For the high mark, like an apex, after the m of salutem see
With the additional evidence of the other texts written by this hand, we now
regard the mark over o as a deliberate apex (likewise tu in line
8); see above, pp.57-61.
A.R.Birley (1991), 89 suggests the possibility that the governor was in the
region of Vindolanda, which is certainly plausible.
n(ostro) is abbreviated to n with a superscript
dash, as happens frequently in the tablets. In the ed.pr. we
stated that this was preceded and followed by a medial point but we are now
less confident that these marks are ink, although the same phenomenon may occur
The reading and interpretation of the closure remains problematical. It is odd
that domine is written further out to the left than the rest of the
sentence and there seems to be a space between it and bene. A
possible explanation of this is that the writer began to write a normal formula
which would have fitted on two short lines but then decided that he wanted
something longer; since he was very short of space, he began his third line
(14) as far to the left as possible, but even so failed to get it all on the
line. This involves understanding domine as the beginning of
line 14 and supposing that there is continuous writing from domine to exspec- which has
simply faded, and that the whole of lines 12-4 were written by the same hand.
It is possible that this is the same hand as that of 247.2-3, in
which case it is likely to be the hand of Brocchus.
We now think op<t>amus preferable, surprising though the
te can be read provided that we accept that it
was fouled by the subsequent writing below. The order is odd but not
unparalleled, see 258.4-5.
The traces after domine are very faint and the reading is uncertain.
If it is correct, we must have part of the verb exspecto, but
there is no room for anything after exspec in this line; there
may be faint traces below on the broken corner of the leaf. Possibly the writer
intended the imperative exspecta.
There are possible traces of the name of the unit, which might be read as viiii Ba[t(auorum). There
may be traces in the bottom left-hand corner which could be part of a
Broccho, but we can see no sign of the name of Niger.