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CTC Glossary of the Classics
Category: Language and Literature > Classical History
Date & country: 11/09/2007, USA
Words: 1485

a fortune-teller, a prophet.

conspirator against the Greek tyrants Hippias and Hipparchus; he and his friend Aristogeiton hatched a plan to kill the two tyrants in 514 BCE, however they were only successful in the killing of Hipparchus; Thucydides recounts their plan and its outcome in his history text.

Harpy (Harpies)
mythical beings with the head of a woman and body of a bird that are great tormentors; also known as the 'snatchers.

an ancient Egyptian goddess also known as Sekhmet; Hathor was depicted as a woman with the head of a cow, as a cow, or as a woman wearing cow horns and holding a solar disk; the Hathors, who served a similar role as the Fates in ancient Greek mythology, were depicted as seven young women who wore the headdress of Hathor, horns and the solar disk.

Hecate (Hekate)
a mother goddess who exteneded goodwill towards mortals; daughter of Perses and Asteria, directly descended from the Titans; identified with Artemis; later became known as the goddess of the crossroads appearing in the form of a woman with three heads, one of snake, one of a horse and one of a dog.

see Hektor.

(Hekabe) wife of Priam and mother of Hektor, Paris, Creusa, Laodice, Polyxena and Cassandra.

Hektor (Hector)
son of Priam and Hecuba, hero of the Trojans (Iliad).

wife of Menelaos, whose abduction by Paris caused the Trojan War; said to be the most beautiul woman in the ancient Greek world.

brother of Hektor with prophetic ability.

Greek novelist; a popular novelist of the 4th century CE; his most famous text is the Ethiopian Story of Theagenes and Charicleia (Aethiopica).

the judges at the Olympic games, literally translated Hellanodikai means the judges of Greeks; they played an important role at the games and their names and hometowns were announced on the last day of the games in recognition of their participation.

(Latin) mainland Greece; the Romans had an intricate relationship with ancient Greece; while fiercely proud of their own roots, the Romans nevertheless admired and sought to emulate Greek arts and culture.

name which the Greeks used for themselves.

Hellenistic Period
a period of ancient Greek history and culture from the death of Alexander the Great (323 BCE) to beginning of Roman domination (146 BCE).

the ancient name for the Dardanelles, a strait northwest of Turkey, between Asian Turkey and the Gallipoli Peninsula of European Turkey, about 40 miles (64 km) long and one to four miles (1.6 to 6.4 km) wide; the Hellespont connects the Mediterranean and the Black Sea; the name Hellespont is derived from Helle, a woman who drowned in the waters of the strait when she fell from the back of Chrysomallus, the ram whose golden fleece Jason retrieved with the help of Medea.

a Celtic people who lived in current-day Switzerland; in 107 BCE, they attacked the consul Lucius Cassius and his army, defeating them ruthlessly; in 58 BCE, they fought again Julius Caesar's army while attempting to cross into central Gaul and, in the 9-hour Battle of Bibracte, suffered the loss of approximately 65 % of their total population; after their loss to Caesar, they were compelled to return to their initial homeland; 10,000 of the remaining Helvetii joined with Vercingetorix to fight against the Roman empire in 52 BCE.

the son of the Macedonian noble Amyntor, Hephaestion was the closest of Alexander the Great's friends; the two fought side by side for years and Hephaestion gave advice to Alexander; Alexander made Hephaestion his second-in-command and gave him power; h

Hephaestus (Hephaistos)
god of fire and metal craft; son of Hera and Zeus; thrown from Olympus by Zeus which results in his lameness; husband of Aphrodite; god who makes peace between Zeus and Hera and also makes armor for Achilles (Iliad); read the Homeric Hymn to Hephaestus to learn more.

queen of the gods, daughter of Cronus and Rhea sister and wife of Zeus; favored Achilles and the Achaians in the Trojan War; the earliest monumental temple in Greece, the Temple of Hera located at Olympia, was constructed and dedicated to Hera in 600 BCE; identified with Juno by Romans.

Herakles (Heracles)
son of Zeus and Alcmene, Greek hero who carries out exploits selected by Eurystheus known as the Twelve Labors; identified by Romans as Hercules.

(Latin) a green plant

a statue with the head of Hermes atop a rectangular block of stone that displays a large phallus on the front.

son of Zeus and Maia, god who escorts Priam to the hut of Achilles in the Iliad; also known as Argeiphontes; read the Homeric Hymn to Hermes to learn more.

woman from Roman legend; her parents compelled her to be a celibate priestess to Venus in Sestos; during a festival, a handsome young man named Leander saw Hero and instantly fell in love with her; she also fell in love with him, but they could not marry because of her parents` objections; in order to meet each night in secret, Leander swam across the Hellespont, guided by the lantern that Hero set in her tower and, in the morning, he returned across the Hellespont; one night when a wind blew out Hero`s lantern, Leander became lost while swimming and drowned; Hero discovered his body on the shore and killed herself by jumping out her tower`s window.

