New book publication! El nacimiento de las culturas epigráficas



This new book, El nacimiento de las culturas epigráficas en el occidente mediterráneo. Modelos romanos y desarrollos locales (III-I a.E.), has been made as a result of a compendium of talks presented in the homonym conference, held in Rome, may 2016. This project was financed by the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness of Spain and was associated with another project, funded by Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness of Spain as well, called Hesperia. The COST Action IS 1407 “Ancient European Languages and Writings (AELAW)”, which is supported by European Program “Horizon 2020”, has also helped with funds in order to public this book.

As you are able to see, there are sixteen articles written by several European researchers, most of them, members of AELAW, such as Francisco Beltrán Lloris or Borja Díaz Ariño, its editors, Paolo Poccetti, Enrico Benelli, Simona Marchesini, Jonathan R.W. Prag, Pierre-Yves Lambert, Javier Velaza Frías, Coline Ruiz Darasse, Carlos Jordán Cólera, María José Estarán Tolosa or Ignacio Simón Cornago, among others; as well as external researchers, such as David Nonnis, Diana Gorostidi Pi, or Françoise Briquel Chatonnet.

This project aimed to put a spotlight on the importance of the public epigraphy, not only as a historical or linguistic source, but as a sociological one, emphasizing the power of displaying inscriptions in publics. From this perspective and with a multidisplinary approach, this book is focused on this specific kind of inscriptions as well as the influence of Greek and Rome cultures in the creation of this genre in the Western Mediterranean areas.

Thus, the first articles analyse the epigraphy of the Italian Peninsula, focused on Roman sources. D. Nonnis studies changes of public epigraphy suffered between Middle and Later Republic; B. Díaz shows the first honorific inscriptions in Rome; and D. Gorostidi talks about her research on Tusculum, where there is one of the most important public republican epigraphy in Lacio. Then, the book turns into local epigraphy. So, P. Poccetti examines Sabellian inscriptions, E. Benelli the Etruscan ones and S. Marchesini scrutinises different epigraphic cultures in the North of Italy (in Cisalpina). You can also find a wide range of epigraphical themes, such as F. Briquel-Chattonet’s article, which analyses Phoenician and Punic inscriptions, or J. Prag’s work, that emphasises epigraphic Sicilian peculiarities, made in Greek during the Later Hellenistic Period.

Following articles deal with Gaulish, Iberian and Celtiberian epigraphy. P.-Y. Lambert studies public Gaulish inscriptions, F. Beltrán analyses the origins of public Palaeohispanic inscriptions, and J. Velaza and C. Ruiz-Darasse write about Iberian epigraphy. Velaza examines Iberian stone inscriptions, above all epitaphs, while Ruiz compares two Mediterranean areas: the South of France and the northeast of Spain. Besides, C. Jordán focuses on one of the most characteristic Celtiberian typologies, inscribed bronze sheets, especially the set from Contrebia Belaisca.

Finally, the last two articles analyse all this epigraphic from a comparative perspective. Mª. J. Estarán compares local religious inscriptions from Italia, Galia and Hispania; and I. Simón examines the texts on mosaic.

In conclusion, this book, written by epigraphic experts, may well be a formidable election for anyone who is interested in developing its knowledge of public epigraphy, a complex but fascinating theme.