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date: 19 November 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Latin verse inscriptions, the so-called carmina epigraphica, are among the treasures of our epigraphic heritage. They are especially demanding because of their metrical form, length, and sophisticated textual content. Depending on the writer’s intentions, they are related to epideictic literary genres such as encomium and biography, scoptic epigram, lament and consolation, hymn and prayer, as well as ecphrasis. The chapter provides a brief history of the study of verse inscriptions and by means of examples ranging from the third century BCE to late Antiquity presents a typology of this genre of Latin inscriptions, c. 80% of which are funerary texts.

Keywords: verse inscriptions, carmina epigraphica, Anthologia Latina, Carmina Latina Epigraphica (CLE), elogia, Pope Damasus, Christian inscriptions, commatica, graffiti, dipinti, encomium, Rome, Italy, Roman provinces

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