WP 0005

Inscriptions of Roman Tripolitania 2021

0880. Building inscription

Description: Block of limestone, shaped to form the arch of a door.
Text: Inscribed above the arch within a rectangular recessed panel (w: 0.96 x h: 0.39), at the left-hand, surviving end of which is a bow-shaped, moulded feature.
Letters: Capitals, lapidary to irregular: 0.04-0.05; Line 7: MA in ligature.

Date: CE 244-246 (reign)

Findspot: Wādī Sawfajjīn: Upper Sofeggin Basin : Saniet Duib; In the gasr, on the Wadi Duib, 40 km. South East of Zintan (map ref. U 7335), the left half in situ over the entrance doorway, the right half re-used in the later walling which flanks the doorway on the left.
Original location: Unknown
Last recorded location: Findspot


Imp(erator) Caes(ar) ⟦ [M(arcus) Iulius Ph]ilippus ⟧ inuic̣tu[s Aug(ustus)]
eṭ ⟦ Ṃ(arcus) Ịul(ius) P̣[hilippus]⟧ [Ca]esar n(oster) regionem limi[tis Ten-]
theitani parṭiṭam et ẹ[ius] uiam incursib(us) barba[ro-]
rum constituto nouo centenario ⟦[---]
5[..][.]⟧Ṣ prae[cl]userunt Cominio Cassiano leg(ato) Augg(ustorum duorum)
pr(o) pr(aetore) Gaḷlican[o]- [c. 6 - 7] u(iro) e(gregio) praep(osito) limitis cura
Numisii Maximi domo [c. 4]sia trib(uni) ((leaf))



3: et ẹ[ius] uiam : et [ob]viam inscurus(ibus) Mouterde, 1950, 1910; et [finitam? . . . ] Di Vita-Évrard, 1990a
6: Gaḷlican[o : c(larissimo) u(iro) Lic(inio) An[- Di Vita-Évrard, 1990a

English translation

Translation by: J. M. Reynolds

Emperor Caesar [Marcus Julius] Philippus (names erased), unconquered [Augustus] and Marcus Julius P[hilippus] (names erased) our Caesar, by building a new fort [---] (erased) preserved the area distinguished as the frontier district of Tentheis (?Tentheitanus), and the road along it, from the attacks of barbarians; Cominius Cassianus, agent of the emperors with propraetorian powers and Gallicanus [c. 7], of equestrian status, in charge of the frontier, Numisius Maximus, whose home town is [c. 7], tribune, saw to the work.

French translation

Translation source: Di Vita-Évrard, 1990a

(Lines 1-4): L'empereur Philippe et le césar Philippe . . . ont fermé aux invasions des barbares la partie de la regio (i.e. Tripolitana) qui dépend pour sa défense du limes Tentheitanus, en emplantant ce nouveau centenarium . . .


Line 7: Mattingly (see AE 1991.1621.b) this must be a reference to cohortis I Syrorum sagittariorum; but the leaf may indicate the end of the text

Bibliography: Goodchild and Ward-Perkins, 1949, 91-2, pi. xn, whence AE, 1950.128; discussed Mouterde, 1950, 1910, 316, whence AE, 1951.149; IRT, 1952, 880, whence IRT, 2009, 880, whence EDH 021232; for BSR images see BSR Digital Collections. See further Di Vita-Évrard, 1990a , whence AE, 1991.1621; Mattingly, 1991 .


   Fig. 1. Ward-Perkins, 1948 (Ward-Perkins Archive, BSR 48.XXXIII.20)

   Fig. 2. Ward-Perkins, 1948 (Ward-Perkins Archive, BSR 48.XXXIII.22)

   Fig. 3. Ward-Perkins Archive, BSR