of decoration in wool dyed either with ‘real purple’ from sea snails or in imitation of *purple; such decoration was generally very simple, consisting of woven bands and geometric motifs; figurative decoration, where it occurred, was usually tapestry-woven and only rarely embroidered. Clothes were made of large pieces of cloth with simple outlines which had been woven to shape on traditional looms; though certain garments were characteristic of the Greeks and others of the Romans there was no real difference between Greek and Roman clothes in techniques or materials; most classical garments belonged either to the category of mantles and cloaks that were ‘thrown around’ and for which the general terms were periblēma and amictus, or to those items, including tunics, that were ‘entered into’, endyma and indumentum; the former often served at night as blankets; all clothes were cleaned by washing and were stored folded-up in chests.

Article

Ephyra  

W. M. Murray

Ephyra (also Cichyrus: Strabo 7. 7. 5), a city in western Epirus near the mouth of the *Acheron river. Here *Neoptolemus (1) landed on his return from Troy (Pind. Nem. 7. 37–9) and *Odysseus came to gather poison for his arrows (Od. 1. 259–62). The ancient city is marked by a circuit-wall of three phases at modern Xylokastro. Some 600 m. (650 yds.) to the south, at Agios Ioannis, a heavily built complex of Hellenistic date incorporating an underground chamber was identified by its excavator with the ‘oracle of the dead’ (nekyomanteion) of Herodotus 5.

Article

Andrew F. Stewart

Pergamene sculptor, active c.240–220 bce. Epigonus signed eight dedications at *Pergamum;*Pliny (1) the Elder, HN 34.88 credits him with numerous bronzes, including a Trumpeter and a Weeping Child Caressing Its Murdered Mother, and his name is often substituted for Isigonos’ in Pliny's list (HN 34.84) of those who ‘did the battles of Attalus and Eumenes against the Gauls’ (see also antigonus (4); phyromachus). Attributions (in copy) include a dying Celtic trumpeter and an underlifesize Amazon once with a child at her breast (removed c. 1560). The trumpeter, however, is too large for Attalus I's dedication at Pergamum for his victories over the *Celts and *Seleucids in 237–223, which he signed. A virtuoso study in ethnic realism, he evokes the pathos of the situation through his posture and stoic expression, as blood seeps from a chest wound. The Amazon copies a figure from Attalus's multiple dedication of c.

Article

H. W. Pleket

The study of inscriptions engraved on stone or metal in Greek letters. Coin-legends (see coinage, greek) are for the numismatist, whereas painted mummy-labels and ink-written texts on *ostraca, especially popular in Egypt, are the realm of the papyrologist; inscriptions painted or incised on vases and pottery (see pottery (greek), inscriptions on) are the combined prey of vase-experts and epigraphists.1 (Superscript figures refer to the bibliographical notes at the end of the article.) Interest in inscriptions is not a modern phenomenon; already in antiquity people studied specific inscriptions. In the early 3rd cent. bce*Craterus (2) published a collection of decrees (Ψηφισμάτων συναγωγή); a hundred years later *Polemon (3) of Ilium received the nickname στηλοκόπας (‘tablet-glutton’) for his fanatical attention to inscriptions. With the Renaissance, interest in antiquities went hand in hand with admiration for the ancient literary inheritance. With Cyriacus of Ancona there began a long series of travelling scholars, who in their notebooks produced beautiful descriptions and drawings of ancient sites and the inscriptions on them. Initially, inscriptions tended to be disregarded or even despised by the champions of the revered literary sources; but when the latter came under the attack of Cartesian rationalism and Pyrrhonian scepticism, epigraphical shares increased in value on the historical stock exchange:2 inscriptions were authentic and direct and could not be disqualified as forgeries or highly biased accounts.

Article

Jenifer Neils

Article

Theodore Fyfe, Richard Ernest Wycherley, and Antony Spawforth

Ancient name for a shrine identified by most (but not all) scholars with the third outstanding building on the Athenian Acropolis, begun in 421 bce and finished, after a lapse, in 407 bce; built of Pentelic marble (see pentelicon), with friezes of black *Eleusis stone to take applied white marble relief sculpture. Exact details of its construction are known from a contemporary inscription (IG 13. 474). The main structure is divided into four compartments: the largest (east cella) has a prostyle-hexastyle Ionic portico; the west end is closed by a wall with engaged columns and corner piers. At this end is a unique and boldly projecting (though small) south feature—the ‘porch of the maidens (korai)’, with draped female figures serving as supports—and, nearly opposite on the north side, a still more boldly projecting porch with Ionic columns (partly reassembled in early 20th cent.) standing on a lower level and having the tallest order of the whole composition.

