Tablet 174

description

Inv.no.85.146. 90 x 47 mm. VRR II, Plate X.
This fragment is complete at the left-hand edge, where there is a v-shaped notch, and probably at the foot. It is noteworthy that the applicant specifies the place at which he wishes to spend his leave. The blank space thereafter suggests that this was the end of the document.

translation

' ... I ask ... that you consider me a worthy person to whom to grant leave at Ulucium (?). '

commentary

1. Only the foot of a descender survives and this is likely to belong to an enlarged initial r (cf. 167.1).

2. The form of g is interesting since it has a descender curling to the left and resembles the alternative form in ORC (illustrated in Bischoff (1990), 64) which was not attested in the Vindolanda texts from the 1970s, but now appears also perhaps in 178 (see introduction) and 344.i.6 (see introduction).

4. Ulucio: we regard the reading as almost certain and it is likely to be a place-name, by analogy with 175.3; A.R.Birley (1991a), 18 suggests that the name may be a corruption of Viuidin, for which see PNRB 507. If we were looking for a name lying behind a possibly corrupt version in the Ravenna Cosmographer, Cicucium might be a possibility (= ?Brecon Gaer, see PNRB 307 and note the relevant comment on -ucium as a latinised version of a Celtic suffix); it is not possible to read Cicucio in our text, however. It seems less likely that we have a form of Verlucio, located by PNRB 494 at Calne in Wiltshire, which appears as Verlucione in the Antonine Itinerary. It is perhaps worth noting that in P.Mich.VIII 466 Apollinarius promises to come from Bostra in Arabia to visit his family in Egypt when he gets leave and we might even consider the possibility that Ulucium (?) is to be found further afield, in Gaul, cf. 255.i.3-4, 154.12 note. See also 311.back 1 note.

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