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CORO´NA (στέφανος), a crown; that is, a circular ornament of metal, leaves, or flowers, worn by the ancients round the head or neck, and used as a festive as well as funeral decoration, and as a reward of talent, military or naval prowess, and civil worth. It includes the synonyms, for which it is often used absolutely, στεφάνη, στέφος, στεφάνωμα, corolla, sertum, a garland or wreath.

The use of crowns on public and private occasions was so general in antiquity, that there was a special literature on the subject, of which we have remains in Theophrastus (Hist. Pl. 6.6), Athenaeus (lib. xv.), Pliny (Plin. Nat. 21. § § 1-70, 22. § § 4-13), and Pollux (6.106-7). At Rome Claudius Saturninus wrote a book De Coronis (Tertull. de Cor. Mil. 7, 10, 12). We shall first briefly describe the materials of which crowns were made, and then mention the principal public and private occasions when they were used.

I. Materials of Crowns.

Crowns originally consisted of wool or the foliage of trees, especially myrtle-twigs or ivy, with which flowers of various kinds were subsequently interwoven. The makers and sellers of these garlands or crowns formed a distinct trade, and were called in Greece στεφανηπλόκοι or στεφανοποιοί

Coronarii, or makers of garlands. (Museo Borbonico.)

(Theophr. Hist. Pl. 6.1; Plut. Quaest. Conv. 3.1, 2), and in Rome coronarii (Plin. Nat. 21. § § 54, 177; Fronto, ad M. Caes. 2, 1). In ancient works of art we find frequent representations of the making of crowns and garlands, as in the preceding drawing from a picture at Pompeii. The flowers used for making crowns and garlands were named στεφανώματα (Theophr. l.c.; Athen. 15.672a, f; Hesych.) and coronamenta (Cat. Agr. 8; Plin. Nat. 21.53, 22.53). The foliage and flowers were sometimes fastened together by the inner bark of the linden-tree, whence such garlands were called by the Romans coronae sutiles. (Plin. Nat. 16.65, 21.11; Ov. Fast. 5.335, 337; Mart. 5.65, 4, 9.90, 6; 9.93, 5.) Such crowns were also called nexae and sertae (Mart. 13.51; Lucan 10.164). At Athens the place in the market where crowns were sold was called αἱ μυρρίναι (Aristoph. Thes. 448, cf. 457), because the myrtle was the most common material for making them. Many of the flower-girls were celebrated in antiquity, especially Glycera of Sicyon, the mistress of Pausias (Plin. Nat. 21.4; 35.125). At Rome the temple of the Lares at the head of the Sacra Via was a place much frequented for the sale of flower-garlands. (Ov. Fast. 6.783; Becker-Göll, Gallus, iii. p. 453.) Among the Romans crowns were frequently made of the leaves of plants (without an intermixture of flowers), especially the ivy (hedera, Hor. Carm. 4.11.4; Plin. Nat. 16. § § 147, 155; 21. § § 52, 55), the myrtle (myrtus, Cat. Agr. 8, 2; Hor. Carm. 1.4.9; 2.7, 25; Ov. Fast. 4.869), and parsley (apium, Hor. Carm. 1.36.16; 2.7, 24; 4.11, 3). Pliny says (21.14), “paucissima nostri genera coronamentorum intra hortensia novere, ac paene violas rosasque tantum.” Of the various flowers used for crowns the violet was a favourite at Athens, whence ἰοστέφανος, “violet-crowned,” is an epithet of Athens (Pind. Fragm. 46; Aristoph. Kn. 1323; Ach. 637). The hyacinth and the lily were also used for crowns (Theocr. 10.28; Hor. Carm. 1.36.16; Ov. Am. 2.5, 37). But the most popular flower for crowns both in Greece and Rome was the rose, called the king of flowers (Achill. Tat. 2.1), and the rose of the Loves (τὸ ῥόδον τὸ τῶν Ἐρώτων, Anacr. 5), whence Demos in Aristophanes (Aristoph. Kn. 966) is said to have been crowned with roses. They were especially used for convivial crowns (Hor. Carm. 1.36.15; 1.38, 3; 2.3, 14; 2.11, 14; 3.15, 15; 3.29, 3; Ov. Fast. 4.870). Garlands of roses were in so much request in Rome that they were used in winter (Sen. Ep. 122, 8). With this object they were grown under glass (Mart. 4.22, 5; 13.127), and were imported from Egypt (Mart. 6.80). As luxury increased the leaves of the nardus or spikenard, brought from India, were used for crowns, with which roses were also intertwined (Plin. Nat. 21.11; Lucan 10.164; Mart. 13.51).

