The Ancient Library
 

Scanned text contains errors.

On this page: Hospes – Hospitium

HOSPITIUM.

portance attached to this part of horticulture is proved not only by the description of Pliny, and the notices of other writers (Plin. H. N. xvi. 33. s. 60, xxi. U.s. 39, xxii. 22. s. 34 ; Martial, iii. 19), but also by the fact -that topiarius is the only name used in good Latin writers for the orna­mental gardener. Cicero (Parad. v. 2) mentions the topiarius among the higher class of slaves.

Attached to the garden were places for exercise, the gestatio and hippodromus. The gesiatio was a sort of avenue, shaded by trees, for the purpose of taking gentle exercise, such as riding in a litter. (Plin. Epist. v. 6, ii. 17.) The hippodromus (not, as one reading gives the word in Pliny, Jiypodro-mus) was a place for running or horse exercise, in the form of a circus, consisting of several paths divided by hedges of box, ornamented with topi-arian work, and surrounded by large trees. (Plin. /. c. ; Martial, xii. 50, Ivii. 23.)

The flowers which the Romans possessed, though few in comparison with the species known to us, were more numerous than some writers have re­presented ; but the subject still requires investiga­tion. Their principal garden-flo wers seem to have been violets and roses, and they also had the cro­cus, narcissus, lily, gladiolus, iris, poppy, amaranth, and others.

Conservatories and hot-houses are not mentioned by any writer earlier than the first century of our era. They are frequently referred to by Martial (viii. 14, 68, iv. 19, xiii. 127). They were used both to preserve foreign plants and to produce flowers and fruit out of season. Columella (xi. 3. §§51, 52) and Pliny (H. N. xix. 5. s. 23) speak of forcing-houses for grapes, melons, &c. In every garden there was a space set apart for vegetables (olera).

Flowers and plants were also kept in the central space of the peristyle [DoMUs], on the roofs, and in the windows of the houses. Sometimes, in a town, where the garden was very small, its walls were painted in imitation of a real garden, with trees, fountains, birds, &c., and the small area was ornamented with flowers in vases. A beautiful example of such a garden was found at Pompeii. (GelPs Pompeiana, ii. 4.)

An ornamental garden was also called viridarium (Dig. 33. tit. 7. s. 8), and the gardener topiarius or viridarius. The common name for a gardener is viilicus or cultor liortorum. We find also the special names vinitor, olitor. The word liortulanus is only of late formation. The aquarius had charge of the fountains both in the garden and in the house. (Becker, Gallus^ vol. i. p. 283, &c. ; Bdttiger, Racemationen zur Carten-Kunst der Alien.} [P. S.]

HOSPES. [hospitium.]

HOSPITIUM (|eWa, irpo&via). Hospitality is one of the characteristic features of almost all nations previous to their attaining a certain degree of civilisation. In civilised countries the necessity of general hospitality is not so much felt ; but at a time when the state or the laws of nations afforded scarcely any security, and when the traveller on his journey did not meet with any places destined for his reception and accommodation, the exercise of hospitality was absolutely necessary. Among the nations of antiquity, with whom the right of hospitality was hallowed by religion, it was to gome degree observed to the latest period of their existence, and acquired a political importance which

619

HOSPITIUM.

it has never had in any other state. It was in Greece, as well as at Rome, of a twofold nature, either private or public, in as far as it was either established between individuals, or between two states. (Hospitium privatum and fiospitium publi-cum, |eyia and irpo^via.)

1. greek. In ancient Greece the stranger, as such (£eVos and host-is), was looked upon as an enemy (Cic. de Off. i. 12 ; Herod, ix. 11 ; Pint Aristid. 10); but whenever he appeared among another tribe or nation without any sign of hostile intentions, he was considered not only as one who required aid, but as a suppliant, and Zeus was the protecting deity of strangers and suppliants. (Zeus £eVios- and iKsr^crios: Horn. Od. xiv. 57, &c. 283, ix. 270, xiii. 213, vii. 164: compare Apollon. Argonaut, ii. 1134 ; Aelian. V. H. iv. 1.) This religious feeling was strengthened by the belief that the stranger might possibly be a god in dis­guise. (Odyss. xvii. 484.) On his arrival there­fore, the stranger, of whatever station in life he might be, was kindly received, and provided with everything necessary to make him comfortable, and to satisfy his immediate wants. The host did not inquire who the stranger was, or what had led him to his house, until the duties of hospitality were fulfilled. During his stay, it was a sacred duty of his host to protect him against any per­secution, even if he.belonged to a politically hostile race, so that the host's house was a perfect asylum to him. On his departure he was dismissed with presents and good wishes. (Odyss. iv. 37, &c., Nitzch's note.) It seems to have been customary for the host, on the departure of the stranger, to break a die (affTpdya\os) in two, one half of which he himself retained, while the other half was given to the stranger ; and when at any fu­ture time they or their descendants met, they had a means of recognising each other, and the hospi­table connection was renewed. (Schol. ad Eurip. Med. 613.) Hospitality thus not only existed between the persons who had originally formed it, but was transferred as an inheritance from father to son. To violate the laws of hospitality was a great crime and act of impiety, and was punished by men as well as gods (SiKcu /ca/co£ej/ias, Aelian, I.e.; Paus. vii. 25). Instances of such hereditary connections of hospitality are mentioned down to a very late period of Greek history; and many towns, such as Athens, Corinth, Byzantium, Phasis, and others, were celebrated for the hospitable character of their citizens. (Herod, vi. 35 ; Thucyd. ii. 13 ; Plato, Crito^ p. 45, c. ; Stobaeus, Florileg. tit. xliv. 40, &c.) But when a more regular and frequent intercourse among the Greeks began to be established, it was impossible to receive all these strangers in private houses. This naturally led to the establishment of inns (Tra^SoKeTov, KaTaywyiov, /caraAixris), in which such strangers as had no hos­pitable connections found accommodation. For those occasions, on which numerous visitors flocked to a particular place for the purpose of celebrating one of the great or national festivals, the state or the temple provided for the accommodation of the visitors either in tents or temporary inns erected about the temple. (Aelian, V. H. iv. 9 ; Schol. ad Pind. Ol. xi. 51 and 55: compare Plato, de Leg. xii. p. 952; Lucian, Amor. 12 ; Thucyd. iii. 68.) The kind of hospitality which was exercised by private individuals on such festive occasions pro­bably differed very little from that which is cus-

Pages
About | First | English Index | Classified Index | Latin Index | Greek Index

618

619

620
letter/word  
page #  
Search this site
Google


ancientlibrary.com
WWW
All non-public domain material, including introductions, markup, and OCR © 2005 Tim Spalding.
Ancient Library was developed and hosted by Tim Spalding of Isidore-of-Seville.com.