Gaulish: Language, Writing, Epigraphy
This booklet, the fifth of AELAW Booklets volumes, focuses on the study of Gaulish, an ancient language linguistically classified as Continental Celtic, a Celtic branch of the vast Indo-European family tree, situated in an area that covers modern day France, Belgium, Luxembourg, most of Switzerland, Northern Italy, and parts of the Netherlands and Germany.
Written in English by A. Mullen and C. Ruiz Darasse and with the aim of bringing Gaulish knowledge to the general public, this booklet provides an introductory explanation of Gaulish language and epigraphy with an accessible literature review. This booklet also offers a completed up-to-date explanation of Gaulish language and writing where readers can find information about linguistics, onomastic or writing systems and their evolution, comparing phonology, morphology or syntax. These authors have also included diverse studies related to name practices, epigraphy, or census of inscriptions, explaining the main inscriptions written in Gaulish. The booklet concludes with a chapter on the most relevant bibliographical references about Celtic and Gaulish, which is very useful to continue exploring relevant issues of this topic.
As the others, the Gaulish booklet is richly illustrated within its 44 pages. Over fifty pictures, visual maps, tables and drawings of the main inscriptions complement the explication and provide a better understanding of it. Also, due to the importance of communicating with a wider audience that its authors have pointed out, the information available in this book and the way it is written allows its comprehension not only for academic readers but also for novels.
Zu Varianten von Pi und Tau in rätischen Inschriften (On Variants of Pi and Tau in Raetic Inscriptions)
The article proposes a reinterpretation of two characters specific to Raetic inscriptions, the allegedly retrograde "Sanzeno pi" and the marginal character "a punto", i.e. consisting of a hasta with a dot on top. Discussing the attestations of the latter and their implications for its sound value, the attestations of words which are written variously with either character, and the graphic derivation and respective distribution of the two characters, it argues their correspondence and the consequent identification of "Sanzeno pi" as a variant of tau.
Raetic. Language, Writing, Epigraphy.
This booklet, the second one in the AELAW series on Pre-Roman epigraphy, provides an introduction to the study of Raetic, a non-Indo-European language of the Alpine region. The Raetic epigraphic corpus includes about 300 inscriptions found in the Trentino and the Veneto, as well as in North and South Tyrol, which are roughly dated between the 6th and the 1st centuries BC. The Raeti, a group of Alpine tribes which are mentioned repeatedly by the ancient historiographers, used a North Italic alphabet, ultimately derived from the Etruscan one, to write their language. The inscriptions are mainly votives, and contain predominantly names, but enough is known about the Raetic language to connect it with Etruscan – together with Lemnian, these two languages form the Tyrsenian language family.
The booklet gives a short introduction on the research history, an up-to-date explanation of the writing system, and an overview of what is known about the Raetic language and onomastics. A representative example of a Raetic inscription is presented in detail to give an impression of the kind of material available to scholars of Raetic. Thirty photographs and drawings of objects and inscriptions, as well as maps and tables, enable the reader to get acquainted with the possibilities and challenges of Raetic epigraphy. References for further reading in the various relevant fields, including archaeology, are provided in the last chapter.
Lusitanian. Language, Writing, Epigraphy.
The fourth volume of AELAW Booklets deals with Lusitanian, an Indo-European language attested in the Western Iberian peninsula in pre-Roman and Roman times. Only six texts in Lusitanian have been hardly preserved until the date. Nevertheless, Latin inscriptions from Central and Northern Portugal include multiple anthroponyms, theonyms and other onomastic elements that help us reconstruct some features of this language. This volume is richly illustrated with pictures, drawings and maps, and offers the reader clear and concise information on Lusitanian language and inscriptions, as well as on the state of the art and the main bibliographical references.
This volume consists of an introductory explanation and of chapters devoted to language, writing, the name formula and epigraphy.
In the first one, Language, D. Wodtko explains the complex situation of Lusitanian within the Indo-European family and its relationship with Celtic languages. She stops particularly in theonyms and its epithets in Latin inscriptions, given their importance to reconstruct Lusitanian morphological elements. This is the link to the next sub-chapter, an instructive approach to Lusitanian morphology and word formation.
