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SY´NTHESIS The synthesis was a costume specially made for wearing at dinner, and was also known as vestis cenatoria (στολὴ δειπνῖτις) or cenatorium alone. It seems, from the other uses of the word synthesis, to have been a suit rather than a single garment, and was apparently easily put on and off, for we hear of dandies wearing several changes of attire at the same dinner (Mart. 5.79, 2). It was most in vogue during the Saturnalia (Mart. 14.1, 1, &c.); and it cannot have been altogether a fashion of the times of the Empire, for the Arval brothers wore it at their feasts (Acta, 27 [Mai, 218, 219], 17 [Mai, 241]). In their case, as befitted a solemn festival, the synthesis was white; but for ordinary occasions green (Mart. 10.29, 4), purple (Petron. 30), and other bright colours (Mart. 2.46) were preferred. (Marquardt, Privatleben, pp. 322, 371; Iwan Müller, Handbuch, pp. 875, 928; Becker-Göll, Gallus, 1.15.)


hide References (6 total)
  • Cross-references from this page (6):
    • Martial, Epigrammata, 10.29
    • Martial, Epigrammata, 10.4
    • Martial, Epigrammata, 14.1
    • Martial, Epigrammata, 2.46
    • Martial, Epigrammata, 5.2
    • Martial, Epigrammata, 5.79
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