Garlands were also made of dried flowers, especially of amaranth, which, when moistened, retained the appearance of fresh flowers, and were called hibernae coronae (Plin. Nat. 21.47). The same name was given to crowns made of artificial flowers (Plin. Nat. 21.5). Sometimes they were made of a thin layer of metal, covered with gold or silver, and called by the Romans corollae or corollaria inaurata or inargentata (Plin. Nat. 21.5; cf. Varr. L. L. v. [p. 1.546]178; Blümner, Techn. u. Term. d. Gewerbe u. Künste, i. p. 304 seq.). But crowns of pure gold were frequent among the Greeks as honorary distinctions. (See below.) Crowns of silver were less common, but are mentioned by Pliny (Plin. Nat. 21.6). Crowns of gold have been found in tombs in Etruria and the Crimea, of which the following specimen found in a tomb at Armento in Southern Italy, and now preserved in the museum at Munich, is one of the most remarkable. It is composed of branches of oak, intertwined with garlands of flowers, while a statue is placed at the top, and winged figures amidst the foliage. It bears an inscription beneath the top figure. (Gerhard, Antike Bildwerke, i. x.) [CAELATURA p. 326 a.]

Golden Crown. (Museum at Munich.)

The Corona Etrusca was made of pure gold in the form of leaves, sometimes set with gems, and terminating in ribbons (lemnisci) of the same metal. It was held by a slave over the head of a general when he entered Rome in triumph (Plin. Nat. 33.11; 21.6; Juv. 10.41; Tertull. de Cor. Mil. 13). Crowns adorned with such pendent ribbons were called Coronae lemniscatae (Serv. ad Verg. A. 5.269, 6.772). The lemnisci (λημνίσκοι) were first made of wool, adorned with ribbons (from λῆνος, wool, Fest. p. 155, M.), afterwards of linden-bast, and subsequently of gold. Crowns so adorned were the highest rewards of victors (Serv. l.c.; Plin. Nat. 16.65), whence Cicero speaks of palma lemniscata, where palma means a victory or the highest reward (Rosc. Am. 35, 100; cf. Aus. Ep. 20.5). Such crowns were also given as a distinction to guests at banquets, and on other occasions (Plaut. Pseud. 5.1, 23; Liv. 33.33, 2; Suet. Nero 25).

Other epithets applied to crowns require a few words of explanation.

Coronae longae (Cic. de Leg. 2.2. 4, 60) resembled what we call festoons, and were employed to decorate the doors of houses, temples, amphitheatres, &c. (Ov. Fast. 4.738). Hence we read in Juvenal (6.51) necte coronam postibus, in Ovid (Ov. Met. 4.759) sertaque dependent tectis, and in Lucan (2.354festa coronato non pendent limine serta.

Corona pactilis (Plin. Nat. 21.11), probably the same as the corona plectilis of Plautus (Bacch. 1.1, 37), corona torta (Propert. 3.20, 18; cf. torta quercu, “a twisted oak-crown,” Verg. G. 1.349), plexa (Lucr. 5.1399; Catull. 64.283), and as the στέφανοι πλεκτοὶ and κυλιστὸς στέφανος of the Greeks. It was made of flowers, shrubs, grass, ivy, wool, or any flexible material twined or twisted together, and therefore opposed to the corona sutilis described above (see p. 545 b).

Corona tonsa was made of leaves only, closely cut, as for instance of the olive (Verg. A. 5.556; tonsae olivae, Georg. 3.21; Serv. ad loc.).

In ancient paintings females are frequently represented with crowns of flowers.

