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A triclinium (plural: triclinia) is a formal dining room in a Roman building. The word is adopted from the Greek triklinion (τρικλίνιον)—from tri- (τρι-), "three", and klinē (κλίνη), a sort of couch or rather chaise longue. Each couch was sized to accommodate a diner who reclined on their left side on cushions while some household slaves served multiple courses brought from the culina, or kitchen, and others entertained guests with music, song, or dance. :376
The triclinium was characterized by three lecti (singular lectus: bed or couch), called triclinares ("of the triclinium"), on three sides of a low square table, whose surfaces sloped away from the table at about 10 degrees. Diners would recline on these surfaces in a semi-recumbent position. The fourth side of the table was left free, presumably to allow service to the table. 376 Usually the open side faced the entrance of the room. In Roman-era dwellings, particularly wealthy ones, triclinia were common :343 and the hosts and guest would recline on pillows while feasting.:
The Museum of Archeology in Arezzo, Italy and the House of Cairo in Pompeii offer what are thought to be accurate reconstructions of triclinia. The custom of using klinai ("dining couches") while taking a meal rather than sitting became popular among the Greeks in the early seventh century BC. From here it spread to their colonies in southern Italy (Magna Graecia) and was eventually adopted by the Etruscans.
In contrast to the Greek tradition of allowing only male guests into the formal dining room, called andrōn , while everyday meals were taken with the rest of the family in the oikos , the Etruscans seem to not have restricted the use of the klinē to the male gender. The Romans may have seen the first dining klinai as used by the Etruscans but may have refined the practice when they later came to closer contact with the Greek culture.
Dining was the defining ritual in Roman domestic life, lasting from late afternoon through late at night. Typically, nine to twenty guests were invited, arranged in a prescribed seating order to emphasize divisions in status and relative closeness to the dominus .As static, privileged space, dining rooms received extremely elaborate decoration, with complex perspective scenes and central paintings (or, here, mosaics). Dionysus, Venus, and still lifes of food were popular. Middle class and elite Roman houses usually had at least two triclinia; it is not unusual to find four or more. Here, the triclinium maius ("big dining room") would be used for larger dinner parties, which would typically include many clients of the owner.
Smaller triclinia would be used for smaller dinner parties, with a more exclusive set of guests. Hence, their decoration was often at least as elaborate as that found in larger triclinia. As in the larger triclinia, wine, food, and love were always popular themes. However, because of their association with patronage and because dining entertainment often included recitation of highbrow literature like epics, dining rooms could also feature more "serious" themes. As in many houses in Pompeii, here the smaller dining room (triclinium minus) forms a suite with the adjoining cubiculum and bath.
In later republican times, after the introduction of round tables of citrus wood, the three couches were replaced by one of crescent shape (called sigma from the form of the Greek letter), which as a rule was only intended to hold five persons. The two corner seats (cornua) were the places of honour, that on the right being considered superior. The remaining seats were reckoned from left to right, so that the least important seat was on the left side of the most important. The use of the sigma continued until the Middle Ages.
A dining room is a room for consuming food. In modern times it is usually adjacent to the kitchen for convenience in serving, although in medieval times it was often on an entirely different floor level. Historically the dining room is furnished with a rather large dining table and a number of dining chairs; the most common shape is generally rectangular with two armed end chairs and an even number of un-armed side chairs along the long sides.
In ancient Greece, the symposium was a part of a banquet that took place after the meal, when drinking for pleasure was accompanied by music, dancing, recitals, or conversation. Literary works that describe or take place at a symposium include two Socratic dialogues, Plato's Symposium and Xenophon's Symposium, as well as a number of Greek poems such as the elegies of Theognis of Megara. Symposia are depicted in Greek and Etruscan art that shows similar scenes.
Tableware are the dishes or dishware used for setting a table, serving food and dining. It includes cutlery, glassware, serving dishes and other items for practical as well as decorative purposes. The quality, nature, variety and number of objects varies according to culture, religion, number of diners, cuisine and occasion. For example, Middle Eastern, Indian or Polynesian food culture and cuisine sometimes limits tableware to serving dishes, using bread or leaves as individual plates. Cups are not dishes. Special occasions are usually reflected in higher quality tableware.
A chaise longue is an upholstered sofa in the shape of a chair that is long enough to support the legs.
In ancient Rome, the domus was the type of town house occupied by the upper classes and some wealthy freedmen during the Republican and Imperial eras. It was found in almost all the major cities throughout the Roman territories. The modern English word domestic comes from Latin domesticus, which is derived from the word domus. The word dom in modern Slavic languages means "home" and is a cognate of the Latin word, going back to Proto-Indo-European. Along with a domus in the city, many of the richest families of ancient Rome also owned a separate country house known as a villa. Many chose to live primarily, or even exclusively, in their villas; these homes were generally much grander in scale and on larger acres of land due to more space outside the walled and fortified city.
The lectisternium was an ancient Roman propitiatory ceremony, consisting of a meal offered to gods and goddesses. The word derives from lectum sternere, "to spread a couch." The deities were represented by their busts or statues, or by portable figures of wood, with heads of bronze, wax or marble, and covered with drapery. It has also been suggested that the divine images were bundles of sacred herbs tied together in the form of a head, covered by a waxen mask so as to resemble a kind of bust, rather like the straw figures called Argei. These figures were laid upon a couch (lectus), the left arm resting on a cushion in the attitude of reclining. The couch was set out in the open street, and a meal placed before it on a table.
