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University of Toronto St. George

VocabularyCultus from colere from verb meaning to take careattend to Refers to a group college that worships a certain deity eg the cult of Juno Regina Pliny calls early Christianity a cultus Nowadays the term cult has a derogatory meaning but this was not so in ancient RomeReligio from religare from latin word meaning binding together Refers to obligation tofrom gods and giving gods their due It is an abstract term for anything you do towards the godsSuperstitio from verb superstare from verb meaning to stand over Refers to things you do on top of your additional duties to the gods going over and above the call of duty This word carries a negative connotation in ancient RomeDeus Dea meaning god and a word which has gender and goes back to early Roman language Some people want to argue that early Romans only worshipped abstract nature powers but these words prove that they had concept of personified powerNumennumena plgeneral divine powerSacer often used to describe something made legally the property of the god Taken very seriously If a person is declared sacer it was badseen as a punishment Devatio a ceremony where the general declares himself and the legions of the enemy to the chthonic gods sacer in a sacrifice to help the Romans He would charge forth onto their spears to end his life This was a morality boost for Roman troopsSanctus translated as holy or sacred Used in origins to refer to physical property given over to the gods eg a plot of ground temple etc Keep in mind that something sanctus need not be sacer but it could be vice versaPomerium the boundary of the city of Rome Considered sanctus and very sacredSacrosanctus refers to the property of the god and protected from disturbance by the community Can be attributed to people eg Liva and OctaviaDivi deified personParilia associated with purification in which people burn sulfur Originated from the country where they were asking protection for the sheepEquus October October Horse a holocaust offering of a horse to Mars god of War associated with chthonic deities killing and slaughter This was unusual as horses were not seen as food for the Romans nor were they commonly offered Horses play a military role thus linked to the deityLudi Romani earliest ludiAmbarvalia a festival to honor Dea Dia who was associated with Ceres carried out by the Arval BrethrenCompitalia refers to the Lares Compitalis who were minor deities the counterparts of household gods They were out at crossroads and neighborhoods and made entire areas of the city sacred This shows us that the gods were everywhere even in rural areas Augusts renames all of them the Lares Augusti in a feat of selfpromotionParentalia and Lemuria refers to the dead ancestors and the worship of them The Lemuria were associated with darker spirits as sometimes those who die are not good or benevolent and will continue on in such a manner They are more spooky and ghostlike and had to be appeasedHolocaust an offering in which the whole animal was burntTemplum a sacred area that doesnt necessarily have a templeAedes a building which is sacer on the templumReligiosus defined as the property of the chthonic lower world gods Can be applied to people and may imply mild superstitioConsular Fasti lists of all people who held office of consulMagna Graecia Translates to Great Greece and refers to the Greek colonization in southern ItalyHaruskepeis refers to the adopted practice by the Romans of Etruscan divination of looking at entrails Although identified as other begin originally an Etruscan practice which perhaps the Etruscans may not have entirely recognized as their own it was deemed essentialPietos pietas duty towards the family and gods and was something that the Romans should aspire to The Romans believed that it constituted just the right amount of devotion to the gods Had to be respectful show piety and not be materialistic Duoviri should have introduced deities first before one can worship themMola Salsa what was sprinkled on the sacrificial victim before the sacrifice Made by the VestalsImperatu the old word for general A title adopted by AugustusEmpiricism a focus on sensory knowledge and how things are quantifiedSouvetaurilia triple sacrifice of pig sheep and bullTorah First five books of Old Testament called the Pentateuch which came together much later when in exile under a foreign powerSources for Early Roman ReligionHistories and Literature often separates by centuries from the time it covers Based on priestly recordsCalendars marked on stone and maintained some sort of regularity and ties with provinces and were used to account for feasts and festivals and days for work and leisure Time was seen as something you could give over the gods and the gods were owed your time Time you gave over to the god was on festival days and on such days you could not appear in mourning as it was supposed to be a time of joy Certain days are consecrated mourning days and on such the temple doors were shutCapitals vs Lower Case speculation is that the capitals are the oldest and most importantor that they came from Numas original calendar The latter guess may be too big a jumpIf the Romans did make this attribution theres is obviously not a real perfect succession Reading Calendars The days are marked accordinglyFfastus the courts can be in sessionCcomitialis public assemblies and courts can be in sessionNnefastus no assemblies or courtsNPnefastus publicus this sort of day is uncertain perhaps means no courts orassemblies and indicates a major festivalENendotercisus nefastus in the morning and fastus the rest of the day Calendar of Duro Europus a calendar found on papyrus that is rather different fromtraditional stone calendars It appears to be multiethnic perhaps a reflection of the Jewishand Christian cult sites here The festivals mentioned are mostly for soldiers and the
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