The Ancient Library
 

Scanned text contains errors.

On this page: Bassus – Batalus – Bateia

BASSUS.

direction, was unable to find them, and in despair put an end to his life, a. D. 66. (Tac. Ann. xvi. 1—3 ; Suet. Ner. 31.)

BASSUS, GA'VIUS or GA'BIUS, a learned, grammarian, whose Commentarii and treatise De Origine Verborum et Vocabulorum are cited by Gel- lius (ii. 4, iii. 9,19, v. 7, xi. 17). He is probably the same with the writer of the work De Diis., spoken of by Macrobius (Sat. i. 19, iii. G, compare iii. 18), and perhaps to him belong the Satirae also from which Fulgentius Planciades quotes a line. (Serin. Antiq. Explio.} We hear of a Gavius Bas- sus who was praefectus of the Pontic coast under Trajan (Plin. Ep. x. 18, 32, 33), but those who would identify him with the person mentioned above have overlooked the circumstance that the author of the commentaries declares, that he beheld with his own eyes at Argos the famous equus Seianus, which was said to have belonged in suc­ cession to Dolabella, Cassius, and M. Antonius; and hence it is clear that, unless in addition to its peculiar property of entailing inevitable destruction upon its possessor, it had likewise received the gift of longer life than ever steed enjoyed before, it could hardly have been seen by a contemporary of the younger Pliny. The praenomen Gavius or Gabius has in many MSS. been corrupted into Gains or Caius, and then abbreviated into (7., which has given rise to considerable confusion; but, for anything we can prove to the contrary, each of the above-mentioned books may be from the pen of a distinct individual. [W. R.] BASSUS JU'LIUS. [bassus, p. 471, b.] BASSUS, JU'LIUS, a Roman orator, fre­ quently mentioned by the elder Seneca in his Controversiae, seems to be the same as the Junius Bassus who was called A sinus albus when Quin- tilian was a boy, and who was distinguished by his abusive wit. (Qtiintil. vi. 3. §§ 27, 57, 74,)

BASSUS, LOLL1US (A6\Xios BaWos), the author of ten epigrams in the Greek Anthology, is called, in the title of the second epigram, a native of Smyrna. His time is fixed by the tenth epi­ gram, on the death of Germanicus, who died a. d. 19. (Tac. Ann. ii. 71.) [P. S.]

BASSUS, LUCI'LIUS, a name used by Cicero as proverbial for a vain and worthless author. In a letter to Atticus (xii. 5), speaking of his pane­ gyric upon Cato, he says, " I am well pleased with my work, but so is Bassus Lucilius with his," Some MSS. here have Caecilius. [ W. R.]

BASSUS, LUCI'LIUS, was promoted by Vitellius from the command of a squadron of cavalry to be admiral of the fleet at Ravenna and Misenum, b. c. 70 ; but disappointed at not ob­taining the command of the praetorian troops, he betrayed the fleet to Vespasian. After the death of Vitellius, Bassus was sent to put down some disturbances in Campania. (Tac, Hist. ii. 100, iii. 12, 36, 40, iv. 3.) His name occurs in an in­scription. (Gruter, p. 573.)

BASSUS, POMPO'NIUS, was consul a. d. 211, under Septimius Severus, and at a subsequent period fell a victim to the licentious cruelty of Elagabalus, who having become enamoured of his fair and high-born wife, Annia Faustina, a de­scendant (airoyovos^ probably great-grandaughter) of M. Aurelius, caused Bassus to be put to death by the senate under some frivolous pretext, and then married the widow with indecent haste. This event took place in 2

473

BATEIA.

The TJassus who was governor of Mysia under Caracalla may have been the father or the son of the above. (Dion Cass. Ixxviii. 21, Ixxix. 5 ; Herodian, v. 6, 5.) [W. R.]

BASSUS, SALEIUS, a Roman epic poet, contemporary with Statius. Quintilian thus characterises his genius : k4 vehemens et poeticum fait nee ipsum senectute maturum." The last words are somewhat obscure, but probably signify that he died young, before his powers were ripened by years. He is the " tennis Saleius" of Juvenal, one of the numerous band of literary men whose poverty and sufferings the satirist so feelingly de­plores ; but at a later period his wants were relieved by the liberality of Vespasian, as we learn from the dialogue on the decline of eloquence, where warm praise is lavished on his abilities and moral worth.

We have not even a fragment acknowledged as the production of this Bassus. A panegyric, in­deed, in 261 heroic hexameters, on a certain Cal-purnius Piso, has been preserved, the object and the author of which are equally uncertain ; and hence we find it attributed to Virgil, to Ovid, to Statius, and very frequently to Lucan, whose name is said to be prefixed in some MSS., while Wernsdorf, rejecting all these suppositions, labours hard to prove that it ought to be ascribed to Saleius Bassus, and that the Piso who is the hero of the piece must be the well-known leader of the great conspiracy against Nero, The strong points in the position are the allusions (1. 180) to the game of draughts in which this Piso is known to have been an adept (Vet. Schol. ad Juv. v. 109), and the references by the writer to his own humble origin and narrow means, a description altogether inapplicable to the well-born and wealthy bard of Corduba. Granting, however, that Wernsdorf is right so far as Piso and Lucan are concerned, it by no means follows, from the simple fact that the author in question was poor and neglected, that we are entitled, in the absence of all other evidence direct or circumstantial, to identify him with Saleius Bassus, for it is certain that the same con­ditions would hold good of Statius, Serranus, and a long list of versifiers belonging to the same period. (Quint, x. 1, 90 ; Dialog, de Oratt. cc. 5, 9 ; Juv. vii. 80 ; Wernsdorf, Poett. Latt. Minn. vol. iv. p. i. Pp. 36, 72, 75, 236,) [W. R.]

BASSUS, SEPU'LLIUS, a Roman orator, frequently mentioned by the elder Seneca. (Con-trov. iii. 16, 17, 20-22.)

BASSUS, SI'LIUS, a Roman orator, mention­ed by the elder Seneca. (Controv. i. 6, 7.)

BATALUS (BdraAos), according to some, the author of lascivious drinking-songs, and according to others, an effeminate flute-player, who must have lived shortly before the time of Demosthenes, for the latter is said to have been nick-named Ba-talus on account of his weakly and delicate consti­tution. (Pint. Dem. 4, Vit, X. Oral. p. 847, e.) According to Libanius ( Vit. Dem. p. 2, ed. Reiske), Batalus, the flute-player, was a native of Ephcsus, and the first man that ever appeared on the stage in women's shoes, for which reason he was ridi­culed in a comedy of Antiphanes. Whether the poet and the flute-player were the same, or two different persons, is uncertain. (Comp. Meineke, Hist. Grit. Com. Graec. p. 333, &c.) [L. S.]

BATEIA (BtJreta), a daughter of Teucer or of Tros (Steph. Byz. s. v. AcfyScu'cs), the wife of Bar-

Pages
About | First

472

473

474
letter/word  
volume
page #  
Search this site
Google


ancientlibrary.com
WWW
All non-public domain material, including introductions, markup, and OCR © 2005 Tim Spalding.
Ancient Library was developed and hosted by Tim Spalding of Isidore-of-Seville.com.