Article

Only his colossal marble *Apollo Patrous has survived. A virtuoso all-rounder, he also made personifications (Aretē, Hellas, i.e. Virtue and Greece), heroes (*Achilles, *Paris) and portraits (*Philip (1) II, *Alexander (3) the Great), wrote on proportion and colours, and painted the Battle of *Mantinea (362), the Twelve Gods, and *Theseus with *Democracy and *Demos in the Stoa Basileios.

Article

Europus  

Margaret Stephana Drower, Eric William Gray, and Antony Spawforth

Europus (also Dura), on the middle *Euphrates, founded by the *Seleucids as a military colony c.300 bce, and a *polis in the 2nd cent. bce. Its importance is chiefly archaeological: excavations in the 1920s and 1930s provide detailed information about a Graeco-Macedonian settlement in the near east under the Seleucids, Parthians, and Romans. The new site was laid out on a grid-plan (see hippodamus) within heavy fortifications; a 2nd.-cent. bce parchment (PDura15) shows that the territory was divided into hereditary farm-plots (klēroi). The *Seleucid phase is marked by an *agora, Greek-style *houses, a temple of *Zeus Megistos with mixed Greek and Mesopotamian elements, and a ‘palace’ in Graeco-Achaemenid style recalling that at *Ai-Khanoum. Occupied by *Parthiac.100 bce, it served for the next 250 years as a Parthian frontier-town; the survival of Greek as the official language and (probably) that most in daily use suggests continuing Greekness. Taken by Rome in ce 165, it became a garrison-town on the eastern *limes; a Roman camp, military equipment, and important Roman military archives belong to this phase.

Article

Andrew F. Stewart

Sicyonian sculptor, pupil of *Lysippus (2), active c.330–290 bce. Famed for his *Tyche for *Antioch (1) (founded in 300), known in many copies and widely imitated by other cities; wearing a mural crown and holding a sheaf of wheat, she was seated on a rock symbolizing Mt. Silpius, with the river *Orontes swimming at her feet.

Article

Robin Osborne

There are no distinct agricultural buildings in Archaic and Classical Greece: those who exploited the land lived in and worked from houses indistinguishable from those inhabited by others who gained their livelihood in other ways. A number of rural buildings, both isolated buildings and buildings which are part of larger complexes, have been excavated, and many more are known from archaeological surface survey. (See archaeology, classical.) Many of these buildings, and the prime example is the *house near the cave of *Pan at Vari in Attica, have no features that directly associate them with agriculture, and even permanent, as opposed to seasonal, residence is difficult to demonstrate archaeologically. Two particular types of sites have been supposed to be particularly likely to be farms: buildings closely associated with regular land divisions in a colonial landscape, such as those found in the territory of ancient *Metapontum in south Italy or in the Crimea (see chersonesus (2)); and tower buildings.

Article

Ian Archibald Richmond, Eric William Marsden, and Richard Allan Tomlinson

In the Aegean area small towns with perimeter walls appear early in the bronze age (Khalandriani). More usual is the fortified acropolis, increasingly developed in the troubled times of the late bronze age (*Tiryns, *Mycenae, Athens (see athens, topography)). These are built with large irregular blocks of stone in Cyclopean style. With repairs, they survive as the principal defences of their location into the Classical period.The simple yet robust brick walls of Old Smyrna (900–600 bce, J. M. Cook, BSA1958/9, 35 ff.) illuminate the somewhat obscure position in the Dark Age and Archaic period. Extensive town walls began to develop in the 6th and, especially, 5th cents. bce. These are usually of mud-brick on a stone footing. The Athenian walls at *Pylos were built with stone facings, with rubble and clay packing, an increasingly common form of construction, while the system of *Long Walls shows how large-scale fortifications were used for strategic ends.

