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māter , tris, f. root ma-; Sanscr. and Zend, to make, measure, like Gr. μήτηρ, the maker, akin with Dor. μάτηρ; Germ. Mutter; Engl. mother; cf.: materies, manus,
I.a mother (dat. sing. matre, Corp. Inscr. Lat. 177; dat. plur. matris, Inscr. Grut. 90: “matrabus,Inscr. Orell. 2089).
I. Lit.: “si quidem istius regis (sc. Anci Martii) matrem habemus, ignoramus patrem,Cic. Rep. 2, 18, 33: “cur non sit heres matri suae?id. ib. 3, 10, 17: “de pietate in matrem,id. Lael. 3, 11: “Sassia mater hujus Aviti,id. Clu. 5, 12: “Hecate, quae matre Asteria est,who has Asteria for her mother, id. N. D. 3, 18, 46: “musa, matre nati,id. ib. 3, 18, 45: mater esse de aliquo, to be a mother, i. e. to be pregnant by any one, Ov. H. 9, 48: “facere aliquam matrem,id. M. 9, 491: mater familias or familiae, the mistress of a house, matron (v. familia).—
B. Transf., a nurse: “mater sua ... quae mammam dabat, neque adeo mater ipsa, quae illos pepererat,Plaut. Men. prol. 19: “puero opust cibo, opus est autem matri quae puerum lavit,id. Truc. 5 10: “lambere matrem,Verg. A. 8, 632.—As a title of honor, mother, applied to priestesses: jubemus te salvere, mater. Sa. Salvete puellae, Plaut. Rud. 1, 5, 5: “amice benigneque honorem, mater, nostrum habes,id. ib. 1, 5, 30.—To goddesses: “Vesta mater,Sen. Excerpt. Contr. 4, 2; Verg. G. 1, 498: “mater Matuta, v. h. v.: Flora mater,Lucr. 5, 739; “the same: florum,Ov. F. 5, 183: mater magna, or absol.: Mater, i. e. Cybele, the mother of all the gods: “matris magnae sacerdos,Cic. Sest. 26; cf. absol.: matris quate cymbala circum, Verg. G. 4, 64; id. A. 9, 108: “secreta palatia Matris,Juv. 9, 23: “matres ... cives Romanae, ut jus liberorum consecutae videantur,Paul. Sent. 4, 9, 1: “matris condicionem sequi,Gai. Inst. 1, 81; cf. §§ 67, 86.—Also, in gen., a woman, a lady; usu. in plur., women, ladies: “pilentis matres in mollibus,Verg. A. 8, 666: “matres atque viri,id. ib. 6, 306; cf. Ov. F. 1, 619.—Of the earth, as the mother of all: “exercitum Dis Manibus matrique Terrae deberi,Liv. 8, 6; cf. Cic. Leg. 2, 22, 56.—Of a country: “haec terra, quam matrem appellamus,Liv. 5, 54, 2: “amorum,” i. e. Venus, Ov. H. 16, 201: “cupidinum,” i. e. Venus, Hor. C. 1, 19, 1.—Of animals: “porci cum matribus,Varr. R. R. 2, 4: “excretos prohibent a matribus haedos,Verg. G. 3, 398: “ova assunt ipsis cum matribus, i. e. cum gallinis,Juv. 11, 70: “mater simia,id. 10, 195: “pullus hirundinis ad quem volat mater,id. 10, 232.—Of the trunks of trees, etc.: “plantas tenero abscindens de corpore matrum,Verg. G. 2, 23; Plin. 12, 5, 11, § 23.—Of a fountain, as the source of waters: “ex grandi palude oritur (fluvius), quam matrem ejus accolae appellant,Mel. 2, 1, 7.—Of a chief or capital city: “mater Italiae Roma,Flor. 3, 18, 5: “ut Graeci dicere solent, urbium mater, Cydona,id. 3, 7, 4: “(Cilicia) matrem urbium habet Tarsum,Sol. 38; cf. Metropolis.—
II. Trop.
A. The mother, i. e. maternal love: “simul matrem labare sensit,Ov. M. 6, 629: mater redit, Sen. ap. Med. 928.—
B. Motherhood, maternity, Sen. Herc. Oet. 389.—
C. A producing cause, origin, source, etc. (freq. and class.): “apes mellis matres,Varr. R. R. 2, 5: “mater omnium bonarum artium sapientia est,Cic. Leg. 1, 22, 58: “philosophia mater omnium bene factorum,id. Brut. 93, 322: “avaritiae mater, luxuries,id. de Or. 2, 40, 171: “voluptas, malorum mater omnium,id. Leg. 1, 17, 47; 1, 22, 58; id. Tusc. 1, 26, 64; id. Planc. 33, 80; Auct. Her. 2, 22, 34; Plin. 37, 6, 21, § 80; Quint. 9, 3, 89: “juris et religionis,Cic. Rep. 5, 2, 3: “justitiae imbecillitas mater est,id. ib. 3, 14, 23: “intemperantia omnium perturbationum mater,id. Ac. 1, 10, 39: “similitudo est satietatis mater,id. Inv. 1, 41, 76: “utilitas justi prope mater et aequi,Hor. S. 1, 3, 98; Lact. 3, 8, 32; Aug. in Psa. 83, 1.—Comically: “eam (sc. hirneam) ego vini ut matre fuerat natum, eduxi meri,” i. e. as it came from the cask, without the addition of water, Plaut. Am. 1, 1, 274.—
D. The protector, shelter, home: “urbs Roma, virtutum omnium mater, Mos. et Rom. Leg. Coll. 5, 3, 1: illa Jerusalem quae est mater nostra,Vulg. Gal. 4, 26.
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