Afrĭca, ae, f. [the Romans received this name from the Carthaginians as designating their country, and in this sense only the Gr. ἡ Ἀφρική occurs]. In a restricted sense, designated by the Greeks ἡ Λιβύη, Libya, the territory of Carthage: Nilus Africam ab Aethiopiā dispescens, Plin. 5, 9, 10, § 53; 5, 4, 3: regio, quae sequitur a promontorio Metagonio ad aras Philaenorum, proprie nomen Africae usurpat, Mel. 1, 7; cf. Cic. Imp. Pomp. 12, and id. Lig. 7.
II. In an extended sense, the whole of that quarter of the globe south of the Mediterranean Sea, Mel. 1, 4.
By meton. for its inhabitants: Africa, quae procul a mari incultius agebat, Sall. J. 89, 7 (cf. id. ib. 19, 5: alios incultius vagos agitare).
- 1. Afrĭcānus, a, um, adj., pertaining to Africa, African: bellum Africanum, the war of Cœsar with the partisans of Pompey in Africa, Cic. Deiot. 9: rumores, of the African war, id. ib.: causa, id. Fam. 6, 13: possessiones, in Africa, Nep. Att. 12: gallina, a guinea-hen, Varr. R. R. 3, 9; cf. Plin. 10, 26, 38, § 74.
Subst.: Afrĭcānae, ārum, sc. ferae, panthers, Liv. 44, 18; so Plin. 8, 17, 24, § 64; Plin. Ep. 6, 34; Suet. Cat. 18; id. Claud. 21 al.
Esp., Afrĭcā-nus, surname of the two most distinguished Scipios.
- A. Of P. Cornelius Scipio major, who defeated Hannibal at Zama (201 B. C.).
- B. Of his grandson by adoption, P. Cornelius Scipio Aemilianus minor, who conducted the third Punic war, destroyed Carthage (146 B.C.), and subjected the whole Carthaginian territory to the Romans.
- 2. Afrĭcus, a, um, adj., African (mostly poet. for the prose Africanus): terra, Enn. ap. Cic. de Or. 3, 42, 167; so Liv. 29, 23 fin.: bella, Sil. 17, 11: Vicus, a place in Rome, on the Esquiline Hill, where the Carthaginian hostages were held in custody, Varr. R. R. 5, 32, 44.
But esp. freq., Afrĭcus ventus, or subst.: Afrĭcus, i, m., the south-west wind, Gr. λίψ, blowing between Auster and Favonius (λιβόνοτος and ζέφυρος), opp. Vulturnus (καικίας), now called, among the Italians, Affrico or gherbino; cf. Plin. 2, 47, 46, § 119, and Sen. Q. N. 5, 16: creberque procellis Africus, Verg. A. 1, 86: praeceps, Hor. C. 1, 3, 12: luctans, id. ib. 1, 1, 15: pestilens, id. ib. 3, 23, 5: protervus, id. Epod. 16, 22.
Adj.: procellae, the waves or storms caused by the Africus, Hor. C. 3, 29, 57.
In Propert., Africus, as the god of this wind, is called pater, 5, 3, 48, but Müll. here reads Aetheris.