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Explaining the Epigraphic Habit in the Roman Empire: The Evidence of Epitaphs1

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  24 September 2012

Elizabeth A. Meyer
The University of Virginia


It is now notorious that the production of inscriptions in the Roman Empire was not constant over time, but rose over the first and second centuries A.D. and fell in the third. Ramsay MacMullen pointed this out more than five years ago, with conclusions more cautionary than explanatory: ‘history is not being written in the right way’, he said, for historians have deduced Rome's decline from evidence that–since it appears only epigraphically–has merely disappeared for its own reasons, or have sought general explanations of decline in theories political, economic, or even demographic in nature, none of which can, in turn, explain the disappearance of epigraphy itself. Why this epigraphic habit rose and fell MacMullen left open to question, although he did postulate control by a ‘sense of audience’. The purpose of this paper is to propose that this ‘sense of audience’ was not generalized or generic, but depended on a belief in the value of romanization, of which (as noted but not explained by MacMullen's article) the epigraphic habit is also a rough indicator. Epitaphs constitute the bulk of all provincial inscriptions and in form and number are (generally speaking) the consequence of a provincial imitation of characteristically Roman practices, an imitation that depended on the belief that Roman legal status and style were important, and that may indeed have ultimately depended, at least in North Africa, on the acquisition or prior possession of that status. Such status-based motivations for erecting an epitaph help to explain not only the chronological distribution of epitaphs but also the differences in the type and distribution of epitaphs in the western and eastern halves of the empire. They will be used here moreover to suggest an explanation for the epigraphic habit as a whole.

Research Article
Copyright © Elizabeth A. Meyer 1990. Exclusive Licence to Publish: The Society for the Promotion of Roman Studies

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2 R. MacMullen, ‘The Epigraphic Habit in the Roman Empire’, AJP 103 (1982), 233–46. (specific quotations at 245 and 246), building on previous work by Stanislaw, Mrozek, ‘A propos de la répartition chronologique des inscriptions latines dans le Haut-Empire’, Epigraphica 35 (1973), 113–18Google Scholar, and reinforced by Mrozek's, homonymous article in Epigraphica 50 (1988), 61–4.Google Scholar

3 In the article I have used, in one form or other and with varying emphasis, all sets of dated epitaphs known to me: those from North Africa (see nn. 43 and 47), Gaul (Lyon and Vienne, the latter only in n. 78), Thessalonica, Athens, and Roman Lydia (the latter only in n. 86).

4 Estimated at 170,000 to 190,000 of a total of c. 250,000 known inscriptions by Saller, R. and Shaw, B., ‘Tombstones and Roman Family Relations in the Principate: Civilians, Soldiers and Slaves’, JRS 74 (1984), 124–56, at 124 n. 1.Google Scholar

5 K. Ery, summarized in MacMullen, op. cit. (n. 2), 239.

6 Specifically 83.3 per cent: Shaw, B., ‘Latin Funerary Epigraphy and Family Life in the Later Roman Empire’, Historia 33 (1984), 457–97, at 463 n. 16. The statistical information which follows is based on Saller and Shaw, op. cit. (n. 4), 124–56.Google Scholar

7 Saller and Shaw, op. cit. (n. 4), 148 (column 8), 149 (column 12).

8 From the charts in Saller and Shaw, op. cit. (n. 4), 152–5; servile populations (151) averaged 74.1 per cent, civilian populations (147–150) averaged 79.3 per cent.

9 In the archaic period it was somewhat more common. Day, J. (‘Rituals in Stone: Early Greek Epigrams and Monuments’, JHS 109 (1989), 25)CrossRefGoogle Scholar refers to this as ‘the most common of all formulas’, but in fact it characterizes 27.2 per cent (25/92) of all Attic sepulchral epigrams in Hansen, P., Carmina Epigraphica Graeca (1983)Google Scholar, 30.8 per cent (49/159) of all sepulchral epigrams in the same collection, and only 12.1 per cent (14/116) of all the Attic epitaphs in IG I2 After the end of the fifth century B.C., only ten of the eighty-three known commemorators (out of 8136 studied in IG2––32) are not from the Roman period, and of these ten, three are put up by people from outside Athens (Gortyn, Phoenicia, and Paphlagonia). That Greek epitaphs rarely included a commemorator was hinted at by Fraser, P. M. [and Ronne, T.], Boeotian and West Greek Tombstones, Skrifter Utgivna av Svenska Institutet I Athens (1957), especially 92101Google Scholar, and by idem, Rhodian Funerary Monuments (1977), 46–52 on the epitaphs of Rhodes. Before him, work on the form of Greek epitaphs is limited to Loch's, E. dissertation, De titulis Graecis sepulchralibus (1890)Google Scholar and article-, ‘Zu den griechischen Grabinschriften’, Festschrift zum fünfzigjährigen Doktorjubiläum Friedländer, L. (1895), 275–95.Google Scholar

10 On the epitaphs of Asia Minor: Stemler, H., Die griechischen Grabinschriften Kleinasiens (1909)Google Scholar, who distinguishes types but rarely gives dates; some of his examples are clearly Roman. See also Loch, op. cit. (n. 9, 1890), 57. For a general assessment of the date of epitaphs from Asia Minor, I follow Kubińska, J. (Les Monuments funéraires dans les inscriptions grecques de I'Asie Mineure (1968), 11)Google Scholar: ‘La majorité de nos inscriptions [i.e. for a study of tomb-terminology] date de l'epoque impériale, du IIe et du IIIe siècle, surtout de ce dernier … Rarement nous avons des textes plus anciens’, and this judgement finds confirmation else-where, e.g. Haspels, C. H. E., The Highlands of Phrygia (1971), 163 (Phrygia and central Asia Minor, where virtually all are from the second to third centuries A.D.).Google Scholar

11 58.4 per cent: Saller and Shaw, op. cit. (n. 4), 147 (col. 1). The earliest Roman funerary inscriptions are (I believe) a set of inscribed urns and cippi from the Praeneste cemetery (ILLRP 1.895–903), dating between the third and first centuries B.C.

12 Saller and Shaw, op. cit. (n. 4), 124–56.

13 See Appendix 5 of my unpublished PhD dissertation, Literacy, Literate Practice, and the Law in the Roman Empire A.D. 100–600, for a preliminary list of such inscriptions.

