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Here is an inscription from the Leptis Magna Museum. It is easy to read:

LEGionis III AVGvstae VIXit
ANNIS XLV STIpendi.... (?)

Two questions:
- what is the ending of line 4 (stipendiis? stipendiorum?) (I ought to know this :oops: )
- what can ALAPI mean?

I have been thinking about ALA PIA or something, but I don't know.

I too thought "ala", but not much to work with there. Easy way out: maybe the guys who commemorated their contubernalis were two brothers named Alapus; I don't believe it myself, though.

Is Alapi a name of the one who had it made? Probably not, but Alapi currently exists as a name in Europe (Hungary for one), and was (supposedly) a winged bull to the Semites, so the word might be 3000 years old.
Further thinking; although the inscription clearly reads ALAPI, surely it's got to be alari, plural of alarius, "pertaining to an ala". My Lewis & Short states that the word appears only once (i.e., it's a ἁπαξ λεγόμενον) as a substantive for a soldier, in Cic. Fam. 2.17 (search there for alariis); but that's literary and not epigraphical evidence.

Reading the P then as an R, it's the fellow soldiers of the ala. Not too convinced myself, but it's the best I can do for now.
I m not so firm in Latin, but when I test the database of Clauss/Slavy. I think it has to be read "stipendiorum". The centurie is jointed in several contibernali (may be the tents groups). And the chief of this tents group was an Alapa. So the comrads called, to be the "Alapi"?

Belegstelle: AE 1986, 00711
Provinz: Tripolitana Ort: Meninx
D(is) M(anibus) s(acrum) / Iulius Mirantius / vixit annis XXX / Silvaniani contiber/nali(!) dedicaverunt

Belegstelle: CIL 04, 04707
Provinz: Latium et Campania / Regio I Ort: Pompei
Cissoni alapa duobus <p=D>u{u}eris felic(i)ter

Belegstelle: CIL 11, 02931 = D 07652
Provinz: Etruria / Regio VII Ort: Vulci / Volci
C(aio) Mestrio C(ai) f(ilio) Alapae / spongiario / v(iva) Chia l(iberta) f(ecit) sibi et suis


Malko Linge
Quote:maybe the guys who commemorated their contubernalis were two brothers named Alapus
Certainly, the names of the contubernales could appear in this position, Bill.

But I wonder if it might actually be the phrase a lapi(cidinis), "from the stone-mason's yard" (or similar). (There may be a slight vestige of an interpunct between the A and the LAPI, similar to the one between LAPI and CO-.)