Definitions

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In Roman antiquity, a prison for slaves attached to a Roman villa or farm; a house of correction.

Etymologies

Sorry, no etymologies found.

Examples

  • 'ergastulum' could again breathe and see daylight: and here we have religion.

    The Ancient Regime

  • I am not made for battles in the sunlight — the flashing of swords troubles my sight; it is a disease, I lived too long in the ergastulum.

    Salammbo

  • Spendius, who had spent three years in the ergastulum, was but imperfectly acquainted with the different quarters.

    Salammbo

  • As he bent his steps towards the purple factories he passed before the ergastulum, which was a long house of black stone built in a square pit with a small pathway all round it and four staircases at the corners.

    Salammbo

  • When on a level with the ergastulum, under a palm tree, a voice was raised, a mournful and supplicant voice.

    Salammbo

  • The parks were broken up, the trenches drained, the doors of the ergastulum open.

    Salammbo

  • He had hopes, too, of ultimately catching the good attorney napping, and leading him too, bound and docile, into his ergastulum, although he was himself just now in jeopardy from that quarter.

    Wylder's Hand

  • The general appearance is that of an ergastulum like Umm

    The Land of Midian

  • We all like showing scars received in battle; the wounds of the ergastulum, less.

    Surprised by Joy

  • Yet while it is true that in many ways the slave's lot might be miserable (the ergastulum), and inhuman (the Roman slave might technically not marry), and immoral (Petronius: "nil turpe quod dominus jubet"), yet here too, human nature has risen above its own philosophies, laws, and conventions.

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 11: New Mexico-Philip

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Comments

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  • Ergastolo means "life imprisonment" in Italian.

    May 20, 2009

  • A prison-like building on a large estate, used for housing slave workers (in quot. 1891, an urban prison for slaves).

    OED

    May 19, 2009