a Roman painter, in the time of Augustus.
Pliny tells us that he was the first to adorn the walls of rooms with landscapes representing villas and porticoes, gardens, groves, hills, ponds, straits, rivers, shores, &c., according to the pleasure of his employers (qualia quis oparet
), animated with figures of persons walking, sailing, and riding, or engaged in fishing, fowling, and gathering the vintage, and sometimes with scenes still more interesting and agreeable to the taste of that age.
The landscape paintings on the walls of houses in Herculaneum and Pompeii may be safely taken as specimens of this style (Plin. Nat. 35.10. s. 37
In the same passage, according to the reading of the common editions, Pliny speaks of a much more ancient painter of the same name, who decorated the temple of Juno at Ardea, for which work he received the freedom of the city, and his memory was preserved by the following inscription in the temple, written in ancient Latin letters:--
Dignis digna loca picturis condecoravit,
Reginae Junoni' supremi conjugi' templum;
Marcus Ludius Helotas Aetolia oriundus;
Quem nunc et post semper ob artem hanc Ardea laudat
But the MSS. give no authority for the name Ludius
The passage is utterly corrupt. Sillig made a very ingenious attempt, in his Catalogus,
to restore the true reading; and again in his edition of Pliny, where the line now stands thus :--
Plautiu' Marcus Cloeetas Alalia excoriundus,
than which, certainly, no better reading has yet been made out.
See Sillig, Catal. Artif. s. v.
; and Notes to his edition of Pliny.