The Oldest Inscription of "Rome"?

A fourth century BC sword may have the oldest known inscription of the name of Rome.

La scritta "Roma" piu antica trovata su una spada del quarto secolo avanti Cristo -Foto

The "Sword of San Vittore" was excavated in 2003 by Dante Sacco, and is dated partly on the style of the Macedonian stars decorating it. The inscription reads:


Trebius Pomponius son of Gaius made me in Rome

Sacco will publish the inscription in R.E.L. 90-2012 as linguistically the oldest form of the name of Rome.


  1. I'm just happy to see text about Rome dating earlier than the 3rd Century BC.

  2. great piece dorothy,ancient inscriptions on swords,weapons ect fascinate me.still kicking myself that i let the thetis fragment slip through my fingers i should have made levette pay double the price he paid,he bought it for next to nothing.

  3. I recognize that there are conventions that experts know, but I'm still wondering how anyone could know to place C.F. between TR and POMPONIO in that inscription. And it seems odd to quote the raw inscription as C.F. (ie, without completing the words Caio Filio) yet still flesh out Trebios and Pomponios, rather than leaving them uninterpreted as well.

    I'm quibbling with the original article rather than the blogger, of course. But maybe someone can explain this for me.

  4. I found something at another source
    ... that reads the original as:

    TR POMPONIO(S) C (f.?)

    which helps me make sense of things. Not sure why the author at Leggo put it in the other order.

  5. Quibble away! I admit I was looking more at decoration - will look properly on pc

  6. In « TREBIOS C.F. POMPONIOS ME FECET ROMAI » (or « TR POMPONIO(S) C (f.?) (M)E FECET ROMA(I)… »), I think that we have a « Caesar pontem fecit » causative, i e. “Trebius Pomponius son of Gaius had me made in Rome”, “Trebius Pomponius fils de Gaius me fit fabriquer à Rome”…


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