A bed to sleep upon was called Lectus Cubiculāris
Div. ii. 65
). The ancient bedsteads were of considerable height,
requiring a footstool (scamnum
), or a set of steps
) to get into them; and were made like our largest-sized sofas,
with a head-board (anaclinterium
), sometimes a corresponding one against
the feet, and a high back (pluteus
) on the farther side, but entirely
open on the one at which the occupants entered (sponda
). The frame was
strung with girths (fasciae, restes, institae
), which supported a thick
mattress (torus, culcita
), on which were placed a bolster and pillow
Lectus. (British Museum.)
A bed inferior in size and in materials was called by the diminutive name Lectŭlus or Lecticŭla,
which also denoted a sofa, forming part of the usual furniture in a study (Pliny ,
Pliny Ep. v. 5, 5
; Ovid, Trist.
i. 11, 39), and on which it was a common practice to recline at length while reading, and
even writing, the tablet being placed against one knee, which was raised up as a support for
The lectus was also used instead of seats in dining-rooms, the guests reclining at table.
The usual number of couches at a table was three— summus,
, and imus.
For a full treatment of the table-arrangements,
Lectus Geniālis or Iugālis, denotes the marriage-bed (εὐνή
to which the wife was conducted on the eve of her marriage by the pronuba
, after she had retired from the bridal feast. (See Matrimonium
.) It was a large bed, handsomely decorated, and raised to a
very great height from the ground, as is indicated by the flight of steps at the foot in the
illustration given in the article
Lectus Funebris. (Rich.)
, p. 744, which represents the lectus genialis
of Dido, in the Vatican Vergil.
Lectus Funēbris is the name of the bier upon which dead
bodies were carried out to the funeral pile, or to their place of sepulture, as shown by the
annexed illustration from an ancient tombstone.