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On this page: Cursores – Cursus – Gustos Urbis

380

CURRUS.

plete suits of armour, all took their chariots with them, and in an engagement placed themselves in front. In the Homeric battles we find that the horseman, who for the purpose of using his weapons, and in consequence of the weight of his armour, is under the necessity of taking the place of irapcu-€drif)s (see above the woodcut of the triga), often assails or challenges a distant foe from the chariot ; but that, when he encounters his adversary in close combat, they both dismount, " springing from their chariots to the ground," and leaving them to the care of the yvioxoi. (//.iii. 29, xvi. 426, 427, xvii. 480—483 ; Hes. Scut. Here. 370—372.) As soon as the hero had finished the trial of his strength with his opponent, he returned to his chariot, one of the chief uses of which was to rescue him from danger. These chariots, as represented on bas-reliefs and fictile vases, were exceedingly light, the body often consisting of little besides a rim fastened to the bottom and to the axle. Thus we find Diomed, in his nocturnal visit to the enemy's camp, deliberating whether to draw away the splendid chariot of Rhesus by the pole, or to carry it off on his shoulder. (Jl. x. 503—505). In later times the chariots were chiefly em­ployed in the public games. Their form was the same, except that they were more e]egantly deco­rated. Chariots were not much used by the Ro­mans. The most splendid kind were the quad­rigae, in which the Roman generals and emperors rode when they triumphed. The body of the triumphal car was cylindrical, as we often see it represented on medals. It was enriched with gold (aureo curru, Flor. i. 5 ; lior. Epod. ix. 22) and ivory (Ov. Trist. iv. 2. 63, Pont. iii. 4. 35). The utmost skill of the painter and the sculptor was employed to enhance its beauty and splendour. More particularly the extremities of the axle, of the pole, and of the yoke, were highly wrought in the form of animals' heads. Wreaths of laurel were sometimes hung round it (currum laurige-rum, Claudian, De Laud. Stil. iii. 20, Tert. Cons. Honor. 130), and were also fixed to the heads of the four snow-white horses. (Mart. vii. 7.) The car was elevated so that he who triumphed might be the most conspicuous person in the procession, and for the same reason he was obliged to stand erect (in curru stantis eburno, Ovid, /. c.). The triumphal car had in general no pole, the horses being led by men who were stationed at their

CYATHUS.

marble, an example of which last is shown in the preceding woodcut from an ancient chariot in the Vatican, were among the most beautiful ornaments of temples and other public edifices. No pains were spared in their decoration ; and Pliny informs us (//. N. xxxiv. 19) that some of the most eminent artists were employed upon them. In numerous instances they were de­ signed to perpetuate the fame of those who had conquered in the chariot-race. (Pans. vi. 10.) As the emblem of victory, the quadriga was some­ times adopted by the Romans to grace the trium­ phal arch by being placed on its summit; and even in the private houses of great families, chariots were displayed as the indications of rank, or the memorials of conquest and of triumph. (Juv. viii. 3.) [J. Y.]

CURSORES, slaves, whose duty it was to

ft V

run before the carriage of their masters, for the same purpose as our outriders. They were not used during the times of the republic, but appear to have first come into fashion in the middle of the first century of the Christian aera. The slaves employed for this purpose appear to have fre­quently been Numidians. (Senec. Ep. 87, 126 ; Marc. iii. 47, xii. 24 ; Petrou. 28.) The word cursores was also applied to all slaves, whom their masters employed in carrying letters, mes­sages, &c. (Suet. Ner. 49, Tit. 9 ; Tacit. Agric. 43.)

CURSUS. [circus.] CURU'LIS SELLA. [sella curulis.] CUSTO'DES. [comitia, p. 336, b.] CUSTO'DES, CUSTO'DIAE. [castra, p. 250, b.]

GUSTOS URBIS. [praepectus urbi.] CY'ATHUS (/cuaflos), is one of the numerous words, containing the element kv, and signifying something hollow: it is applied, for example, to the hollow of the hand. Its general meaning is a cup of any kind ; and it constantly occurs as the name of a sort of drinking vessel used by the Ro­mans, who borrowed it from the Greeks (Varro, De Ling. Lat. v. 124, ed. Miiller) ; but whether it designates the cup out of which the wine was drunk, or the small ladle by means of which it was transferred from the mixing-bowl (Kparrjp) into the drinking-cup, is a disputed point. Orelli asserts that it is never used in the latter sense, and that the ladle was called en-f^vcm, or trulla, vinaria (Ad Horat. Carm. iii. 8. 13). But the passages in which the word occurs bear out the opinion of Becker, that the ladle was called cy-

Chariots executed in terra cotta {quadrigae fatiles, Plin. H. N. xxviii. 4), in bronze, or in

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