The author tackles writing in the second chapter, which is obviously short (Lusitanian was written only in Latin alphabet) and underlines one of the most interesting features of the paleography of Lusitanian inscriptions: ligatures.
The third chapter, "Name formula", is a clear presentation both on anthroponyms and onomastic formulae. The booklet ends with an attractive chapter presenting the main features of Lusitanian epigraphy (rock and stone inscriptions, religious texts) and containing commentaries on the five 'canonic' Lusitanian inscriptions: Arroyo de la Luz, Lamas de Moledo, Cabeço das Fráguas, Arronches and Viseu. The rest of inscriptions (Latin with interferences of Lusitanian languages) is compiled in the closing pages, consisting of a census of inscriptions.
This book is a very attractive volume both for novel and initiated readers, since it offers updated and concise data from the latests research works on Lusitanian, as well as a meticulous selection of pictures.
A QUANTITATIVE APPROACH TO THE ANALYSIS OF THE SOUTH WESTERN SCRIPT
This paper analyses the south western script, also known as Tartessian, mainly from a quantitative approach, taking advantage of the structure of this script, which makes it especially suitable for an analysis of
this kind. The aim is to assess the discrepancies between researchers in the interpretation of signs without consensus value, where it is possible, with the help of quantitative indicators, but without losing sight of the qualitative information coming from the close relationship between the south-western script and the southeastern Iberian script.
Ibérico. Lengua, Escritura, Epigrafía.
AELAW COST Action goes on publishing its series of booklets with the aim of providing updated and easy-to-understand introductions to the local languages of ancient Europe and their written culture. After Celtiberian and Raetic, it’s now the turn of Iberian.
With more than 2,000 inscriptions spanning over 5 centuries and a widely developed epigraphic habit, Iberian is the best attested of the so-called Palaeohispanic languages. Although it is currently an undeciphered language, in the last decades knowledge of the language has advanced notably in some areas. This new AELAW booklet, written by N. Moncunill and J. Velaza, provides a state-of-the art on the knowledge of Iberian and presents the main research lines undertaken by recent scholarship.
The work is divided into different sections: 1. introduction, 2. writing systems (the north-eastern Iberian script, the south-eastern Iberian script, the Graeco-Iberian script, the Latin and Greek alphabet), 3. language (phonetics and phonology, morphology and syntax), 4. anthroponomy, 5. epigraphy, 6. survey of inscriptions, 7. commentary on three Iberian inscriptions (the Graeco-Iberian lead tablet from La Serreta; the bilingual architrave of Sagunto; and the pavement from La Caridad, Caminreal), 8. bibliographic recommendations for further reading.
Throughout all these chapters, the reader will also find ad hoc maps, high-definition pictures and drawings of the most remarkable artefacts together with commentaries on the illustrated inscriptions, and tables containing the value of the characters in the different scripts used for Iberian, the description of the most recurrent epigraphic formulae, and the structure of the Iberian naming formulae.
Celtibérico. Lengua, Escritura, Epigrafía
The first booklet published within AELAW network has just seen the light of day. The aim of these dissemination books is to provide an updated introduction to fragmentary languages of ancient Europe and their epigraphic record to all kind of audiences. The first one assesses the most known Hispano-Celtic language and the inscriptions written on it: Celtiberian.
Written in Spanish by F. Beltrán and C. Jordán (Universidad de Zaragoza), it is made of 44 pages filled with novel ad hoc maps, high-definition pictures and tables complementing the text, which has been written with clear dissemination intentions but also with scientific accuracy.
After an introduction containing historiographical aspects, the main body of the booklet is devoted to language, writing and epigraphy. The chapter “Language” offers the reader a precise definition of Celtiberian (with useful tables of Celtiberian declension) and its position among other Indo-European and Celtic languages; in the second one, “Writing”, the authors explain the adaptation of Iberian Levantine writing system to Celtiberian language, its variants and the phenomena derived from it, and also the adaptation of Latin alphabet to Celtiberian language.
A third chapter focuses on the structure of the onomastic formulae found in inscriptions, being one of the best-attested information in Celtiberian epigraphy. Finally, the fourth chapter deals with the epigraphic habit of Celtiberian peoples, born from the contact with Iberians and Romans, and also with the most Celtiberian representative epigraphic genres: tesserae hospitals and bronze tabulae. This chapter is complemented by a useful and up-to-date sylloge of Celtiberian inscriptions, the commentary of two important epigraphs (the Ibiza slab and the so-called “Bronce Res”) and a bibliographic guidance for those interested in deepen their knowledge in Celtiberian.
