Inscribed tombstone

Record number: CHEGM: 1999 6 92

Object name: inscribed tombstone

Description: Lower part of a tombstone with a moulded border; the commencement of the inscription has been lost, and the epitaph begins in the middle; below the text two conventional shrubs have been incised, each standing within, or in front of, an aedicula with ornamental gable, flanking a larger structure with double doors, perhaps representing a tomb.

Period: Roman

Place found: North Wall (West), Chester

Date: 3.1891

Material: stone

Dimensions: height 39 inches; width 33 inches

Inscription: ...OPTONIS AD SPEM / ORDINIS C LVCILI / INGENVI, QUI / NAVFRAGIO PERIT / S E
...] opt[i]onis ad spem ordinis c(enturia) Lucili Ingenui, qui naufragio perit s(itus) e(st)
...an optio, serving in the century of Lucilius Ingenuus, and awaiting promotion to centurion, who died by shipwreck. He is buried [here].
The optio was an officer under the centurion. The regular promotion seems to have been optio, signifer, centurio, but in some cases, as here, the optio had a definite right to the ordo or position of centurion. Instead of cutting the full formula H.S.E, 'lies buried here', a space was left for H(ic) in case the body lost in the shipwreck were recovered; this does not seem to have happened, as the letter was never inserted on the stone. Latin


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