The Ancient Library

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On this page: Machaira – Machaon and Podalirius – Macrobius – Maenads – Magister Equitum


among his statues of gods were the colossal f'r'.ms of Zeus and Heracles, at Tarentum (of which the former was second in size only to that at Rhodes, while the latter was afterwards brought to the Capitol at Rome, and then to the Hippodrome at Constantinople, where it was melted down in a.d. 1022), and, lastly, the sungod on the four-horse chariot at Rhodes [Pliny, N. H., xxxiv §§ 40, 63].

The first example of pure allegory in Greek art was his Cairos, the Favourable Moment; a delicate youth with modest look standing on a ball, with his feet winged, and holding shears and a balance in hiss hands. The hair hung down in front, while it was so short behind that it could not be grasped [Anthol. Gra ii 49, 13; Callistratus, Statute, 6].

By far the greater number of his statues were portraits; of these the various repre­sentations of Alexander the Great from boyhood onwards were of marked excellence [Pliny, I.e. 64], Indeed, the king would have no sculptor but Lysippus to represent him, even as he would have no other painter than Apelles [Pliny, N. H., vii 125; Horace, Epist. ii 1, 240; Cicero, Ad Fam. v 12, 13].

Among his large groups were Craterus saving the life of Alexander chasing the lion [Pliny, xxxiv 64], and the portraits of twenty-five horsemen and nine foot soldiers who fell at the first assault in the battle

of the Gramcus [Arrian, Anab. i 16 § 7; Plutarch, Alex. 16]. The excellent copy in marble, at the Vatican, of the ApoxydmenOs,


(Rome, Vatican Museum.)

a youth removing the dust of the palaestra with a strigil, affords an idea of his skill in representing beautiful and perfectly deve­loped bodies of delicate elasticity and grace­ful suppleness [Pliny, xxxiv 62].


Machaira. A one-edged sword, slightly curved, in use among the Greeks. For further information, see sword.

Itachaon and_ Podallrras, The sons of Asclepius and EpI5ne, skilled in the art of healing, took part in the expedition to Troy with thirty Thessalian ships, and were there the physicians of the Greeks, besides fight­ing valiantly. According to post-Homeric legends Machaon was slain by Eurypylus, the son of TelSphus, and his corpse was brought by Nestor to Messenia, where, at Gerenia, he had a sepulchre and a temple in which cures were effected. Podalirius, who recognised the madness of Ajax by his burning eyes, stayed with Calchas from the fall of Troy to his death, and then settled at Syrnos in Caria; he had a hiroOn in Apulia, close to that of Calchas.

Macrdbma (Ambrosius TheodOsius). A man of high rank, and, according to his own account, not a born Roman, and probably a

pagan, who wrote, in the beginning of the 5th century after Christ, two extant works: (1) a commentary on Cicero's Dream of Scipio (Somnium Sclplonis, from the sixth book of the De Republic^); and (2) an anti­quarian compilation in seven books, treat­ing of a number of historical, mythological, grammatical, and antiquarian subjects, in the form of table talk, at a celebration of the Saturnalia; hence the title, Convlvia Saturnalia. Macrobius has gathered his information from various authors, especially Gellius, whom, however, he does not men­tion any more than his other authorities.

Maenads (Gr. mainades) " the frenzied ones." Women in Bacchic ecstasy, who formed part of the train of Dionysus (q.v. fig. 3; cp. vases, fig. 13).

Magister Equltum. The assistant of the dictator, nominated by him immediately after his own appointment, and bound to obey him unconditionally, representing him

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