Ancient World

Throughout the romanized parts of the empire - in other words, wherever Romans settled, in Italy, Spain, Gaul, Britain, and also wherever the richer natives imitated the Roman fashions - the house in any city or considerable town was built as nearly as possible after the type described.

On the customary furniture of a Roman house we need not spend many words. For one thing, it was simple and scanty as compared with the furnishing and upholstering of to-day. For another, its nature presents little that would be strange to us or that would require explanation.

We have seen in what sort of a home a Roman dwelt in town or country. Meanwhile it goes without saying that the non-Roman or non-Romanized populations of the empire were living in houses and amid furniture of their own special type - Greek, Syrian, Egyptian, or as the case might be. They were also living their lives after their own fashion in respect of dress, meals, occupations, and amusements.

We will suppose that Silius is specially inclined for action and society. The afternoon is growing chilly, and, as he has no further ceremonial to undergo, he will probably throw over his toga a richly coloured mantle - violet, amethyst, or scarlet - to be fastened on the shoulder with a buckle or brooch.

Silius was a noble, with a nobleman's privileges and also his limitations. The class next in rank below his consisted of the "knights," of whom something has already been said. It will be remembered that these men of the "narrow stripe" were the higher middle class, who conducted most of the greater financial enterprises of Rome and the provinces.

The reception accorded to my Life in Ancient Athens has led me to write the present companion work with an eye to the same class of readers. In the preface to the former volume it was said: "I have sought to leave an impression true and sound, so far as it goes, and also vivid and distinct.

These topics bring us naturally to the consideration of the chief amusements and entertainments of Rome and of those parts of the empire which were either fairly romanized or else contained a large number of resident Romans.

The subject of this book is "Life in the Roman World of Nero and St. Paul." This is not quite the same thing as "Life in Ancient Rome" at the same date. Our survey is to be somewhat wider than that of the imperial city itself, with its public and private structures, its public and private life. The capital, and these topics concerning it, will naturally occupy the greater portion of our time and interest.

We will assume that Silius is a married man, and that his wife is a typical Roman dame worthy of his station in life. Her name shall be Marcia, or, if she possesses more than one, Marcia Sabina.

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