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Reading in transliteration: k riop
Reading in original script: K dspace sR dI dO3 dP d
Variant reading: kspace sriol
L sO3 sI sR sspace sK s

Object: TI·15 Giubiasco (bowl)
Position: bottom, outside
Direction of writing: ambiguous
Script: North Italic script (Lepontic alphabet)
Letter height: 3–5 cm1.181 in <br />1.969 in <br />
Number of letters: 5
Number of words: 2
Number of lines: 1
Workmanship: scratched after firing
Condition: complete

Archaeological culture: La Tène D 2 [from object]
Date of inscription: 75–25 BC [from object]

Type: unknown
Language: prob. Celtic
Meaning: abbreviation (?)

Alternative sigla: Whatmough 1933 (PID): 265
Solinas 1995: 14
Motta 2000: 18
Morandi 2004: 16

Sources: Morandi 2004: 528 no. 16



First published in Herbig 1906: 191 f., no. 10 (without kappa). Examined for LexLep on 20th July 2021.

Images in Herbig 1906: 192, no. 11 (drawing), Rhŷs 1913: tav. IV (photo), Kientz 1943: 765 (drawing = Crivelli 1943: 52, fig. 123), Crivelli 1973b: tav. 8.7 (drawing), Solinas 1995: tav. LXIIc (photo), Motta 2000: 209, fig. 13 (drawing), Pernet et al. 2006: 233, fig. 6.39 = pl. sub 442.14 (drawing).

Inscribed on the bottom close to the foot (length 3.8 cm). The orientation and therefore writing direction are uncertain, which affects the reading of the last letter as pi P d (upside-down, dextroverse) or lambda L s (upright, sinistroverse). While Herbig makes no decision, Rhŷs 1913: 30, no. 10 opts for riop, as do Whatmough 1933: 80, no. 265 (comparing CO·69), Tibiletti Bruno 1978: 143, Solinas 1995: 325 f., no. 14, and De Marinis & Biaggio Simona 2000: 462, no. 531. riol is preferred by Motta 2000: 210, no. 18; Morandi 2004 gives both options (cf. also Crivelli 1943: 53, Pernet et al. 2006: 229). We prefer the upside-down reading riop with regard to the other bowl inscriptions from Giubisaco (mostly upside-down, cf. TI·8 from the same grave) and the shapes and arrangement of the scratches, which indicates upside-down application.

Upside-down application is particularly clear in the character K d, first mentioned by Whatmough and identified by Morandi 2004 as a form of chi, which is incised ca. 7 cm before rho, though its relationship to the longer sequence is unclear. The two parts may have been applied by the same hand.

riop/riol is most likely an abbreviated personal name; see the word pages.

Corinna Salomon


Crivelli 1943 Aldo Crivelli, Atlante preistorico e storico della Svizzera Italiana. Vol. 1: Dalle origini alla civiltà romana, Bellinzona: Istituto Editoriale Ticinese 1943.
Crivelli 1973b Aldo Crivelli, "Cronologia protostorica della Valpadana dal IV al I sec. a.C.", Rivista Archeologica dell'Antica Provincia e Diocesi di Como 152–155 (1970–1973), 427–474.
De Marinis & Biaggio Simona 2000 Raffaele C. De Marinis, Simonetta Biaggio Simona (eds), I leponti tra mito e realtà. Raccolta di saggi in occasione della mostra Locarno, Castello Visconteo - Casorella, 20 maggio - 3 dicembre 2000, Verbania: Armando Dadò Editore 2000.