The Ancient Library

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On this page: Parali – Parascenium – Parasite – Parastas – Parcae – Parentalia – Parian Chronicle – Parilia – Paris



complete. It originally contained a number of dates of the political, but chiefly of the religious and literary, history of the Greeks, from the Athenian king Cecrops to the Athenian archon Dlognetus, 264 b.c.; in its present condition, however, it only goes down to 354 B.C. All the dates are given according to Attic kings and archons, and the historical authorities on which it de­pends must have been Attic authors. The origin and aim of the tablet are unknown. [It was first published by Selden in 1628; it has since been printed by Boeckh (Corpus Inscr. Grcec. ii, no. 2374), who considers that the leading authority followed is Phanias of Eresos, and also by C. Muller, Frag. Hist. PirUia = PcrZ««i'($.i'.). [Gr., i 535-90.) Paris (or Alexandras, Gr.). The second son of Priam and Hecuba. His mother having dreamt before this birth that she had brought forth a firebrand, which set all Troy in flames, Priam had the new-born babe exposed on Mount Ida by the advice of his son jEsacus. Here a she-bear suckled the babe for five days; then a shep­herd found him, and reared him with his own children. Paris won the name of Alexandras (" protector of men ") by his ! bravery as a shepherd, defending herdsmen j and cattle. On Mount Ida he married (Enone, daughter of the river-god Cebren. He decided the strife of the goddesses Hera, Aphrodite, and Athene for the golden apple of Erfs (see peleus), having been appointed arbiter by Hermes at the com­mand of Zeus. Paris preferred the posses­sion of the fairest woman, promised him by Aphrodite, to power and riches, or wisdom and fame, promised by Hera and Athene respectively. He therefore awarded to Aphrodite the prize of beauty, but drew upon himself and his fatherland the irre­concilable hatred of the goddesses whom he had passed over. When Priam was once celebrating funeral games in memory of his lost son, and commanded the finest bull in all the herds grazing on the mountain to be brought as a prize, Paris came to Troy as its driver. He took part in the contests, and vanquished his brothers, even Hector. Seized with envy, they wished to kill him ; but Cassandra recognised him, and he was joyfully received by his parents. In spite of the warning of the forsaken (Enone, who still loved him tenderly, Paris set out on a voyage to Sparta, at the instigation of Aphrodite. Here he carried off Helen, the wife of Menelaus, whom the goddess her­self had quickly inspired with love for the

indispensable, part of the chorus in the Old Attic comedy. About the middle of the piece, when the action of the play had been developed up to a certain point, the chorus, which had up to this time turned towards the actors on the stage, now turned to the audience. This stepping forward towards the audience is itself also termed parabctsis. In this position they made an appeal to the public on behalf of the poet, who could thus give expression to his personal views and wishes, and offer advice, as well as explain the purport of his play, etc. This address stood wholly outside the action of the play. When the parabasis was com­plete, which was seldom the case, it con­sisted of seven parts, partly spoken by the leader of the chorus, partly sung by the chorus. One of these parts was called the parabasis in a narrower sense, and consisted chiefly of anapaestic tetrameters.

Par&li. Lit. " the people of the coast-land." (See. solonian constitution.)

Parascenium. See theatre.

Parasite (Gr. pardsltos, lit. " table com­panion "). Denoted originally among the Greeks the priest's assistant, who (like the priest) received his support from the offer­ings made to the temple, in return for certain services. These services included "jollecting and keeping the supplies of corn due to the temple, helping at certain sacri­fices, and preparing the banquets connected with certain festivals {Aihentxus, p. 234]. The assistants of civil officials, who (like the latter) were maintained at the expense of the State, were also called parasites in many places [ib. 235]. The word received quite another meaning in the middle and later Greek Comedy, where it means the , hanger on, who lays himself out for play­ing the flatterer and buffoon, with a view-to getting invited to dinner. The parasite was transferred as a standing character to the Roman imitations of Greek comedy.

Parastas. See house (Greek).

Parcae. The Italian goddesses of Fate. (Cp. mcer/e.)

Parentalla. The general festival in honour of deceased relatives, celebrated by the Romans from February 13th to 21st. (See manes.)

Parian Chronicle (Chronicfm or Manner Pdrrum). A marble tablet found at Pares in 1627, now [among the Arundel Marbles in the University Galleries] at Oxford. It is written chiefly in the Attic, but partly in the Ionian dialect, and consists of ninety-three lines, some of which are no longer

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All non-public domain material, including introductions, markup, and OCR © 2005 Tim Spalding.