14 Cicero, Tusc. Disp. 1. 31 (M. Pohlenz (Ed.), Teubner, 1965): ‘Quid procreatio liberorum, quid propagatio nominis, quid adoptationes filiorum, quid testamentorum diligentia, quid ipsa sepulcrorum monumenta elogia significant nisi nos futura etiam cogitare?’.

15 de legibus 2. 48 (Keyes, C. W. (Ed.), Loeb, 1977)Google Scholar: ‘Quaeruntur enim, qui astringantur sacris. Heredum causa iustissima est; nulla est enim persona, quae ad vicem eius, qui e vita emigrant, propius accedat. De-inde, qui morte testamentove eius tantundem capiat, quantum omnes heredes … tertio loco, si nemo sit heres, is, qui de bonis, quae eius fuerint, cum moritur, usu ceperit plurimum possidendo. Quarto, qui, si nemo sit, qui ullam rem ceperit, de creditoribus eius plurimum servet. Extrema ilia persona est, ut is, si qui ei, qui mortuus sit, pecuniam debuerit neminique earn solverit, proinde habeatur, quasi earn pecuniam ceperit’. Cicero then goes on to say that older authorities apportioned responsibility somewhat differently, that men had been bound in three different ways: as heirs, as receiving the preponderance of the property, or as receiving anything by a legacy. See also Fronto, Ep. M. Caesar 1. 6. 6 (M. P. J. Van den Hout (Ed.), 1954): the funeral cannot properly take place until the heir is known.

16 Greek observers of the Romans also noticed the peculiarities of Roman practice and attitude: see Plutarch, Mor. 550B8–9 (absurdity), Lucian, Nig. 30–1 (hypocrisy). The Roman obsession with wills and succession even worked its way into poetry, in ways particularly vivid when compared to a similar Greek treatment: see Manilius 1. 890 (compared to Thucydides's treatment of the plague) or Catullus 68. 119–24 (compared to Pindar, Ol. 10. 86–90).

17 Humphreys, S., ‘Family tombs and tomb-cult in Classical Athens: Tradition or Traditionalism?’ in The Family, Women and Death. Comparative Studies (1983), 79130, at 83–4, with further references.Google Scholar

18 D. 11. 7. 4–5; correcting popular misconceptions,11. 7. 4 and 11. 7. 14. 8 (Ulpian), all discussed by Saller and Shaw, op. cit. (n. 4), 126.

19 Monument: ‘quod memoriae servandae gratia existat’, D. 11. 7. 2. 6; also 11. 7. 42, a monument is something left as a memorial to posterity. Servius on Aen. 3. 22. 6: ‘inscriptum nomen memoriaque “monumentum’”.

20 There is no evidence from Athens to indicate that a monument was in any way thought necessary. Solon's ‘legislation’ merely restricted the sumptuousness of the the funeral; later law, attested only in Cicero (de leg. 2. 64), limited the opulence of the memorial, which implies only that some individuals were using the opportunity which a grave marker presented to display a little ostentatious wealth. As Humphreys, op. cit. (n. 17), 93 emphasizes, in a discussion of archaic tombstones:‘these monuments are not… the product of a belief that it was a sacred duty for a son to see that his father received proper honors after death’

21 Memorial as a funeral expense: 11. 7. 12. 6, 14. 1 (Ulpian). On the general trend, see Tellegen-Couperus, O. E., Testamentary Succession in the Constitutionsof Diocletian (1982), 93–4Google Scholar. The necessity of a memorial was a normal assumption. Thus Horace (Odes 2. 20) and Frontinus (quoted in Pliny, Ep. 9. 19. 6) are drawing self-conscious attention to their originality by paradox. Other expenses of the funeral: D. 11. 7. 14. 3–4 (Ulpian), 37 (Macer); cf. 11. 8. 1. 6 (the absolute legal right to spend for a tomb), 11. 7. 37 (Macer; the limits on opulence).

22 D. 5. 3. 50. 1: ‘… tamen principali vel pontificali auctoritate compelluntur ad obsequium supremae voluntatis’. Clearly all Roman deaths were not commemorated: see W. Eck, ‘Inschriften und Grabbauten in der Nekropole unter St. Peter’, in Alföldy, G. (Ed.), Vom frühen Griechentum bis zur römischen Kaiserzeit. Gedenk-und Jubiläumsvorträge am Heidelberger Seminar für alte Geschichte (1989), 5589Google Scholar, and idem, ‘Aussagefähigkeit epigraphischer Statistik und die Bestattung von Sklaven im kaiserzeitlichen Rom’, in Kreissel, P. and Losemann, V. (Eds), Alte Geschichte und Wissenschaftsgeschichte: Festschrift für Karl Christ zum 65. Geburtstag (1988), 130–9 (with thanks to I. Morris for the reference).Google Scholar

23 A full discussion of the legal enforceability of such requests, with further references, can be found in Tellegen's, J. W.The Roman Law of Succession in the Letters of Pliny the Younger (1982), 100–7Google Scholar treatment of Pliny Younger's Ep. 6. 10. It was a legally believable or even common defence made by someone who had buried contrary to the heir's wishes (i.e. had usurped the heir's prerogative, and in this case was claiming reimbursement from the estate) that he had buried him ‘out of a sense of duty’ (pietatis gratia, D. 11. 7. 14. 13 (Ulpian)), and pietas appears as a motivation on tomb-stones as well, e.g. CIL viii.12652 (Carthage), Pliny commented that ‘loyalty in friendships is so rare, the dead are forgotten so quickly that we must erect our own tombs and anticipate all the duties of the heir’, and this sentiment is occasionally repeated in inscriptions, e.g. IG 10. 2. 1. 819 (Thessalonica, second or third century A.D.); worry about the monument is perhaps what prompted testators to compose their own epitaphs ahead of time (e.g. CIL 111.4282; 5196; IK 28. 392; CIL viii.10001, 23823; CIL XIII.1948; Lucian, Demonax 44.3); plan them (e.g. Trimalchio); or build tombs themselves. Wills could also impose other sorts of obligations on heirs, most clearly, of course, in the institution of fideicommissa; but see also Lib., Or. 45. 25. 7, where the heirs were obligated to try their best to find and convict the murderer(s) of the testator.

24 Sometimes these discharges of obligations are very specific: money or silver amounts, e.g. CIL 11.1036, 1424, 1425, 1663, 2150, 3265, 3424; v.3904; VIII.2354, 5299, 7001, 8840, 18890, 19980; tomb itself, CIL 11.1637; iii.3558, 5780; v.6110, 6955; VIII.2764, 3006, 3016, 3079, 3334, 3654 (ex praescripto), 4192, 4319 (time-limits), 4582, 8840, 9109 (of opus quadratum), 10001 (had to be a marble inscription), 18572 (with a statue), 19929, 20197; ix.4269; AE 1972.793, AE 1984.746 (inscription); or D. 35. 1. 27, where the testator specified that his tomb was to be an exact copy, but unfortunately misidentified the tomb to be copied.