Females with Crowns. (Pict. Antiq. in
Crypt. Rom.
tav. 8.)


Judging from Homer's silence, crowns do not appear to have been adopted amongst the Greeks of the heroic ages as rewards of merit, or as festive decorations; for they are not mentioned amongst the luxuries of the delicate Phaeacians, or of the suitors. But crowns are mentioned in the Homeric Hymns (6.42, 32.6) and by Hesiod (Hes. Th. 576, though this passage is considered spurious by many critics). The Tragic poets, transferring the customs of their own days to the heroic age, frequently represent the heroes wearing crowns. At what time the wearing of crowns first came into use is uncertain. Some writers attribute their introduction as honorary rewards to the athletic games in which they were bestowed as prizes upon the victors; but in opposition to this view is the express testimony of Pausanias (10.7.3), that in the second Pythiad the Amphictyons enacted that the reward in the contests should be simply a crown or chaplet instead of the material prizes which had been formerly given. It is more probable that crowns were of religious origin (see below), and were for this reason given to the victors in the public games as the highest distinction. In the Olympic games the prize was a crown of wild olive (κότινος, Paus. 5.7.4), in the Pythian a crown of laurel (δάφνη, Paus. 10.7.4), in the Nemean a crown of parsley (σέλινον, cf. Pind. N. 6.71), and in the Isthmian a crown of pine-leaves (πίτυς), though crowns of other materials were at different periods also given at the Isthmian games (Plut. Symp. 5.3). [p. 1.547]For details see the articles on these games, and Hermann, Privatalterth. § 50. Poets also were crowned both among the Greeks and Romans, and are so represented in works of art.

Homer crowned and enthroned. (Bartoli, Admiranda, tav. 81.)

Crowns as rewards for public services are first mentioned in the time of the Persian wars. The Lacedaemonians gave to Eurybiades an olive crown as the prize of valour, and also to Themistocles a crown of the same material as the prize of wisdom and dexterity, when he had failed to obtain the prize at Athens (Hdt. 8.124). The Athenians also refused the crown as a prize to Miltiades and Aristides (Plut. Cim. 8; Aeschin. c. Ctesiph. § 45). They first granted it to Pericles (V. Max. 2.6.5); and next to Thrasybulus and the exiles who had seized Phyle, on their return to Athens (Aeschin. c. Ctesiph. § 50; Corn. Nep. Thrasyb. 4). The inhabitants of Scione crowned Brasidas with a golden crown as the liberator of Hellas (Thuc. 4.120). Soon after the Peloponnesian war the Athenians substituted for the olive garland a crown of gold, and granted it for every trifling feat, whether civil, naval, or military. But, though such crowns were lavished without much discrimination as far as regards the character of the receiving parties, they were still subjected to certain legal restrictions in respect of the time, place, and mode in which they were conferred. They could only be presented in the public assemblies, and with the consent, that is by the suffrage, of the people, or by the senators in their council, or by the tribes to their own members, or by the δημόται to members of their own δῆμος. According to the statement of Aeschines, the people could not lawfully present crowns in any place except in their assembly, nor the senators except in the senate-house; nor, according to the same authority, in the theatre, which is, however, denied by Demosthenes; nor at the public games, and if any crier there proclaimed the crowns he was subject to ἀτιμία. Neither could any person holding an office receive a crown whilst he was ὑπεύθυνος, that is, before he had passed his accounts. But crowns were sometimes presented by foreign cities to particular citizens, which were termed στέφανοι ξενικοί, coronae hospitales. This, however, could not be done until the ambassadors from those cities had obtained permission from the people, and the party for whom the honour was intended had undergone public investigation in which the whole course of his life was submitted to a strict inquiry. Crowns were also given by one state to another. Demosthenes tells us that the inhabitants of Byzantium decreed a crown to the Athenian people in token of their gratitude, and also that the Chersonesites for a similar reason bestowed upon the senate and people of Athens a crown of gold of sixty talents. (See Aeschin. c. Ctesiph. and Dem. de Coron. passim.)

