Problems in the Satires of Horace


On their arrival at Fundi Horace, Maecenas and their friends are, we may infer, greeted by a self-important local official with all the pomp of office that he can claim or usurp; the praetexta belongs to the first class and the latus clauus apparently to the latter, and likewise the title of praetor, though it was quite often assumed by the more lowly local aediles, which was the correct title at Fundi. The last two words of the above quotation attract airy notes from commentators. One would better start from the glosses on uatillum collected in the index of Goetz' Corpus Glossariorum 7.2, which explain the word as acerra, turibulum, uas ad portandum carbones. It therefore means an incense- burner, a vessel which could take one of many forms and in which the burning was provided by live coals, carbones or pruna. Some interpreters suppose that the 'praetor' is presented as wishing to mark the arrival of these important guests with a sacrifice or simply a burning of incense, but this is oif the point; Horace, as praemia shows, is talking about regular manifestations of his pomp. Such vessels were customarily carried in religious and festal processions (much evidence is gathered in RE s.v. turibulum), and from the second century AD onwards apparently often preceded the emperor as seemingly little more than a status symbol, though we have no evidence of anything like this as early as Horace; on (giving due attention to Horace) Alfbldi.Herodian as to; mip, and the glossaries uatillum provide "rrupcciirļ, 'fire-vessel', sense in any Greek text. Alföldi equates a term applied to torches carried in front is in essence followed by Whittaker in 2.3.2, 4 but I think that we should keep however, with Alföldi in rejecting Mommsen's followed by Kiessling-Heinze, that the purpose of keeping the torches lit. The Aufidius pampered his vanity by having on everyday occasions by attributes normally be reserved for ceremonial occasions.


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