King of Judaea; made the king by Mark Antony and the Senate; he rebuilt much of the buildlings and infrastructure of Judaea and gained prominence for himself in establishing the power of his land; he had ten wives and numerous children; however, he fell victim to a number of political intrigues which prompted savagery in him, leading him to kill his first wife, Maryamne, in 29 and her sons Alexander and Aristobulus in 7 BCE.

Herod Agrippa
King of Judaea from 41-44 CE; a friend to Caligula, who first gave Herod political power; after Caligula's death, Herod supported Claudius for emperor; because of that support, Claudius made him king of Judaea in 41; he died during games in honor of Claudius in 44 CE.

(5th century BCE) Greek historian and author of The Histories of Herodotus, a book that chronicles the battles between the Greeks and the Persians known as the Persian Wars; Herodotus has been dubbed The Father of History, but that title has become debated as his sources are questioned; he records stories and variants of those stories in order to support and broaden the scope of his historical inquiry.

Heroic Code
the unwritten rules which guide the conduct of the Homeric heroes; the heroic code is best explained by Sarpedon in the Iliad; essentially, he claims that it is necessary to fight in such a way that his men will be justified in having put him in charge and honored him.

epic poet, contemporary with Homer; composed Works and Days, Shield of Herakles (attributed to Hesiod) and The Theogony.

Hetaira (Hetaera)
a female concubine or courtesan.

(Latin) winter; the opposite season of aestas, or summer.

designating or pertaining to a pictographic script particularly that of the ancient Egyptians; in hieroglyphic writing, many of the symbols used by the ancient Egyptians are pictures of things represented by the words for which the symbols stand.

xan ancient Greek herald who called for silence at the beginning of the Eleusinian Mysteries, marking the start of the rites.

the most important ancient Greek priest of the Eleusinian Mysteries; the hierophant was the person who could approach the cult objects of Eleusis and reveal secrets to initiates during the Mysteries.

a soft thong or strap of ox hide wrapped around the hands to strength their fingers and wrists worn by boxers in ancient Greece; soft himantes evolved into hard leather straps for harder blows; in the forth century, himantes evolved into gloves, oxeis himantes, with an layer of wool in the inside; later the Romans used the caestus, a weapon-like boxing glove, layered with iron and lead.

a large rectangular piece of cloth wore around the body and over the left shoulder.

a mythical being with the head, body and legs of a horse and the wings and tail of a cock.

son of the tyrant Pisistratus and brother of the tyrant Hippias and Thessalus; Hipparchus was ostracized from Athens in 487 BCE; Cleisthenes promulgated the law of ostracism in 510 BCE and Hipparchus was the first Athenian citizen to be ostracized under the law; Hipparchus was slain by Aristogiton and Harmodius near the temple of the daughters of Leos as he was arranging the Panathenaic procession; Hipparchus had foreseen his death in a dream.

Hipparchus (2)
ancient Greek astronomer, who lived ca. 190 125 BCE; Hipparchus' discovered the precession of equinoxes and explained the eastward shift of the stars, having found that while the celestial longitude of the stars increased their latitude did not change, by the forward motion of the equinoxes; Hipparchus was also the first to catalog the stars, noting their position and brightness.

Hippias Of Elis
fifth century BCE author who compiled the list of victor at the first Olympic games.

a mythical sea creature with the head, chest and forelegs of a horse and fins, body and tail of a sea serpent.

Greek physician considered the father of medicine who lived from ca. 460 to ca. 377 BCE; mostly likely born on the Greek island of Kos and died in Larissa, Greece; little is actually known about Hippocrates; though he is its namesake, he probably did not compose the Hippocratic Oath; it is probable that his analytical approach to medicine was the catalyst that moved ancient medicine beyond its supersitious roots; there are approximately 70 works ascribed to Hippocrates, the Hippocratic Collection, though Hippocrates may have written only six of them; the work Airs, Waters, and Places from the Hippocratic Collection proposes that environment , e.g., weather, drinking water, etc., not divine origin is the cause of disease; three other works' Prognostic, Coan Prognosis, and Aphorisms—expanded on the theory that a physician can predict the course of a disease by observing cases of the disease; other works in the Hippocratic Collection deal with such issues as preventative medicine, epilepsy, joint dislocations, and head wounds.

