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Originally appearing in Volume V16, Page 200 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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LAPITHAE, a mythical race, whose home was in Thessaly in the valley of the Peneus. The genealogies make them a kindred race with the Centaurs, their king Peirithoiis being the son, and the Centaurs the grandchildren (or sons) of Ixion. The best-known legends with which they are connected are those of Ixion (q.v.) and the battle with the Centaurs (q.v.). A well-known Lapith was Caeneus, said to have been originally a girl named Caenis, the favourite of Poseidon, who changed her into a man and made her invulnerable (Ovid, Metam. xii. 146 ff). In the Centaur battle, having been crushed by rocks and trunks of trees, he was changed into a bird; or he disappeared into the depths of the earth unharmed. According to some, the Lapithae are representatives of the giants of fable, or spirits of the storm; according to others, they are a semi-legendary; semi-historical race, like the Myrmidons and other Thessalian tribes. The Greek sculptors of the school of Pheidias conceived of the battle of the Lapithae and Centaurs as a struggle between mankindand mischievous monsters, and symbolical of the great conflict between the Greeks and Persians. Sidney Colvin (Journ. Hellen. Stud. i. 64) explains it as a contest of the physical powers of nature, and the mythical expression of the terrible effects of swollen waters. LA PLACE (Lat. Placaeus), JOSUE DE (16o6 ?—1665), French Protestant divine, was born in Brittany. He studied and after-wards taught philosophy at Saumur. In 1625 he became pastor of the Reformed Church at Nantes, and in 1632 was appointed professor of theology at Saumur, where he had as his colleagues, appointed at the same time, Moses Amyraut and Louis Cappell. In 164o he published a work, Theses theologicae de state hominis lapsi ante graham, which was looked upon with some suspicion as containing liberal ideas about the doctrine of original sin. The view that the original sin of Adam was not imputed to his descendants was condemned at the synod of Charenton (1645), without special reference being made to La Place, whose position perhaps was not quite clear. As a matter of fact La Place distinguished between a direct and indirect imputation, and after his death his views, as well as those of Amyraut, were rejected in the Formula consensus of 1675. He died on the 17th of August 1665. La Place's defence was published with the title Disputaliones academicae (3 vols., 1649–1651; and again in 1665); his work De imputatione primi peccati Adami in 1655. A collected edition of his works appeared at Franeker in 1699, and at Aubencit in 17o2.
End of Article: LAPITHAE

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