Among the Romans, in particular, honorary crowns of various kinds were among the dona militaria, which generals bestowed upon the soldiers, and with which soldiers honoured their generals. A full account of them is given by A. Gellius (5.6), who, as well as Festus, derived his information from Varro. (Cf. Marquardt, Röm. Staatsverw. ii. p. 556.)

1. Corona obsidionalis or corona graminea.

Among the honorary crowns bestowed by the Romans for military achievements, the most difficult of attainment, and the one which conferred the highest honour, was the corona obsidionalis, presented by a beleaguered army after its liberation to the general who broke up the siege. It was made of grass, or weeds and wild flowers (Plin. Nat. 22.14), thence called corona graminea (Plin. Nat. 22.7), and graminea obsidionalis (Liv. 7.37), gathered from the spot on which the beleaguered army had been enclosed (Plin. l.c.; Gel. 5.6, 2.11; Fest. pp. 97, 190, M.); in allusion to a custom of the early ages, in which the vanquished party in a contest of strength or agility plucked a handful of grass from the meadow where the struggle took place, and gave it to his opponent as a token of victory. (Gell. l.c.; Plin. Nat. 22.8; Fest. l.c.; Serv. ad Verg. A. 8.128) A list of the few Romans who gained this honour is given by Pliny (22. § § 9-13), who tells us that though it was properly given by the army, yet Q. Fabius Maximus received it from the senate and people, and Augustus from the senate.

2. Corona civica,

the second in honour and importance (Plin. Nat. 16. § § 7-14), was presented to the soldier who had preserved the life of a [p. 1.548]Roman citizen in battle (Gel. 5.6; Fest. p. 42, M.), and therefore accompanied with the inscription Ob civem servatum (Sen. Clem. 1.26, 5). It was originally made of the ilex, afterwards of the aesculus, and finally of the quercus (Plin. l.c.), three different sorts of oak, the reason for which choice is explained by Plutarch (Quaest. Rom. 92). As the possession of this crown was so high an honour, its attainment was restricted by very severe regulations (Plin. l.c.), so that the following conditions must have been satisfied before a claim was allowed:--To have preserved the life of a Roman citizen in battle, slain his opponent, and maintained the ground on which the action took place. The testimony of a third party was not admissible; the person rescued must himself proclaim the fact, which increased the difficulty of attainment, as the Roman soldier was commonly unwilling to acknowledge his obligation to the prowess of a comrade, and to show him that deference which he would be compelled to pay to his preserver if the claim were established. (Cic. pro Planc. 30, 72.) Originally, therefore, the corona civica was presented by the rescued soldier (Gell. l.c.; Plb. 6.39), after the claim had been thoroughly investigated by the tribune who compelled a reluctant party to come forward and give his evidence (Polyb. l.c.); but under the empire, when the prince was the fountain from whence all honours emanated, the civic crown was no longer received from the hands of the person whose preservation it rewarded, but from the prince himself, or his delegate. (Tac. Ann. 3.21, 12.31, 15.12.)

The preservation of the life of an ally, even though he were a king, would not confer a sufficient title for the civic crown. When once obtained, it might always be worn. The soldier who had acquired it had a place reserved next to the senate at all the public spectacles; and they, as well as the rest of the company, rose up upon his entrance. He was freed from all public burthens, as were also his father and his paternal grandfather; and the person who owed his life to him was bound, ever after, to cherish his preserver as a parent, and afford him all such offices as were due from a son to his father. (Polyb., Cic., Plin., Aul. Gell. ll. cc.

A few of the principal persons who gained this reward are enumerated in the following passages:--Plin. Nat. 7. § § 101-6, 16. § § 11-14; Liv. 6.20, 10.46. L. Gellius Publicola proposed to confer it upon Cicero for having detected and crushed the conspiracy of Catiline (Gel. 5.6); and among the honours bestowed upon Augustus by the senate, it was decreed that a civic crown should be suspended from the top of

Corona civica, on coins of Augustus (left hand) and of Galba (right hand). (British Museum.)

his house (D. C. 53.16; Mon. Ancyr. 6, 14; V. Max. 2.8 fin.; Ovid. Fast. 1.614, 4.953, Trist. 3.1, 6; cf. Sen. Clem. 1.26, 5; Suet. Calig. 19, Claud. 17, Tib. 26); hence a crown of oak leaves, flanked by two branches of laurel, with the inscription ob civis servatos, is frequently seen on the reverse of the Augustan medals, as also on those of Galba, Vitellius, Vespasian, Trajan, &c., showing that they likewise assumed to themselves a similar honour.

