A Roman tombstone from Cirencester

Contributed by Corinium Museum

A Roman tombstone from Cirencester

Roman tombstones tell you something about the lives of the soldiers, slaves, men, women and children who lived in Cirencester. Inscriptions can tell us about military units - their distribution and movements, their uniforms and equipment.

This 1st century tombstone is carved from local limestone. It has a relief of a Roman cavalryman. This tombstone was the work of a very competent sculptor who has included many details of the soldier's dress and armour, and of the horse's harness.

The inscription on the Genialis tombstone reads:

"Sextus Valerius Genialis, trooper of the Calvary Regiment of Thracians, a Frisian tribesman, from the troop of Genialis, aged 40, of 20 years' service, lies buried here. His heir had this set up."

Genialis was probably recruited in lower Germany where the unit is thought to have been until 43 A.D. With 20 years' service, he could have died about 60 A.D.

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  • 1 comment
  • 1. At 23:12 on 22 April 2010, J St Clare wrote:

    Since visiting Chedworth, and then Pompeii, Herculanem etc I have been gripped with the Roman world and our place within it - what a great resource this is, and points to other places of interest. ust a minor point, I am sure the soldier in question belonged to a 'Cavalry' Regiment and not a 'Calvary' one as stated :-)

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