palestra: (Greek palaistra, plural palaistrai), Greek exercise and training site. Palaestra etymologically and perhaps originally referred to an area for wrestling (pale), but came to describe a structure with wider functions: an enclosed square or long courtyard surrounded by rooms for various activities (e.g. undressing, oiling, dusting). The Roman writer Vitruvius gives two Stadia (about 400m) as a standard circuit; however, no excavated example is so large. Palaestrae (from at least the fourth century) might be privately owned and operated, as standalone facilities or as part of a Gymnasia, and identified by an individual’s name; or public. In some communities, palaestrae (like gymnasia) were set-aside for boys or older users, perhaps in an attempt to prevent undesired sexual activity.
panic: “The quasi-divine seizure of an organism by panic is similar to demonic possession; master of relations, some demon takes hold of all those who appear on the stage of its theater, in a dance uncoordinated to the point of paralysis, amid the cries, rictus, vomiting, icy and copious sweats, the tetanization and then collapse of the muscles, the relaxations of the sphincter, the stench of the appalling trails, the death pangs.” (Michel Serres, Variations sur le corps)
paraphernalia: exercise and bathing garments, sandals, towels, and cista.
plaster: “A plaster of indistinct color is useful in all moderate wounds, animal bites, and contusions or cuts on joints, as when teeth are punched in. Likewise it is remarkably helpful for boils and swellings of the lymphatic glands, completely dissipating hardness as long as it is used for some time. It also draws fluids off long-term ulcer scars and it is generally wonderfully good for all sorts of light tasks in daily usage: it doesn’t allow tumors or pus to develop; it sticks, so that bandages are unnecessary; and it will not fall off in the bath.” (Scribonius Largus, c. 214)