Contesto e fuori contesto: alcune osservazioni topografiche sulle iscrizioni magiche di Roma
In: Archeologia Classica: 65, 2014
Survey of the magical-religious documents (defixiones, phylakteria, acclamations of a religious
character) in the urban and suburban areas of Rome led to collection of about 130 Greek and Latin
inscriptions. They were mostly inscribed on thin sheets of metal, but also on other types of medium
This is the first corpus of ‘magical epigraphs’ in Rome, soon to be presented in a forthcoming publication. The origin of this material, found largely in the 19th century and early decades of the last century, is often poorly documented, sometimes dubious or even unknown. This is especially the case when information came solely from antiquarian collectors. With the latest findings of the second half of the last century and recent years, we are now better informed. Most of the known contexts cover large sepulchral areas located around the consular roads, but there also cases in residential areas and areas of sacred origin. The purpose of this article is to present a preview of the corpus and the complicated contextual archaeological and topographical situation of the findings, providing some preliminary data on this peculiar category of epigraphic documents.