, a narrow lane between
two rows of houses, sometimes ending in a cul de sac
(id quidem angiportum non est pervium,
Ter. Ad. 4.2
, 39), sometimes not (id.
5.2, 6, 7). Thus a MS. glossary quoted
by Ellis on Catull. 58, 4, says: Angiportus viae angustae inter
minores vicos quac exitun ad muros aut nullum aut angustum
The ancients derived the word ab angendo
the original meaning of portus
being no doubt “an entrance” of any sort
(Varr. L. L.
5.145, cf. 6.41 ; Fest. p. 17, ed.
Müller; Ulpian, in Dig. 50
, tit. 16, s.
59). The number of such places seems to have been considerable in ancient
Rome: and they were apt to be disreputable (Catull. 58, 4; Hor. Od. 1.25
The form angiportum
is archaic (Ter. Catull.
4.2, 6, 15; 4.7,
136; Auct. ad Herenn.