25 These epitaphs can, therefore, appear on the inside of mausolea, where only a limited circle would see them, as well as on the outside: see W. Eck's observations in ‘Römische Grabinschriften. Aussageabsicht und Aussagefähigkeit im funerären Kontext’, in von Hesberg, H. and Zanker, P. (Eds), Römische Gräberstrassen. Selbstdarstellung–Status–Standard (1987), 6181.Google Scholar

26 Saller and Shaw, op. cit. (n. 4) at 124, 125, 126–7; possibly misleading statements: e.g. men and women of the lower classes ‘attached enough importance to the family to perpetuate its memory on stone’ (135); ‘our tombstone samples show important uniformities related to family type’ (137); ‘[t]o the extent that serving soldiers were commemorated less often by family, heirs and friends appear more often in their epitaphs’ (140).

27 CIL XII.3564 (‘nec iussus testamento nec voce rogatus’), 5273 (‘nec iussa testamento neque voce rogata sed pia …); IG 10. 2. 1. 433 (μνείας χάριν, οὐχ ὅτι σαι κεκληρονὁμηκα, ἀλλὰ πρὸς θεὸν ἐργαζομένη second century A.D., probably Christian). That patterns and practices of inheritance create or influence ritual and commemoration (rather than the reverse) is also observed in Goody's, J.Death, Property, and the Ancestors (1962).Google Scholar

28 Tacitus, Germ. 20. 5, 32; compare the Pactus Legis Solicae 44 and 59, MGH Leges 1. 4. 1 (K. A. Eckhardt, Ed. 1962). Very little is known about pre-Roman patterns of legal succession beyond this, despite Rostovtzeff's, M. belief (The Social and Economic History of the Roman Empire (2nd edn., 1957), 183) that every province had its own local system of law.Google Scholar

29 A point still being made in the fifth century A.D.: see Priscus 504–10 (Blockley).

30 See (e.g.) Thomas, J., Textbook of Roman Law (1976), 405–7Google Scholar.

31 Grants of ius Latii that make individuals into Latins may be largely mythical, according to Millar, F., The Emperor in the Roman World (1977), 485–6 and 630–5Google Scholar. After the first century A.D. there are only two certain references to Latin rights, one in a refined form called Latium maius (CIL viii. 22737 [= ILS 6780]; see Gaius 1. 96) and generally dated to the reign of Hadrian (see A. Steinwenter, ‘Ius Latii’, RE vol. 10 (1919), 1260–78, at 1269–70); the other is CIL viii.14763 ( = ILS 6781, Thisiduo). In general, see Sherwin-White, A. N., The Roman Citizenship (2nd edn., 1973), 360–7.Google Scholar

32 See in particular the discussion by A. Sherwin-White, ‘The Roman Citizenship: A Survey of its Development into a World Franchise’, ANRW 1.2 (1972), 23–58, at 44: with the promotion to colony-status, ‘citizens of all classes gained the Roman citizenship, whether formerly of Latin or of peregrine status’. There were other benefits as well: the ius Italicum, which conveyed a tax-break, seems to have been granted only to provincial cities which had achieved colonia-status (see Salmon, E. T., Roman Colonization under the Republic (1969), 156–7)Google Scholar, a development first common in the reign of Septimius Severus. A few cities received this favour from Augustus (idem), but very few thereafter until the reign of Septimius Severus (D. 50. 15. 1 has a list).

33 See Knapp, R. C., ‘The Origins of Provincial Prosopography in the West’, Ancient Society 9 (1978), 187222, at 192–3, with the references cited there (note in particular Suet., Claudius 25. 3, promising execution for those usurping the citizen's rights).Google Scholar

34 See Sherwin-White, op. cit. (n. 31), e.g. 257, 258, 418. It was, of course, not unknown for cities to petition for status or rights before, as the Campanians had petitioned for conubium (and specifically for the right of their children to inherit from their fathers) in 188 B.C. (Livy 38. 36. 5–6). The difference is one of degree.

35 Aurelius Victor (Dufraigne, P. (Ed.), Budé, 1975), Liber de Caes. 16. 12: ‘data cunctis promiscue civitas Romana’.Google Scholar

36 Sherwin-White, op. cit. (n. 31), 267.

37 Cic, Pro Arch. 11 (N. Watts (Ed.), Loeb, 1935): ‘… ita se turn gessisse pro cive, iis temporibus, quem tu criminaris ne ipsius quidem iudicio in civium Romanorum iure esse versatum, et testamentum saepe fecit nostris legibus et adiit hereditates civium Romanorum et in beneficiis ad aerarium delatus est a L. Lucullo pro consule’.

38 Pliny, Ep. 8. 16 (B. Radice (Ed.), Loeb, 1969): ‘quod permitto servis quoque quasi testamenta facere eaque … dividunt donant reliquunt, dumtaxat intra domum, nam servis res publica quaedam et quasi civitas domus est’.

39 Pliny, Pan. 37. 4–5 (B. Radice (Ed.), Loeb, 1969): ‘Ita maximum beneficium vertebatur in gravissimam iniuriam, civitasque Romana instar erat odii et discordiae et orbitatis, cum carissima pignora salva ipsorum pietate distraheret. Inveniebantur tamen, quibus tantus amor nominis nostri, ut Romanam civitatem non vicesimae modo verum etiam adfinitatum damno bene compensari putarent; sed his maxime debebat gratuita contingere, a quibus tam magno aestimabatur’. Note that here again impediments to legal succession (like a tax) are depicted as childlessness, despite blood relations and ties of affection. Crook, J., Law and Life at Rome (1967), 255 considers the right of inheritance ‘a major incentive’.Google Scholar

40 Dio 78. 9. 5 (Cary, E. (Ed.), Loeb, 1914): οὗ ἕνεκα καί Ῥωμαίους πάντας τοὺο ἐν τῇ αὐτοΰ, λόγῳ μὲν τιμῶν ἕργῳδὲ δπως πλείω αὐτῷ καί ἐκ τοῦ τοιοέτου προςίῃ διὰ τὸ τοὺς ξένους τὰ πολλὰ αὐτῶν μὴ συντελεῖν ἀπέδειξεν.Google Scholar

41 Julia Velva: Collingwood, R. G. and Wright, R. P. (Eds), The Roman Inscriptions of Britain (1965), no. 688Google Scholar; see also 146 and 201 (among the many examples of curious cognomina that I could have chosen).

