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On this page: Convfvium – Cooptare – Corbis – Corbitae – Cothinus



(Caes. Bell. Gall i. 54, v. 1, viii. 46 ; Act, Apost. —.) At such a conventus litigant parties


applied to the proconsul, who selected a number of judges from the conventus, generally from among the Romans residing in the province, to try their causes. (Cic. in Verr. ii. 1-8, &c.; Niebuhr, Hist. Rom. vol. iii. p. 732.) The proconsul himself pre­ sided at the trials, and pronounced the sentence according to the views of the judges, who were his assessors (consilium or consiliarii). As the pro­ consul had to carry on all official proceedings in the Latin language (Val. Max. ii. 2. 2), he was always attended by an interpreter. (Cic. in Verr. iii. 37, ad Fam. xiii. 54.) These conventus appear to have been generally held after the proconsul had settled the military affairs of the province ; at least when Caesar was proconsul of Gaul he made it a regular practice to hold the conventus after his armies had retired to their winter-quarters. In the time of the emperors certain towns in each province were appointed as the seats of standing courts, so that the conventus were super­ seded. (Cod. Just. i. tit. 40. s. 6.) The term con­ ventus is lastly applied to certain bodies of Roman citizens living in a province, forming a sort of cor­ poration, and representing the Roman people in their district or town ; and it was from among these that proconsuls generally took their assist­ ants. Such corporations are repeatedly mentioned, as, for example, at Syracuse (Cic. in Verr. ii. 13, 29, iii. 13, iv. 25, 31, v. 36, &c.), Capua (Caes, De Bell. Civ. i. 14 ; Cic. p. Seoct. 4), Salona (Caes. De Bell. Civ. iii. 9), Puteoli (Cie, in Vat. 5), and Corduba (Caes. De Bell. Civ. ii. 19; comp. provincia.) [L. S.]

CONVFVIUM. [symposium.]

COOPTARE. [collegium.]

COTHINUS (/c^tvos, Engl. coffin), a large kind of wicker basket, made of willow branches. (Moer. Att. and Hesych. s. v. *A.pptxos.) From Aristophanes (Av. 1223) it would seem that it was used by the Greeks as a basket or cage for birds. The Romans used it for agricultural pur­poses, and Columella (xi. 3. p. 460, ed. Bip.) in describing a method of procuring early cucumbers, says, that they should be sown in well manured soil, kept in a cophinus, so that in this ease we have to consider it as a kind of portable hot-bed. Juvenal (Sat. iii. 14, and vi. 542), when speaking of the Jews, uses the expression cophinus et foenum (a truss of hay), figuratively to design-ate their high degree of poverty. [CoKBis.] [L. S.]

CORBIS, dim. CO RBULA, CORBICULA, a basket of very peculiar form and common use among the Romans, both for agricultural and other purposes. It was made of osiers twisted together, and was of a .conical or pyramidal shape. (Var. L. L. v. 139, ed. Miiller; Isidor. Orig. xx. 9 ; Cic. pro Seat. 38 ; Ov. Met. xiv. 643; Plaut. Aul. ii. 7. 4 ; Suet. Ner. 19.) A basket answering, precisely to this description, both in form and material, is still to be seen in everyday use among the Cam-panian peasantry, which is called in the language of the country w la corbella," a representation of which is introduced in the lower portion of the annexed woodcut. The hook attached to it by a string is for the purpose of suspending it to a branch of the tree into which the man climbs to pick his oranges, lemons, olives, or figs. The upper portion of the woodcut (AnticUta di Er-eplano9 torn. iii. tav. 29) represents a Roman farm,


in which a farming man, in the shape of a dwarf-' ish satyr, is seen with a pole (acriAA.a) across his shoulder, to each end of which is suspended a basket resembling in every respect the Campanian corbella j all which coincidences of name, form, and description leave no doubt as to the identity of the term with the object represented. [A. R.]

CORBITAE, merchantmen of the larger class, so called because they hung out a corbis at the mast-head for a sign. (Festus ; Nonius, s. v.) They were also termed onerariae,• and hence Plautus, in order to designate the voracious ap-netites of some women, says, " Corbitam cibi eomesse possimt ** (Cas. iv. 1. 20). They were noted for their heavy build and sluggish sailing (LuciL ap. Non. s. v. Corbitae; Plaut. Poen. iii. 1.4), and carried passengers as well as merchandise, an­swering to the large " felucca " of the present day. Cicero proposed to take a passage in one of those vessels, which he opposes to the smarter class of packets (actuariola, ad Att. xvi. 6). [A. R.] CORDAX (iedp5a£). [chorus, 280, a.] CORNI'CINES. [aeneatoees.] CORNICULA'RII. [exercitus.] CORNU. [ExERcrrus.] CORNU, a wind instrument, anciently made of horn, but afterwards of brass. (Varr. L. L. v. 117, ed. Miiller.) According to Athenaeus (iv. p. 184, a.) it was an invention of the Etruscans. Like the tuba, it differed from the tibia in being a larger and more powerful instrument, and from the tuba itself, in being curved nearly in the shape of a C, with a cross-piece to steady the instrument for the convenience of the performer. In Greek it is called ffTpoyyvXt} (raXrciy^. It had no stopples or plugs to adjust the scale to any particular mode (Burney's Hist, of Music, vol, L p. 518) ; the entire series of notes was produced without keys or holes, by the modification of the breath and the lips at the mouthpiece. Probably, from the description given of it in the poets, it was, like our own horn, an octave lower than the trumpet. The dassicum, which originally meant a signal, rather than the musical instrument which gave the signal, was usually sounded with the cornu.

" Sonuit reflexo classicum cornu, Lituusque adunco stridulos cantus Elisit aere." (Sen. Oed. 734.)

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