CROWN

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CROWN. In the early ages, when men were fond of expressing all their feelings by outward signs, a wreath of flowers or leaves was naturally one of the first emblems of honor or of joy. Such was the ornament of the priest in the performance of sacrifice, of the hero on his return from victory, of the bride at her nuptials, and of the guests at a feast. The ancient mythology, which gave every thing a distinct beginning and a poetical origin, ascribes the invention of wreaths to Prometheus, who imitated, with flowers, the fetters which he had borne for his love to mankind, whom he had created. According to Pliny, wreaths were first made of ivy, 11 nd Bacchus first wore them. In process of time, they were made of very different materials. Those worn by the Greeks at feasts in honor of a divinity, were made of the flowers of the plaut consecrated to the god. Wreaths of roses afterwards became very common. In some cases, wreaths were even made of wool. Wreaths of ivy and amethyst were worn, by the Greeks, on the head, neck and breast, at entertainments, with a view to prevent drunkenness. Mnesitheus and Callimachus, two Greek physicians, wrote entire books on wreaths, and their medical virtues. Corpses were covered with wreaths and green branches. Lovers adorned with wreaths and flowers the doors of their mistresses, and even captives, who were to be sold as slaves, wore wreaths ; hence the phrase sub corona venire or vendere. The beasts sacrificed to the gods were also crowned. Wreaths, in process of time, were made of metal5 in imitation of flowers, or of the fillet which the priest wore round his head when he sacrificed, which was called ^o^a. This attribute of distinction was early adopted by the kings, when they united in their persons the temporal and spiritual power. Among the various crowns and wreaths in use among the Greeks and Romans, were the following: Corona agonothetarum; the reward of the victor in the great gymnastic games. Corona aurea (the,golden crown); the reward of remarkable bravery. Corona castrensis; given to him who first entered the camp of the enemy. Corona civica (see Civic Crown) ; one of the highest military rewards. It was given to him who had saved the life of a citizen. Corona convivalis; the wreath worn at feasts. Corona muralis; given by the general to the soldier who first scaled the enemy's wall. Corona natalitia; a wreath which parents hung up before the door at the birth of a child. It was made of olivebranches if the child was a boy, and of wool if a girl. Corona navalis, the next in rank after the civic CROWN, was given to him who first boarded and took an enemy's vessel. Corona nuptialis; a crown or wreath worn by brides. The bridegroom, also, and his relations, on the day of the wedding, adorned themselves with wreaths. At first, the corona nuptialis was of flowers ; afterwards, of gold or silver and precious stones. Corona obsidionalis; a reward given to him who delivered a besieged town, or a blockaded army. It wa% one of the highest military honors, and very seldom obtained. It was made of grass; if possible, of such as grew on the delivered place. Corona triumpkalis ; a wreath of laurel which was given, by the army, to the imperator. He wore it on his head at the celebration of his triumph. Another crown of gold, the material of which [coronarium aurum) was furnished by the conquered cities, was earned over the head of the general. The wreaths, conferred at the great games of Greece, were of different kinds ; at the Olympic games, of wild olive; at the Pythian games, of laurel ; at the Nemean games, first of olive, then of parsley ; at the Isthmian games, a wreath of pine leaves, afterwards of parsley ; subsequently pine leaves were resumed.In the middle ages, crowns became exclusively appropriated to the royal and imperial dignity; the coronets of nobles were only borne in their coats of arms. (See Coronet, also Tiara.) From the Jewish king being called, in the Scriptures, the anointed of the Lord, a kind of religious mystery and awe became attached to crowned heads, which, in most countries, continues to the present day, though history has shown us abundantly that crowns often cover the heads of very weak or very wicked individuals, and that there is no great mystery about their qrigin; some having been obtained by purchase, some by crime, some by grants from a more powerful prince, some by contract, some by choice, but, on the whole, comparatively few in an honest way. The iron crown of Lombardy, preserved at Monza, in the territory of Milan, is a golden crown set with precious stones, with which in forrcier times the Lombard kings were crowned, and, at a later period, the RomanGerman emperors, when they wished to manifest their claims as kings of Lombardy. An iron circle, made, according to the legend, out of a nail of Christ's cross, which is fixed inside, gave rise to the name. Agilulf, king of Lombardy, was the first person crowned with it (in 590). legislative, judicial, &c. domains are distinguish or national domains. Ii ence is even made betwi mains and the private king; the former are ii long to the reigning m second may be treated 1 vate property. The di crown and state, of cours perfectly arbitrary gove: officers are certain office] European sovereigns, the different branches of not accurately defined, t generally, also state offi German empire, and i The offices were general of late years, they are i attached to the court, tl cases, being connected w ties, as, for instance, in F and military grand offic have always existed. (£ Crown, in commerce; for coins of several n about the value of a dc Table of.) Crown, in an ecclesias for the tonsure, the sh; head of the Roman Cath they received the ointn tion. (See Tonsure.)