Roman Military Diploma

After a find from Slavonski Brod, Croatia. The original find is completely preserved and thus represents an ideal model for this replica. The diploma is somewhat reduced in size and consists of two thin bronze plates with a curved, retractable cover, which was intended to protect the seals. When unfolded, the Roman military diploma measures about 12.5 x 20 cm. 

SKU
758001
Lieferzeit
5-6 weeks
€249.00
All prices include VAT, plus shipping costs

Roman Military Diploma

After a find from Slavonski Brod, Croatia. The original find is completely preserved and thus represents an ideal model for this replica. The diploma is somewhat reduced in size and consists of two thin bronze plates with a curved, retractable cover, which was intended to protect the seals. When unfolded, the Roman military diploma measures about 12.5 x 20 cm. 

 

Roman military diplomas

The modern term military diploma refers to ancient certificates awarded on the discharge of soldiers and containing special rights. The ancient name is unknown, possibly the document was called tabula or diploma. They are two bronze tablets containing an imperial edict (constitutio) on the inside, which is a copy of a public tablet (tabula aenea or aerea) in the Capitol of Rome. The tablets were folded together, closed with wire and sealed to prevent tampering. On the outer pages is a copy of the text and a list of the witnesses in whose presence the military diploma was closed and sealed.

If there was any suspicion of tampering with the outside, the plaque could be opened, for example, during a court case, to check the original text.

Different military diplomas exist with standardised texts for soldiers of the infantry, cavalry, marines, praetorians and urbaniciani. What these documents have in common is that the recipients were granted Roman citizenship. Since a Roman citizen could not enter into a legally binding marriage with a non-Roman woman and the offspring were thus illegitimate, the conubium was usually awarded as well, with which such a marriage was subsequently legitimised. Thus, the future offspring automatically received citizenship and could legally inherit their father.

The content of a military diploma follows a standardised structure:

- The full imperial titulature
- A list of the units of privileged soldiers
- The province and the governor, or in the case of naval diplomas, the respective prefect
- The privileges conferred, usually citizenship and the right to marry
- Date
- The unit of the recipient and its commander (not in the case of fleet diplomas)
- The recipient of the diploma and his or her dependants
- Certification formula and place of publication

 

The Military Diploma from Slavonski Brod

This find from 1997 is an extraordinary stroke of luck because of its complete preservation. It is the military diploma for the centurion Liccaius, son of Birsus from Marsunnia dated 09.02.71. Liccaius had served with the fleet of Misenum under Sextus Lucilius Bassus. In his discharge certificate he is granted citizenship and his marriage is legitimised.

Text and translation:

IMP(erator) CAESAR VESPASIANVS AVG(ustus) PONT(ifex) MAX(imus)
TR(ibunicia) POT(estate) II IMP(erator) VI P(ater) P(atriae) COS III

VETERANIS QVI MILITAVERNVT IN CLASSE MISENENSI SVB SEX(to) LVCILIO BASSO QVI SENA ET VICENA STIPENDIA AVT PLVRA MERVERANT ET SVNT DEDVCTI PAESTVM QVORVM NOMINA SVBSCRIPTA SVNT IPSIS LIBERIS POSTERISQVE EORVM CIVITATEM DEDIT ET CONVBIVM CVM VXORIBVS QVAS TVNC HABVISSENT CVM EST CIVITAS IIS DATA AVT SIQVI CAELIBES ESSENT CVM IIS  QVAS•POSTEA DVXISSENT DVM TAXAT SINGVLI SINGVLAS

A(nte) D(iem) V IDVS FEBR(uaria)
IMP(erator) CAESARE VESPASIANO AVG(usto) III
M(arcus) COCCEIO NERVA CO(n)S(ulibus)

>(centurioni) LICCAIVS BIRSI•F(ilio) MARSVNNIA

LOCO XXIII
DESCRIPTVM ET RECOGNITVM EX TABVLA AENEA QVAE FIXA EST ROMAE IN CAPITO(lio) IN PODIO ARE GENTIS IVLIAE

---------------

Emperor Caesar Vespasian Augustus, supreme priest, tribune for the second time, emperor for the sixth time, father of the fatherland, consul for the third time.

To the veterans who fought in the Misenian fleet under Sextus Lucilius Bassus, who served twenty-six or more stipends and are settled in Paestum, whose names are given below, for them, children and descendants of them, citizenship is granted, and the right of lawful marriage, either with a wife they had when citizenship was velieved to them, or, if they were unmarried, with the wives they will have later.

On the fifth day before the Ides of February (February 9th) during the Consulate of Emperor Caesar Vespasian Augustus for the third time.
Marcus Cocceius Nerva (in 71 AD)

Centurion Liccaius, son of Birsus, from Marsunnia

In place 23

Copied and verified from the bronze tablet attached to the base of the Temple of Augustus at the Capitol in Rome.

The witnesses

M(arci)•VIRI•MAR CELLI DEC(urionis?)•LEG(ionis) SAVAR(iensis)
L(ucii)•DOMITI(i) SEVERI•VET(erani) BREVCI
C(ai)•MARCI(i) NOBILIS•EMON(ensis)
C(ai)•PIDIENI AQVILEIENS(is)
L(ucii)•VALERI(i) PAVONIS•VET(erani) BREVCIO
C(ai)•IVLI(i)•CLARI AQVILEIENS(is)
L(uci)•MINEI IVCVNDI•AQVILEIENSIS

(seal of) Marcus Virus Marcelus, decurio of the Legio Savariensis (?)
(seal of) Lucius Domitius Severus, Veteran of the Breuki
(seal of) Gaius Marcus Nobilis from Emonca‎
(seal of) Gaius Pidienus from Aquileia
(seal of) Lucius Valerius Pavonis, Veteran of the Breuki
(seal of) Gaius Julius Clarus from Aquileia
(seal of) Lucius Mineus Iucundus from Aquileia

More Information
Delivery time 5-6 weeks
weight 0.600000
size 20 x 12,5 cm ausgeklappt
Era Romans
Material Bronze
Kind of replica Special Replicas
scope of delivery Delivery in a jewellery case with certificate
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