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390

MERCENARIES——MERIONES.

were destroyed at the burning of the temple of Artemis at Ephesus, in b.c. 356, obviously he lived before that event, and probably flourished in the best period of Greek art, though he is never mentioned by any earlier Greek writer than Lucian (Lexiphanes, 7). He worked mainly in silver. The orator Crassus paid 100,000 sesterces (£1,000) for two cups chased by his hand; but, from regard to their value, refrained from using them. Varro possessed a statue wrought by him in bronze; and one Diodorus at Lily-bceum, two fine cups in the style of those adorned with figures of animals by Therlcles, the Corinthian potter (Cic., Verr. iv 38). Martial (iii 41) mentions a cup with a life­like representation of a lizard, and often refers to him (iv 39, viii 51, ix 59, xiv 93; cp. Juvenal viii 104). Propertius alludes to him (i 14, 2), and supplies us with the only extant criticism of his style, implying that, while the work of Mys (q.v.) was re­markable for its minute execution, that of Mentor was famous for its composition and its general design (iii 7, 11).

Argumenta magis sunt Mentoris addita formae: At Myos exiguum flectit acanthus Her.']

[J. E. S.]

Mercenaries. Apart from a few earlier examples of the employment of mercenaries, a regular organization of such troops was formed amongst the Greeks in the course of the Peloponnesian War, especially by the Arcadians, who were compelled by the poverty of their own country to utilize their strength and courage by seeking em­ployment outside it. It was most easily found by serving as soldiers in the continual wars between the Grecian states. When the mercenary system was at its height, Arcadians formed by far the larger portion of the mercenary forces, even as early as in the first great army of mercenaries of 13,000 men, which the younger Cyrus led against his brother Artaxerxes, king of Persia, in 400 b.c. In Greece in the 4th century the ground became more and more favourable to the growth of the mercenary body, and the citizens of the Greek states, instead of bearing arms them­selves, became more and more inclined to leave their wars to be fought out by mercenaries, especially since it had become a trade to form troops of mercenaries, and to let them out wholesale for service, no matter whether to Greeks or barbarians. Even prominent men, such as Agesllaus and PhllSpcemen, did not consider it beneath

their dignity to fight for strangers at the head of mercenaries. One of the chief recruiting places in the 4th century was Corinth, and afterwards for a time the district near the promontory of Tsenarum in Lacedsemon. The generals of mercenaries were called strdttgoi; their captains, through whom they raised companies of different kinds of troops, known as lOchoi, one hundred men in number, lOchagoi. The usual monthly pay of a common soldier i was on the average a gold daric (dareikos) j [ = 20 silver drachmae or 13s. 4d. in in-| trinsic value of silver; but in intrinsic value of the gold contained in it=a little more than a guinea. (Cp. coinage, fig. 3.)] Out of this he had to maintain himself entirely, to buy his armour, and keep it in good condition. The pay of the lochagoi was double, and of the strategoi four times that amount. In later times the strategoi, when they entered with com­plete armies into the service of some power at war, seem to have generally received considerable sums at the conclusion of the contract.—The Romans also employed foreign mercenaries after the second Punic War, especially as archers and slingers, and after the time of Marius a recruited army of mercenaries (se.e legion) had sprang out of the earlier levied army of citizens; but the mercenary organization never took among the Romans a form similar to that among the Greeks.

Mercury (Lat. Mercurius). The Italian god of commerce, and as such identified with the Greek Hermes (q.v.), whose descent and other qualities were accord­ingly transferred to him. As protector of the corn trade, especially with Sicily, which was of such great importance to Rome, he was first publicly honoured in that city by the erection of a temple near the Circus Maximus. At the same time a guild of merchants was established, the members of which were known as mercurtales. At the yearly festival of the temple and the guild, May 15th, the merchants sacrificed to the god and to his mother, and at the Porta Cdpena sprinkled themselves and their merchandise with hallowed water. With the spread of Roman commerce the worship of Mercury extended far into the West and North.

M6r6trlces. See het^er^:, at end.

Merldnes. Son of Molus, a half-brother of

Idomeneus of Crete, whom he accompanied

to Troy. In Homer we read that he was

there one of the bravest in the fight, and

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