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Reading in transliteration: ????tios
Reading in original script: S sO8 sI sT s????

Object: BS·15 Gottolengo (bowl)
Position: bottom, outside
Direction of writing: sinistroverse
Script: North Italic script (Lepontic alphabet)
Letter height: 1.7–2.9 cm0.669 in <br />1.142 in <br />
Number of letters: 4
Number of lines: 1
Workmanship: scratched after firing
Condition: complete

Archaeological culture: La Tène D 1 [from object]
Date of inscription: late 2nd–early 1st c. BC [from object]

Type: unknown
Language: Celtic
Meaning: '°tios'

Alternative sigla: Solinas 1995: 45
Morandi 2004: 244

Sources: Morandi 2004: 676 no. 244



First published in Tibiletti Bruno 1972.

Images in Tibiletti Bruno 1972: 110, fig. 1 (photo = Tibiletti Bruno 1975: tav. D.1) and fig. 2 (drawing), Frontini 1985: tav. 8.8 (drawing), Morandi 2001: 18, no. 14 (drawing), Morandi 2004: 679, fig. 27.244 (drawing), De Marinis & Motta 2007: 155, fig. 2.1 (drawing).

Inscribed upside-down on the bottom of the patera curving around the foot (length ca. 11 cm). While the sequence tios at the end is clearly recognisable and agreed upon by all scholars, the reading of the letters before it is unclear. Tibiletti Bruno 1972 identifies the first three lines as nu N s, followed by retrograde alpha addA3 d, then a large and lopsided inverted upsilon U3 s, reading a personal name nautios. With regard to flag-shaped alpha and inverted upsilon, she argues that the alphabet of the inscription is a Venetic one, despite the absence of syllabic punctuation. (See also Tibiletti Bruno 1975: 162 f.) While initial nu is plausible, however, alpha and upsilon seem doubful. Solinas includes the inscription without a reading. Morandi 2001: 18 f., no. 14 (also 2004) reads S sO3 sI sT sA sseparator sI sU3 sC sU sI s iucui : atios, including a small horizontal scratch as a word separator and two faint scratches by the hasta before St. Andrew's cross to form alpha; he translates 'Atios (made an offering on behalf of) Iucos'. atios is indeed attested in VB·4, but iucui with its small and dislocated Latin C s and one inverted, one non-inverted upsilon is not plausible (cf. De Marinis & Motta 2007: 138). De Marinis in De Marinis & Motta 2007: 139 follows Tibiletti Bruno in reading the first letters as nu and alpha, tentatively identifies the long scratch in the middle as sigma, and takes into account one of Morandi's bars of alpha to get inverted upsilon: S sO3 sI sT sU3 sS saddA3 dN s nasutios. The form is evidently a single, possibly compound personal name, but the reading must be considered unclear.

Corinna Salomon


De Marinis & Motta 2007 Raffaele C. de Marinis, Filippo Motta, "Iscrizioni del II e I secolo a.C. dal territorio insubre e cenomane", in: Francesca Moradini, Marina Volonté (eds), Contributi di archeologia in memoria di Mario Mirabella Roberti. Cavriana 15–16 ottobre 2005 [= Annali Benacensi 13–14], Brescia: 2007, 135–160.
Frontini 1985 Patrizia Frontini, La ceramica a vernice nera nei contesti tombali della Lombardia [= Archeologia dell'Italia Settentrionale 3], Como: 1985.