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Tablet 185

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Vindolanda Inventory No. 88.950


A diptych which is only partially preserved at all margins, and has lost a good deal near the top. There are two fragments with traces of writing which may belong in this area but we are not able to place them securely nor do we have any confidence in our readings of the traces. We may well have the whole account, however. The writing, particularly in the upper part, is very abraded and difficult to read and there are a number of readings and interpretations with which we remain unsatisfied. This is the more frustrating because the account has several features of interest. It seems to record expenditure for a variety of items including food, perhaps clothing, equipment for a carriage (raeda, see note to lines 20-1) and perhaps also accommodation (see note to line 24). Some of the purchases or payments are connected with place-names, Isurium (Aldborough, line 23, cf. line 6), Cataractonium (Catterick, line 24), Vinovia (Binchester, line 26, cf. line 2), and this leads us to wonder whether we have an account of expenditure incurred on a journey. It is interesting that the order in which Isurium, Cataractonium and Vinovia occur towards the end of the account is the order in which they would be reached by a traveller coming from York to Vindolanda via Corbridge. The first part of the account could relate to an outward journey (see notes to lines 2, 4, 6) and the second part to the return. It must be admitted, however, that if this is close to the mark, the account cannot be regarded as a meticulous record of expenditure such as we find in the papers of Theophanes (P.Ryl.IV 627-38), for there are no dates at all in the second half of the text. The hand is an unremarkable cursive. In line 24 note the use of o open at the right.

n 1 _[..][ c.4? ].i
n 2 ].uis
3 [c.3 ]. traces (quadrantem)
n 4 [c.3 ]l.a..asdum
n 5 faeci (denarii) s(emissem)
n 6 [.] Idus Iulias
7 faeci (denarii) (quadrantem)
8 I]dus Iulias traces
9 faeci (denarii) (quadrantem)
n 10 [..] Idus Iulias a[
11 traces of six lines
n 17 [[ c.12 ]]c[c.3] traces viii[
n 18 faeci (denarii) (quadrantem)
n 19 hordei m(odium) i (denarii) s(emissem) (assem i)
20 axes carrarios
21 duos ad raedam (denarios) iii s(emissem)
n 22 sal (denarium) i
n 23 Isurio faeci (denarii) (quadrantem)
n 24 Cataractonio locario (denarii) s(emissem)
25 faeci (denarii) (quadrantem)
n 26 Vinouis subunc.lon.s (denarii) (quadrantem)
27 frumenti traces
28 fiunt (denarii) lxxiix s(emis) (quadrans)
n 29 summa omnis (denarii) lxxxxiiii s(emis) (quadrans)
n 30 [ c.12]..[ c.3 ]uti


(lines 5-10) "For lees of wine (?), denarii _

July (8-13), at Isurium (?)

for lees of wine (?), denarii _

July (9-14), ...

for lees of wine (?), denarii _

July (10-14), ..."

(lines 17-29) "... 8 ..

for lees of wine (?), denarii _,

of barley, modius 1, denarii _, as 1


two, for a carriage, denarii 3_

salt and fodder (?) ..., denarius 1

at Isurium, for lees of wine (?), denarii _

at Cataractonium, for accommodation (?), denarii _

for lees of wine (?), denarii _

at Vinovia, for vests (?), denarii _

of wheat, ...

total, denarii 78_ grand total, denarii 94_. ..."