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E07498: Latin epitaph for a woman who was arguably buried ad sanctos. Found in the cemetery of Feilicitas/Cemetery of Maximus on the via Salaria, Rome. Dated 390. [provisional entry, description needed]

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posted on 30.03.2019, 00:00 by pnowakowski
Constantia que et Bonifat[ia]
[h]ụius quia bene pro meritis vi[ge]-
[b]at gratia facti ad sanctọ[rum]
[lo]c̣um in pace quiescit que ḅ[ixit]
[an]ṇ(os) p(lus) m(inus) XXXIII d(eposita) die VI non[(as) - - -]
[d(omino)] n(ostro) Valentiniano Aug(usto) IIII et Ṇ[eoterio]
v(iro) c(larissimo) cons(ulibu)s

'Constantia also called Bonifatia lived and merited well, whose gratitude for such a deed is that she rests in peace near the place of the saints. She lived more or less 33 years. She was buried on the 6th day before the nones [of - - -] in the consulship of our [lord] Valentinan Augusts for the fourth time, and N[eoterius] of clarissimus rank.'

Text: ICVR, n.s., VIII, no. 23425 = EDB20374.

History

Evidence ID

E07498

Saint Name

Saints, unnamed : S00518

Saint Name in Source

sancti

Type of Evidence

Inscriptions - Funerary inscriptions

Language

Latin

Evidence not before

390

Evidence not after

390

Activity not before

390

Activity not after

390

Place of Evidence - Region

Rome and region

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc

Suburban catacombs and cemeteries

Place of evidence - City name in other Language(s)

Suburban catacombs and cemeteries Rome Rome Roma Ῥώμη Rhōmē

Cult activities - Places

Burial site of a saint - crypt/ crypt with relics

Cult activities - Non Liturgical Practices and Customs

Prayer/supplication/invocation

Cult Activities - Protagonists in Cult and Narratives

Women

Source

Marble plaque. H. 0.63 m; W. 0.85 m; Th. 0.03 m. Letter height: 0.05 m. Found in the pavement of the surface basilica at the Cemetery of Felicitas/Cemetery of Maximus. [description needed]

Discussion

Paola de Santis (2010, p. 73 note 316 and p. 152 note 823) list the cases where the formula ad locum sanctorum appears in epitaphs in Rome, and Aquileia. She, however, doubts that the expression denotes a burial ad sanctos, and opts for the meaning 'buried with the other faithful (sancti = fideles)'. It is true that at an early period the entire community of Christians could be termed sancti, but in the epitaphs cited the phrase seems to stress a particular dignity of the places of burial, based on their closeness to the tombs of the martyrs. These epitaphs are also interpreted as testimonies to burials ad sanctos by other scholars, including Yvette Duval. The consular date specified in the inscription is AD 390. De Rossi noted that the inscription used phrasing from Christian verse inscriptions of the city of Rome, but was not truly composed in verse. For the phrase gratia facti, see Vergil Aeneid VII 231-232: nec vestra feretur / fama levis tantique abolescet gratia facti.

Bibliography

Edition: Epigraphic Database Bari, no. EDB20374. see http://www.edb.uniba.it/epigraph/20374 De Rossi, G.B., Ferrua, A. (eds.) Inscriptiones Christianae Urbis Romae Septimo Saeculo Antiquiores, n.s., vol. 8: Coemeteria viarum Nomentanae et Salariae (Vatican: Pont. Institutum Archaeologiae Christianae, 1983), no. 23425 (with further bibliography). Further reading: De Santis, P., Sanctorum Monumenta: "Aree sacre" del suburbio di Roma nella documentazione epigrafica (IV-VII secolo) (Bari: Edipuglia, 2010), 73 note 316, 152 note 823.

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