Hippocratic Oath
the oath taken by physicians in various forms for over 2,000 years; originally thought to have been composed by the Greek physician Hippocrates, researchers have shown that it most likely originated in a Pythagorean sect around the 4th century BCE; the oath originally prohibited physicians from participating in abortions and surgery; many modern physicians take a revised version of the oath upon finishing medical school.

an arena in which ancient Greek equestrian events took place; the hippodrome had a large post at each end and was divided by the embolon, a stone or wood partition running down the middle; the perimeter was eight stades or a little over 1,500 meters.

the area currently known as Spain; the territory had been settled by the Phoenicians, Greeks, and Carthaginians before it became the Roman provinces of Hispania Citerior (the eastern section) and Hispania Ulterior (the south-eastern part) in 197 BCE; Augustus conquered more of Spain through the Cantabrian Wars from 26-19 BCE and added another province and greater territory to Hispania Citerior, which became Tarraconensis.

Historia Augusta
(Latin) ancient biographies of the Roman emperors between Hadrian and Numerianus; these texts are written by various authors and do not seem to have a coherent theme; since there are disputes concerning authorship and dubious sources, these texts are not completely trustworthy as sources for biographical data, although they are the most complete texts extant for the time period covered.

a Roman measuring device used to measure distances; the hodometer was attached to the side of a vehicle (e.g., a cart) and consisted of a gear assembly, which caused a pebble to fall into a metal bowl after the vehicle had traveled one Roman mile = 400 revolutions of the wheel; the vehicles used a specific wheel size, 4 feet in diameter and 12.5 feet in circumference.

(Latin) something related to herbs; comes to be a market where vegetables are sold.

epic poet, thought to be author of the Iliad and Odyssey.

(Latin) honor; public office.

a Greek infantry soldier of the citizen armies who defended Greek city-states; for more information on the hoplites see the Perseus Historical Overview subtopic '5.16. The so-called Hoplite Revolution.

the contest or competitors who compete in a race while dressed in full armor of a hoplite (soldier), which included greaves, a helmet, and a shield; together, these weighed 50 to 60 pounds.

Quintus Horatius Flaccus, Roman satirical poet; born 65 BCE in Venusia; father was a manumitted slave; studied in Athens from 46 to 44 BCE; joined the staff of M. Brutus in Asia ca. 43 BCE; fought at the Battle of Philippi which ended in the defeat and suicides of Cassius and Brutus; he began writing in 41 BCE and around 39/38 BCE was introduced to C. Cilnius Maecenas, a patron of the arts, by fellow poets Vergil and Varius; Horace published his first book of satires in 35 BCE and his second in 31 BCE; Horace's Epistles 2.1 to Augustuts is commisioned and published in 12 BCE; he died suddenly in 8 BCE.

(Latin) Roman granaries; structures used for storing grain that could be built from wood, stone or brick.

Quintus Hortensius, a plebeian who became dictator in 287 BCE after the final plebeian secession; he sponsored the Lex Hortensia that made plebiscites virtually the same as laws, thereby making the plebeians and the patrician class more equal; the Lex Hortensia was an important step in ending the conflict of orders.

(Latin) gardener; a hortus is a garden and the hortulanus is the person who works in the garden.

the ancient Egyptians believed that their pharaohs were the earthbound embodiment of Horus, one of the greatest Egyptian gods; Egyptian pharaohs would take the name of Horus as their own to show their direct relation to him; Horus was often depicted as a child suckling at his mother`s breast; as a child, Horus was shown seated wearing a side lock and a royal crown and sucking his thumb.

(Latin) the enemy.

(Latin) an enemy.

three sisters named Eunomia, Dike and Eirene; these sisters are mentioned in the Iliad and are entrusted with guarding the gates of the sky.

Household."Old Comedy
form of comedy popular at Athens during the fifth century, characterized by the prominence of the chorus and political and social satire; the only extant Old Comedy playwright is Aristophanes.

Hubris (Hybris)
insolence, wanton violence; violent and outrageous acts against others.

(Latin) soil, earth, country.

a mythical being with nine serpent heads that when cut off were replaced by two more heads; this monster was destroyed by Herakles.

a water-carrier.

a Titan, son of Gaia and Uranus; father of Eos (Dawn), Helios (Sun), and Selene by his sister, Theia; the Sun was sometimes referred to as Hyperion because the name means 'he who goes before' (the Earth).

(Latin) hypocaustum (sg.), from the Greek words for 'under' and 'burning,' the central heating system invented by the Roman Gaius Sergius Orata ca. 80 BCE; a series of tanks, that made up the hypocasustra system, were propped up on little brick posts; hot air from a fire built on one side of a tank circulated through the space beneath the tank to warm it and this warmed the house; Orata also invented the balnae pensiles, raised bathrooms, heated by means of ducts under the floor.

the starting gate that ensured all runners started at the same time in ancient Greece running

the meter of the spoken parts in tragedy and old comedy; an iamb consists of two syllables, a short syllable followed by a long syllable.

