The Ancient Library

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On this page: Penelope – Penestae – Pentacosiemedimni – Pentathlon – Pentecontorus – Pentecostys – Penteres – Penthesilea – Pentheus – Pephredo – Peplus – Perduellio



their blessing being shown in the fulness of the store-room. This chamber therefore, as being sacred to them, was holy, and not to be entered except by chaste and undefiled persons. The hearth of the house was their altar, and on it were sculptured the figures of the two Penates beside that of the Lar. Often they were represented dancing and raising a drinking-horn, to symbolise a joy­ful and prosperous life. The offerings to them were made jointly with those to the Lar (see lares). There were also Penates belonging to the State. These at first had their temple in the quarter Valla, where their statues stood below those of the Dioscuri. Afterwards it was supposed that the original Penates, brought from Samo-thrace to Troy, and thence conveyed by tineas to Lavinium, were identical with certain symbols kept, with the Palladium, in a secret part of the temple of Vesta. The Penates of the Latin League, which were at first regarded as the Trojan Penates, were enshrined in the sanctuary at Lavinium. Annual offerings were brought to them by the Roman priests, and also by consuls, praetors, and dictators on assuming or laying down office, and by generals on their depar­ture for their provinces.

Penelope. Daughter of Icarius and the Nymph Periboaa, the faithful wife of Odys­seus (9.^.) and mother of Telemachus.

PgnestsB. In Thessaly the descendants of the older population subdued by the Thessalians. They managed the property of the owners as serfs bound to the soil, paying a moderate tax, and being also liable to be called out for military service. But their lords could not remove them from the land nor put them to death.

PentacSsISm&dimni. The first of the four classes of citizens instituted at Athens by S5lon. (See solonian constitotion and eisphora.)

Pentathlon. In Greek gymnastics a contest compounded of the five events (run­ning, jumping, wrestling, throwing the dis-cns and the javelin). After each separate event the defeated stood out, till finally two contested the victory in the wrestling. (See gymnastics.)

PentecontdruB. A kind of Greek ship in which there were fifty oarsmen arranged in a single row. (See ships.) j

Pentecostjfs. In the Spartan army, a

division of the ISr.hos (q.v.). \

Penteres. Aquinquereme; i.e. the form of i

Greek ship in which there were five rows of j

oarsmen one above the other. (See ships.) i

Penthesllea. Daughter of Ares and Otrera, and queen of the Amazons (q.v.}, with whom she came to Priam's aid after Hector's death. Her courage reduced the Greeks to sore straits, till she was mortally wounded by Achilles; and, even as she died, her youth and beauty filled the heart of her conqueror with love. [Quiutua Smyrnaaus, i.]

Pentheus. Son of Echion and Agave, the daughter of Cadmus, whom he succeeded in the sovereignty of Thebes. When Dio­nysus came to Thebes, and the women celebrated a Bacchic festival for him on Cithserou, he hastened thither to prevent it, but was taken by his own mother for a wild beast, and torn to pieces by her and the other women [Eur., Baccfice}. His grandson was Menceceus, the father of Creon and Ificaste. See cut under agave.

Pgphredo. One of the Graiaa (q.v.).

Peplus. (1) A Greek woman's garment, large, broad, hanging in folds, and usually richly embroidered. It was thrown over the rest of the clothing, and wrapped round the whole of the body. (2) In particular, the State robe of Athene, which was a work of art, embroidered with groups from the battle of the Giants, representations of the exploits of heroes under Athene's guidance, scenes of Attic history, and portraits of celebrated men. It was woven by the wives and maidens of Attica for the statue of Athene as goddess of the State, and presented at the Panatheuaic festival.

Perddelllo. The Roman term for all acts whereby an individual within the State showed himself an enemy, perduellis, of the established constitution. It included attempts at despotic power, usurpation or abuse of magisterial powers (e.g. the execu­tion of a citizen), violation of the sanctity of the trlbttni plebis, etc. In the time of the kings, the king himself tried crimes of the kind, or handed over the decision to two deputies appointed in each instance by him­self, dUS vlri cdp'italSs or perduellionis, from whom an appeal lay to the people; after Servius Tullius, to the cOmitta cen-tiirtata. Under the Republic duo viri were still appointed as presiding judges, till this gradually fell into disuse, and trials of the kind came in general to be dealt with by the popular court. In earlier times the penalty was death by hanging on a tree, by throwing from the Tarpeian P^ock, or by beheading ; later, banishment, and after the tribunes brought cases of perducllio before the comitia tributa, fines as well. From

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