• a cura di Richard Gordon, Francisco Marco Simón e Marina Piranomonte

ISBN: 978-88-6557-286-3


Contexts, Objects, Meanings: The Archaeology of Instrumental Religion in the Latin West a cura di Richard Gordon, Francisco Marco Simón e Marina Piranomonte


This book derives from the research-programme ‘Espacios de penumbra: cartografía de la actividad mágico-religiosa en el Occidente Imperio Romano’ (2012-14), directed by Francisco Marco Simón at the University of Zaragoza, Spain, and financed by the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation. The aim, inspired by the ‘material turn’, was to collect all relevant archaeological data concerning magical practice in the Latin-speaking Roman Empire in a digital data-base. Part One of this volume is mainly devoted to a selection of this material, that is, self-authored written texts (‘vernacular curse tablets’), mainly in non-standard Latin, found in the Latin-speaking western Empire, excluding North Africa. The notion of context is understood in a variety of ways, focusing on individual agency in difficult or conflict-ridden situations: where did the principals who wrote these texts choose to deposit them? Can we say anything about what may have influenced them in making such choices? Are there significant differences between locations chosen for different types of curse? Other contributions in this section approach the notion of context from a social point of view, and in terms of conceptions of the body. Part Two focuses on the techniques, especially images, used to enhance the authority of specifically literate magical texts on a metal base in the very different Graeco-Egyptian tradition, including protective amulets. A final contribution, explicitly by way of contrast, offers reflections on the debated issue of magic and miracle in the world of the New Testament. A substantial Appendix provides a concordance between earlier corpora and Celia Sánchez Natalías’ Sylloge of defixiones from the Latin West, the most complete presentation of this material, with commentary, ever published.
formato 24 x 30, brossura, pp. 192, 49 b/n, 3 col.