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Marlborough Down

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Author: Unknown

Authority: Roger Tomlin

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Description:

Oblong tablet with rounded corners, 72 by 49 mm, cut from sheet lead c. 1 mm thick, found(FN1) with a metal-detector in 1998 in topsoil near scattered Roman pottery and coins some miles south of Swindon, east of which another ‘curse tablet’ has been found, at Wanborough (Britannia iii (1972), 363-7). The finder made it available, and showed the find-spot to RSOT. The tablet is complete except for minor losses at the corners, but both faces are badly corroded and there is damage due to folding. There are surface indications in the corrosion layer of lead carbonate that both faces were originally inscribed, but after the tablet was folded into three, only two-thirds of its inner face was sufficiently protected for the underlying metal to retain the incisions of the writing-instrument. Some letters have also been lost in the first fold and in a central patch of deep corrosion, and they have all been lost to the right of the second fold.

(FN1) With a metal-detector, some miles south of Swindon, east of which another ‘curse tablet’ has been found, at Wanborough (Wanborough-1).

Edition:
n 1 uacat  do (over a) uacat
n 2 deo Marti A[.]VNISEA id [est?][. . .]
n 3 3-4 eculium eum et secur[. . .]
n 4 tidisse e . . . illum iume . [. . .]
n 5 rogat genium tuum dom[ine]
6 ut quampr[imu]m res[ideant?]
n 7 nec eant per annos novem n[on eis]
8 permittas nec sedere [nec . . .]
n 9 . . . MIMBRIC[. . .]

Diplomatic:

Commentary:

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I give (?). To the god Mars ... asks your Genius, Lord, that they [stop] as soon as possible and do not go for nine years. Do not allow [them] to sit [or to ... ] ...