An Australian legal tv series from the producers of Phoenix, shown on the ABC in the mid-nineties.

Similar in tone and style to Phoenix, and featuring some of the same characters, Janus detailed the court proceedings involved in the prosecution of various members of a family of crooks, the Henneseys.

The series began with the trial of Mal and Steve Hennesey, for murdering a police officer during a bank robbery. The brothers get off on a technicality. We then cut to a year later, and Senior Sergeant Peter Faithful (one of the cops from Phoenix) is determined to see that the Hennesey's are arrested, and that they don't get off this time.

The first season is concerned for the most part with Steve Hennesey's trial for drug dealing, and the second season with Mal Hennesey's trial for a murder committed ten years earlier.

Unlike Phoenix, as well as part of the ongoing storyline being advanced each week, there were often shorter stories that were completed during the episode, detailing different aspects of the Victorian criminal justice system.

On paper, the series looks like a dry exploration of the criminal justice system, but excellent writing and compelling performances from Simon Westaway (himself a cop for ten years before his acting career took off) as Peter "Noddy" Faithful, Brett Swain as the borderline psychotic Mal Hennesey and Chris Haywood as the unethical defence barrister Michael Kidd.

In my opinion, the best legal series ever.

{ Moons of Saturn }
Discovered by            Audouin Dollfus  
Date of Discovery        1966
Distance from Saturn     151,472 km
Radius                   97.0 × 95.0 × 77.0 km
Mass                     1.92 × 10^21 g
Orbital Eccentricity     0.007
Orbital Inclination      0.14°
Orbital Period           0.6945 day
Rotational Period        Synchronous
Density (gm/cm3)         ??? 

Janus and Epimetheus may have been part of the same body at one time. They share nearly the same orbit, but unlike co-orbital moons like Rhea and Diomed, their orbit is not stable. In fact, about once every four years they switch places, one being slightly higher than the other. Janus is heavily cratered so if it and Epimetheus were truly once a single entity, the event causing the split must have happened early in its history, billions of years ago. It is irregularly shaped, but unlike Epimetheus, it has no significant ridges, fissures, or grooves.


One of the oldest of the gods in the Roman pantheon. He was represented as having two faces, one looking forwards and the other backwards. His legends were purely Roman and were bound up with those dealing with the origin of the town. According to some mythographers, Janus was a native of Rome where at some point he had ruled with Camesus, a mythical king of whom nothing is known. Others claim that Janus was a foreigner, a native of Thessaly, who was sent as an exile to Rome where he was welcomed by King Camesus, who shared his kingdom with him. Janus was supposed to have built a city on a hill, which was consequently called Janiculum. He came to Italy with his wife Camise or Camasenea and they had children, the best-known being Tiber, eponym of the river Tiber. After the death of Camesus, he ruled Latium alone. Janus received Saturn when he was driven from Greece by his son Jupiter (see Cronus and Zeus). While Janus ruled on the Janiculum Saturn ruled over Saturnia, a village situated on the heights of the Capitol. The reign of Janus was said to have had all the features of the Golden Age: men were perfectly honest; there was plenty; and there was also complete peace. Janus was said to have invented the use of money. The oldest bronze Roman coins indeed had the effigy of Janus on the right side and the prow of a boat on the reverse. Janus was said to have civilized the first natives of Latium, although this was sometimes attributed to Saturn.

When Janus died he was deified. Other legends were attached to him: one miracle in particular was attributed to him, which saved Rome from being conquered by the Sabines. After Romulus and his companions had carried off the Sabine women, Titus Tatius and the Sabines attacked the city again. One night Tarpeia, the daughter of the Warden of the Capitol, delivered the citadel into the hands of the Sabines. They scaled the heights of the Capitol and were just about to turn on the defenders when Janus launched a jet of hot water in front of the attackers which frightened them and put them to flight. To commemorate this miracle it was decided that in time of war the door of the Temple of Janus should always be left open so that the god could come to the aid of the Romans. It was only closed if the Roman Empire was at peace. Janus was also said to have married the Nymph Juturna whose shrine and spring were not far from his own temple in the Forum. He was said to have had a son by her, the god Fons or Fontus, the god of springs. In his satiric poem about the transformation of the Emperor Claudius into a pumpkin (Apocolocyntosis), Seneca tells how Janus, a skilful speaker and an habitué of the forum, and expert in the ability to see forwards and backwards, pleaded in defence of Claudius.


Table of Sources:
- Carmen Saliare in Varro, De Ling. Lat. 7, 26
- Piso, Annals, quoted ibid. 5, 165
- Livy 1, 19, 2, etc.
- Ovid, Fasti 1, 63-299; Met. 14, 785ff.
- Virgil, Aen. 7, 180; 7, 610; 8, 357; 12, 198
- Serv. on Aen. 1, 291 and 8, 319
- Plutarch, Quaest. Rom. 41, 274e-f
- Macrob. Sat. 1, 7, 19; 1, 9
- Aug. Civ. Dei 7, 4
- Solinus 2, 5
- Joann. Lyd. De Mensibus 4, 1-2. Cf. P. Grimal, Letters d'Humanité IV, 1945
- L. A. Holland, 'Janus and the Bridge' in Papers and Monographs, American Academy in Rome. 21, 1961.

Janus (Roman Mythology)

Janus was one of the most ancient and dignified of Roman Gods. Whereas nowadays, "Janus-faced" is used to mean deceitful or hypocritical, Janus was originally a kind and protecting God. Mythically, he guarded doorways. Thus one face inspected those who entered, whilst the other bade farewell to those who exited. He was responsible for domestic security and the safety of passangers.

As Rome grew in power and importance, so did Janus. He became the God of all thresholds. This included; gates and ports. He also became the God of passages which covered birth (as the first great passage of life), and the beginning of everything - such as the beginning of the Year. This is why on the Roman calender the first month was named after Janus - Januarius.

However, Janus soon lost his status and power. When the Romans assimilated Greek myths into their own, they discovered that the Greeks had no equivalent God. Janus was demoted from elder God to a King that was deified upon his death. He was made Heaven's gatekeeper, whilst Saturn took most of his duties as threshold God. This was because Saturn was now identified with the Greek God Cronus.

Despite entirely positive accounts of Janus throughout mythology, the negative view of Janus (and the resulting insult - 'Janus-faced') originated in 1711 when Anthony Ashley Cooper, the third Earl of Shaftesbury wrote Characteristicks sic of Men, Manners, Opinions, Times. In this text he wrote about the "Janus-face of some writers, who with one countenance force a smile and with another show nothing beside rage and fury"

Ja"nus (?), n. [L. See January.] Rom. Antiq.

A Latin deity represented with two faces looking in opposite directions. Numa is said to have dedicated to Janus the covered passage at Rome, near the Forum, which is usually called the Temple of Janus. This passage was open in war and closed in peace.

Dr. W. Smith.

Janus cloth, a fabric having both sides dressed, the sides being of different colors, -- used for reversible garments.


© Webster 1913.

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