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Illyrian onomastics on lead tags from Sisak (Siscia): an overview

Ivan Radman Livaja ; Arheološki muzej u Zagrebu, Zagreb, Hrvatska

Puni tekst: hrvatski, pdf (2 MB) str. 143-171 preuzimanja: 217* citiraj
APA 6th Edition
Radman Livaja, I. (2017). Pregled ilirske onomastike na sisačkim teserama. Tusculum, 10 (2), 143-171. Preuzeto s
MLA 8th Edition
Radman Livaja, Ivan. "Pregled ilirske onomastike na sisačkim teserama." Tusculum, vol. 10, br. 2, 2017, str. 143-171. Citirano 11.05.2021.
Chicago 17th Edition
Radman Livaja, Ivan. "Pregled ilirske onomastike na sisačkim teserama." Tusculum 10, br. 2 (2017): 143-171.
Radman Livaja, I. (2017). 'Pregled ilirske onomastike na sisačkim teserama', Tusculum, 10(2), str. 143-171. Preuzeto s: (Datum pristupa: 11.05.2021.)
Radman Livaja I. Pregled ilirske onomastike na sisačkim teserama. Tusculum [Internet]. 2017 [pristupljeno 11.05.2021.];10(2):143-171. Dostupno na:
I. Radman Livaja, "Pregled ilirske onomastike na sisačkim teserama", Tusculum, vol.10, br. 2, str. 143-171, 2017. [Online]. Dostupno na: [Citirano: 11.05.2021.]

The Roman Department of the Zagreb Archaeological Museum contains close to 1200 inscribed lead tags, found in Sisak, the ancient city of Siscia, one of the biggest Roman agglomerations in the region and the largest urban centre in south-western Pannonia.
Some of those tags were offered or sold to the Museum by individual finders or collectors but most of them were found during the dredging of the Kupa river before WWI. Since the dredging was localised in the very centre of the town, i.e. in front of the port quarter, it would seem that all the tags come from a limited area, where, according to the excavations
done in the eighties, the port facilities of the Roman town were also situated. All of those tags are small lead tablets, of a more or less rectangular shape, pierced with a hole (sometimes even two or three perforations) so that the tag could be attached to the merchandise
with a small rope or a metal wire. They all carry an inscription, sometimes only on one side, but usually on both sides. Those inscriptions are always written in capital letters or the older Roman cursive. Most of the tags were reused several times and thus one can often see traces of older inscriptions, more or less thoroughly erased by the scribe. For this reason, it is often difficult to distinguish with certainty which inscription is the most recent one. Obviously, when one finds traces of many different inscriptions, the lecture becomes rather uncertain. Those inscriptions generally follow the same model: on one side, one can read personal names, duo nomina (far more rarely tria nomina) as well as single names, often followed by a patronymic. It would thus seem that both citizens and peregrines are mentioned on those tags, and in some cases even slaves. The other side of the tag usually carries an inscription mentioning the merchandise, most of the time in an abbreviated form, as well as a price and quite often an indication of quantity or weight. Despite the fact that the reading of the personal names can be quite dubious due to several factors, mostly the bad state of preservation of some tag and the mistakes done by the scribe, it is usually far less subject to doubt than the interpretation of the abbreviations. Fortunately, the words appearing on the tags are not always abbreviated which is of great help when you try to interpret correctly at least some of the abbreviations. There are many different abbreviations on those tags and although many different commercial
industrial activities could be in play, there is no doubt that most of them are linked to the wool trade and the textile industry. Words like LANA, PAN(N)UM, TVNICA, SAGVM, P(A) ENVLA, PAL(L)A, PALLIOLUM, LODIX, BANATA and ABOLLA appear more or less regularly without being abbreviated and thus the interpretation of common abbreviations like L, LA, LAN, PAN, T, SAG, PAENV, PAL, LO, LOD, LODI, BANA, AB is not in doubt. Many different shades and colours are mentioned as well, an important detail which would point to the activities of fullonicae and/or tinctoriae. Finally, the prices on those tags are a major argument when
one considers those lead tags as commercial tags. Those prices were indicating the value of the goods or the cost of a given service like cleaning, fulling or dyeing and they must have been an essential information on the tags since they appear on at least 81 % of them.
Over 900 individuals are named on the tags, most of them being presumably clients (and inhabitants of Siscia as well). While most of them have typical Latin names, there is nonetheless a significant percentage of people bearing names which may be considered
as indigenous, i.e. Celtic or »Illyrian« in a larger sense and certainly not out of place in south-western Pannonia. This paper will not be thoroughly covering this interesting issue but, as a tribute to the late Professor Rendić-Miočević, only aims to give an overview of idionyms
which may be interpreted as »Illyrian«, i.e. belonging to the traditional anthroponymy of the native population of the western Balkans. 59 names are discussed and while many may be considered as »Illyrian« with a high level of certainty, there are nonetheless quite a few dubious cases which can only tentatively be related to »Illyrian« onomastics. Since this topic is a vast one and certainly deserves a more methodical approach, this paper may at best only be considered as a first step towards further research, hopefully by linguists and philologists.

Ključne riječi
Siscia; lead tags; »Illyrian« onomastics

Hrčak ID: 186055



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