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Triumphator and Ancestor Rituals Between Symbolic Anthropology and Magic

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This article argues that the Roman triumph with the figure of the triumphator and the burial of Roman nobles with the pompa imaginum should be interpreted within the framework of the prestige and practices related to honori fic statues. Using the red colour of the triumphator's skin as the main argument, the figure of the triumphator is interpreted as a temporary statue, and the triumph as an attempt on part of the senate to regulate the prestige of honori fic statues by tying it to a public ritual. Likewise, the bearers of imagines are interpreted as representing the ensemble of all legitimate — i.e. as based on public positions — statues used to construct a family. Both rituals, as known from late republican sources, developed from the fourth century BC onwards.


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