Curse tablet made of gold discovered in a Roman city in Serbia

Roman tombs in the ancient city of Viminacium in Serbia, once provincial capital of Moesia Superior, revealed 4th century golden tablets with inscriptions believed to be curses and invocations of demonic forces. The find may be possibly the first of such kind as according to the Roman customs, gold was never put into graves. Some of the so called “tabella defixionis” are written in Greek but they also they feature an incomprehensible language and symbols. The beginning of one of the tablets in Latin reads “Let all the forces and demons help that …”.

Gold tablet from Viminacium (by NBC News)
Gold tablet from Viminacium (by NBC News)

Experts believe those were likely invented by the person who made the tablet, so its message could only be understood by gods and demons. Previously found tablets were inscribed in lead, which is much less valuable substance. It shows us how luxurious the life in Viminacium was or how much hope ancient Romans had in the curse tablets so that they used precious metals. Opposing deities appear on these tablets, as if invoking both Christ and the Antichrist today, or Christ and pagan gods. This shows us that the process of converting to Christianity was slow in the 4th century, when Viminacium was populated by 40000 inhabitants. So far graves of mixed Christian and pagan burials were found at the site.

(after NBC News & International Business Times)

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