The Ancient Library

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On this page: Araarium – Armilla



properly bell-metal. [aes.] Hence the names for this metal (xa^-tfcJs, aes) are often used to mean

armour', and the light reflected from the arms of a warrior is called avyfy xaA/cei^ by Homer, and lux a'e'na by Virgil. (Aen. ii. 470.) Instead of copper, iron afterwards came to be very extensively used in the manufacture of arms, although articles made of it are much more rarely discovered, because iron is by exposure to air and moisture exceedingly liable to corrosion and decay. Gold and silver, and tin unmixed with copper, were also used, more espe­cially to enrich and adorn the armour. [J. Y.]

ARAARIUM, originally a place for keeping arms, afterwards a cupboard, set upright in the wall of a room, in which were kept not only arms, but also clothes, books, money, ornaments, small images and pictures, and other articles of value. The armarium was generally placed in the atrium of the house. (Dig. 33. tit. 10. s. 3 ; Cic. Pro CluenL 64 ; Petron. Sat. 29 ; Plin. //. N. xxix. 5. s. 32, xxxv. 2.) The divisions of a library were called armaria. (Vitruv. vii. Praef.; Vopisc. Tac. 8.) We find armarium distegum mentioned as a kind of sepulchre in an inscription in Gruter (p. 383. No. 4). For other passages see Forcel- lini, s.i7. [P. S.]

ARMILLA (i|/c£\£oi>, $4\iov, or ^e'AAiOV, x^l~ 8c6i/, a^iSe'cu), a bracelet or armlet, worn both by men and women. It was a favourite ornament of the Medes and Persians (Herod, viii. 113, ix. 80; Xen. Ana-ft. i. 2. § 27) ; and in Europe was also worn by the Gauls and Sabines. (Gell. ix. 13 ; Liv. i. 11.) Bracelets do not appear to have been worn among the Greeks by th 8 male sex, but Greek ladies had bracelets of various materials, shapes, and styles of ornament. The bracelet was some­times called (TtyiyH.T'fip (from (r^fyyw), in Latin spintlier or spinier (Plaut. MenaecJi. iii. 3), which derived its name from its keeping its place by com­pressing the arm of the wearer. Bracelets seem to have been frequently made without having their ends joined ; they were then curved, so as to require,


when put on, to be slightly expanded by having their ends drawn apart from one another ; and, ac­cording to their length, they went once, twice, or thrice round the arm, or even a greater number of times. As they frequently exhibited the form of serpents, they were in such cases called snakes (vtyets) by the Athenians (Hesych. s. v. otytis}. Twisted bracelets of the kind described above often occur on Greek painted vases. See the annexed cut from Sir William Hamilton's great work, vol. ii. pi. 35.

Bracelets were likewise worn at Rome bv ladies


of rank, but it was considered a mark of eifeminacy for men in an ordinary way to use such female ornaments. (Suet. Cal. 52, Ner. 30.) They were, however, publicly conferred by a Roman general upon soldiers for deeds of extraordinary merit (Liv. x. 44 ; Plin. H. N. xxxiii. 2 ; Festus, s. v.) ; in which case they were worn as a mark of honour, and probably differed in form from the ordinary ornaments of the kind. See the cut below.

The following cuts exhibit Roman bracelets. The first figure represents a gold bracelet dis­covered at Rome on the Palatine Mount. (Caylus, Rec. dSAnt. vol. v. pi. 93.) The rosette in the middle is composed of distinct and very delicate leaves. The two starlike flowers on each side of it have been repeated where the holes for securing them are still visible. The second figure represents

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