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Cesnola Painter

(187 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Named after his geometric krater, formerly in the Cesnola collection (h. 114.9 cm with lid, from Kourion/Cyprus, now in New York, MMA, Inv. 74. 51. 965;  Geometric pottery). The work of the anonymous vase painter combines motifs from the Middle East with those from mainland Greece and the Greek islands. In the past, both the unusual form of the eponymous krater and the combination of decorative motifs led to discussion as to its date and origin, but these are now confirmed by ana…

Pen

(298 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (κάλαμος/ kálamos, lat. calamus). Besides the stylus , the pen was the second indispensable writing implement in antiquity. It was used to write with red or black ink on papyrus and parchment, as well as on whitened or uncoated wooden tablets. Pens made from reed stalks (κάλαμος/ kálamos, lat. calamus) were sharpened with a penknife (σμίλη, scalprum librarium) and given a slit in the middle, so that they resembled the modern steel pen in appearance and functioned correspondingly (Pers. 3,10-14). After longer use, kalamoi which had become blunt could be resharpen…

Krepis

(395 words)

Author(s): Höcker, Christoph (Kissing) | Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] [1] Architectural term (κρηπίς/ krēpís, κρηπίδωμα/ krēpídōma). Ancient term, documented frequently in building inscriptions, for the stepped base which served as the foundation for various edifices, but particularly for Greek colonnade construction (sources: Ebert 7-9). The krepis rests on the euthynteria (the top layer of the foundation, the first to be precisely planed) and ends in the stylobate, the surface on which the columns stand. The shaping of the initially one- or two-stepped krepis in the early 6th cent. BC is an important result of the comi…

Games of dexterity

(530 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] were primarily performed by children. With some of these games  astragaloi (knucklebones), nuts, pebbles, coins, small balls or potsherds were used as toys ( Children's games), with others, sticks, discs, wheels, etc. A favourite was the so-called πεντάλιθα ( pentálitha) (Poll. 9,126), in which five stones (nuts, balls, etc.) were thrown up in the air and caught in the palm of the hand or on the back of the hand. In another, the orca-game, nuts, stones etc. were thrown into a narrow-necked container (Ps.-Ov. Nux 85f.; Pers. 3,50). Similar to this game was the ἐς βόθυνον ( es…

Ostrakon

(261 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ὄστρακον; óstrakon). Sherd of pottery, sometimes of (lime)stone, which was used as writing material for short  messages, smaller documents, receipts, etc.; they were rarely used for literary texts (Sappho fr. 2 Lobel-Page). Ostraca are attested from pre-Ptolemaic Egypt and then up to the end of Graeco-Roman antiquity. The respective texts were written in ink or scratched into the ostrakon; examples have survived in the Hieratic, Demotic, Greek, Coptic and Arabic scripts. In contrast to expensive papyrus, óstraka were waste products of a household, and th…

Barbaron Hyphasmata

(142 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (βαρβάρων ὑφάσματα; barbárōn hyphásmata). The Greeks called the valuable Median-Persian robes, materials, blankets i.a., with colourful  ornaments, detailed figurative decorations, hybrid and fable creatures barbaron hyphasmata (BH ). The BH arrived in Greece through commerce (Aristoph. Vesp. 1132ff.), as loot (Hdt. 9,80) or gifts (Ath. 2,48d). BH were donated as  votive offerings to sanctuaries (Paus. 5,12,4) or they were worn as luxury robes as a demonstration of wealth and power. The BH led to changes in…

Running and catching games

(453 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Running and catching games tended to be played in open areas and streets (e.g., Callim. Epigr. 1,9; Verg. Aen. 7,379) where children could chase one another (Hor. Ars P 455f.; cf. Hor. Ars P 412-415 perhaps races) or engage in the popular pastime of hoop rolling (τροχός/ trochós, trochus), often depicted on Greek vases in particular (also in Ganymedes [1]) (Poll. 10,64). From indications in Roman sources this game was frequently played in the street (Mart. 14,168; 14,169; cf. ibidem 12,168; 14,157) and even on frozen rivers (Ma…

Comb

(385 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (ὁ κτείς; ho kteís, Lat. pecten). Combs for wool and for the hair were known alre…

Pins

(3,978 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) | Giesen, Katharina (Tübingen) | Niemeyer, Hans Georg (Hamburg) | Prayon, Friedhelm (Tübingen) | Steimle, Christopher (Erfurt) | Et al.
[German version] I. General Pins and needles (βελόνη/ belónē, περόνη/ perónē, ῥαφίς/ rhaphís, Latin acus) were put to a variety of uses in the ancient household: they were used for hair, garments and sewing. They were also a utensil, for example, in the work of doctors (Surgical instruments), sailmakers etc. Tattoos were also done using special needles. The shape of the pin, long and thin with one sharp end, has not changed since prehistoric times. In sewing needles, the head is generally unadorned and flat; …

Bustum

(106 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] The term already defined in the  Tabulae duodecim (Cic. Leg. 2, 64) as ‘tomb’ was, according to Paul. Fest. 6, 78; 25,3; 27,11 and Serv. Aen. 11,201, the place where the corpse was cremated and the remains buried, whilst the place where dead bodies were actually burnt was generally known as   ustrinum . There is a lot of archaeological evidence of this type of funeral.  Burial Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bibliography T. Bechert, Röm. Germanien zwischen Rhein und Maas, 1982, 244-246 M. Struck (ed.), Römerzeitliche Gräber als Quellen zu Rel., Bevölkerungsstruktu…