42 1048 freedmen are mentioned in 475/1140 of the inscriptions that mention heres, test amenta, codicilli, voluntas, and intestatus: 41.7 per cent of these inscriptions have 2.2 freedmen on them. (1140 includes 49 inscriptions republished within the body of CIL vi.) I estimate that freedmen appear in 22.24 Percent of the inscriptions from Rome; Kajanto, I. (Onomastic Studies in the Early Christian Inscriptions of Rome and Carthage, Acta Instituti Romani Finlandiae, vol. 11:1 (1963), 6)Google Scholar estimates 26 per cent, Huttunen, P. (The Social Strata in the Imperial City of Rome Acta Universitatis Ouluensis ser. B3, Hist. 1 (1974), 186) estimates 24 per cent. No matter which figure is used, the difference between one of the three (22.24, 24, or 26 per cent) and 41.7 per cent is significant. Freedmen were more than one-and-a-half times as likely to appear in inscriptions mentioning wills and heirs as they were in the body of surviving inscriptions.Google Scholar

43 MacMullen, op. cit. (n. 2), 233–46, fig. iv (p. 242), based on Lassère, J.-M., ‘Recherches sur la chronologie des épitaphes paiennes de l'Africa’, Antiquités africaines 7 (1973) 7152, especially the charts at 133–51CrossRefGoogle Scholar. The following adjustments have been made: (1) Lassère included inscriptions from Thala and Djebel Dhelloud, both of which have unclear but apparently heavily dependent relationships with more major towns (Am-maedara and Carthage). Since their municipal status is unclear, they have been excluded. It is only an exclusion of 183 inscriptions. (2) The epigraphic profile of the town of Maktar, done subsequent to Lassère's study but, according to its author, M'Charek, A., in Aspects de I'évolution démographique et sociale à Mactaris aux IIe et IIIe siècles ap. J.-C. (1982), with rigorous faithfulness to Lassère's principles of dating, has been included instead. (3) A number of inscriptions listed by Lassère in his appendix had to be excluded, either because they could not be found or because, upon being found, they were inappropriate: CIL viii.25346a, 28277, BCTH 1922 ccxxvii, 1918–9 p. 128, 1932 p. 118 (all not found); BCTH 1886, p. 217, 1891 p. 203, ILAfr. 1109 (all unavailable to me); CIL viii.1854, 5306, 7105, 19512, 25649, 25659, BCTH 1910 cxxxiv (all not funerary); ILAfr. 155 (irrelevant); CIL VIII.14603, 14684, 20506, BCTH 1917 ccxxvn (not from the seven major towns). (4) Lassère's appendix does not make clear that the inscriptions he lists for Theveste and Cirta from ILA 1 and 2 are actually republications of inscriptions listed for the same towns from CIL VIII earlier in the Appendix. There is similar overlap between publications in periodicals and later collections or AE. Every effort has been made to eliminate such duplication, which lowers by approximately 1500 the total number of inscriptions studied, to 3611. (5) When inscriptions are dated by century or half-century, they have been divided and averaged into twenty-five-year periods, following the procedure adopted by MacMullen, op. cit. (n. 2), 241.Google Scholar

44 For Latinity as an index of romanization, see (e.g.) R. MacMullen, ‘Notes on Romanization’, BASP 21 (1984), 161–77, a t 170 n. 24.

45 Cannon, A., ‘The Historical Dimension in Mortuary Expressions of Status and Sentiment’, Current Anthropology 30. 4 (1989), 437CrossRefGoogle Scholar, associating himself with the views of Kroeber, A. L., ‘Disposal of the Dead’, American Anthropologist 29 (1927), 308–15. See also N. Purcell, ‘Tomb and Suburb’, in von Hesberg and Zanker, op. cit. (n. 25), 25–41, at 33: ‘This degree of homogeneity [in Roman funerary architecture] throughout the Empire would not have been possible had the associations of funerary style not been with status, honour, display, and benefaction’.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

46 For the under-representation of children, see Saller and Shaw, op. cit. (n. 4), 130 n. 27–despite the fact that Romans were more likely to commemorate children than Greeks (see MacMullen, op. cit. (n. 2), 239, citing K. Ery). One could also, of course, make status claims through a child's epitaph–if he or she had a citizen name, for example, or special status, titles, literary achievements, etc.

47 Of the other five (all not individually graphed here), three–Cirta, Carthage, and Ammaedara–will be discussed in passing in the text; Lambaesis is treated in n. 50; and Thugga in Appendix 1.

48 Civitas: ILA 1.3068 (CIL viii.1888), ILA 1.3051 (CIL VIII. 1862; Diocletianic).

49 Theveste's elevation to colonia is attested only epigraphically, and for the first time in the time of Commodus (ILA 1.3032). The city was assigned to the Papiria tribe, which required that the granting emperor be either Nerva, Trajan, or Marcus Aurelius. Of these, Marcus Aurelius seems the reasonable choice, since consequently there would not be too great a gap between the change in status and its appearance on surviving inscriptions; but S. Gsell in ILA 1 (pp. 286–7) challenged this, citing CIL viii. 18084, a Trajanic legionary-list from Lambaesis with [–] Aemilius Secundus from Theveste at line 52. This argu-ment is refuted by Gascou, J., La Politique municipale de I'Empire romain en Afrique proconsulate de Trajan à Séptime-Sévère (1972), 92Google Scholar; Gascou none the less assigns a Trajanic date to colony status because he believes that the legion was moved to Lambaesis from Theveste by Trajan, and that Trajan would have made Theveste a colony after this as Vespasian had made Ammaedara a colony after the departure of the legion in A.D. 75 (pp. 91–2). Since, however, the legion was in Lambaesis by A.D. 81 (see Leschi, L., Libyca 1 (1953), 189205), this argument too fails to convince. I therefore revert to the later dating.Google Scholar

