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AMUSSIS a level used by masons to test the evenness of a surface (Varr. ap. Non. 1.28 Festus, s. v.). But Sisenna (ap. Charis. 2, p. 178, Putsch.) defines it as a raddled surface used to prove whether work was perpendicular-tabula rubricata quae demittitur exominandi operis gratia, an rectum opus surgat. And Auson. (Idyll. 16.10) appears to denote by amussis a sort of norma, testing whether an angle made by two surfaces was a right angle. It appears from Vitruvius (1.6.6) that it was different from the regula (straight rule) and from the libella (plumb-line or square), and that it was used for obtaining a truer surface, whether horizontal or perpendicular, than those two instruments together would give. The amussis gives rise to the adverbs amussim, adamussim, examussim, also to amussitatus, in a metaphorical sense, meaning with perfect regularity and exactness (Varr. R. R. 2.1.26; Gel. 20.1.34; Plaut. Amph. 2.2, 213, Mil. 3.1, 38).


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  • Cross-references from this page (2):
    • Vitruvius, On Architecture, 1.6.6
    • Gellius, Noctes Atticae, 20.1.34
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