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Bill Thayer

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p243 Carruca

Unsigned article on p243 of

William Smith, D.C.L., LL.D.:
A Dictionary of Greek and Roman Antiquities, John Murray, London, 1875.

CARRUCA, a carriage, the name of which only occurs under the emperors. It appears to have been a species of rheda [Rheda], whence Martial in one epigram (III.47) uses the words as synonymous. It had four wheels, and was used in travelling. Nero is said never to have travelled with less than 1000 carrucae (Suet. Ner. 30). These carriages were sometimes used in Rome by persons of distinction, like the carpenta [Carpentum], in which case they appear to have been covered with plates of bronze, silver, and even gold, which were sometimes ornamented with embossed work. Alexander Severus allowed senators at Rome to use carrucae and rhedae plated with silver (Lamprid. Alex. Sev. 43); and Martial (III.72) speaks of an aurea carruca which cost the value of a farm. We have no representations of carriages in ancient works of art which can be safely said to be carrucae; but we have several representations of carriages ornamented with plates of metal (see Inghirami, Monum. Etrusch. III.18.23; Millingen, Uned. Mon. II.14). Carrucae were also used for carrying women, and were then, as well, perhaps, as in other cases, drawn by mules (Dig. 34 tit. 2 s13); whence Ulpian (Dig. 21 tit. 1 s33 §8) speaks of mulae carrucariae.

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