50 The same may be true in Lambaesis as well, which was also the home of the third legion, in this case between A.D. 81 and A.D. 238, when the legion was disbanded for fifteen or twenty years. During this time, the small settlement, originally canabae, was growing toward full status: first recognition as a civitas with ius Latii (after petition, at the same time as the neighbouring town of Gemellae) between A.D. 158 and 161 (CIL viii.18218 (ILS 6848, Pius)), then reference to it as a municipium under Caracalla (CIL viii. 18247, and AE 1920.12 gives the date of 210); finally, grant of colonial –status between 238 and 253 (Cyprian, Ep. 59. 10). Civilian, citizen epitaphs in Lassere's sample (only thirty-two) are statistically insignificant, but in their general distribution do not preclude a possible correlation with the second-century grants of status. Mócsy, A. (Gesellschaft und Romanisation in der römischen Provinz Moesia Superior (1970), 201–2) has postulated a similar relationship between the beginnings of inscription-production and grants of civic status for Moesia Superior.Google Scholar

51 Conventus: M'Charek, op. cit. (n. 43), 12. Colonia: Colonia Aelia Aurelia Augusta Mactaris, CIL VIII.11801 (A.D. 198, =ILS 458), 11804 (A.D. 306–8, = ILS 6787), with duumviri (CIL viii.631). Pflaum, H.-G., ‘Les flamines de l'Afrique romaine’ (review of M. S. Bassignano), Athenaeum 54 (1976), 152–63, at 158 argues, on the basis of the order of the imperial names (Aelia Aurelia for Aurelia Aelia) that Maktar did not become a colony until A.D. 191–2, but can cite only one significant parallel example, and that from a later date. Nomenclature: only 8 of 248 names in that period lack a gentilicium, while 75/128 men carry three names; M'Charek, op. cit. (n. 43), 181–2 emphasizes that the change in status was a ‘promotion massive des autochthones’ which created a resurgence of Punic-Numidian names (as nomina or cognomina) in the funerary epigraphy (p. 188).Google Scholar

52 Institutions: two triumvirs (CIL viii.630 = 11827 (A.D. 162) and 23599 (A.D. 158)) replaced sufetes; quin-quennales and a flamen perpetuus (CIL VIII.11827). Citizenship: see M'Charek, op. cit. (n. 43), 146–8. For office-holders, see below n. 68.

53 Cirta, 87/1091, 7.9 per cent; Thugga, 11/501, 2.2 per cent; Carthage, 228/953, 23.9 per cent. Cirta's number, 7.9 per cent, is different from that arrived at by Saller and Shaw, op. cit. (n. 4), 130 n. 24 (13 per cent), since (a) Lassère's sample is different from their sample (though not by very much), and (b) I count only named commemorators, or some inscriptions with clear indication of who the commemorator was. It should be noted that the deceased-commemorator inscriptions were more common among the important Romans in town–soldiers (ILA 2.779 and 1149) imperial slaves and freedmen (784–787, 790 and 1212; 803 (public slave)), equites (799), procurators (815), a provider of theatre-costumes (822), and a self-styled philosophus (823); 13/42 (30.9 per cent) of those epitaphs which reveal profession or status are of the deceased-commemorator type, while only 74/1049 (7 per cent) of the inscriptions for the rest of the population are of this type. A very high percentage of those who put up tombstones were citizens (1029/1091, 94.3 per cent, using Lassère's dated sample; a count of all the inscriptions (MacKendrick, P., The North African Stones Speak (1980), 201) yields 1162/1309). In Thugga, 77.3 per cent (387/501) were citizens. Carthage: the cemetery from which Lassère took most of his inscriptions (729/953–953 of Lassère's original 1092 because I have excluded 139 from Dhebel Dhelloud) was apparently reserved for a special group: 388 are the free, freed, or slave underlings of the proconsul of Africa. These three groups used the deceased-commemorator pattern the most in their epitaphs (slaves 37.9 per cent; freed 37.5 per cent; probable freed 34.5 per cent), but the figures are not impressive, and their preference for simpler forms can most likely be attributed to a Punic-African origin (see below nn. 55–6).Google Scholar

54 The other 7/44: two deceased-commemorator (1.3, a veteran for his daughter; 1.30 for an imperial freedman– numbering in M'Charek, op. cit. (n. 43)), and five with either nothing beyond the name, or incomplete.

55 Saller and Shaw, op. cit. (n. 4), 128 briefly discussed the ‘non-military’ regions of Africa (Thugga, Sicca Veneria, Thubursicu Numidarum, Cirta, and Castellum Celtianum) and pointed out the difference in tombstone type; Shaw, op. cit. (n. 6), 463 later suggested that poverty was the reason. But Cirta was (by some estimates) the second-richest town in North Africa, and it was probably just this fact which allowed so many of her citizens to put up tombstones at all. And Cirta's citizens lived near a venerable Punic sanctuary and a cemetery which together have produced, after Carthage, the largest number (700) of Punic inscriptions in North Africa (Berthier, A., La Numidie. Rome et le Maghreb (1981), 161, 278Google Scholar (votive) from the sanctuary of El-Hofra (Berthier, A. and Charlier, R., Le Sanctuaire punique d'El Hofra à Constantine (1955), 9–178))Google Scholar, and most of Cirta's epitaphs offer, as at Maktar, only endless simple permutations of the formula ‘D.M.S. … [vixit annis …] h.s.e.’ Moreover, it is noteworthy that Thugga (Ennabli, A. in Stillwell, R., MacDonald, W. L., and McAllister, M. H., The Princeton Encyclopedia of Classical Sites (1976), 917–19Google Scholar, and Golfetto, A., Dougga (1961), 18)Google Scholar, Sicca Veneria (Dessau, H., ‘Sicca Veneria’, RE2 (1923), vol.4, 2187–8)Google Scholar, and Thubursicu Numidarum (MacKendrick, op. cit. (n. 53), 216–17 (173 stelae)) were all located near Punic sanctuaries and have produced quantities of Punic (and Libyan) funerary inscriptions. The Libyan inscriptions, always less numerous, are published in Chabot, J. B., Recueil des Inscriptions libyques (1940), 148 (Thugga). Castellum Celtianum was a pre-Roman settlement of a tribe called the Celtiani and probably also falls into the pattern just described, especially since it was so near to Cirta. Carthage: Lassère's cemetery–actually three cemeteries when first discovered in 1880, covering in succession the period from Caesar to Caracalla, but the inscriptions have become so intermingled since that time that Lassère could not determine date on the basis of provenance–lay directly on top of a Punic cemetery, which has produced stelae (most of them without inscriptions) of its own (Lassère, op. cit. (n. 43), 26; see p. 30 for a discussion of borrowing between Punic and early Roman). It does not appear to be a Punic ceme-tery of great antiquity, perhaps begun only after 146 B.C.Google Scholar

