Welcome Guest [Log In] [Register]

From Aug 2006 - Nov 2013 WeDig provided a live forum for diggers & fans of Vindolanda. It has now been mothballed and will be maintained as a live archive.

Here you will find preserved 7 years of conversation, photos, & knowledge about a site many people love. Vindolanda gets under the skin. (Figuratively and literally as a volunteer excavator!) It's a place you remember, filled with people you remember!

Thanks for 7 great years!

Welcome to We Dig Vindolanda!

Username:   Password:
Add Reply
How much the tablets have told us
Topic Started: Apr 16 2010, 09:12 PM (919 Views)
Member Avatar
[ *  * ]
Many people know the "biggie" writing tablets -- the birthday invitation; the bundle of fresh socks & underwear from home; the comment on the lousy roads; the observation about "wretched little Brits." We know that the tablets have brought names to light: around AD 100 the commander was Flavius Cerialis, and his wife was Sulpicia Lepidina. There was a trader, Octavius, who communicated with a Candidus. A few others may come to mind.

But it may surprise you just how much those fragile, faded, broken slivers of wood have brought from the distant past. The following is just one measure of their value, a (likely incomplete) list of names mentioned in the tablets found so far:

Acranius; Adiutor, Vittius, aquilifer; Aduectus; Africanus, Vocusius, praefectus; Aga[]; Agilis; Albanus; Albinus; Albiso; Alio, ueterinarius; Allatus?; Amabilis; Ammius; Andecarus; Andle[]; Aquilio?; Arcanus, miles; Aristo?; Arquittius, optio; Ascanius; Asper, Licinius; Ato?; Atrectus, ceruesarius; Atticus; Atto, decurio; Atto; Audax; Aventinus; Billo; Bog[]; Bolanus, Vettius, consul; Brigio; Brigionus; Brocchus, Aelius; Buccus; Butimas; Caecus; Caledus; Candidus; Candidus, optio Candidus, slave of Genialis; Cano[]; Capito; Carpentarius?; Catussa; Celer; Cephalio; Cerialis, Flauius, praefectus; Certius; Cessaucius; Cessius Fin[]; Chnisso; Chrauttius; Claudius; Cogitatus; Conianus, Flauius; Corinthus; Crescens; Crescens, centurio; Crispa; Crispinus; Crispinus, Grattius; Crispus; Culcianus; Cuselus, centurio; C]aledus; Dardanus; Diligens; Dio; Elpis; Equester, centurio; Equester, Annius, centurio regionarius; Exomnius, centurio; Expeditus; Faber, Cluuius; Fadus; Fatalis; Felicio, centurio; Feni[]; Ferox; Festus; Fidelis; Firmanus; Firminus; Firmus; Flavianus; Flavianus, Hostilius; Flavinus; Flavius; Florus; Fontanus, ]ius; Fortunatus, centurio; Fraternus; Frontinus, eques; Frontius; Frue[]; Frumentius, centurio?; Furio; Fuscinius; Fuscus; Gambax; Gamiso; Gannallius; Gau(u)o; Genialis, Flauius, praefectus?; Genitor; Gentilis; Germanus; Gleuco; Gracilis; Gramaseus?; Hermes; Huep[]; Huete[]; Ianuarius; Iddi[]; Imber, Furius; Ingenuus; Ircucisso; Iulius, Frontinus; Iustinus; Iustinus, optio; Iustus, Celonius; Iustus, Macr[]; Karus, Claudius; Lent[]; Lepidina, Sulpicia; Lib(e)rinus?; Lub[]; Luca, uector; Lucanus; Lucerius; Lucco; Lucius; Lucius, decurio; Lucius, scutarius; Lupelus, centurio; Lupus; Lutius; Lu[, beneficiarius; Macrinus; Mansuetus; Marcellus, consularis; Marcia; Marcus, medicus; Marcus, optio?; Marinus; Masculus, decurio; Masuetus; Messicus; Messor; Metto; Modius; Natalis; Niger; Niger, Oppius; Niger, Valerius; Nigrinus?, Cessaucius; Nis[, ]nius; Octauius; Onno[; Pac(a)ta; Pacatus; Paratus?; Paris; Pastor; Paterna; Paternus; Petrus, Flauius; Piso, Calpurnius, consul; Placidus; Pollio; Popa, Claudius; Prese[]; Primigenius, slave of Cerialis?; Primus; Primus, slave (?) of Lucius; Priscinius; Priscinus; Priscus; Priuatus; Proculus; Proculus, Flauius; Prudens; Publicus; Quar[; Quintia; Quintus; Quotus?; Rhenus; Rhenus, slave of Similis; Rufinus; Rufinus, praefectus; Rufus; Sabinus; Saco; Saecularis, Cassius Sancta; Sanctus; Sattua; Saturninus; Sautenus; Senecio; September, Caecilius; Sequentinius; Settius; Severa, Claudia; Severinus; Severus; Severus, Vettius; Similis; Similis, Flauius; Simplex; Singularis; Sollemnis; Spectatus; Stipo; Suasco; Super, Clodius; Super, Curtius; Super?; Tagamos, vexillarius; Tagarminis; Tappo; Taurinus; Taurus; Tertius; Tetricus; Thuttena; Tranquillus; Trophimus; Troucisso; Tullio; Tullio, centurio; Ucen(i)us, centurio; Uxperus; Valatta; Valentinus; Vale[]; Varcenus; Varia[]; Vatto; Vattus; Vel(de)deius, equisio consularis; Velbuteius; Velox, Marcus Cocceius; Veranius, praefectus; Verecunda; Verecundus, optio; Verecundus, Iulius, praefectus; Vern[], centurio; Verus, [Cla]udius, decurio; Vettius; Vibbi[]; Victor; Victor, Felicius; Viddi[]; Vindex; Viranus; Virilis, ueterinarius; Viriocius; Vitalis; Vitalis, decurio; Vocontius, centurio; Voturius, centurio.

260+ names -- and counting! A handful are known from inscriptions and tales elsewhere across the Empire. But the vast majority are people whose very existence had disappeared from all knowledge. A lucky few have even emerged as real personalities thanks to the tablets. The efforts of the Vindolanda Trust, and volunteer diggers, over the past 40 years have recovered them from obscurity.

The accounts, personal letters, records -- all have put flesh on the skeleton of the Roman frontier's past. And revealed remarkable, intimate details of a fascinating world. But to this author, the most amazing feat has been the simple act of giving people back their names.

Birley, Anthony. Garrison Life at Vindolanda: A Band of Brothers, Tempus 2002 -- a must-read.
Oxford University Center for the Study of Ancient Documents: Vindolanda Writing Tablets
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
ZetaBoards - Free Forum Hosting
Join the millions that use us for their forum communities. Create your own forum today.
« Previous Topic · Factoids & Trivia · Next Topic »
Add Reply