Ludi Compitalicii 2768 AUC (Nova Roma)

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Ritual Prayer

On the morning of 18 January 2768 a.u.c., M. Pompeius Caninus offered this prayer at the primary crossroads in his neighborhood:

"Father Janus, before you I make an offering of honey-cake, I sincerely pray that you will look kindly and favorably on me, my household and Nova Roma."

"Lares, I offer you these honey-cakes to strengthen and please you so that my household and Nova Roma may have good fortune, happiness, and prosperity."

"Father Janus, Lares, if anything in this ceremony was displeasing to you I ask forgiveness and I expiate my fault with this wine."

"It is done."


"The city of Rome was divided into a number of local units know as vici, each with is own pair of magistrates, and cult of the Lares Compitales located at key crossroads (on vici in Rome see Flambard 1977 and 1981; Laurence 1991). It was at the shrines of the Lares Compitales that the magistri vici celebrated festivals such as the Compitalia. Thus each inhabitant of the city was a member of a vicus, which had magistrates and its own local cult of the Lares Compitales. This organization would have provided each individual inhabitant with a sense of identity and place in the city. The vici played an important part in politics, and were utilized by Publius Clodius for the organization of violent demonstrations in the 50s BC (Vanderbroeck 1987)."

From Roman Pompeii: Space and Society by Ray Laurence
Published by Routledge (April 15, 2013)
Print ISBN-10: 0415141036
Print ISBN-13: 978-0415141031


Tarquinius Priscus may have instituted the yearly festival known as Compitalia or Ludi Compitalicii, in honor of the lares compitales. Slaves presented sacrifices of honey-cakes (pevlanoi) at the Compitalia, which was probably celebrated a few days after the Saturnalia. Macrobius (Saturn. i.7) says that at the celebration of the Compitalia, boys were sacrificed to Mania, the mother of the lares. After the expulsion of the Tarquins, garlic and poppies were substituted for the boys.

Magistri vici presided over the Compitalia festival, which included public games until the senate did away with the Compitalia in B.C. 68. During the civil wars the festival fell into disuse, but Augustus revived the Compitalia and made the lares of the emperor the state lares. He created an order of priests (Augustales) to attend to the worship of the lares.

Priests or magistrates selected the day -- as was true of other "feriae conceptivae" -- of the Compitalia each year.

Lares and the Compitalia

In ancient Roman religion, the Compitalia (Latin: Ludi Compitalicii) was a festival celebrated once a year in honor of the Lares Compitales, local deities of the crossroads, to whom sacrifices were offered at the places where two or more ways meet. The word compitales comes from compitum, meaning a cross-way in the Latin language. The city of Rome was protected by a Lar, or Lares, housed in a shrine (sacellum) on the City's ancient, sacred boundary (pomerium). Each Roman vicus (pl. vici – administrative districts or wards) had its own communal Lares, housed in a permanent shrine at a central crossroads of the district. These Lares Compitalicii were celebrated at the Compitalia festival (from the Latin compitum, a crossroad) just after the Saturnalia that closed the old year. In the "solemn and sumptuous" rites of Compitalia, a pig was led taken in celebratory procession through the streets of the vicus then sacrificed to the Lares at their Compitalia shrine. Cult offerings to these Lares were much the same as those to domestic Lares; in the late Republican era, Dionysius of Halicarnassus describes the contribution of a honey-cake from each household as ancient tradition.

See Lares and the Compitalia in Wikipedia.
See Comitalia in Wikipedia.
See the Lares article in Wikipedia for a discussion of the various types of Lares, including the Lares Compitales.
Read the Lar article in the Nova Roma wiki.

Results for Ludi Compitalicii Circenses for 2768 AUC

The final results of the Chariot Races for Ludi Compitalicii 2768 AUC:

Place Chariot Driver Owner Factio
1 White Lightning Maleos of Alexandria Gaius Decius Laterensis Albata
2 Ulysses Iason Marca Valeria Pavo Praesina
3 Harbinger Aurora Publius Anaeus Constantinus Placidus Russata
4 Blue Max Ursinus Marcus Martianius Lupus Veneta
5 Faolchú Dubh Barinthus Marcus Martianius Lupus Veneta
6 Quicksilver Publius Anaeus Constantinus Placidus Publius Anaeus Constantinus Placidus Russata
7 Boihaemum Astianax Tiberius Iulius Nerva Russata

Ludi Compitalicii Circenses Report for 2768 AUC

Yesterday was the Compitalia and we have a special report on the races that took place at the Circus Maximus from our reporter Titus Nautius Sura.