56 The script of the Libyan language is mysterious, but probably the funerary inscriptions contained only ‘des noms propres et des formules banales’ (Picard, G. C., Civitas Maktaritana, Karthago 8 (1957), 26)Google Scholar. There were twelve Libyan inscriptions in 1957, one Libyan-Punic, nearly one hundred and thirty Punic, and eighty-five neo-Punic. The last become ‘decadent’ in the second century A.D., and only the stereotyped formulae of votive and funerary steles were still known (Picard, ibid., 67–8), although at least two (BCTH (1901) 325 #3, 326 #4) mention that the deceased was a citizen of Maktar. The dating of the Libyan inscriptions is still in question (Picard, ibid., 67 dates some between the second century B.C. and the second century A.D.), and they are quite possibly derived from, or imitative of, Punic inscriptions: see Benabou, M., La Résistance africaine à la romanisation (1976), 474–83Google Scholar.

57 This survival of ‘Numidie traditions’ also explains ‘certain peculiarities of the religious, social, and political institutions of the city’: Picard, op. cit. (n. 56), 26, 33–41.

58 M'Charek, op. cit. (n. 43), 158–9 concludes that the number of actual Italian immigrants in. the first century was ‘faible’ (6/42, or 10/42 if freedmen are counted), and that approximately three-quarters of the citizens seem to have been descendants of Africanized Italian immigrants, especially from Cirta, where the tombstones were also predominantly of the ‘name … [vixit …] h.s.e.’ type. Majority: 104/242 h.s.e., 61/242 … vixit annis, 25/242 deceased-commemorator, and 52/242 other (no formula; deceased's name in dative without commemorator; incomplete). 242 + 18 (undatable) = (total) 260 Latin inscriptions from Maktar. These simple epigraphic types continue through the third century.

59 M'Charek, op. cit. (n. 43), 188 and passim.

60 Colonia Flavia Augusta Emerita Ammaedara: CIL VIII.302 and 308 (to Maximianus).

61 Colonia Julia Juvenalis Honoris et Virtutis Cirta: called under its captor P. Sittius Cirta Sittianorum colonia (Mela 1. 30); thereafter a Roman colony with the longer name, CIL vm.7041 ( = ILA 2.626), 7071, and reinforced by Augustus in 26 B.C. (AE 1955.202).

62 The neighbouring or surrounding Punic community was first named a civitas libera, then also given Roman citizenship by Augustus in 28 B.C.(Tertullian, de pallia 1.2). For all this see, e.g., Van Nerom, C.‘Colonia Julia Concordia Carthago’, Hommage à Marcel Renard, Collection Latomus 102 (1969), 2,76776, with further references. In 44/38 B.C. it was named either Colonia Julia Concordia Carthago or Colonia Concordia Julia Carthago.Google Scholar

63 Problems of sampling or preservation are also apparent here. Ammaedara's epigraphic curve has a complete gap between A.D. 125 and 175, probably as a consequence of scattered excavation and irregular reporting of inscriptions: see A. Ennabli in Stillwell et al., op. cit. (n. 55), 50. Cirta's curve has also, like Ammaedara's, been the victim of either irregular publication or the razing of one of the cemeteries outside the walls (the Kudiat cemetery has been entirely levelled–see P.-A. Février in Stillwell et al., ibid., 225)–so that here too there is a gap between 125 and 175. Carthage: the latest of the three cemeteries was not used after the first quarter of the third century and any pagan cemetery subsequently in use has not yet been found; thus the graph stops abruptly. Thugga also has a complete gap between A.D. 150 and 175; and for further problems in the sampling here, see Appendix 1.

64 For Thugga, the anomaly, see Appendix 1.

65 According to the graphs, the population would have doubled almost five times in twenty-five years –an impossible statistic, even if (as asserted by Tertullian, de anima 30) population had been increasing for a long time. Moreover, although the plague brought back from the East by Lucius Verus in 166 undoubtedly had severe demographic consequences, there is no indication that it ever reached North Africa; ancient references, if they can be trusted, mention Asia Minor, the Danube and Rhine regions, and the city of Rome (SHA, Marcus Aurelius 13. 3–6, 17. 2, 21. 6–7, 28. 4; Aelius Aristides, Oral. 33. 6, 48. 38–9, 50. 9, 51. 25). SHA, Verus 8. 1–4 specifically says that plague spread in all the provinces through which Verus returned, while SHA, Aurelius 17. 2 notes provisions made for mass burials, which implies that in fact there was no time for the exercise of normal habits of commemoration anyway. Tertullian's reference to population also implies that North Africa had not been ravaged by plague. See J. F. Gilliam, “The Plague under Marcus Aurelius’, AJP 82 (1961), 225–51, esp. 241 on Egypt.

66 In the second century, Theveste was a centre for the administration of the imperial properties: CIL vi.790, CIL vin.7039, 7053, CIL xiv.176; ILA 1.285, 3992. Imperial freedmen attached to imperial bureaux: CIL vm.2757 (third century); ILA 1.2997, 3009, 3024, 3063, 3134, 3137, 3139, 3549, 3562; other imperial freed: ILA 1.3013, 3131–3, 3135–6, 3138, 3140; ILA 1 p. 287 refers to them as ‘numerous’. Also noted by Sailer fcnd Shaw, op. cit. (n. 4), 130. These freedmen as a group preferred the deceased-commemorator type of memorial (7/9); ILA 1.3131–3140. At least one was a public benefactor (ILA 1.2997: Coronatus, Aug.n. adiut. tabul., gave parts of a temple–antae, arcum a fundamentis–to Caelestis, plus refurbishments (aedem ornavit et ampliavii).

