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Xenia

ξένια).


1.

Presents that it was customary among the Greeks and Romans for a host to give or send to his guests, as a mark of hospitality and friendship (Pliny , Epist. vi. 31, 14), consisting, for the most part, of delicacies for the table; as may be collected from the thirteenth book of Martial, which is inscribed with the title Xenia, and relates chiefly to articles of food.


2.

Pictures of still-life, such as dead game, poultry, fish, fruit, vegetables, etc. (Vitruv. vi. 7, 4; Philostrat. Imag. i. 31, ii. 25); so termed because they represented such objects as a host sent in presents to his guests. Many pictures of this kind have been found among the paintings of Pompeii, one of which is given under Pictura.

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