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Bill Thayer

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Scene 62
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 64

Scenes of the spiral band running up the shaft

 p152  LXIII. Reception of the emperor

The Roman fleet makes for one of the more important colonies founded by the emperor on the Danube. A port surrounded by quays built on arches shows that a ship basin has been dug out, or a mole built into the water. For this the vessels are all making. There is open space for landing and embarking between the buildings of the town and the edge of the water. On a point of land  p153 beyond the quays is seen an altar on which fire is burning, and before it a dead bull, showing that a sacrifice to Neptune33 has been offered for the safe arrival of the emperor. The open space or esplanade is surrounded by colonnades, supporting a flat architrave, from which springs a roof. The inner side is walled, but it is open to the port, and this is provided for stowage of merchandise and stores. Behind a large square building can be distinguished a crowd of eager citizens with women and children, who are hurrying to the water's edge to welcome the emperor. The men wear the Roman toga. The women are dressed as Roman matrons, and a child in front of them is in loose drapery. The emperor is on shore and is received with enthusiasm by the colonists. The quay on which he stands communicates by steps or a sloping round with the rest of the town, and is defended at this point by a lofty round tower in several stories, opening on the two upper stories with windows, which command a view on every side. A wide arched opening on the tower of these stories seems intended for a pharos or lighthouse.

The emperor is surrounded by a crowd of military colonists wearing the tunic and sagum, or military cloak, who hasten on in advance to bring him into their city. Others of higher rank, wearing the toga, seem to have landed from two galleys moored under the tower. The foremost holds a scroll in his left hand. All lift their right hands in token of respect and welcome. Three men in the galley, furthest from the spectator, are in the act of landing, and are observing the scene from the decks. Sailors in the foremost galley are making her secure. The bows of their galley, besides the protruding cutwater, are armed with two bars of iron projecting forwards from under her forecastle, the upper ending in a ram's head of bronze. An insigne or flag on a pole with flower ornaments on the top has been struck and laid flat.

The Author's Note:

33 See Introduction, p61.

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Page updated: 9 Aug 20