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Document Details :

Title: Uniformity up to the Grave?
Subtitle: Funerary Inscriptions of Roman Legionaries in Western Europe
Author(s): FEUCHT, Birgit
Journal: Ancient Society
Volume: 41    Date: 2011   
Pages: 147-183
DOI: 10.2143/AS.41.0.2129568

Abstract :
Roman military tombstones are one of the most visible remains of the vast extent of the Roman Empire. They are found in every province, but especially at the Empire’s frontiers. One might expect the information displayed in these inscriptions to be uniform, as many other aspects of military life were. This article puts this presupposition to the test: can we detect a trans-border uniformity in the funerary inscriptions of Roman legionaries in Western Europe or do they differ regionally? A sample of 565 inscriptions from seven (geographical, political and ethnic) regions in Western Europe has been collected and in them the frequency of 11 themes, typical of funerary inscriptions, has been established. When results are divergent, investigation has been made whether the encountered differences are to be determined locally. This might point to the adaptation of legionaries to epigraphical customs valid in the region in which they served and died. Lastly, a comparison is made between modern scholarly views on funerary themes and their frequency and the results of our statistical analysis.

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