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Discovered in the waters of the ancient port of Misenum not far away from Punta Terone, the large inscribed pedestal, damaged by a long permanence in water, contained a dedication by the collegium of fresh fish sellers to Caius Julius Maro, a veteran of the praetorian fleet of Misenum and probably born in Thrace.

Below is the full text:

C(aio) Iulio C(ai) f(ilio) Cl(audia)


vet(erano) Augg. n̅n̅. ex scri=

bis cl(assis) pr(aetoriae) Misen(ensis), adlect(o)

in ordin(em) decurionum,

IIvir(o), curatori perpetuo

[c]ollegi propolarum.

[H]ic ob honorem statuae,

iam pridem decretae si=

bi ab eis, testamento suo

((sestertia)) X̅X̅ n(ummum) dari caṿit.

Propolae pisciụm

l(oco) d(ato) d(ecreto) d(ecurionum).

The artefact presents an evident phenomenon of epilithic and endolithic biological colonisation.  The epilithic fouling was caused by the growth of Serpulidae (sea worms with a typical calcareous tube) and Brachiopods (belonging to the species Novocrania anomala), similar to bivalve molluscs.  Endolithic colonisation was caused by boring sponges whose degradation is particularly visible on the smooth surfaces and on the epigraph.  There are also perforations due to bivalve molluscs.

AE 1995, 331

Parma, A. (1995) ‘Una nuova iscrizione di Misenum con un veterano duovir della città’, Ostraka, IV, pp. 301–306.

Ricci S., Sacco Perasso C., Antonelli, F., Davidde Petriaggi B., 2015. Marine Bivalves colonizing roman artefacts recovered in the Gulf of Pozzuoli and in the Blue Grotto in Capri (Naples, Italy): boring and nestling species. International Biodeterioration & Biodegradation (98) 89 – 100.

Ricci, S., Pietrini, A. M., Bartolini, M., Sacco Perasso, C., 2013. Role of the microboring marine organisms in the deterioration of archaeological submerged lapideous artifacts (Baia, Naples, Italy). International Biodeterioration & Biodegradation 82 (2013) 199-206.

Ricci S., Davidde B., Bartolini M., Priori G. F., 2009. Bioerosion of lapideous objects found in the underwater archaeological site of Baia (Naples). Archaeologia Maritima Mediterranea, 6: 167-188.

MUSAS Ref. No.BAI-042DimensionsHeight: 160 cmMaterialsMarbleLocationArchaeological Museum of Campi Flegrei, GardenOriginPort of Misenum (1972)Dating161-211 A.D.Share