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  • Author or Editor: Bence Fehér x
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In 1952, a small altar with a cursive inscription raised to Silvanus Pantheus and dated from the first half of the 2nd century was found at Albertfalva. The Pantheus epitheton is known from Aquincum. According to its analogues from the territory of the Empire and especially from Italy, this epithet belonged to a fertility deity called Liber-Sivanus. The person who raised this altar (and who was not an autochthonous inhabitant but a liberated slave or a slave) probably practised an Italian cult, which later fused with the honour of the local fertility deity in the Silvanus–Diana cult.

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The gold sheets from Pyrgi are mostly interpreted as a testimony of Carthaginian political influence on the city of Caere. We need not interpret the Etruscan-Punic bilingual text inevitably so, because its dates are obscure, but seemingly each text is dated in the manner of the actual party, and they are roughly corresponding. The only important difference shows that the leader of Caere, Ti. Velianas held his sway as a monarch in foreign affairs, but he retained the appearance of the libera res publica in internal policy. The unparalleled Etruscan text, according to a new interpretation of the first sentence, says that Ti. Velianas maintained the rites of the Juno-Astarte sanctuary out of his private property with a temple foundation. It says also that the performance of the cult was connected with a vaticination. These facts show that the cult was more independent from the Carthaginians than it was supposed and we may guess by which means the autocrat of Caere used his power.

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When seeking for the possible emendation of the errors in a map based on Ptolemy's co-ordinates, we have to understand the measuring process of his sources first. Ptolemy possibly used the official formulae provinciae, which were created with the help of gromatic surveys carried out with due precision, but the author had to deal with different formulae, in Pannonia possibly four, which were not consistent with one another. Carefully examining the actual deviations, we can restore the ways and the starting-points of the surveys, and so the methods of eliminating the inconsistencies can be identified.

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Late Latin toponyms as local adverbs are generally used in the ablative instead of the accusative and the locative. Nevertheless there are some lesser groups in the itineraries that contain locatives and accusatives. The Pannonian data show that they must be local phenomena, occurring only in SE Pannonia, forming a clear conservative zone until the 5th century. It is uncertain when this region was separated from the whole, yet this seems to have occurred after the period Ptolemy had collected his data from.

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Our epigraphic terminology usually applies the name of cursive script to every kind of scratched inscriptions, although they were written in significantly different styles. Apart from the strange terminology, the major problems in the palaeography of Roman scratches are those of datation, and of the question: whom are those inscriptions to be connected with? The writing manner which might be called really cursive appears mostly on bricks and the tabulae ceratae; partially cursive texts occur 1) in the handwriting of more skilled writers, 2) in the writing of some special letters, most of all ‖, 3) when copying cursive scripts. It is the reason why functionally illiterate stone-cutters produce ununderstandable inscriptions, misinterpretating the cursive models. With some care, such misinterpretations can be explained and thus the meaningless texts reconstructed.

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