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.
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.
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).