Selected finds from Dercolo in the context of Raetic epigraphy
Among the archaeological finds made in Dercolo in the Non valley (Italy) are a number of objects bearing inscriptions and inscription-like marks. These documents are testimonies of Raetic writing and/or culture, and were examined and documented anew for their inclusion in the online data management system Thesaurus Inscriptionum Raeticarum. The present paper gives an overview on the Dercolo finds from the Late Iron Age, and describes the different kinds of marks and characters in the context of the Raetic archaeological and inscription corpus.
Palaeohispanic Epigraphy on coins. The secondary legends
The short legends of the Palaeohispanic coins have been tra- ditionally analysed and understood within the epigraphic culture (Celtiberian, Iberian and “Vasconic”) they belong to. This approach has lead to a di- chotomous vision according to which the typical Celtiberian secondary legends show the first letter of their toponym while Iberian ones have an order or value mark. The study analyses and organises short legends other than toponyms (or their first letter) and order marks, but the value and undefined markers, as a whole. The result is much less rigid than the traditional model. The author also formulates a hypothesis about the meaning of the legends ban, eba, bon, etaon and etaban and a link between them.
Palaeohispanic Languages Database. II. Palaeohispanic Numismatics, Vitoria 2015
The printed version of numismatic section of the HESPERIA Palaeohispanic Languages Data Bank (http://hesperia.ucm.es/en/numismatica.php) contains every coin legend written in any Palaeohispanic language, that is, Iberian and Celtiberian, and the language of the coins from the north-western Ebro Valley, which maybe partially corresponds to the Vasconic language.
Epigraphic Habit and Bilingual Inscriptions in the Iberian Peninsula
This paper offers a panoramic vision of language contact in the Iberian Peninsula before and during Latinisation. An explanation of the difficulties that this topic rises to epigraphists and linguists and some methodological reflection are followed by a catalogue of bilingual inscriptions of Hispania, as well as those that, even if not bilingual, suggest some kind of bilingualism during their execution.
Roman inscriptions with Celtic theonyms from northern Spain
Review of an important group of roman inscriptions preserved in the museums of Palencia, Valladolid and Burgos (Spain), that shows different hispano-celtic theonyms.
Graffiti on pottery —Iberic, Latin, Greek and signs— from the archaeological site of La Cabañeta (El Burgo de Ebro, Zaragoza)
This paper presents an interesting group of inscriptions made on pottery, unearthed during the archaeological excavations carried out in the site called La Cabañeta (El Burgo de Ebro, Zaragoza), from 1997 to 2009. Included are fourteen Iberian documents written in Paleohispanic script, twenty-two in Latin, two in Greek, eight signs and four difficult to identify marks, all of them dated between the second half of the II century B.C. and the destruction of the settlement in the decade of the 70s of the I century B.C.
Graffiti on pottery from Roman-republican Valentia (Valencia, Spain)
This paper presents a group of inscriptions made on pottery, recovered in various archaeological excavations carried out in Valentia (Valencia, Spain), in the last decades. It includes sixteen Latin documents, three Greeks, one Iberian and five signs, all of them dated between the last quarter of the second century B.C. and destructión of the city during the Sertorian Wars.
Ciceronian Sicily: the epigraphic dimension
This paper surveys the epigraphy of the island of Sicily in the Hellenistic / Roman period, and uses it as a methodological case study for the use of epigraphy alongside extensive but partial literary sources (in this case Cicero’s Verrine Orations) for trying to make sense of a region in a historical context.
Epigraphy by numbers: Latin and the epigraphic culture in Sicily
This paper examines the epigraphic habit on the island of Sicily across antiquity (seventh century BC to seventh century AD), comparing the use of different languages, materials and categories of inscriptions over time and space across the island.
Epigraphy in the western Mediterranean: a Hellenistic phenomenon?
