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On this page: Pontius Telesfnus – Pontius Titinianus – Pontus – Popfllius – Popillia – Popillia Gens – Poplfcola – Porcia


part t)f the policy of the imperial government to publish such reports, we may reasonably question the genuineness of the document. At all events there can be no doubt that the acts of Pilate, as they are called, which are extant in Greek (Fabric. Apocr. vol. i. pp. 237,239, vol. iii. p. 456, &c.), as well as his two Latin letters to the emperor (Fabric. Apocr. vol. i. p. 298, &c.), are the productions of a later age. (Comp. Winer, Biblisches Realwor-terbuch, art. Pilatus.}

PONTIUS TELESFNUS. 1. A Samnite, appears to have been appointed general of the Samnite forces in the Social war after the death of Pompaedius Silo. At all events he was at the head of the Samnite army in b. c. 82, in which year Carbo and the younger Marius were con­suls. Marius and the brother of Telesinus were besieged in Praeneste by Sulla. Telesinus him­self, at the head of an army of 40,000 men, had marched to the neighbourhood of Praeneste, apparently with the intention of relieving the town, but in reality with another object, which he kept a profound secret. In the dead of the night he broke up from his quarters, and marched straight upon Rome, which had been left without any army for its protection. The Samnites were upon the point of avenging the many years of op­pression which they had experienced from the Romans. Sulla scarcely arrived in time to save the city. Near the Colline gate the battle was fought, the most desperate and bloody of all the contests during the civil war. Pontius fell in the fight ; his head was cut off, and carried under the walls of Praeneste, to let the younger Marius know that his last hope of succour was gone. (Appian, B. C. i. 90—93 ; Veil. Pat. ii. 27.)

2. A brother of the preceding, commanded the Samnite forces which had been sent to the assistance of the younger Marius, and shared in the defeat of the latter by Sulla, and with him took refuge in Praeneste, where they were besieged by the con­queror, b. c. 82. After the defeat of the Samnites and the death of the elder Telesinus, which have been related above, Marius and the younger Tele-sinus attempted to escape by a subterraneous pas­sage, which led from the town into the open country ; but finding that the exit was guarded, they resolved to die bv one another's hands. Telesinus fell first,

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and Marius accordingly put an end to his own life, or was stabbed by his slave. (Liv. Epit. 88 ; Veil. Pat. ii. 27.)

PONTIUS TITINIANUS, the son of Q. Titinius, adopted by Pontius, joined Caesar through fear, in b. c. 49. (Cic. ad Alt. ix. 19. § 2.)

PONTUS (IIoWos), a personification of the sea, is described in the ancient cosmogony as a son of Gaea, and as the father of Nereus, Thamnas, Phorcys, Ceto, and Eurybia, by his own mother. (Hes. Theog. 132, 233, &c. ; Apollod. i. 2. § 6.) Hyginus (Fab. praef. p. 3, ed. Staveren) calls him a son of Aether and Gaea, and also assigns to him somewhat different descendants. [L. S.]

POPILLIA, was twice married, and had by her former husband Q. Lutatius Catulus, by her second C. Julius Caesar Strabo. Her son Catulus delivered a funeral oration over her grave, which was the first time that this honour had been paid to a female at Rome. (Cic. de Orat. ii. 11.)

POPILLIA GENS, plebeian. In manuscripts the name is sometimes written with one /, and sometimes with two ; but as it always appears




with a double I in the Capitoline Fasti, this form is to be preferred. There are no coins to decide the question ; for those which Goltzius has published, are spurious. The Popillia gens is one of the great plebeian gentes that rose into eminence after the passing of the Licinian laws, which threw open the consulship to the plebeian order. The first member of it who obtained the consulship was M. Popillius Laenas, in u c. 359, and he was the first plebeian who obtained the honour of a triumph. The only family of the Popillii mentioned under the republic, is that of laenas : the majority of the few Popillii, who occur without a surname, and who are given below, may have belonged to the same family, and their cognomen is probably omitted through inadvertence.

POPFLLIUS. 1. T. popillius, a legatus in the Roman army engaged in the siege of Capua, b. c. 211. (Liv. xxvi. 6.)

2. P. popillius, one of the three ambassadors sent to king Syphax in Africa, in b.c. 210. (Liv. xxvii. 4.)

3. C. popillius, surnamed sabellus, a Roman eques, distinguished himself by his bravery in the campaign against the Istri in b. c. 178. (Liv. xli.

4. M. popillius, one of the ambassadors sent to the Aetollans, in b. c. 174. (Liv. xli. 25.)

5. P. popillius, the son of a freedman, is said by Cicero to have been condemned for bribery. (Cic. pro Cluent. 36, 47.)

POPLFCOLA. [publicola,] PQPPAEA SABFNA. [sabina.] POPPAEUS SABI'NUS. [sabinus.] POPPAEUS SECUNDUS. [seoundus.] POPPAEUS SILVA'NUS. [silvanus.] POPPAEUS VOPISCUS. [Vopiscus.] POPULO'NIA, a surname of Jiino among the Romans, by which she seems to have been characterized as the protectress of the whole Roman people. This opinion is confirmed by the fact that in her temple there was a small table, the symbol of political union. (Macrob. Sat. iii. 11.) [L.S.]

PORCIA. 1. The sister of Cato Uticensis, was brought up with her brother in the house of their uncle M. Livius Drusus, as they lost their parents in childhood. She married L. Doinitius Alien obarbus, who was consul in b.c. 54, and, like her brother, one of the leaders of the aristocratical party. We learn from Cicero that she was at Naples in b.c. 49, when her husband was besieged at Corfinium by Caesar. (Cic. ad Ait. ix. 3.) In the following year, b. c. 48, she lost her husband, who fell in the battle of Pharsalia. She herself died towards the end of b. c. 46, or the beginning of the next year, and her funeral panegyric was pro­nounced by Cicero, and likewise by M. Varro and Lollius. (Pint. Cat. 1, 41 ; Cic. ad Att. xiii. 37, 48.)

2. The daughter of Cato Uticensis by his first wife Atilia. She was married first to M. Bibulus, who was Caesar's colleague in the consulship b. c. 59, and to whom she bore three children. Bibu­lus died in b. c. 48 ; and in b. c. 45 she married M. Brutus, the assassin of Julius Caesar. She inherited all her father's republican principles, and likewise his courage and firmness of will. She induced her husband on the night before the 15th of March to disclose to her the conspiracy against Caesar's life, and she is reported to have wounded herself in the


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