The House of the Vettii is a domus located in the Roman town, Pompeii, which was preserved by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD. The house is named for its owners, two successful freedmen: Aulus Vettius Conviva, an Augustalis, and Aulus Vettius Restitutus. Its careful excavation has preserved almost all of the wall frescos, which were completed following the earthquake of 62 AD, in the manner art historians term the Pompeiian Fourth Style. The House of Vetti is located in region VI, near the Vesuvian Gate, bordered by the Vicolo di Mercurio and the Vicolo dei Vettii. The house is one of the largest domus in Pompeii, spanning the entire southern section of block 15. The plan is fashioned in a typical Roman domus with the exception of a tablinum, which is not included. There are twelve mythological scenes across four cubiculum and one triclinium.
Accubita was one name for the Ancient Roman furniture couches used in the time of the Roman emperors, in the triclinium or dining room, for reclining upon at meals. It was also apparently sometimes the name of the dining room itself, or a niche for a couch. Sometimes it denotes a multi-person curved couch, for which the term stibadium is also used. Klinai is the Greek equivalent, sometimes also used.
Klinai, known in Latin as lectus triclinaris, were a type of ancient furniture used by the ancient Greeks in their symposia and by the ancient Romans in their somewhat different convivia.
The stibadium is a later form of the Roman lectus triclinaris, the reclining seat used by diners in the triclinium. Originally, the lecti were arranged in a group of three in a semi-circle. The stibadium was a single semi-circular couch, fitting up to a dozen people, which replaced the triple group of lecti in the dining-room, frequently in alcoves around the centre of the room.
The House of the Tragic Poet is a Roman house in Pompeii, Italy dating to the 2nd century BCE. The house is famous for its elaborate mosaic floors and frescoes depicting scenes from Greek mythology.
The House of Loreius Tiburtinus is renowned for its meticulous and well-preserved artwork as well as its large gardens.
The House of Julia Felix, also referred to as the praedia of Julia Felix, is a large Roman property on the Via dell'Abbondanza in the city of Pompeii. It was originally the residence of Julia Felix, who converted portions of it to apartments available for rent and other parts for public use after the major earthquake in 62 AD, a precursor to the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD that destroyed Pompeii.
The Wadi Qelt Synagogue is the name given by some to a building controversially identified by its excavator, archaeologist Ehud Netzer, as a Hasmonean-period synagogue. It is part of the royal winter palace complex built by the Hasmoneans in the warm desert oasis of Jericho, west of the town proper. It dates from between 70 and 50 BCE, and if it did indeed serve as a synagogue, it would be one of the oldest synagogues ever found.
The House of Sallust is a domus or elite residence in the ancient Roman city of Pompeii. The oldest parts of the house have been dated to the 4th century BCE, but the main expansions were built in the 2nd century BCE during the Roman period. The long history of this structure provides important evidence about the development of elite residences in Pompeii. The house is located on the east side of the Via Consolare. It received its modern name from an election notice placed on the facade, recommending Gaius Sallustius for office. An alternative name is the House of A. Cossus Libanus, from a seal found in the ruins. The site was later damaged by a bomb in World War II, and was restored in 1970.
The Tomb of the Leopards is an Etruscan burial chamber so called for the confronted leopards painted above a banquet scene. The tomb is located within the Necropolis of Monterozzi, near Tarquinia, Lazio, Italy, and dates to around 480–450 BC. The painting is one of the best-preserved murals of Tarquinia, and is known for "its lively coloring, and its animated depictions rich with gestures."
The House of the Centenary was the house of a wealthy resident of Pompeii, preserved by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 AD. The house was discovered in 1879, and was given its modern name to mark the 18th centenary of the disaster. Built in the mid-2nd century BC, it is among the largest houses in the city, with private baths, a nymphaeum, a fish pond (piscina), and two atria. The Centenary underwent a remodeling around 15 AD, at which time the bath complex and swimming pool were added. In the last years before the eruption, several rooms had been extensively redecorated with a number of paintings.
Ancient furniture was made of many different materials, including reeds, wood, stone, metals, straws, and ivory. Some civilizations inlay or carved images of mythological creatures or constellations carved into their furniture. The chairs would be stylized with metals, finials, inlays, or upholstery. It was a common practice for the legs of furniture to be shaped like animal legs and use mortise and tenon joints. Lacquerware and Ivory carving were also common. Throughout the ancient world inlay were common. Metals such as bronze or gold. Sometimes furniture would be inlaid into a certain shape. For example, the game Mehen was played on a table inlaid into the shape of a snake. Inlays were also used to ornament shapes.
The Tomb of the Triclinium or the Funereal Bed is an Etruscan tomb in the Necropolis of Monterozzi dated to approximately 470 BC. The tomb is named after the Roman triclinium, a type of formal dining room, which appears in the frescoes of the tomb. It has been described as one of the most famous of all Etruscan tombs.
The House of the Prince of Naples is a Roman townhouse located in Region VI, Insula XV, entrances 7 and 8 in the archaeological site of Pompeii near Naples, Italy. The structure is so named because the Prince and Princess of Naples Joseph Bonapartes grandson Louis Joseph and his wife Laura, attended a ceremonial excavation of selected rooms there on March 22, 1898. The house is painted throughout in the Pompeian Fourth Style and is valued by scholars because its decoration is all of a single style and single period, unlike many surviving Roman structures that are found to be a hodgepodge of styles from different periods.
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