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Does anyone have any information or can point me towards a translation of the Abinnaeus archive- a collection of correspondence once belonging to a 4th century Roman cavalry officer stationed in the Fayyum area of Egypt?

Thanks!!
Quote:Does anyone have any information or can point me towards a translation of the Abinnaeus archive- a collection of correspondence once belonging to a 4th century Roman cavalry officer stationed in the Fayyum area of Egypt?

Bell, H. I., Martin, V., Turner, E. G. and Van Berchem, D. 1962: The Abinnaeus Archive; Papers of a Roman officer in the Reign of Constantius II, Clarendon Press, Oxford

There is a copy for £80 on Abebooks if you are feeling flush :-)

Mike Bishop
Thanks Mike. Not quite as flush as I was..... :roll:
There are a few transcripts here: http://www.ancientsites.com/aw/Post/185358

Document 45:To Flavius Abinnaeus, praefectus alae of the troops in the camp of Dionysias from Flavius Priscus, veteran, honorably discharged, and Alia his wife, daughter of Heron, soldier in the imperial suite, landowners in the village of Philagris. On the 25th day of the present month of Payni, Sir, in my absence, while my wife was left alone in the house, certain evildoers in the manner of robbers attacked the house by night and making a subterranean passage carried off all that I and my wife possessed. Wherefore I ask and beseech your humanity to apprehend the officials of the village and compel them to present before you the persons guilty of the robbery, and then to bring our statement to the knowledge of our lord the Duke; for it is his function to take vengeance on the perpetrators of such outrages. And obtaining this we shall acknowledge our gratitude to you, Sir. Farewell. We, Flavius Priscus and Alia, have made this statement. Consulship of Flavius Placidus and Flavius Romulus the most illustrious. 29 Payni.

Document 47: Petition dated May 1, 346 C.E.To Flavius Abinnaeus, praefectus alae of the troops in the camp of Dionysias in the Arsinoite nome, from Aurelius Aboul son of Dionysius, of the village of Hermopolis in the same nome. My sheep were shorn in the night, eleven in number, by certain criminals, and on my investigating the shearing of the sheep I heard it was Paul the soldier, one of those under your command, and he named as his fellow evil-doers Peter son of Sarapion and his brother Melas a soldier and Apion son of Horion the irenach from the same village. Wherefore I ask and beseech your humanity to apprehend these men and compel them . . . [lacunae] . . . by these evildoers, and then to bring our statement to the knowledge of our lord the Duke; for it is his function to take vengeance on the perpetrators of such outrages. And obtaining this I shall acknowledge our gratitude to you, Sir. Farewell. I, Aurelius Aboul, have made this statement. Consulship of our masters Constantinus for the 4th time and Constans for the 3rd time, Augusti, Epeiph 5.
P.S. On another occasion the same persons drove off pigs of mine to the number of 6.

Document 49: Petition dated July 5, 346 C.E.To Flavius Abinnaeus, praefectus alae of the troops in the camp of Dionysias, from Aurelia Mary, daughter-in-law of Akiar one of the soldiers stationed at Memphis under Colluthus the praepositus, landowner in the village of Theoxenis. On the second of the present month of Epeiph, Sir, for some unknown reason and in the manner of robbers by night certain evildoers attacked my field of sheep and having shorn sheep of mine to the number of nine carried off three other sheep alive. And when field-guards of the village of Theoxenis made inquiry concerning the shearing and driving off of the sheep they found in the fields of Narmuthis John and Elias, against whom suspicion lies of the shearing and driving off. Wherefore I ask and beseech your humanity to apprehend these men and compel them to confess the shearing and driving off of the sheep, and then to bring my statement to the knowledge of our lord the Duke; for it is his function to take vengeance on the perpetrators of such outrages. And obtaining this I shall acknowledge our gratitude to you, Sir. Farewell. I, Aurelia Mary, have made this statement. Consulship of our masters Constantinus for the 4th time and Constans for the 3rd time, Augusti, Epeiph 11.

Document 51: Petition dated August 26, 346 C.E.To Flavius Abinnaeus, praefectus alae of the troops in the camp of Dionysias, from Aurelia Ataris, landowner in the village of Hermopolis, daughter of Melas, veteran. On the third of the Intercalary Days, for some unknown reason and in the manner of robbers, at the tenth hour, when I demanded repayment of the debt which he owes me, Poleion with Apion the son of Horion the irenarch and Cyriace the sister of Poleion shut me up in his house and nearly killed me with blows. I took to flight from his house and betook myself to a distance from their outrageous conduct and the violence which I suffered from them, and I am in a condition bordering upon death. Wherefore I ask and beseech your humanity, Sir, to apprehend these men and send them to my lord the Duke; for his function it is to take vengeance on the perpetrators of such outrages. And obtaining this I shall acknowledge my gratitude to you, Sir. Farewell. I, Aurelia Ataris have made this statement. Consulship of our masters Constantius for the 4th time and Constans for the 3rd time, the Augusti, 3d of the Intercalary Days.
[N.B. Note that "Apion the son of Horion the irenarch" is one of the same individuals complained of in letter 47, from a retired soldier in the village of Hermopolis; he seems to have been a local tough who was protected by his ties to the village leaders.]
Fascinating.

Shearing of sheep at night? Just show's you that nothing is new in this world...
Anyone has the papyrological collection numbers in which this was published first ?

M.VIB.M.
Absolutely fascinating. What a great link. It serves to remind us that for your average minor roman commander more time was spent acting as a paramilitary local police force instead of great feats of arms on the battlefield!
Exactly. Feels more like a British Empire District Officer......or more likely the British DOs were based on the Roman system!

[Image: dharma0920.gif]
Or like a British Empire District Officer?
Quote:Absolutely fascinating. What a great link. It serves to remind us that for your average minor roman commander more time was spent acting as a paramilitary local police force instead of great feats of arms on the battlefield!
Not quite. I read that most of his 'cases' invloved soldiers or veterans. Which would mean he did not have jurisdiction over civilians, or perhaps that this was some sort of patronage system where the military had their own patrons when it came to seeking justice.
Quote:Anyone has the papyrological collection numbers in which this was published first ?

M.VIB.M.

You will find these in the Concordance Tables in The Abinnaeus Archive cited by Mike Bishop.