This paper surveys epigraphic practices across the western Mediterranean in the period between the fourth and first centuries BC, and suggests that some broad trends are identifiable, indicative of broader socio-cultural and historical changes across the region – and the Mediterranean – as a whole. In particular, it is suggested that Romanisation should be seen as one of the indicators of these changes rather than necessarily the cause or source of such developments, with Roman epigraphic culture only one among many developing at this time.
This work is a grammatical compendium of the Celtiberian language, incorporating the data available through 2003. The more relevant phonological and morphological phenomena are reviewed. These demonstrate that Celtiberian is an Indo-European and Celtic language. Abundant epigraphic material is also presented in support of the arguments presented here.
Review of the Celtiberian Tesserae
Review and assessment from the historical, paleo-epigraphic and linguistic point of view of the documents considered, to the present, celtiberian tesserae.
Celtiberic inscriptions written in Latin alphabet
The aim of this paper is the study of Celtiberian inscriptions engraved in Latin alphabet in the context of the palaeohispanic epigraphy, in order to assess their value as sources for the latinization of the Iberian Peninsula in the Republican period.
Vernacular Celtic Writing Traditions in the East-Alpine Region in the Iron-Age Period?
In previous scholarship, four inscriptions or groups of inscriptions are mentioned as proof for vernacular Celtic literacy in the East-Alpine region, i.e. modern Austria, during the La-Tène period or shortly afterwards: 1. the so-called ‘writing tablet’ from the Dürrnberg above Hallein (Salzburg), 2. the so-called ‘Noric’ inscriptions from the Magdalensberg (Carinthia), 3. the graffito on a tile fragment from the Frauenberg near Leibnitz (Styria), 4. the graffito on a tile fragment from Grafenstein (Carinthia). This article critically evaluates all four of them. The conclusion is that only the fourth contains genuine Celtic linguistic material. The others belong to different literary traditions or to different periods.
Inscriptiones Pseudocelticae. Wrong and premature ascriptions of inscriptions as Celtic
This article continues, i.e. expands and corrects, the contribution to the proceedings of the 3rd Linzer Eisenzeitgespräche (Stifter 2009) where several inscriptions, found at sites across Austria, that had sometimes or frequently been claimed to contain Celtic ‘linguistic’ material were discussed. Two of those texts, the so-called ‘writing tablet’ from the Dürrnberg and the plate inscribed in the so-called Noric script from the Magdalensberg, are subjected to a more detailed study in the present paper. This article will present additions and new insights concerning the texts, as well as necessary corrections to the previous study.
Lepontic Studies: Lexicon Leponticum and the function of the letter san in the Lepontic corpus
This article introduces the project Lexicon Leponticum, and then discusses the attestations of the letter san in the Lepontic corpus, with an eye on the question of its phonetic reality.
New early second-century Gaulish texts from La Graufesenque (L-143a–c)
In this article, several short texts produced by the potter L. Cosius in La Graufesenque, dating to the early 2nd century A.D., will be discussed, some of which could be Gaulish in language. In contrast to most inscriptional testimonies of Gaulish, these texts can be dated exactly and their historical and social context is clear. This allows to make inferences about the position of Gaulish in the Roman imperial period.
New Inscriptions in North-Italic script from Austria
This article presents two very short pre-Roman inscriptions in North-Italic script from Austria: 1. a text in possibly Raetic or Ventic script from the Gurina (Carinthia), 2. a graffito in Venetic script from the Frauenberg (Styria).
The language of the Iberian coin legends
This paper aims to summarize the state of the research on the legends of Iberian coins. The legends mainly identify place names, personal names, value marks and issue marks. These elements can appear isolated, accompanied by morphemes or in multiple composition or combination between them.
News about the dual system of graphical differentiation between voiceless and voiced stops
In this article, I defend that some bo sign variants are in fact voiceless variants of the ta sign. In addition to the improvement of the dual system internal coherence, this change modifies the reading of almost a hundred Iberian inscriptions. The chronology of the dual inscriptions seems to indicate that the dual system may be the original North-Oriental (Levantine) Iberian writing system. This system was created at the end of de 5th century BC in some point at the coast of the north of Catalonia and the south of Languedoc-Roussillon, having being spread out towards the south along the coast. The exact reason of its substitution in favour of the non-dual system among the Iberians at the beginning of de 2nd century BC is not well known, but it seems to be a direct consequence of the Roman conquest of the Iberian territory. Besides, the use of a dual system in Celtiberian is proved by the presence of dualities in some Celtiberian texts. This fact modifies the chronology of the introduction of writing among the Celtiberians.