3. Corona navalis or rostrata,

also called classica by Vell. 2.81, a golden crown, given to the sailor who first boarded an enemy's ship (Fest. p. 163, M. ; Gell. l.c.). Virgil (Aen. 8.684) unites two of the terms in one line: “tempora navali fulgent rostrata corona.” According to other authorities, it was granted very rarely, and only to a commander who destroyed the enemy's fleet, or gained any very signal victory at sea. Thus it was conferred upon Varro by Pompeius in the war against the pirates, and upon Agrippa by Augustus on his conquest of Sex. Pompeius in B.C. 36. (Vell. Pat. 1. c.; Liv. Epit. 129; D. C. 49.14; Ov. A. A. iii.

Corona rostrata, on a coin of Agrippa. (British Museum.)

392; Sen. de Ben. 3.32; Plin. Nat. 7.115, 16.7; Suet. Cl. 17; Orelli, Inscr. 3454.) It occurs on the coins of Agrippa, the crowns being decorated with the beaks of ships, like the rostra in the forum (Plin. Nat. 16.7; Eckhel, vi. p. 164).

The Athenians likewise bestowed golden crowns for naval services; upon the trierarch who got his trireme first equipped, or the captain who had his vessel in the best order. (Dem. de Cor. Trierarch. p. 1228.1, ed. Schaefer.)

4. Corona muralis.

The first man who scaled the wall of a besieged city was presented by his commander with a mural crown, made of gold and decorated with turrets (quasi muri pinnis decorata, Gell. l.c.); and being one of the highest orders of military decorations, was not awarded to a claimant until after a strict investigation. (Plb. 6.39; Liv. 26.48; Sil. It. 15.257; Suet. Aug. 25; Orelli, Inscr. 3569, &c.)

Corona muralis and rostrata combined, on a coin of Agrippa. (British Museum.)

Cybele is always represented with this crown upon her head (Lucr. 2.607-10 ; Ov. Fast. 4.219); as shown in the woodcut on p. 553. Agrippa is represented on a coin wearing a combination of the naval and mural crowns.

5. Corona castrensis

or vallaris. The first soldier who surmounted the vallum, and forced an entrance into the enemy's camp, was, in like manner, presented with a golden crown, called corona castrensis or vallaris (Gell. l.c.; Fest. p. 57, M.; V. Max. 1.8.6; Liv. 10.46; Suet. Aug. 25; Plin. Nat. 33.38; Corona castrensis, Orelli, 3048; vallaris, Orelli, 749, 3509), which was ornamented with the palisades (valli) used in forming an entrenchment.

6. Corona triumphalis

was worn upon the head of the commander during his triumph. It [p. 1.549]was first made of laurel and bay leaves, and afterwards of gold. (Gell. l.c.; Fest. p. 367, M.; Liv. 10.7; Cic. in Pis. 24, 58; Dionys. A. R. 2.34; Zonar. 7.21; Ov. Pont. 2.2, 92; Plin. xv.

Corona laurea, on a coin of Augustus. (British Museum.)

§ 127 seq.; Juv. 10.41; Suet. Tib. 17, Ner. 13.) Those who had received the laurel crown had the right of wearing it at the public games (D. C. 46.40, 48.16). It was. conferred upon Julius Caesar and Augustus, and appears on the coins of subsequent emperors as a mark of sovereignty, and was therefore not worn by any one but the reigning emperor (Eckhel, vi. p. 361). The triumphal Etruscan crown, made of gold and often enriched with jewels, was held over the head of the general during his triumph, by a public officer. (See above, p. 546 a.) This crown, as well as the former one, was presented to the victorious general by his army. [TRIUMPHUS]