67 Temple of Asclepius and Salus, begun by the third legion (CIL vIII.2579a–c), continued by a legate of M. Aurelius and L. Verus (2579d-e), with a long list of soldiers who dedicated gold statues (2586), and many other dedications: 2587–89, 2591, 2593, 2596, 2598. Temple of Jupiter and the Augusti, finished by a leg. Auggg., patronus municipii (with more military dedications: 2615–16, 2618 (another list), 2619, 2621–2626 (another list), 2627–2628, 2630). Temple of Neptune, built by the third legion (2652), dedicated by a leg. Aug. (2653). Nymphaeum and Septizodium, built by the third legion (2657–8). Temple of Silvanus restored (2671); arch to Commodus (2698); baths rebuilt (2706); restoration of a portico by a soldier (2760); the Via Septimania (2705). Elsewhere, as in Britain, soldiers can dominate the epigraphic record and not inspire much local imitation: see Mann, J. C., ‘Epigraphic Consciousness’, JRS 75 (1985), 204–6.Google Scholar

68 Positions: CIL vin.11811 (M. Valerius [-.]f. Quirina Quadratus, xvir stlitibus iudicandis and a trib. laticlavius of the legion), and in the dedications: CIL vm.619 (praef. alae), 621 (A. Caecilius Faustinus, procurator; an arch for Trajan, A.D. 116), 622 (a prefect; to Antoninus Pius), 11796 (Sextus Julius Sex.f. Victor, proc. Aug.), 11813 (C. Sextius C.f. Pap. Martialis, proc. Aug.; a testamentary gift); 11804–807, 23400, and 23401 are all post A.D. 250. Administration: CIL vm.23404 (IIII publica Africae, first century A.D.), and see M’Charek, op. cit. (n. 43), 12 on the pagus. Liber Pater:CIL vIII.23399

69 The nomenclature of the inscriptions from the first and early second centuries supports this: of forty nonmilitary inscriptions with fifty-nine names, forty names are ‘Roman’ (women with two names, men with three–including nine with Roman-style patronymic), fifteen are men with only two names, two are slaves (CIL vIII.23263–4), and only one seems to be a ‘naturalized’ native (MEFR 32 (1912), p. 147, 47).

70 Rome: Sailer and Shaw, op. cit. (n. 4), 147(001. 1).

71 Financial offices: ILA 2.665, 668, 783, 784, 792, and p. 40. Dedications:ILA 2.468–82, 484–549 (496 restores a temple of Mercury, A.D. 164; 540 is a temple; 541 is a Mithraic crypt with appurtenances, A.D.355–365), 550–603 (imperial dedications), 569,596–598, 600, 604–15 (604 is an aqueduct; 615, baths), 620, 624 (porticos and tetrapylon, A.D. 362), 671 (portico and zothicum), 674–8 (triumphal arch), 683 (arch), 704, 716 (tetrastylum and tholus), 729. Public largesse: ILA 2.478–9, 499, 501, 529, 559 (heirs), 569, 675–78, 688, 696–7, 727–8.

72 See A. Audollent, Carthage romaine. 146 avant Jesus Christ–698 apr`es Jésus Christ (1901), 325–49.

73 Cannon, op. cit. (n. 45), 437.

74 The impression given by the graph, that the curve starts to drop after A.D. 200 rather than after A.D. 212, is almost certainly a reflection of the inexactitude of the way the graph must be made. Since the number of inscriptions is averaged over a twenty-five-year span, a drop after 212 appears to begin in 200, whereas a very dramatic drop after 212 (if we could date these things precisely) would push the number of inscriptions 200–12 up to the level achieved in 175–200.

75 Dating: A. Audin and Y. Burnand, ‘Chronologie des epitaphes romaines de Lyon’, REA 61 (1959), 320–52. Founded as a colony first in 43 B.C. (Cassius Dio, 46. 50; Colonia Copia …: CIL xIII. 1752–4, 1846, 1910, 2602), the name providing the Claudian date (for which see, more specifically, Grimal, P. and Woloch, M., Roman Cities (1983), 175).Google Scholar

76 Roman population: CIL xIII.1813, 1819, 1820, 1914, 1917, 1941, 1947, 1951, 2013 [a curator], 2059, 2233, 2309, AE 1952.76. New local citizens: e.g. CIL xm.2278; unexceptional citizens: e.g. CIL xIII.2222; ‘citizens’ of other towns: e.g. CIL XIII. 1984. Usually (in twelve of thirteen later cases) these ‘citizens’ of other towns also carry Roman citizen-names.

77 An event recorded on a bronze tablet found at Lyon (CIL xIII. 1668), and also recorded in Tac, Ann. 11. 23–4.

78 A nearby town, the colony of Vienne, also seems to follow the same epigraphic pattern, and here Vienne was known to be Lyon's arch-rival (Tac, Hist. i. 65). The dating, however, is very inexact (all inscriptions divided into only three time periods), and a graph therefore not particularly convincing–see Y. Burnand, ‘Chronologie des épitaphes romains de Vienne (Isère)’, REA 63, 3–4 (1961), 291–313.

79 Citizen-percentages: A.D. 115–140, 39/41 (95.1 per cent); A.D. 140–240, 147/150 (98 per cent), with an additional twenty-one epitaphs that were too fragmentary for an assessment of name; A.D. 240–310, 89/91 (97.8 per cent), with an additional seven epitaphs that were fragmentary.

80 sub ascia: see Hatt, J. J., La Tombe gallo-romaine (1951), 85107.Google Scholar

81 See my unpublished PhD dissertation, Literacy, Literate Practice, and the Law in the Roman Empire A.D. 100–600 (Yale, 1988), 179–94.Google Scholar

82 The charts were constructed from the following sets of information. Thessalonica: IG 10. 2. 1. 284–931 (a total of 651 (counting inclusively, plus four intercalated numbers) of 935 total); both funerary and non-funerary are graphed; they are all dated by the editor, eleven of them incorrectly according to Vickers, M. (review of IG 10. 2. 1 in JHS 93 (1973), 242–3) and Speidel, M. (review of IG 10. 2. 1 in AJA 77 (1973), 446–7); these eleven are non-funerary anyway. Athens: IG 2–32 5228–13247, a total of 8135 (there are internumerary additions, and additions at the end); they are all dated by the editor.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

83 Colony: see Head, B., Historia Nummorum. A Manual of Greek Numismatics (2nd edn., 1911), 245. Free city: Thessalonica liberae condicionis (Pliny the Elder, NH 4. 36)Google Scholar, and on coins (Head, ibid., 245), a title certainly acquired by the time of Antony.

84 IG 10. 2. 301–2, 327, 908–9, 912.

85 Balas: IG 10. 2. 1. 371 and 372 (second century); Artemin: 386 (second or third century). There are others, e.g. IG 10. 2. 1. 503, 665, and 830.