Greek novelist of the 2nd century CE; his most famous work was entitled The Babylonian History, which supposedly told stories told to the novel`s author by a Babylonian captive.

a Titan, son of Gaia and Uranus; father of Atlas, Epimetheus, and Prometheus by his sister Clymene, though other myths maintain that he married Asia or Asopis; helped Zeus overthrow Cronus.

a wild goat.

(Latin) literally in the same place; abbreviated in books and journals as ibid.; used in scholarly citation to indicate another citation from a directly previously cited source.

Iconographical Subjects
symbolic situations.

(Latin) for that purpose, on that account.

(Latin) for that reason.

(Latin) efficient ; in the Annales 1.58, Tacitus recounts a speech by Segestes in which he describes himself as an idoneus conciliator between the Romans and the Germans.

in the Roman calendar the Ides fell on the following days: January 13, February 13, March 15, April 13, May 15, June 13, July 15, August 13, September 13, October 15, November 13, December 13; often interest, debts, and tuition were paid on the Ides.

(Latin) for the average Roman, a light breakfast of bread and fresh fruit, which would sustain him/her until prandium, lunch.

the employment of images in a given passage of a literary work, a whole work or a group of works.

(Latin) unmindful, forgetful; Virgil uses this term to describe Ascanius in Book 9 of the Aeneid, saying that Ascanius would never be unmindful of the sacrifices made on the battlefield; he also describes the Trojans of being immemores, or unmindful, of the destruction that bringing the Trojan Horse inside the city walls would bring in Book 2.

(Latin) the skilled craftsmen in a legionary camp who were, as the Latin translate, 'the exempt;' these men did not perform such routine tasks as ditch-digging and patrolling the ramparts because they posessed some specialised skill or trade which qualified them for special duties. The immunes may have included engineers, carpenters, masons, wagon-makers, blacksmiths, painters, farriers, surveyors, shipwrights, glaziers, fletchers, armourers, hunters, butchers, grooms, plumbers, bronze-smiths, lime and charcoal burners, and keepers of sacrificial animals.

Imperial Cults
worship of a Roman emperor as a god; Julius Caesar first proclaimed himself god-like on a statue in 44 BCE and Augustus, his adopted heir, built a temple to Divus Julius in Rome; other emperors were made gods after their deaths; during Hadrian`s time and after, the emperors had so much power that they also could proclaim themselves to be gods during their lifetimes; after the emperor Constantine I, however, imperial cults were no longer celebrated.

Imperial Province
territory that was under the power of the emperor; imperial provinces included Syria, Cappadocia and Germany.

(Latin) power; in Rome, power over a community was signified by the term imperium and was visually indicated by the fasces and the presence of lictors.

Imperium Maius
(Latin) 'the greatest power'; having imperius maius meant that the person holding the power was more powerful than all others; Augustus was given imperius maius proconsulare in 23 BCE.

(Latin) without respect, irreverent.

(Latin) in a Roman house, a basin built into the floor of the atrium that collected rain from the compluvium, or quadrangular skylight towards which the roof sloped that served as a source of light and air.

(Latin) this word means impunity or that one can avoid being punished for an action.

In Exergue
(Latin) in reference to coins, it is the position of a being or thing below the main subject of the coin imprint.

(Latin) to bend, to change, to waver.

in reference to coins, the action of stamping or hammering a figure on a coin; it is the impression made by the stamping of a coin.

(Latin) hard-work, a Roman virtue.

(Latin) to act like a fool.

(Latin) literally means unable to speak; the word comes to mean child or infant.

(Latin) injury, injustice, wrong.

(Latin) Roman apartment complexes; an insula might have included up to eight apartment blocks built around an open courtyard, which provided much needed light; the complexes were three to five stories tall and could easily block the light for neighboring buildings; the first floor often housed merchants' shops, or tabernae; during the rise of the Roman empire, the majority of the Roman population was housed in rooms rented in insulae; these tenements became overcrowded and vulnerable to fire built with timber and mud bricks; thin walls were made out of opus craticum, which was a woven mixture of cane and mortar; the walls were neither waterproof nor fireproof; eventually emperors, such as Nero, imposed fire regulations; as a result of the upper stories lacked running water sanitation suffered; by the end of the fourth century BCE, insulae outnumbered domi twenty-six to one.

(Latin) wholeness, integrity, health.

(Latin) intelligence.