Il baule della sposa. Amuleti, simboli e ideali in una tomba di Este romana

Cecilia Rossi

pp. 95-126

DOI: 10.26406/RdA42-07

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Abstract

This work is focused on a Roman cremation burial coming from Este (Padova – North-eastern Italy) dated to the third quarter of the 1st century AD. Discovered at the beginning of the Twentieth century and never published in a systematic way, the grave goods of the tomb are now preserved in the National Archeological Museum of Este.
The paper initially moves from the study of the funerary context to the reconstruction of the burial dynamics and the discussion of the original grave goods, whose number was probably increased once the items entered in the Museum collections. The attention is then focused on the artefacts identified as part of the original group. Except for some of them, specifically intended for the funeral celebrations, most of the items deal with the human being: there are jewels, toilette and spinning tools, games and an exotic amulet (a specimen of cypraea pantherina), together used to build up the image of the deceased. Taken from the everyday life, these artefacts highlight some aspects of the Roman world, slightly overlooked in the academic literature. Considered together, they show us the identity of the deceased, perhaps a marriageable young lady, even in the absence of the human remains.