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Reading in transliteration: ]??i : uosiu[
Reading in original script: ]U7 sI sS2 sO2 sU7 sseparator3 sI s??[

Object: TI·38 Pregassona (stela)
Position: front
Orientation: 270°
Frame: ?top and bottomtop and bottom?  (left: unknown, middle: top and bottom, right: unknown)
Direction of writing: ambiguous
Script: North Italic script (Lepontic alphabet)
Letter height: 7.5–9 cm2.953 in <br />3.543 in <br />
Number of letters: 8
Number of words: 2
Number of lines: 1
Workmanship: carved
Condition: fragmentary

Archaeological culture: Golasecca III A, La Tène B, La Tène C
Date of inscription: 5th–mid-2nd c. BC

Type: prob. funerary
Language: prob. Celtic
Meaning: 'for ... Uosios' (?)

Alternative sigla: Morandi 2004: 279

Sources: Morandi 2004: 706 f. no. 279



First published in Morandi 2004: 706 f., no. 279. Examined for LexLep on 16th October 2023.

Images in Morandi 2004: 707, fig. 33 (photo and drawing), Dell'Era 2020: 217, fig. 1 (photo and drawing).

The fragment preserves part of an inscription (length of remains 41.f cm) between frame lines (frame width 10 cm); the surface is damaged and the letters are badly legible. The letter to the right of the separator in the photo above is a slightly wiggly line which could be iota (Dell'Era 2020: 218, Crivelli via ibid.) or four-bar sigma (Morandi), the other sigma, also with four bars, being also quite flat. The letter next to it is read as rho by Crivelli (via ibid.), as omicron by Morandi, and considered illegible by Dell'Era. Between this and the breaking edge, a space of ca. 5 cm appears to be free of any traces of letters, but in the lower area a notch on the edge may indicate a bar (lambda L s?).

One of the frame lines (the lower one in the photo above, on the left side) appears to curve outward just before the breaking edge, though the damage is too heavy to be sure that this is an intentional line. Piana Agostinetti 2004: 162, interpreting it as a stylised foot, considers this the lower end and beginning of the inscription. Morandi's reading accordingly assumes dextroverse writing: ]uisou:ṣo?[ (or indeed uisou:ṣo?[), which yields a linguistically unattractive (on-stem nominative?) ending °ou (cf. uerkou, prikou, anatikou). As pointed out by Dell'Era 2020: 218, the curve could as well represent the beginning of the head, in which case this would be the inscription's end. The writing direction being ambiguous in terms of letter forms, he suggests a sinistroverse reading ]??i:uosiu[ (the end of the inscription), with )i a likely dative ending and another dative in emended uosiui. This would agree better with our expectations regarding the text formula of a Ticino gravestone (binominal formula in the dative); irregularities are constituted by the absence of the formula word pala and the formation of the assumed second name uosiu( without -al- (cf. [dubious] TI·43 kuimitrui).

If the fragment shows the frame's head, the frame can be classified as type B, if it shows the feet, as type C according to the system of De Marinis & Motta 1991: 206; hence the non-committal dating above.

Already mentioned (without readings) in Tatarinoff 1924: 125, PID Add.: 629, Lejeune 1971: 5, no. 10.

Corinna Salomon


Dell'Era 2020 Romeo Dell'Era, "uisou o uosiu[i]? Cambiando senso, il senso cambia. Nuova lettura di un'iscrizione celtica da Pregassona (Lugano)", in: Michel Aberson, Francesca Dell'Oro, Michiel de Vaan, Antoine Viredaz (eds), [vøːrtər]. Mélanges de linguistique, de philologie et d'histoire ancienne offerts à Rudolf Wachter [= Cahiers de l'ILSL 60], Lausanne: 2020, 215–220.
De Marinis & Motta 1991 Raffaele C. De Marinis, Filippo Motta, "Una nuova iscrizione lepontica su pietra da Mezzovico (Lugano)", Sibrium 21 (1990–1991), 201–225.