MORITIX LONDINIENSIUM

It was not until 2002 that epigraphic confirmation came of the Latin adjective for London and perhaps Londoners. This was in the form of a monumental inscription on a tablet of imported Turkish marble of about 12 inches by 16 inches found in autumn 2002 during a dig on Tabard Street, Southwark, south of the Thames. There had been occasional uncertainty as to whether the authentic form was Londinensis or Londiniensis. It turned out to be the latter. In addition an word unfamiliar to Latinists was found, moritix (elsewhere moritex). The word is of Celtic origin, mor- being ‘sea’.The inscription, probably of Antonine date (second century AD), reads:

NVM·AVGG

DEOMARTICA

 MVLO · TIBERINI

 VSCELERIANVS C · BELL·

(leaf ) MORITIX· LONDINIENSI

VM (leaf ) [PRI]IMVS ·

” To the Divine Powers of the Emperors and to the god Mars Camulus, Tiberinius Celerianus, citizen of the Bellovaci, moritix of the people of London [or shipper overseas of London trade items?] first to ….”

Tiberinius Celerianus was from the area around modern Beauvais (Caesaromagus Bellovacorum) in northern France and worshipped Mars Camulus, who was popular in  northern Gaul and Germany.

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