Crowns, likewise of gold and of great value, were sent as presents from the provinces to the commander, as soon as a triumph had been decreed to him, and were carried before him in his triumphal procession (Fest. p. 367, M.; Plut. Aem. 34; Liv. 37.58). In the early ages of the republic, these were gratuitous presents, but subsequently they were exacted as a tribute under the name of aurum coronarium, to which none were entitled but those to whom a triumph had been decreed. [AURUM CORONARIUM] The custom of presenting golden crowns from the provinces to victorious generals was likewise in use among the Greeks, for they were profusely lavished upon Alexander after his conquest of Dareius (Athen. 12. 539 a); and the Romans probably borrowed the custom from the Greeks.

7. Corona ovalis

was another crown of less estimation, appropriated solely to commanders who merely deserved an ovation [OVATIO], on which account it was made of myrtle, the shrub sacred to Venus, “Quod non Martius, sed quasi Veneris quidam triumphus foret.” (Gell. l.c.; Fest. p. 195, M.; Plut. Marc. 22; cf. Plin. Nat. 15. § § 125-6; Dionys. A. R. 5.47.)

8. Corona oleagina

was likewise an honorary wreath, made of the olive leaf, and conferred upon the soldiers as well as their commanders. According to Gellius (l.c.), it was given to any person or persons through whose instrumentality a triumph had been obtained, but when they were not personally present in the action. It was conferred both by Augustus and the senate upon the soldiery on several occasions. (D. C. 46.40.)

III. Religious Crowns.

Crowns in general probably owed their origin to religious rites. Certain trees were from the most ancient times regarded as sacred, and it is probable that those who presented offerings to the gods carried in their hands branches of such trees, which in course of time were woven into garlands and worn upon the head. However this may be, the use of the sacrificial crown, though later than the Homeric poems, was established at least as early as the times of Sappho, who says that “the gods turn away from those who are uncrowned” (Athen. 15.674 e). Certain trees were sacred to certain divinities, as the ivy to Dionysus or Bacchus, who is constantly represented with the corona pampinea (Hor. Carm. 3.25.20; 4.8, 33), the oak to Zeus, the laurel to Apollo, the myrtle to Aphrodité or Venus, the olive to Athena or Minerva, &c. Garlands of leaves and flowers were worn by the worshippers, the priests and priestesses, and the victims offered in sacrifice. In like manner persons who went to consult an oracle wore crowns, which they laid aside when they returned. Crowns imparted a sanctity to the persons, and secured them inviolability. Thus they were worn by the archons at Athens (Dem. Mid. § 33), their office being called στεφανηφόρος (Aeschin. Tim. § 19), and by orators when addressing the assembly (Aristoph. Thes. 380). For further details, see Hermann, Griech. Antiq. vol. 1. § § 124, 129; vol. 2. § § 24, 35.

Among the Romans crowns were, in like manner, worn by priests and the victim, as well as the bystanders, when officiating at the sacrifice. It does not appear to have been confined to any one material, but was sometimes made of olive (Stat. Theb. 3.466), sometimes of gold (Prudent. Peristeph. x. 1011; Tertull. de Idol. 18), and sometimes of the ears of corn, then termed corona spicea, which kind was the most ancient one amongst the Romans (Plin. Nat. 18.6; Tac. Ann. 11.4), and was consecrated to Ceres (Hor. Carm. Sec. 30; Tib. 2.1, 4, 1.1, 15), before whose temples it was customarily suspended (Tib. 1.1, 16). In particular the insigne of the Fratres Arvales was the corona spicea and infulae albae, or white woollen fillets (Gell. vii. (vi.) 7.8; Plin. l.c.; Marquardt, Röm. Staatsverw. iii. p. 429). [INFULA] The corona spicea was likewise regarded as an emblem of peace (Tib. 1.10, 67), in which character it appears in the subjoined coin, which commemorates the conclusion of the civil war between Antony and D. Albinus Brutus.

Corona spicea, on coin of D. Albinus Brutus.

Corona spicea, on the head of Antonia. (British Museum.)

The corona spicea also appears in coins on the heads of some of the females of the imperial family, as Livia, Antonia, and Agrippina (Eckhel, vi. p. 257).