Article

Nicholas Purcell

The table, chair, and couch are the central canon of ancient furnishings. Their principal characteristic (by contrast with early modern and modern furnishings) is portability, essential in the circumstances of ancient domestic life, with use of space, and even choice of house, at least among the élite, varying with season and occasion. Heavy desks and armoires, immovable dressers and cabinets had no place in a theory of habitation which revolved round the current location of the principal persons of the family; their environment had to be speedily arranged for them, if not around them, with screens, curtains, and equipment for the current activity, be it eating, drinking, sleeping, writing—and portable furniture to support small utensils, *lamps, containers. Furniture was also a form of capital accumulation (as its place in inventories from the Mycenaean period already shows), deriving value from rare materials, ebony in Greek usage, citrus (Gk. thyon, Callitris quadrivalvis, a North African tree) in Roman, see timber; or workmanship (lathe-turning is known in Assyria; fine figured representations, as on the chest of *Cypselus, were common, and best known to us from the wooden sarcophagi of the Crimea).

Article

games  

Frederick Adam Wright and Michael Vickers

One of the earliest games played in Greece, if we may believe *Athenaeus (1), was marbles: the suitors of *Penelope shot their alleys in turn against another marble, representing the queen; the first one to hit had another turn, and if he were successful again he was considered to be the presumptive bridegroom. A favourite game at Athens was draughts (πεσσοί). The board was divided into 36 squares, and on them the oval pieces were moved; the centre line was called ἱερὰ γραμμή (‘sacred line’), perhaps because when you crossed it you were on the enemy's ground. More popular still was the ‘Wine-throw’ (κότταβος), especially at the end of dinner (see symposium). The players, reclining on their left elbow, had to throw with their right hand the last drops of wine from their cups at a target; this might be saucers floating in water or an object that might fall when hit.

Article

gems  

Frederick Norman Pryce, David Edward Eichholz, and Michael Vickers

Precious stones were valued in antiquity as possessing magical and medicinal virtues, as ornaments, and as seals when engraved with a device. Such engravings (intaglios) in soft media like steatite or *ivory are found in early Minoan days; the use of hard stones dates from the middle Minoan age. Late Minoan and Mycenaean gems have a rich repertory of human and animal designs; the favoured shapes are the lenticular (round) and amygdaloid (sling-stone) (see minoan and mycenaean civilization). In sub-Mycenaean and geometric times the art of working hard stones was largely lost. A revival in the 7th cent. bce is usually associated with the island of *Melos, and the commencement of Classical gem-engraving in the 6th cent. is marked by the introduction of the scarab (beetle) form of seal from Egypt. This was soon abandoned in Greece for the scaraboid, which omits the beetle-back. The late 5th and 4th cents. mark the high point of Greek gem engraving. In Hellenistic times the choice of subjects grows restricted, but excellent work was done in portraiture. In Italy the Etruscans used the scarab until the 3rd cent.; gems of the later Roman republic show a wide range of subjects, combined with clumsiness of execution. With Augustus begins the large series of ‘Graeco-Roman’ gems. A period of indifferent work in the middle empire is succeeded by a revival under Constantine I.

Article

G. Herman

In the Homeric poems, gift-giving perhaps receives more attention than any other peaceful heroic activity. It has three outstanding features. First, gifts have an extremely wide range of functions. The word ‘gift’ (dōron) was, as Finley (see bibliog. below) puts it, ‘a cover-all for a great variety of actions and transactions which later became differentiated and acquired their own appellations…payments for services rendered, desired or anticipated; what we would call fees, rewards, prizes and sometimes bribes’ (and, we should perhaps add, taxes, loans, and diplomatic relationships). Secondly, gifts are often extremely valuable; those referred to include cattle, armour, women, and even entire cities. Thirdly, gifts are frequently given within contexts such as *marriage, *funerals, friendship, and ritualized friendship (see friendship, greece and friendship, ritualized), either to initiate or to perpetuate amiable relationships. The claim sometimes made in modern research (by Hooker, for example) that these features of gift-giving existed in poetical fantasy rather than in social reality is contradicted by the recurrence of these features in later non-poetical descriptions of gift-giving.

Article

Glycon (2) Athenian sculptor (early 3rd cent. ce), known from his signature on the Farnese Hercules in Naples, found in the baths of Caracalla. The statue is a version of a late 4th-cent. type often attributed to *Lysippus (2).