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Bill Thayer

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Scene 57
This webpage reproduces a section of
A Description of the Trajan Column
by John Hungerford Pollen

printed by George E. Eyre and William Spottiswoode,
printers to Queen Victoria
London, 1874

Text and engravings are in the public domain.

This page has been carefully proofread
and I believe it to be free of errors.
If you find a mistake though,
please let me know!


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Scene 59

Scenes of the spiral band running up the shaft

 p147  LVIII. Trajan receives Decebalus and determines the conditions of peace

The emperor is seated on a chair or throne tastefully draped, and elevated on a suggestum about three feet high. He is attended by several officers of high rank. Five of these personages are dressed in cuirasses. In rear of the persons thus dressed in the foreground is a guard of three soldiers. On the other side are the signiferi, of whom six are represented bearing the standards of various manipuli. Outside all is a strong guard of Praetorians.

In the foreground immediately below the emperor is the Dacian King Decebalus on his knees, with his hands raised to the knees of Trajan imploring forgiveness and peace. Two other chiefs are kneeling on one knee immediately in front of him. All three wear the Dacian cap. The shields and swords of the last two are laid beside them. Five men stand bound behind them, they are prisoners of importance reserved to grace the imperial triumph in Rome.

Behind these prisoners a crowd of Dacian chiefs, some wearing the cap, kneel and stretch out both hands imploring the clemency of Trajan. Behind stand the rest of the Dacian officers using the same action of the hands. Their shields are laid down on the ground. Two dragon ensigns and two labara, short flags on a cross bar like the Roman  p148 dracones, are held behind, and are supposed to be surrendered like the arms. This is one of the conditions imposed by Trajan.

[image ALT: A largish timber construction, which appears to be two stories tall: the lower story consists of a platform of twelve courses of alternating stretchers and headers; the upper story consists of two covered walkways with a space between them. The structure is attached on our left to a somewhat similar structure cut off by the edge of the image. It is an engraving rendering a detail of a sculpture of wooden fortifications in Dacia, found on the shaft of Trajan's Column in Rome.]

Fig. 44

As in the last composition we distinguish various wooden cataractae, and other details of fortification on the walls; stretching behind the entire scene is a range of fortifications, some of logs, some of timber and stone, as described in page 54 of the introduction; they are given in the accompanying woodcut; and fortifications of sawn timber are represented adjoining the parts of wall still in progress.

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Page updated: 27 Nov 01