Ring

(802 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (δακτύλιος/ daktýlios, ἀκαρές/ akarés; Latin anulus). In the following, ring refers exclusively to finger rings (for earrings, see Ear ornaments). The rings in the Aegina and Thyreatis treasures from the beginning of the 2nd millennium BC already display outstanding technical command and high artistic quality. From the early Mycenaean period, gold wire and silver rings deserve note, along with the so-called shield rings, which developed into a leading form of Mycenaean jewellery. They …

Greeting

(1,186 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
I. Gestures of greeting [German version] A. Handshake According to Greek and Roman custom, one would shake the right hand of guests, family members, close acquaintances or friends and squeeze it firmly (Hom. Il. 10,542 et passim; Xen. Cyr. 3,2,14; Aristoph. Nub. 81; Plut. Cicero 879; Plut. Antonius 952; Plut. De amicorum multitudine 94b), both as a greeting (according to Plut. Caesar 708 more a form of affability) and to say good-bye. Shaking hands was seen as a sign of friendship and trust (Xen. Cyr. 3…

Canistrum

(110 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (Greek κανοῦν; kanoûn). Flat wicker basket; it served as a fruit basket (Ov. Met. 8,675) and was used in agriculture (Verg. G. 4,280). Canistra of sturdy materials (clay, silver, gold) were used as receptacles for liquid substances, e.g. honey and oil. The canistrum was also a device for sacrifices (Tib. 1,10,27; Ov. Met. 2,713 and more); often represented in Roman art in this role, the canistrum contained incense, fruits and offering-cakes. The silver saucers for drinking vessels were called canistra siccaria (Serv. Aen. 1,706).  Kanoun Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg) Bi…

Calceus

(275 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Roman shoe or half-boot made of leather that was probably adopted from the Etruscans and was part of the clothing ( vestis forensis) of the noble Roman citizen. If a member of the nobility dressed in other shoes in public, he would be criticized (Suet.Tib. 13; an exception was the dress for the banquet at which people wore the solla; Hor. Sat. 2,8,77; Mart. 3,50,3; Suet. Vit. 2). In Roman literature and art the calceus was represented in many ways; three variants can be distinguished that at the same time served to differentiate between social ranks. Th…

Geneleus

(237 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Sculptor of the archaic period, famous for the family group with his signature in the Heraion on  Samos (560-550 BC). The group consists of the reclining figure of the founder ...ιλάρχος, three standing girls (unknown name, Philippe, Ornithe), the fragments of a young man, and the enthroned mother Phileia; apart from Ornithe (Berlin, SM, Inv. 1739), all the figures are on Samos (Vathy, Mus. Inv. 768). G. proves himself a master of Ionian sculpture because of the minute detail to w…

Canosa Vases

(129 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] Type of  Apulian vases, between c. 350 and 300 BC, probably made exclusively for use in graves. Their distinguishing feature is their decoration in a variety of water-soluble pigments (blue, red/pink, yellow, pale purple, brown) on a white background. Preferred  vessel forms are the volute-krater, cantharus, oinochoe, and askos, whose main bodies were frequently decorated with figures of women on small pedestals and with three-dimensional decor (winged heads, gorgoneia et al.). The gre…

Paestan ware

(394 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] PW first developed in around 360 BC when immigrant artists from Sicily founded a new workshop in the southern Italian city of Paestum (Poseidonia), the leading masters of which were the vase painters Asteas and Python. Both are the only vase painters in southern Italy whose signatures are known on vases. The Paestan vase painters favoured bell craters, neck amphorae, hydrias, lebetes gamikoi (nuptial cauldrons depicting mostly wedding but also funeral scenes), lekanides (cosmetic/trinket containers), lekythoi (one-handled flasks for perfumed oil) and jug…

Sakkos

(144 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (σάκκος/ sákkos). Closed bonnet, esp. popular as a headdress of Greek women in the 5th and 4th cents. BC. The evidence from Attic vase paintings and tomb reliefs shows the sákkos worn mainly by female servants, whereas in southern Italian art it appears as the headdress of any woman. Sákkoi frequently had a loop on the calotte for hanging them up and often tassels hanging down. Some sákkoi were unadorned or decorated with simple lines, while others were richly decorated with ornaments of meanders, waves, scrolls and similar. The sákkos was not necessarily the only hea…

Tiara

(266 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (τιάρα/ tiára). Head covering of Near Eastern peoples (Armenians, Assyrians, Sagae, especially Persians; Hdt. 3,12; 7,61; 7,64 et passim), similar to a turban; also a tall tiara, decorated with stars and rising to a point, which among the Persians was fit only for the king, his relatives and holders of high office (Xen. An. 2,5,23; Xen. Cyr. 8,3,13). In Greek sources, the tiara is also called a kyrbasía or a kíd(t)aris (e.g. Aristoph. Av. 487). The tiara as a head covering for Middle Eastern aristocrats was also common in the Roman period (Suet. Ner…

Tribon

(99 words)

Author(s): Hurschmann, Rolf (Hamburg)
[German version] (τρίβων/ tríbōn, τριβώνιον/ tribṓnion). A coat ( himátion, cf. pallium ) of 'bristly' wollen material, worn by Cretans (Str. 10,4,20) and Spartans (Plut. Lycurgus 30; Plut. Agesilaus 30; Ael. VH 7,13); later also common in Athens (Thuc. 1,6,3). It was part of the clothing of simple people (Aristoph. Eccl. 850; Aristoph. Vesp. 1131), farmers (Aristoph. Ach. 184; 343) and lakōnizóntes ('imitators of Spartan customs', Dem. Or. 54,34). From the time of Socrates (Pl. Symp. 219b; Pl. Prt. 335d; Xen. Mem. 1,6,2) the tribon was also the typ…
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