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588

HAST A.

were particularly celebrated as pikemen. (Horn. //. ii. 543.) 3. It was commonly thrown by the nand. The Homeric hero generally went to the field "with two spears. (Horn. //. iii. 18, x. 76, xii. 298 ; Find. Pyth. it. 139.) On approaching the enemy he first threw either one spear or both, and then on coming to close quarters drew his

•sword. (Horn. //. iii. 340, xvii. 530, xx. 273—

•284.) The spear frequently had a leathern thong tied to the middle of the shaft, which was called ayicv\r) by the Greeks, and amentum by the Romans, and which was of assistance in throwing the spear. (Pollux, i. 136 ; Schol. ad Eurip. Orest. 1477 ; Xen. Anub.iv. 2. § 28 ; Virg. Aen. ix. 665 ; X)v. Met. xii. 321 ; Cic. de Qrat. i. 57.) The an­nexed figure, taken from Sir W. Hamilton's Etrus-;can Vases (iii. pi. 33), represents the amentum 'attached to the spear at the centre of gravity, a little above the middle.

We are not informed how the amentum added to the effect of throwing the lance ; perhaps it was by giving it rotation, and hence a greater degree of steadiness and directness in its flight, as in the cnse of a ball, shot from a rifle-gun. This supposi­tion both suits the expressions relative to the in­sertion of the fingers, and accounts for the frequent use of the verb torquere, to whirl, or twist, in con­nection with this subject. We also find mention in the Latin grammarians of Hastae ansatae, and Ennius speaks of Ansatis concur runt imdique, telis (Macrob. Sat. vi. 1). The ansa was probably the same as the amentum, and was so called as being the part which the soldier laid hold of in hurling the spear.

Under the general terms liasta and eyxoy were included various kinds of missiles, of which the principal were as follow : -—

Lwncea (^TX^r Festus, s. v. Lancea\ the lance, a comparatively slender spear commonly used by the Greeks; Iphicrates, who doubled the length of the sword [gladius], also added greatly to'tha dimensions of the lance. (Diod. xv. 4^' Nep.

•HAST A.

xi.'l. 3.) This weapon was used by the Grecian horsemen (Polyb. vi. 23) ; and by means of an appendage to it, which is supposed by .Stuart (Ant. of Athens, vol. iii. p. 47 ; woodcut, fig. 2) to be ex­hibited on the shafts of three spears in an ancient bas-relief, they mounted their horses with grsater facility. (Xen. de Re Equest. vii. xii.)

Pilum (i>ffcr6s\ the javelin, much thicker and stronger than the Grecian lance (Flor. ii. 7), as may be seen on comparing the woodcuts at pp. 135 and 136. Its shaft, often made of cornel (Virg. Aen. ix. 698 ; Ovid, Met. viii. 408), was four and a half feet (three cubits) long, and the barbed iron head was of the same length, but this extended half way clown the shaft, to which it. was attached with extreme care, so that the whole length of tho weapon was about six feet nine inches. Each soldier carried two. (Polyb. vi. 23.) [exercitus, p. 497, a.j It was used either to throw or to thrust with ; it was peculiar to the Romans, and gave the name of pilani to the division of the army by which it was adapted. When Marius fouu'h.t against the Cimbri, he ordered that of the two nails or pins (irepovat) by which the head was fastened to the staff, one should be of iron and the other of wood. The consequence was, that, when the pihun struck the shields of, the enemv, the wooden nail

* *

broke, and as the iron head was thus bent, the spear, owing to the twist in the metal part, still held to the shield and so dragged along the ground. (Pint. Mar. 25.)

" Whilst ths heavy-armed Roman soldiers bora the long lance and the thick and ponderous javelin, the light-armed used smaller missiles, which, though of different kinds, were included under the general term hastae velitares (Liv. xxxviii. 20 ; Plin. //. A7", xxviii. 6). From ypoo-tyos, the cor-

"responding Greek term (Polyb. i. 40 ; Strabo, iv. 4. § 3), the velites, or light-armed, are called by Polybiiis ypo(r<po[jidxot (vi- 19* 20). According to his description the ypocrfyos was a dart, with .a shaft about three'feet long and an inch in thick­ness : the iron head was a span long, and so thin and acuminated as to be bent by striking against

w o . ^:

."any thing, and thus rendered unfit to be seirt back against the enemy. Fig. 3, in the preceding wood­ cut, shows one which was found, with nearly four hundred" others, in a Roman entrenchment nt M.eon Hill, in Gloucestershire. (Skelton's Engraved Illustrations, vol. i. pi. 45.) .......

The light infantry of the Roman army used a similar Weapon, called a spit (veru, rerutum, Liv. xxi. 55 ; ffcLvviov, Diod. Sic. xiv. 27 ; Festus, :s:'v. Samnites'). It was adopted by them from • the Samnites (Virg. Aen. vii. 665), and the Volsci (Georg. ii. 168). Its shaft was 3^ feet long, its point five inches. (Veget. ii. 15.) Fig. 4, in the preceding Woodcut, lepresents the head of a dart in the Royal Collection at Naples ; it may be taken as "a specimen' of the vemtum, and may be con­trasted with fig. 5, which is the head of a lance in the same collection. The Romans adopted in like manner the gaesum, which was properly a Celtic weapon (Liv. xxviii. 45) ; it was given as a reward to any soldier who wounded an enemy. —(Po'lyb. vi. 37.) 'Spams is evidently the same word with the English spar and spear. It was the rudest missile of the whole class, and only used when better could not'be obtained. (Virg. Aen. xi. 682 , Serv. in loo.; Nepos, xv. 9. § 1 ; Sallust, Cat. 56 ; Gell.x.25.)

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