Tablet 677

description 40 x 76 mm. Plate 23.
Archaeological data. Location: SG (bonfire site). Period: 3.
A fragment containing part of an account written across the grain. Parts of the surface are covered with resin, making the writing very difficult to distinguish. We are unable to suggest satisfactory readings for most of the entries. The tablet appears to be complete at the right and the top (although it may be the lower half of a diptych); there seems to be a deliberate diagonal cut across the top right corner. The back is blank.


] . ụram n
] . [.] .am albam
] o.ịum ... ṛ ụ ṃ n
5 ] traces n
] c̣atellum u traces [ n
] .. fe..... traces n
] gu...... ṃ ạ ụ ṛ ạ ṃ [ n
] ḷum et n
. . . . . . . .


2. ạụram appears to be the likeliest reading (cf. line 7) but we cannot explain it. 3. [tu]ṇ[i]c̣am is not persuasive. The first trace has a descender which is compatible with r. GLL cites subserica (from Tertullian, resurr. 27) a garment of silk, which would suit the traces ([subse]ṛ[i]c̣am). This would mean that the line would start well to the left of the surviving traces in the other lines. Less attractive possibilities include b]ṛ[a]c̣am and u]ị [t]ṭam.

4. The scan suggests op̣ịum and there is no reason to think its use at Vindolanda impossible, cf. Pliny, NH 20.199-203, esp. 199, papaueris uero largus densatur et in pastillos tritus in umbra siccatur, non ui soporifera modo, uerum, si copiosior hauriatur, etiam mortifera per somnos. opium uocant; we note that OLD s.v. cites Scribonius Largus for its use in collyria (cf. 591 introd.). However, there seem to be traces before it and we cannot suggest anything plausible for what follows. We wonder whether we might have p̣oc̣ḷum (cf. 594.c.11 note); but the letter before um looks much more like i. And we can do no better with the following word; we are not confident of the ending but we suppose that it must agree with the preceding noun ending -um. siccatum does not look possible.

5. At the end we might have clum (cf. line 7 note). We can make nothing sensible of the preceding letters.

6. We are confident that c̣atellum is correct, meaning a puppy or a young dog. Apart from u, the traces which follow are unreadable. We have considered uenaticium, but it is perhaps too long. A connection with hunting (cf. 594 introd.) might be supported by the traces in line 8 (see note).

7. The traces are perhaps compatible with feṛịc̣ḷụṃ or feṛc̣ḷụṃ (cf. 596.back 2-3 note). The trace before it might be , possibly the end of a date.

8. The scan shows gu clearly; we could envisage [se]guṣị, see 594 introduction, but since we are entirely unsure of what follows we do not feel confident enough to restore it; we seem to have ạụṛạṃ again at the end (see line 2 note).

9. ]ḷum: equally possible is ]ịum.

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