Spectacles of Death in Ancient Rome

By Donald G. Kyle | Go to book overview

brief conclusion notes recurrent themes, including punishment, pollution, and protection.


NOTES
1
P. Green, Classical Bearings (London: Thames and Hudson, 1988) 63: 'Anxiety about death dictates many of our fundamental beliefs and behaviour patterns ...To study any group's attitudes to death becomes, in a very real sense, a refraction of their ideas about life, their social conventions and priorities, their more persistent sustaining myths.' P. Metcalf and R. Huntington, Celebrations of Death: The Anthropology of Mortuary Ritual, 2nd ed. (Cambridge: Cambridge U., 1991) begin their survey of mortuary rituals with valuable discussions, esp. 1-39, of the theories of E. Durkheim, A.van Gennep, and others who see disposal of the dead as a ritualized process of deep cultural significance. For an early anthropological approach, see J.G. Frazer, The Fear of the Corpse in Primitive Religion (London: Macmillan, 1933). A.van Gennep, The Rites of Passage, trans. M. Vizedom and G. Caffee (Chicago: U. Chicago, 1960) 1-13, 146-65, sees contests as appropriate for funerals: honors and spectacles appease the dead and reintegrate the community after the loss of a member. On European customs, see Philippe Ariès, The Hour of Our Death, trans. H. Weaver (New York: Vintage Books, 1982, orig. 1977) 18-19, passim, and, in brief, his Western Attitudes Toward Death, trans. P.M. Ranum (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins U., 1974), on facing death through ritualized public ceremony.
2
Further on Seneca, see ch. 3 below. Tacitus, Hist. 3.84, Loeb, comments on the abuse of Vitellius: 'With his arms bound behind his back, his garments torn, he presented a grievous sight (foedum spectaculum) as he was led away. Many cried out against him, not one shed a tear; the ugliness of the last scene had banished pity.' Juv. 10.66-7: 'Sejanus is being dragged along by a hook, as a show and a joy to all (spectandus, gaudent omnes).' Eusebius, HE 8.10, says that after numerous horrific tortures the wounded, naked bodies of martyrs in Alexandria were presented to onlookers as a spectacle (spectaculum).
3
CIL 10.852 (=ILS 5627); see L. Richardson, Jr, Pompeii: An Architectural History (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins U., 1988) 134-8. On the terminology, see Katherine Welch, 'The Roman Arena in Late-Republican Italy: A New Interpretation', JRA 7 (1994) 59-80, discussed below.
4
Two famous examples are often cited. Plato, Resp. 4.439e-440a, writes of a man encountering an executioner and the bodies of some criminals outside the walls of Athens. He knew that it was disgusting, but wanted to look; his desire overcame his aversion, and he approached the bodies, telling himself to stare at the 'lovely spectacle'. Centuries later, Augustine, Conf. 6.8, writes of a pupil Alypius succumbing to crowd enthusiasm in an amphitheater at Rome: he closed his eyes but not his ears, and moved by the crowd's roar when a gladiator was wounded, he opened his eyes, became fascinated with the bloodshed, and became a fanatic eager to attend more shows.
5
On films and the arena, see M. Eloy, 'Les Gladiateurs dans le spectacle moderne', 277-94, in C. Domergue, C. Landes, and J.-M. Pailler, eds., Spectacula -I: Gladiateurs et amphithéâtres: Actes du colloque tenu à Toulouse et à Lattes les 26,27,28 et 29 mai 1987 (Lattes: Editions Imago, Musée archéologique Henri Prades, 1990). Jean-Claude Golvin and Christian Landes, Amphithéâtres et gladiateurs (Paris: Éditions du CNRS, 1990), 'Histoire et fiction', 15-21, discusses films and novels, and, passim, uses various works by Gérôme on amphitheatral themes as illustrations.

-20-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Spectacles of Death in Ancient Rome
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 288

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.