In past posts, I’ve worried quite a bit about the penates. I may have to write this all up eventually as a proper article or something. I’m still working on Dionysius ahead of my Yale talk this coming Saturday. And, my work led me back to passage on the Penates in book 1. And I found this comment by A. E. Dumser on the aedes Penates on the Mapping Augustan Rome Website.
Here are some more images just for further context:
Update 6/30/17 – just a bibliographical reference for when I come back to the penates:
M. Stöckinger, Inalienable Possessions : the di penates in the Aeneid and in Augustan Culture, p. 129-48 in Mario Labate, Gianpiero Rosati (ed.), La costruzione del mito augusteo. Bibliothek der klassischen Altertumswissenschaften, Band 141. Heidelberg: Universitätsverlag Winter, 2013. ISBN 9783825361136.
I came across the passage of Crawford below and decided I might kick the main discussion of the type above out of the chapter I’m working on at the moment (Rome and Italy) and put it in the previous one (The Legendary Past).
Since Crawford wrote this passage (RRC II.714) thinking about Lycophron and Roman foundation legends has developed. Here’s Wiseman’s translation of the relevant passage from his Remus:
Coin geeks will know Aphrodite Castnia from the coins of Metropolis in Thessaly [links to an example with a side story from the collector illuminating acquisition practices]. Literary buffs will be more likely to reference Callimachus Iambus 10; Kerkhecker 1999: 207:
The lion and goddess seem to me very much in the South Italian and Sicilian repertoire of iconography (cf. Velia and Syracuse for Lions among other mints), evoking power and divine protection, but not necessarily an intersection with a specific foundation narrative.
And I’m still moving away from Russo’s suggestion that RRC 16, 17, and 23 form a series, amongst other reasons already discussed, because of Crawford’s comments about the different circulation patterns of RRC 16 and 17 in CMRR, p. 38 with App. 9 (p. 285) listing hoards.
The first time I saw an image of this mosaic I thought the spellings of the names very odd. PWMYΛΛΟC and PWΔC, except the delta looks like it has a tail like a funny iota script. So perhaps its reads PWAiC, but that doesn’t make much sense either. At with point I stopped worrying about it because its way after my period and just a distraction from getting this book done.
Then today I started thinking about that odd letter in the twin’s name who isn’t Romyllos or Romulus or however you want to spell it. I was reading Wiseman’s chapter on L. Brutus in his Unwritten Rome (2008) and I read this fragment of Alcimus (FGrH 560 F 4 = Festus 326-8L):
Alcimus says that Romulus was the son of Aeneas’ wife Tyrrhenia, and from Romulus was born Aeneas’ granddaughter Alba, whose son, called Rhodius, founded Rome.
Wiseman goes on (p. 302 ff.) to explain that ardea means heron and so does rhodios in Greek and so this passage is about Ardea claiming to be founder of Rome.
Anyways. I doubt a late Syrian mosaicist was following Alcimus or anything.
I’m trying to make up my mind whether I think RRC 308/1 represents one of the Catanaean Brothers as most scholars think or if I am swayed at all by Evans’ claim that it is really Aeneas. Above is a coin of Catana showing the brothers. Here is the Republican coin:
There two literary accounts of the brothers. One is Hyginus’ list . I give the two proceeding entries and the two after for context:
Why should we assume he’s wrong? Or at least that the attribution of this prophecy is disputed? Whelp. The obverse of the above coin looks like this:
That’s Juno Sospita, the patron goddess of Lanuvium! The moneyer’s family is well known for celebrating their connection to this city on their coins. If there was a statue that looked like the reverse, it probably stood in that forum, not at Lavinium. Add in this tantalizing bit of Horace: