ISBN is

978-0-7141-2246-5 / 9780714122465

Life and Letters on the Roman Frontier: Vindolanda and Its People

by

Publisher:British Museum Press

Edition:Softcover

Language:English

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About the book:

"Clodius Super to his Cerialis, greetings. I ask that you send the things which I need for the use of my boys...which you well know I cannot properly get hold of here..." So writes a Roman soldier stationed on the wild northern frontier of England around AD 100. In 1973, the first discoveries were made of the now famous wooden tablets - 300 letters and documents that had survived 2000 years - at the fort of Vindolanda. Painstakingly deciphered by Alan Bowman and David Thomas they have contributed a wealth of evidence for daily life in the Roman Empire. From the military documents we learn of the strength and activities of the units stationed at Vindolanda. The accounts testify to the lifestyle of officers and ordinary soldiers, with payments for pepper and oil, towels and tallow, boots and beer. Then there are snapshots of domestic life in letters between the officer's wives, including a birthday invitation. Most fascinating of all is the evidence for a high degree of literacy in the Roman army, when even a common soldier receives a letter from home promising him a parcel of socks. In this revised, expanded and updated edition, Alan Bowman's lively summary of this evidence is followed by the text of 50 key tablets, in Latin and in translation, bringing the reader very close to the actual people who inhabited Vindolanda in AD 100.

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