The Ancient Library

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On this page: Thorax – Thraces – Thranitae – Thronus


the ten statues of the Attic sir&vvpoi. [eponymi,


Other Greek cities had likewise their public &6\oi: thus we find that Polycletus built one of white marble at Epidaurus, the inside of which was adorned with paintings by Pausias. It was originally surrounded by columns, of which in the days of Pausanias six only were standing, and upon these were inscribed the names of such per­ sons as had been cured of some disease by Ascle- pius, together with the name of the disease itself and the manner in which they had obtained their recovery. (Paus. ii. 17. § 3.) [L. S.]

THORAX. [lorica.]

THRACES. [gladiatores, p. 576, a.]

THRANITAE (&pcw/?rai). [Navis,p. 788,a.]

THRONUS, the Greek frp6vo$, for which the proper Latin term is solium ; a throne. This did not differ from a chair (/cafleSpa) [cathedra ; sella] except in being higher, larger, and in all respects more magnificent. (Athen. v. p. 192, e.) On account of its elevation it was always neces­ sarily accompanied by a foot-stool (subsclliuin, vTroir68iov, Att. &p&viov,Ion. ^pJjvus, Horn. II. xiv. 240, Od. i. 131, x. 315). Besides a variety of ornaments, especially nails or studs of silver, be­ stowed upon the throne itself, it was often covered with beautiful and splendid drapery. (Horn. Od. xx. 150.) [tapes.] The accompanying woodcut shows two gilded thrones with cushions and dra­ pery represented on paintings found at Resina. (Ant. d\Erc. vol. i. tav. 29.) These were intended to be the thrones of Mars and Venus, which is expressed by the 'helmet on the one and the dove on the other.

All the greater gods were sometimes represented as enthroned. This was in imitation of the prac­tice adopted by mortals, and more particularly in Asia, as in the case of Xerxes (Philostr. Imag. ii. 31), and of the Parthians. (Claud, in IV. Cons. Honor. 214.) When the sitting statue of the god was colossal, the throne was of course great in pro­portion, and consequently presented a very eligible field for the display of sculpture and painting. As early as the sixth century before Christ Bathycles of Magnesia thus decorated the throne of the Amyclaean Apollo. (Diet, of Biog. art. Bathycles.} The throne of the Olympian Zeus, the work of Pheidias, was constructed and ornamented in a similar manner. (Diet, of Biog. art. Pheidias, vol. iii. p. 252.) As a chair for common use was sometimes made to hold two persons (Horn. //. iii. 424, Od. xvii. 330) and a throne shared by two potentates (5ty>poi/, Doris, ap. Athen. i. p. 17, f.), so two divinities were sometimes supposed to occupy the same throne. (Pans. viii. 37. § 2.) Besides those belonging to the statues of the gods, the thrones of



monarchs were sometimes deposited in the temples as donaria. (Paus. ii. 19. § 4, v. 12. § 3.)

The following woodcut, taken from a fictile vase in the Museo Borbonico at Naples, represents Juno seated on a splendid throne, which is elevated, like those already described, on a basement. She holds in her left hand a sceptre, and in her right the apple, which Mercury is about to convey to Paris with a view to the celebrated contest for beauty on Mount Ida. Mercury is distinguished by his talaria, his caduceus, and his petasus thrown behind his back and hanging by its string. On the right side of the throne is the representation of a tigress or panther.

The elevated seat used by a schoolmaster was called his throne. (Brunck, Anal. ii. 417.) [J. Y.] TPIY'MELE (du/wATj). [THEATRUM,p.H22.] THYRSUS (bfyffos), a pole carried by Diony­sus, and by Satyrs, Maenades, and others who engaged in Bacchic festivities and rites. (Athen. xiv. p. 631, a.; Veil. Pat. ii. 82.) [dionysia, p. 411, a.] It was sometimes terminated by the apple of the pine, or fir-cone (icowotydpos, Brunck, Anal, i. 421), that tree (Treu/o?) being dedicated to Dionysus in consequence of the use of the tur­pentine which flowed from it, and also of its cones, in making wine. (Walpole, Mem.onEur. and As. Turkey^ p. 235.) . The monuments of ancient art, however, most commonly exhibit instead of the pine-apple a bunch of vine or ivy-leaves (Ovid. Met. xi. 27, 28; Propert. iii. 3. 35) with grapes or berries, arranged into the form of a cone. The following woodcut, taken from a marble ornament (Mon. Matth. ii. tab. 86), shows the head of a thyrsus composed of the leaves and berries of the ivy, and surrounded by acanthus-leaves. Very frequently also a white fillet was tied to the pole . just below the head, in the manner represented in the woodcut on p. 136, b., where each of the figures holds a thyrsus in her hand. See also the wood­cut to funambulus and vannus. (Statius, TJicb. vii. 654.) [instita.] The fabulous history of Bacchus relates that he converted the thyrsi car­ried by himself and his followers into dangerous weapons, by concealing an iron point in the head of leaves. (Diod. iii. 64, iv. 4 ; Macrob. Sat. i. 19.) Hence his thyrsus is called "a spear en­veloped in vine-leaves11 (Ovid. Met. iii, 667)9

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