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Volume One (TVI) material for tablet 323 (TVI tablet number 41)

Commentary:

Reference: P.J. Parsons, JRS lxix (1979), p.131, n.43

A small fragment with the remains of five lines of a letter. It is possible that the tablet is complete at the top and right, in which case we must have the top of the right-hand column of a letter. We would then expect to see some trace of the address on the back, but it appears to be blank; it is, however, possible that it was written on the lost lower part of the tablet. Most of the words are well separated and the writer uses interpunction more consistently than any other in this collection (see Parsons, loc.cit.). The hand is a competent cursive in which the tall c (cf. ratiunculis in line 4) and the tendency for the cross-bar of t to slope downwards (e. g. tamen in line 2 where it makes a ligature with a) are noteworthy. There is a remarkable ligature in erat (line 1) in which a and t are joined by the addition of a link stroke.

The text contains a reference to the purchase of, and accounting for, some objects at a price of three uictoriati each (see line 3 note).

 

Notes:

2. uilitatis: this could be supplemented as ci]uilitatis or left as it stands. The former might be thought to fit with what precedes and the latter with what follows. Since we have not enough of the text to attempt any articulation, we cannot decide which is more likely.

3. The letter before iternis is difficult; its second part resembles h but the first hasta is missing at the top (where it is perhaps obscured by dirt). This would suggest mi]hi ternis but in this hand we would expect an interpunct between the words; there is no clear sign of one in the photograph, but it is just possible that it is there.

uictoriatis: Cicero uses the phrase ternos uictoriatos at pro Font.9.19. The uictoriatus is a coin worth half a denarius, see RE VIIIA 2, 2542 ff. Cf. Pliny, NH 33.46, is qui nunc uictoriatus appellatur lege Clodia percussus est and Quintilian, 6.3.80, ut Gabba, dicente quodam uictoriato se uno in Sicilia quinque pedes longam murenam emisse (we are indebted to Mr. M.H. Crawford for these references).

4. ]ntatas: we assume that the objects purchased are represented by quas with which ]ntatas agrees. There are many possible supplements, e.g. arge]ntatas, ‘silver-plated'. What follows is difficult; e looks inescapable and the next letter looks most like s, but it is difficult to explain es. It may be just possible to read ex.

5. At the end ]..limo is also possible.