Curse Tablet 1

Uricalus: probably the elder of two brothers (see Decentinus below), as suus refers back to him. The individuals in their families are listed by name on this tablet (Uricalus has a wife, son, and daughter; Decentinus is named probably with his wife). The oath they took may have related to the disposition of inherited property, which would explain the importance of guarding it with a curse. Letters in square brackets are additions to the text.

nomen, -inis n.
name, title; these family names are a mix of Celtic and Roman names, typical of inscriptions found in Bath. Letters in angle brackets are to be removed: the a may be a misspelling or the beginning of a discarded phrase.

iuro (1)
take an oath, swear. While the repetition of qui iuraverunt may be an error, as some scholars believe, it is possible the author for legal/magical purposes was making separate statements: the list of individuals who swore, then the place and date of their oath-taking.

fons, fontis m.
spring; ground water source; this is the first mention of the sacred spring for which Aquae Sulis was named.

pridie, adverb
the day before.

Idus, -uum f. pl.
Ides: in April they fall on the 13th (15th of March, May, July, October); one of the three markers of the Roman month, the others being the Kalends and Nones.

illic, adverb
there; in that matter.

periuro/peiero (1)
swear falsely, perjure oneself; the proximity of deae Suli followed by facias (direct address) has led some scholars to conjecture that deae Suli is vocative.

facias: the subjunctive used as a polite imperative addressed to the goddess: bring it about that, followed (not classical usage) by indirect statement (illum ... satisfacere).

sanguis, -inis m.
blood; descent, family, offspring; strength, life.

satisficio, -ere, -feci, -factum
give satisfaction; compensate; satisfy; followed by the indirect object of person (deae Suli) and direct object of thing (illud).

Curse Tablet 2

Tretia, -ae f.: a proper name. The accusative case ending (letter omissions are indicated by square brackets) has been generally accepted. It has been suggested that Tretia is a misspelling for Tertia.

defico = defigo, -ere, -fixi, -fixum
fix, embed; drive in; bind with a spell, bewitch (in magic texts).

illeus= illius.

iocur, iocine/oris and iecur, iecoris/-inoris n.
liver; locus of passion. The vertical line (|) marks the place in the word where the line ends on the disk and a new line begins.

pulmo, -onis m.

intermisceo, -ere, -miscui, -mixtum
mix up, intermingle. Angle brackets (< >) mark supernumerary letters; it is certainly possible that these letters, written in inverse order, were intentionally added as part of the magic of the curse (mirror writing), in order to ensure the desired effect.

for, -ari, fatus/a sum
speak; fata: perfect passive participle, n. pl. = things said.

cogitata, -orum n. pl.
ideas, thoughts.

possit<t>: the author used the subjuntive following sic, as in a result clause.

secerno, -ere, -crevi, -cretum
separate, set apart; sicreta sint = secreta sint.

neque, conjunction
and not; nor.

Curse Tablet 3

defero, -ferre, -tuli, -latum
carry down, convey; charge, indict. Conjectured letters are enclosed in square brackets. The vertical line (|) marks the place in the word where the line ends on the tablet and a new line begins.

lego (1)
send as an envoy, appoint; l[egata] seems less apt than the conjecture [li]gata, from ligo: bind, fasten, tie up, constrict, a verb often used in binding curses.

inferi, - orum m. pl.
the dead, the spirits of the underworld.

vis, vis f. (vim: accusative, vi: ablative)
force, power; violence.

corripio, -ere, -ripui, reptum
snatch up, seize hold of; carry away; censure; the subjunctive follows ut in a purpose clause .

Silonia, -ae f.: a proper name. Her name may derive from the Greek word meaning "snub-nosed." It has been suggested that Silonia is in the vocative case rather than the nominative, which would make her the target of this "lover's complaint" rather than its author.

Secundus, -i m.: a cognomen, the betrothed or husband (sponsus) of the writer. One reading is that his whole name is Surus Caenus Secundus; another that Surum Caenu[m], seemingly inserted afterwards between Silonia and Secundum (view drawing side B), are the names of two other men, perhaps friends or slaves who aided in the betrayal. The accusative case and the nature of this inscription call for a cursing verb (e.g., devoveo, exsecror).

te= the person addressed, presumably a woman, who has attracted the sponsus.

sponsus, -i m.
betrothed man; bridegroom; husband.

proco, -are, --, --
urge, press; woo. Another reading is pro[vo]cat, from provoco (1) call out to, appeal to.

illum: the script is difficult to read; another transcription supports eum.

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