Among religious crowns may be mentioned the corona radiata, which was a mark of divinity. It had been originally given only to gods and deified heroes,--thus Virgil (Aen. 12.162) represents the hero Latinus:

Cui tempora circum
Aurati bis sex radii fulgentia cingunt,
Solis avi specimen,--
and it was first assumed by some of the successors of Alexander the Great, who claimed divine [p. 1.550]honours. Thus we find it on the coins of the Ptolemies, kings of Egypt.

Among the Romans divine honours were decreed to Julius Caesar and Augustus, who claimed a divine descent (corona radiata, Suet. Aug. 94); but the first emperor who assumed the corona radiata in his lifetime was Nero, upon whose

Corona radiata, on a coin of Ptolemaeus V., king of Egypt. (British Museum.)

coins it appears. We find, however, Augustus thus represented on coins struck after his death, as in the accompanying coin of Caligula. The example of Nero was not followed by the subsequent emperors till Caracalla, who is represented on coins with the corona radiata,

Corona radiata, on head of Augustus. (Coin of Caligula in British Museum.)

Corona radlata, on a coin of the Emperor Decius. (British Museum.)

and it appears frequently on those of succeeding emperors. (Eckhel, vi. p. 269 ff.)

IV. Funeral Crowns.

The practice of crowning the dead with chaplets of leaves and flowers was doubtless of religious origin. Clemens of Alexandria (Paedag. ii. p. 181) explains it by the crown being a symbol of freedom and deliverance from every annoyance. In any case it was regarded as a mark of honour (Eur. Tro. 1143; Aristoph. Eccl. 538; Lysistr. 602-4; Cic. pro Flacc. 31, 75; Alciphr. 1.36; Tert. de Cor. 10). Thus Euripides (Eur. Phoen. 1632) represents Creon forbidding the crowning of the corpse of Polynices under the penalty of death. All kinds of flowers and leaves were used for this purpose (στεφανώσαντες τοῖς ὡραίοις ἄνθεσι, Lucian. de Luct. 11), but parsley (σέλινον) was most commonly employed among the Greeks (Plut. Tim. 26; Suid. s. v.). Although the corpse was probably crowned with only one garland, the relations and friends sent, as with us, numerous garlands to the funeral, with which they crowned both the bier and the tomb. The taeniae (ταινίαι), bands, ribbons, or fillets of leaves and flowers, not necessarily for crowning, were also sent to funerals (τὰς ταινίας, ἃς τοῖς νεκροῖς ἔπεμπον οἱ φίλοι, Schol. ad Aristoph. Lys. 603). Caecilius (op. Fest. s. v.) speaks of a “tomb, full of taeniae, as usual;” and on ancient vases funeral stelae are often represented hung with chaplets or bound with taeniae. (Dennis, Etrur. i. p. 395; Stephani, Compte Rendu for 1874, p. 114.) Such chaplets or fillets were frequently deposited on tombs, not only at the time of the funeral, but also at subsequent periods. The Greeks entwined with garlands the cinerary urn of their friends (Plut. Demetr. 53); Philopoemen's urn was so covered with chaplets as scarcely to

A funeral stele, with crowns and taeniae. (Baumeister.)

be visible (Plut. Phil. 21), and Hannibal crowned the urn of Marcellus (Plut. Marc. 30).

The crowning of the dead was not so common among the Romans as among the Greeks. But a law of the Twelve Tables enacted that a person who had obtained an honorary crown in his lifetime might have it placed upon him in the funeral procession. (Cic. de Ley. 2.2. 4, 60; Plin. Nat. 21.7.) Garlands of flowers were also placed upon the bier and the funeral pyre (Plin. Nat. 21.10; Dionys. A. R. 11.39). Pliny (ib. § 11) says that crowns were used in honour of sepulchres and the manes. (Cf. Ov. Tr. 3.3, 82; Tib. 2.4, 48.)

We have seen that funeral crowns were usually of leaves and flowers, but golden crowns in the shape of leaves and flowers have also been found in tombs. (See above, p. 546 a.) (Becker-Göll, Charikles, i. p. 260, iii. pp. 122, 159; Gallus, iii. p. 491.)

