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Reading in transliteration: ]uikalai
Reading in original script: I sA12 sL sA12 sK5 sI sU s[

Object: TI·54 Sonvico (stela)
Position: front
Orientation: 270°
Frame: waisted headtop and bottomtop and bottom?  (left: waisted head, middle: top and bottom, right: unknown)
Direction of writing: sinistroverse
Script: North Italic script (Lepontic alphabet)
Letter height: 6–8 cm2.362 in <br />3.15 in <br />
Number of letters: 7
Number of words: 1
Number of lines: 1
Workmanship: carved
Condition: fragmentary

Archaeological culture: La Tène B, La Tène C
Date of inscription: 4th–mid-2nd c. BC

Type: funerary
Language: Celtic
Meaning: 'for ... daughter of Uikos'

Alternative sigla: none

Sources: Dell'Era 2018: 152–155



First published in Dell'Era 2018. Examined for LexLep on 16th October 2023.

Images in Dell'Era 2018: 153, fig. 1 (photo) and fig. 2 (drawing).

The fragment preserves the last word of an inscription written from the bottom toward the top between frame lines (length of the remains ca. 30 cm); the frame ends in a stylised neck and head on top (width 10 cm, 6.5 cm at the neck). The lines are about 0.5 cm broad; the letters are well legible. The breaking edge before upsilon crosses the line diagonally, so that it is hard to judge whether a letter was written before it; Dell'Era points out that the distance between the break and upsilon, with 3.5 cm, is wider than the widest distance between the other letters (2.5 cm), and gives a reading with a space before upsilon. No traces of a word separator are visible. In any case, the sequence is likely to represent a complete word, as compound names are not common on the Ticino stelae. The text can be identified a a funerary inscription containing the name of the deceased in the dative, with only the patronym left (and possibly pala, if written between individual name and patronym as in TI·27.1).

Dating according to the typology of De Marinis & Motta 1991: 206; cf. also Dell'Era 2018: 154.

Corinna Salomon


Dell'Era 2018 Romeo Dell'Era, "Una stele con iscrizione celtica individuata a Dino (Lugano, Canton Ticino)", Quaderni Ticinesi di Numismatica e Antichità Classiche 47 (2018), 151–157.
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.