Iberian KUTU and the Iberian abecedaries
This paper presents the hypothesis that identifies three texts as Iberian non-dual abecedaries on the basis of a statistical irregularity. They consist of one considerable long segment, but almost all of the signs are different. The texts identified as abecedaries are a rock inscription from L’Esquirol and the two texts from the spindle whorl from Can Rodon. Two of the texts begin with the same sequence, kutukiŕbitatiko, a fact that also identifies other texts that begin with the same sequence as non-dual abecedaries: these are an unpublished text on rock in Latour de Carol and probably a short text on a dolium from Val de Alegre. The sequence kutu can also be reconstructed at the Ger abecedary and at the new dual one from Latour de Carol making plausible the hypothesis that the familiar element kutur / kutun was related to it and therefore the meaning of the kutu root was originally in the semantic field of writing.
Language vs. material culture: the (old) problema of the indigenous language of Catalunya
The aim of this paper is to analyze the question of the indigenous language of Catalunya, taking into account the hypothesis of Iberian language as a vehicular language recently proposed by J. de Hoz.
The writing of the sacred in the Iberian world
The work tries to be an approach to the presence of writing in the religious contexts of Iberian world. Though in many cases it is problematic to decide whether an Iberian inscription is religious or not and though our capacity of understanding the texts is still very limited, it is possible to identify contexts, supports and formularies that indicate the votive character of some inscriptions. Taking on account these evidences, we try to elaborate an ensemble vision of the Iberian votive epigraphy, its varieties and its evolution along the time.
Writing, Self-Representation and Power in the Iberian World
The purpose of this study is to analyze the use of writing as a mechanism of self-representation and as an expression of power in the Iberian world. In the present state of knowledge, Iberian epigraphy during the 5th to 3rd centuries BC was by and large restricted to colonial and eminently practical uses, such as seals, markers of quality control, and the like. One has to await the arrival and spread of Roman epigraphic models during the later 2nd and 1st centuries BC to witness the development of funerary, honorific, and architectural epigraphy through which local elites represented themselves while still using the indigenous language. Also analyzed are the forms Iberian epigraphy took in the context of different urban communities, especially Ampurias, Tarragona and Sagunto, in which (despite the limitations on our knowledge of the language which hinder understanding of the texts) one can detect evidence of the co-existence in the same public spaces of the Iberian, Roman and even Greek (in the case of Ampurias) written cultures.
Present, Past and Future of Palaeohispanistics
In this paper, we intend to provide an overview of Paleohispanistics. To this end we will begin by defining our research topic. Then we will handle a number of relevant questions, namely the discussions on the following Palaeohispanic languages: Southeastern language, Lusitanian, Celtiberian, Iberian and Vascon language.
A new Iberian grafitto made on pottery from La Cabañeta (El burgo de Ebro, Zaragoza)
This paper presents an Iberian graffito datable back to the early 1st century BC and retrieved at the archaeological works developed at the baths of La Cabañeta (El Burgo de Ebro, Zaragoza), a Roman site from the Republican period. New information about Iberian writing and language is given in this document, as well as an unprecedented personal name and a likely verbal form. It also shows the continuance of dual writing system graphic forms in later texts written in non-dual writing system.
Rome and the Iberian Epigraphy on Stone in North-easter Hispania
Review of the polemic about the role of Roman influence in the development of Iberian epigraphy on stone in north-eastern Hispania during the 2nd and 1st cent. BCE. Two models are suggested: one in the Mediterranean harbours of Emporion, Tarraco and Saguntum, three cities with a strong Roman presence or influence, where the principal concentrations of Iberian epigraphs are located along with other Latin —and Greek— inscriptions, and Roman epigraphic types arise in a monumental context; and another one in the rest of the Iberian north-eastern regions where stelae predominate as local response to the Roman inspired monumentalisation of the coastal cities. The emergence of Iberian inscriptions on stone is explained as a consequence of the process of romanization and the diffusion, in this context, of the incipient Roman epigraphic culture.