86 In another possible parallel, epitaphs from eleven towns in the Upper Hermus valley in Roman Lydia (TAM 5. 1, ‘public’ and funerary graphed together by R. MacMullen, ‘Frequency of Inscriptions in Roman Lydia’, ZPE 65 (1986), 237–8; 281/405 of the funerary can be dated by Actian or Sullan era at the top of the stone), uncertain civic legal status and pre-existing traditions of funerary epigraphy preclude any certainty about how an interest in status and style may have influenced epitaph production. A respectable number (117) of recognizable Roman names (Gaius, Lucius, Faustina, Julia, Antonina, etc.) indicates the growing presence of people with Roman status or origin in the area, but the civic status of Saittae and Julia Gordus (from which 141/281 of the inscriptions derive), is not known. Moreover, epigraphic convention in the area encouraged the use of names with neither a Greek patronymic nor a Roman nomen and cognomen and a type of funerary inscription in which various members of the family (including brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, and foster children) honoured (ἐτείµησεν) the deceased, often in great number (TAM 5. 1. 56, 681 (10), 548, 680, 812 (11), 707 (12), 768, 795 (14), 711, 733 (15), 705, 764 (16), 625 (25))–clearly not a deceased-commemorator pattern of the Roman type, since the Roman type rarely includes more than two commemorators (for a brief note on the Lydian style, see Robert, L., ‘Inscriptions grecques de Lydie’, Hellenica 6 (1948), 92)Google Scholar. An inclination to view the relationship between specifically Roman status and the form of epitaphs rather more flexibly than in North Africa could also explain the high percentage of deceased-commemorator inscriptions in Noricum (see Sailer and Shaw, op. cit. (n. 4), 149 col. 12) combined with an apparently low number of Roman citizens (Mócsy, A., ‘Die Unkenntnis des Lebensalters im ömischen Reich’, Ada Antiqua 14 (1966), 387421, at 409–10). Since these Norican epitaphs are not dated, a final interpretation of these must wait.Google Scholar

87 The sample may be flawed: many Athenian epitaphs in IG 2–32 seem to be taken from the Kerameikos cemetery, which expanded out to the north-west over time, but the furthest north-west section (more likely to have Roman tombstones?) has not been as extensively excavated as the rest. A comparison of this graph with a graph of 339 more recently and randomly discovered Athenian epitaphs collected by Osborne, M. J. in ‘Attic Epitaphs–a Supplement’, Ancient Society 9 (1988), 560 does, however, show basically the same configuration–i.e. rising and falling at the same times as in my graph–although the degree to which the curve drops and varies after 300 B.C. is not quite as pronounced. This suggests that small adjustments may be in order, but that the distribution itself should be trusted.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

88 This is a small point for which a long list is superfluous; the Romans as metics are IG 2–32 10143–58, 10160–9 (with some intercalated numbers). Cf. D. Geagan, ‘Roman Athens: Some Aspects of Life and Culture’, ANRW II.71 (1979), 388–430, at 389: ‘… the proportion of Roman citizens to non-Romans in public documents indicates that Athenian citizenship alone carried the right to prestige and office. This was the case even down into the third century according to the proportions of names in an Eleusinian catalogue’; also E. Kapetonopoulos, ‘The Romanization of the Greek East. The Evidence of Athens’, BASP 2 (1965), 47–55, at 50: ‘the Romans who were settling in Attica were becoming members of the community rather than remaining parts of a separate group’ (late Republic), and 52, the ‘Roman’ names were at most 10 per cent of the total ever, so that ‘only a small percentage of the population of Attica was touched by any form of Romanization, if acquiring the civitas is to be taken as Romanization’

89 Which, despite its free status, was also the seat of the Roman governor of Macedonia: see Arnold, W. T., Roman Provincial Administration (2nd edn., 1906), 237. Officials, etc.: see the list of titles in IG 10. 2. 1 pp. 308–9.Google Scholar

90 Day, J., An Economic History of Athens under Roman Domination (1942), 177, 182, 196, 209, 249, 251–2Google Scholar. This assessment of economic doldrums has held up: see Geagan, op. cit. (n. 88), 385–6.

91 I believe that the distribution of classical Athenian funerary inscriptions is linked to a valuation of Athenian citizenship combined with a new readiness to announce that fact on an epitaph; I hope to publish a study of this elsewhere.

92 Again, the numbers are from Lassère's dated sample only, but this is not a false impression created by strange sampling: the index to CIL vIII lists only 430 Aurelii for all of North Africa.

93 In other ways, the Athenian reaction to the citizenship decree was more obvious. Geagan, op. cit. (n. 88), 408–9: ‘For Athens as for most other cities of the Empire [!] Caracalla's universal grant of Roman citizenship was an event of great impact. For the first few years following it, Aurelius was carefully prefixed to each name in the ephebic and prytany documents. As the novelty wore off nomina were prefixed only to the names of those whose citizenship antedated the Constitutio Antoniniana or among the epheboi of those also who chose to use their new nomen. The prytaneis for a while merely inscribed the blanket heading Aurelioi at the top of the list; this usage was misinterpreted for a while by modern scholars’. Thessalonica: only 4/73 of the deceased-commemorator type were by people who retained their Greek or local name (IG 10. 2. 1. 491, 774, 824, 859). The deceased-commemorator type is virtually the only one (73/85, 85.88 per cent) for the first three-quarters of the century, significantly higher than for the first two centuries (368/566, 65 per cent).

94 Nicomedia: TAM 4. 1. 33/49 inscriptions by Aurelii are on sarcophagi, which argues for a date in the second or third centuries. Of the 271 funerary inscriptions, 38 are fragmentary and have no trace of a name; of the remaining 233 (12 of which are incomplete and do not permit identification of type and 182 of which are deceased-commemorator type), 102 (43.6 per cent) are by Romans, of which 49 are Aurelii.

95 Four experts have estimated that the name Aurelius was used in an almost faddish fashion until about A.D. 250, but thereafter became much less visible in inscriptions. See S. Mitchell, ‘Inscriptions of Ancyra’, AS 27 (1977), 63,–103, at 71 n. 25, citing P. Herrmann, L. Robert, and R. Heberdey.

96 Outlined by Garnsey, P., Social Status and Legal Privilege in the Roman Empire (1970)Google Scholar. Higher standing (and, in particular, wealth) could additionally have been signalled by interment in sarcophagi–they were ‘expensive and gratified the instinct for ostentation’ and began as a general phenomenon no earlier than the reign of Trajan (Nock, A. D., ‘Cremation and Burial in the Roman Empire’, in his Essays on Religion in Ancient World (Stewart, Z. (Ed.), 1972) 277307, at 306 and 279).Google Scholar

97 MacMuIlen, op. cit. (n. 2), 244; the latter type is plotted by Mrozek, op. cit. (n. 2, 1973), 114.