V. Crowns as signs of rejoicing.

1. Coronae conviviales.

The name of coronae was only applied to convivial garlands at a late period, as the word was originally restricted to religious crowns, and those given as rewards (Plin. Nat. 21.3). Among the Greeks and Romans, the guests wore crowns at their banquets, but they were not put on till the first course was finished, and the symposium or comissatio began (Athen. xv. pp. 685, 669; Plut; Symp. 3.1, 1; V. Max. 2.6, 1). Guests crowned with flowers are frequently depicted in the drinking scenes on ancient vases. The practice was borrowed by the Romans from the Greeks, and was already usual in the second Punic war: but it was considered a mark of luxury; and when anyone was seen in public, even accidentally, crowned with flowers, he was severely punished. (Plin. Nat. 21.8.) At first woollen fillets were only used, tied round the head, to prevent intoxication, but afterwards crowns of leaves and flowers, especially the myrtle and the rose (Plin. ib. § 3). The Greeks also believed that crowns of flowers likewise mitigated the effects of wine. (Athen. xv. pp. 674, 675; Plut. Symp. 3.1.) On the various kinds of flowers, especially roses, used for convivial crowns, and the luxury attending them, see above, p. 545. The rose was used as synonymous with, or to indicate, the comissatio. Thus Cicero says (de Fin. 2.20, 65) in rosa potare; and Martial (10.19, 20), cum regnat rosa, cum [p. 1.551]madent capilli, also (3.68, 5) deposito post vina rosasque pudore. Unguents or perfumes were introduced with the flowers (Sen. de Ir. 2.33, 4; Athen. 15.669; Mart. 10.19, 20), and sometimes, as a special honour, crowns were

Guests crowned in a Symposium. (From a painting on a vase.)

dedicated with lemnisci or pendent ribbons, like the triumphal crowns already mentioned (p. 546). (plaut. Pseud. 5.1, 21; Capitol. Ver. 5.) In ancient times each guest brought his own crown (Ov. Fast. 1.403), but subsequently the crowns were provided by the host. The guests not only wore crowns upon their heads, but also garlands round their necks, called ὑποθυμίδες (Athen. 15.674), so that they might enjoy the scent. Thus Verres is represented as wearing one garland on his head, and another round his neck (Cic. Ver. 5.11, 27). The garlands round the neck, as well as on the head, are mentioned in other passages (Hor. Sat. 2.3, 256; Catull. 7.51; Ov. Fast. ii.

The god Hymenaeus with a nuptial crown. (Baumeister.)

739). Among the extravagances in the house of Trimalchio we are told that the legs, feet, and ankles of the guests were bound with flowers (Petron. 70). (On convivial crowns, see Becker-Göll, Gallus, iii. p. 493 seq.

2. Corona nuptialis.

Both the bride and bridegroom among the Greeks and Romans wore crowns (Schol. ad Aristoph. Pac. 869; cf. Aves, 159), and are often so represented on ancient vases. Those who were present at the marriage also wore crowns; and the doors of the bridegroom as well as the bridal bed were also decorated with garlands (στέφος γαμήλιον, Bion, Id. 1.88; Lucian. Dial. Meretr. 2.3; Plut. Amat. 10, Pomp. 55; Catull. 64.294; Juv. 6.51, 227; Lucan 2.358; Stat. Silv. 1.2, 231; Apul. Met. 4.100.26.) Among the Romans the verbena and other plants, of which the bridal crown was composed, were plucked by the bride herself. (Fest. p. 63, M.; cf. Catull. 61.7.)

3. Corona natalicia,

the chaplet suspended over the door of the vestibule of the house in which a child was born (Juv. 9.85). At Athens, when the infant was male, the chaplet was made of olive; when female, of wool (Hesych. s. v. στέφανος). (Paschalius, de Coronis, Paris, 1610; Garcke, de Horatii Corollis, Altenburg, 1860; the works of Becker-Göll, Hermann, Blümner, Marquardt, referred to above; Daremberg and Saglio, s. v.)


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