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On this page: Horrearii – Hortus – Iiorreum



HORREARII. [horreum.]

IIORREUM (o>pe?oi/, ffi was, according to its etymological signification, a place in which ripe fruits, and especially corn, were kept, and thus .answered to our granary. (Virg. Georg. i. 49 ; Tibull. ii. 5. 84 ; Horat. Carm. i. 1. 7 ; Cic. de Leg. Agr. ii. 83.) During the empire the name horreum was given to any place destined for the safe preservation of things of any kind. Thus we find it applied to a place in which beauti­ful works of art were kept (Plin. Epist. viii. 18) ; to cellars (Jiorrea subterranea, horrea vinaria. Dig. 18. tit. 1. s. 76) ; to depots for merchandise, and all sorts of provisions (horreum penarium, Dig. 30. tit. .9. s. 3). Seneca (.Epist. 45) even.calls his library a horreum. But the more general application of the word horreum was to places for keeping fruit and corn ; and as some kinds of fruit required to be kept more dry than others, the ancients had be­sides the horrea subterranea, or cellars, two other kinds, one of which was bnilt like every other house upon the ground ; but others Qiorrea pensi-lia or sublimia) were erected above the ground, and rested upon posts or stone pillars, that the fruits kept in -them might remain dry. (Colum. xii. 50, i. 6 ; Vitruv. vi. 6. 4.)

From about the year 140 after Christ, Rome pos­sessed two kinds of public horrea. The one class consisted of buildings in which the Romans might deposit their goods, and even their money, securities, and other valuables (Cod. 4. tit. 24. s. 9), for which they had no safe place in their own houses. This kind of public horrea is mentioned as early as the time of Antoninus Pius (Dig. 1. tit. 15. s. 3), though Lampridius (Aleos. Sev. c. 39) assigns their institution to Alexander Severus. (Compare Dig. 10. tit. 4. s. 5.) The officers who had the super­intendence of these establishments were called hor-rearii. The second and more important class of horrea, which may be termed public granaries, were buildings in which a plentiful supply of com was constantly kept at the expense of the state, and from which, in seasons of scarcity, the corn was distri­buted among the poor, or sold at a moderate price. The first idea of building such a public granary arose witli C. Sempronius Gracchus (lex Sempronia frumentaria) ; and the ruins of the great granary (horrea populi Romani) which he built were seen down to the sixteenth century between the Aven-tine and the Monte Testaceo. (Appian, de Bell. Civ. i, 21 ; Pint. C. Gracch. 5 ; lav. Epil. 60 ; Veil. Pat. ii. 6 ; Cic. pro Sext. 24.)

The plan of C. Gracchus was followed out and carried further by Clodius, Pompey, and several of the emperors ; and during the empire we thus find a great number of public horrea which were called after the names of their founders, e. //., horrea Ani- ceti, Vargunteii, Seiani, Augusti, Domitiani, &c. The manner in which corn from these granaries was given to the people differed at different times. [Comp. frumentariae leges.] [L. S.]

HORTUS (ktjttos), garden. 1. greek. Our knowledge of the horticulture of the Greeks is very limited. We must not look for information re­specting their gardens to the accounts which we find in Greek writers of the gardens of Alcinolis, filled with all manner of trees and fruit and floxvers, and adorned with fountains (Odyss. vii. 112—130), or of those of the Hesperides (Hesiod. Tlieog. 25), or of the paradises of the Persian satraps, which resembled our parks (Xcn. Anab. i. 2. § 7, Occo-


nom. iv. 26, 27 ; Pint. Alcib. 24) ; for the former gardens are only imaginary, and the manner in which the paradises are spoken of by Greek writers shows that they were not familiar with anything of the kind in their own country. In fact the Greeks seem to have had no great taste for land­scape beauties, and the small number of flowers with which they were acquainted afforded but little inducement to ornamental horticulture.

The sacred groves were cultivated with special care. They contained ornamental and odoriferous plants and fruit trees, particularly olives and vines. (Soph. Oed. Col. 16 ; Xen. Anab. v. 3. § 12.) Some-, times they were without fruit trees. (Paus. i. 21. § 9.)

The only passage in the earlier Greek writers, in which flower-gardens appear to be mentioned, is one in Aristophanes, who speaks of k^ttovs euwSezs (Aves, v. 1066). At Athens the flowers most cultivated were probably those used for making garlands, such as violets and roses. In the time of the Ptolemies the art of gardening seems to have advanced in the favourable climate of Egypt so far, that a succession of flowers was obtained all the year round. (Callixenus, ap. Atli. v. p. 1.96.) Longus (Past. ii. p. 36) describes a garden containing every production of each sea­son, " in spring, ros:s, lilies, hyacinths, and vio­lets j in summer, poppies, wild-pears (dxpaSes), and all fruit ; in autumn, vines and figs, and pome­granates and myrtles." That the Greek idea of horticultural beauty was not quite the same as ours, may be inferred from a passage in Plutarch, where he speaks of the practice of setting off the beauties of roses and violets, b}^ planting them side by side with leeks and onions (De capienda ex inimicis utilitate, c. 10). Becker considers this passage a proof that flowers were cultivated more to be used for garlands than to beautify the garden. (Becker, Ckariktes, vol. ii. p. 403—405.)

2. roman. The Romans, like the Greeks, laboured under the disadvantage of a very limited flora. This disadvantage they endeavoured to over­come, by arranging the materials they did possess in such a way as to produce a striking effect. We have a very full description of a Roman garden in a letter of the younger Pliny, in which lie de­scribes his Tuscan villa. (Plin. Epist. v. 6.) In front of the portions there was generally a xystus, or flat piece of ground, divided into flower-beds of different shapes by borders of box. There were also such flower-beds in other parts of the garden. Sometimes they were raised so as to form terraces, and their sloping sides planted with evergreens or creepers. The most striking features of a Roman garden were lines of large trees, among which the plane appears to have been a great favourite, planted in regular order ; alleys or walks (ambulationes) formed by closely dipt hedges of box, yew, cypress, and other evergreens ; beds of acanthus, rows of fruit-trees, especially of vines, with statues, pyra­mids, fountains, and summer-houses (diaetae). The trunks of the trees and the parts of the house or any other buildings which were visible from the' garden, were often covered with ivy. (Plin. I. c.; Cic. ad Q. F. iii. 1, 2.) In one respect the Roman taste differed most materially from that of the present day, namely, in their fondness for the ars topiaria., which consisted in tying, twisting, or cutting trees and shrubs (especially the box) into the figures of animals, ships, letters, &c. The im-

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