Salvete omnes! There was plenty of action yesterday at the track but the final race to determine the victor was exceptional. The seven finalists who participated in the final race were: Astianax, driving the chariot "Boihaemum", owned by Tiberius Iulius Nerva for Factio Russata in Lane 1; Iason, driving the chariot "Ulysses", owned by Marca Valeria Pavo for Factio Praesina in Lane 2; Publius Annaeus Constantinus Placidus, driving his own chariot "Quicksilver", for Factio Russata in Lane 3; Barinthus, driving the chariot "Faolchú Dubh", owned by Marcus Martianius Lupus for Factio Veneta in Lane 4; Aurora, driving the chariot "Harbinger", owned by Publius Annaeus Constantinus Placidus for Factio Russata in Lane 5; Maleos of Alexandria, driving the chariot "White Lightning", owned by Gaius Decius Laterensis for Factio Albata in Lane 6; and, Ursinus, driving the chariot "Blue Max", owned by Marcus Martianius Lupus for Factio Veneta in Lane 7.

Thousands of spectators cheered with confetti in the colors of the four factions filling the air. The crowd was very lively and more than ready to crown a victor. So let's cut to the highlights and see how it turned out...

The consul is preparing to start this final race!

The quadrigae are in position in the carceres. The horses are bristling with anticipation. The team in lane 2 driven by Jason appear to be a bit skittish.

The trumpets sound!

From the magistrates box, Consul Caninus drops the mappa and they are off!

Maleos and Jason take off leaving the others behind. Aurora is behind them but her position prevents Censor Placidus from being able to pass! Astianax is pushing Barinthus into the spina as they go around the meta! Astianax handles the turn well! Maleos and Jason thunder towards the second lap! Aurora is now focused on the other quadrigae, and Astianax, biding his time, trailing at a steady pace!

The dolphin turns in the second lap, it's Maleos 1st, Jason 2nd, Aurora 3rd and Astianax 4th! There is a fast run down the straightway with all quadrigae maintaining their place! Whoaaaa!!!!!!!!!!! Ursinus has come up wide around the metae and charges into the lead! He has centered himself in the track strategically! Jason thunders forward and positions himself near the spina but not passing the Ursinus! It is Ursinus in the lead position, with Jason on the inside in second, almost flanked by Aurora in 3rd with Maleos on the inside in 4th as they head down the stretch. Placidus lashes Astianax! Placidus gets too close, slips and recovers his balance holding onto his chariot's top rail as his horses demonstrate their excellent training.

The crowd is cheering and jeering, there is fighting in the stands and in the cavae between Russata fans of both men.

Maleos moves ahead of the Aurora! Maleos prevents her from passing him as they turn the curve into the 3rd lap!

It's Jason in first but Ursinus is almost neck in neck in 2nd , Maleos is two lengths behind in 3rd and Aurora, Barinthus, Placidus and Jason are fighting for position in the trailing pack! Maleos passes the Ursinus! Charging ahead is Aurora lashing at Ursinus! Ursinus lashes back and urges his horses forward! And Ursinus has passed Jason! Jason gains the lead once again and is near the spina! What is this? Aurora has lashed her way past a wounded Maleos! Folks - blood is wetting the sand! Jason and Aurora are once again exchanging lashes! Aurora moves into first place! Her horses sport a rich lather.

More fighting breaks out in the stands, the roar is deafening, the soldiers rush into the stands and the cavae to prevent injury.

Aurora enters the 4th lap in first place, closely followed by Jason in 2nd, Ursinus in 3rd, a wounded Maleos in 4th, Placidus in 5th, Astianax in 6th and Barinthus last. Jason makes his move along the spina! Aurora Is not having it! Jason sends a flurry of lashes against Aurora! Aurora is returning them with enraged shouts! And Maleos has just lashed passed Ursinus! He appears focused! The dust of the track makes it hard to see who is in the lead! But Jason surges forward and has regained position near the spina as they pass the meta for the final time. Jason and Maleos charge down the track neck in neck to the finish line! Aurora and Ursinus are not far behind! It looks like a dead heat for first place as Maleos and Jason cross the finish line!"

Spectators rush out of the stands! Minutes pass...

Citizens! I have the official decision! In 7th place, Astianax, driving Boihaemum, owned by Tiberius Iulius Nerva for Russata. In 6th place, Publius Annaeus Constantinus Placidus, driving his own chariot Quicksilver for Russata. In 5th place, Barinthus, driving Faolchú Dubh, owned by Marcus Martianius Lupus for Veneta. In 4th place, Ursinus, driving Blue Max, owned by PMarcus Martianius Lupus for Veneta. In 3rd place, Aurora, driving Harbinger, owned by Publius Annaeus Constantinus Placidus, for Russata. In 2nd place, by a fraction of a length, Jason, driving Ulysses, owned by Marca Valeria Pavo for Praesina.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you Maleos of Alexandria, driving White Lightning, owned by Gaius Decius Laterensis for Albata, winner of the 2768 auc Ludi Compitalicii Circenses!

What a Race! Be careful leaving the Circus, get out safe because there are many parties and feasts all over town this night! And, please, be responsible, do not drink and drive.

This is Titus Nautius Sura, and on behalf of Nova Roma Broadcasting, I bid you all good night!

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