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Reading in transliteration: ụ[ ]?us
Reading in original script: U s[ ]?U sS s

Object: BG·46 Bergamo (bowl)
Position: bottom, outside
Direction of writing: ambiguous
Script: North Italic script (Lepontic alphabet)
Number of letters: 4
Number of lines: 1
Workmanship: scratched after firing
Condition: fragmentary

Archaeological culture: unknown [from object]
Date of inscription: 1st century BC [from object]

Type: unknown
Language: unknown
Meaning: unknown

Alternative sigla: none

Sources: Casini & Motta 2018: 124–126 no. 12


First published in Casini & Motta 2018: 124–126, no. 12.

Images in Casini & Motta 2018: 125, fig. 5.12 (photo and drawings).

Of the five fragments which make up half of the object, the two on opposite ends bear deeply incised scratches which appear to be beginning and end of a lengthy inscription, though it cannot be excluded that two separate sequences were inscribed on the object. Which part is the beginning and which the end is hard to determine, as are the writing direction and orientation of the inscription (displayed above as seen from the foot/handle and dextroverse). On one side, the remains of two scratches which may form upsilon or omicron (open at the top O4 s), or may belong with separate letters; in any case, no more scratches can be made out beside them. On the opposite fragment, an oblique scratch remains of what may be T s or S s, or, if dextroverse, also K d, M d or N d, followed by clear U sS s. (Casini & Motta 2018: 126)

As observed by Casini and Motta, -us is most likely the end of the inscription, representing the Latin ending -us of a Latin(ised) masculine personal name, or a Celtic u-stem nominative -us. The letters are probably Lepontic, though, in light of the dating and analysis, what remains could also be classified as Latin(ised).

Corinna Salomon


Casini & Motta 2018 Stefania Casini, Filippo Motta, "Iscrizioni vascolari celtiche a Bergamo", Notizie Archeologiche Bergomensi 26 (2018), 115–128.