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PARADI´SUS (παράδεισος) was the name given by the Greeks to the parks or pleasuregrounds which surrounded the country residences of the Persian kings and satraps. They were generally stocked with animals for the chace, were full of all kinds of trees, watered by numerous streams, and enclosed with walls. (Xen. Anab. 1.4, § 10; ξψρ. 1.3.14, 4.5; Hell. iv. 1.33; Oec. 4.13; Diod. 16.41; Curt. 8.1, § § 11, 12; Gel. 2.20.) These paradises were frequently of great extent; thus Cyrus on one occasion reviewed the Greek army in his paradise at Celaenae (Xen. Anab. 1.2, § 9), and on another occasion the Greeks were alarmed by a report that there was a great army in a neighbouring paradise (Id. 2.4.16). In many respects, except as regards their being larger and used for hunting, they were like the Latin vivarium, which was a park, warren, or preserve. “Vivaria quae nunc vulgus dicit, quos παραδείσους Graeci appellant, quae leporaria Varro dicit, hand usquam memini apud vetustiores scripta. . .;” but Scipio, the writer goes on to say, called them roboraria, because they were fenced round with wooden palings (Gel. 2.20; cf. AGRICULTURA Vol. I. p. 80). In Greece they were first borrowed from the East in the time of the Diadochi (Iwan Müller, Handbuch, iv. p. 468).

Pollux (9.13) says that παράδεισος was a Persian word, and there can be no doubt that the Greeks obtained it from the Persians, whether its origin etymologically is to be found in Indo-European or Semitic languages.

[W.S] [G.E.M]

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