> Thanos5150 wrote:
> > Origyptian:
> One of the ostraca fragments is a
> communication between
> > the quarry and the procurator admitting that the column is
> > ready for shipment but the quarry administrator doesn't know
> > what quarry it's from. In another fragment the quarryman asks
> > the procurator for "more iron" to presumably speed up getting
> > single column ready. What kind of quarry is this that isn't
> > equipped to quarry the stones that are on order?
> that quarries columns obviously. Yes, we in the modern
> > world never make mistakes or need more material to complete a
> > job. Come on man. But strange you would cite an ostraca that
> > clearly refers to quarrying and columns yet still think this
> > not evidence? A broken record, but this make no sense. The
> > ostraca speak extensively of the quarrying activities which
> > you unknowingly note the overwhelming majority date to the
> > of Hadrian which is also the most active period of using the
> > stone from MC in the Roman Empire.
> Note quite. I think you may be overreading. Here is the
> complete inscription, per
I presume the parenthetic phrasesQuote
To Antonius Flavianus, prefect, from the
> foreman and the stonemasons, Sir, greetings. With the help of
> our Lord Sarapis and the Tyche of Claudianus and your Tyche we
> announce that we have finished one of the 25 foot columns on
> the 26th day of Hathyr. If you please, Sir, and with the
> accord of our master the procurator, if steel and charcoal be
> sent to us, we shall finish the other one faster, if we can
> work without hindrance. From the moment you send us (it, and
> if) all the infidels (will leave us in peace)...(we shall be
> able to finish it).
> are speculation of the translator to replace unreadable
> inscriptions. There is no reference to quarrying any stone. In
> fact there is no reference to actually doing any work on a
> stone at all. "Finished" could simply mean it's packed up on
> the transporter and ready to roll, but could also mean trimming
> a pre-existing column to the procurator's current
> specifications. There is no specific indication of what they
> intended to use the "steel and charcoal" for -- it makes no
> mention of whether the "steel" should be chisels, axles,
> spokes, nails, tie-bands, etc. I'm wondering why he didn't
> specify what form of "steel" he needed.
> And so we are left with the distinct possibility that the
> "steel and charcoal" may instead be intended simply as bribes
> to keep the "infidels" away so they can finish their work. To
> speculate alternative unreadable phrases: "From the
> moment you send us the bribes, all the infidels will
> leave us in peace...and we will be allowed to finish our
> work". After all, there were many reports of the
> locals causing repeated disruptions in the workflow, and it's
> certainly logical that the quarry would tend to resist giving
> away its own precious tools as bribes to keep the locals at bay
> or else they would soon run out of tools. The generic request
> for "steel and charcoal" might simply indicate that ANY form
> form of steel would suffice as a trinket to keep the infidels
> away. But wasn't M. Claudianus akin to a military operation
> with a so-called "fort" there that allegedly protected the
> quarry operation?
> And regarding the source of the column:
And they were ready to ship the 2nd column 19Quote
You write, Sir,
> to tell you from which quarry. We do not know the name of the
> quarry, but it is the quarry far from praesidium, lying
> towards Porphyrites, which we have given the name
> 'Philoserapis'. When we were well arrived at the
> days later, but apparently it was either a broken/repaired
> column or the result of conjoining two pre-existing shorter
> columns to form one longer column which resulted in this
We have received your letter, Sir, in which
> you reproach us about the caurasia [broken stone?] because we
> have made then conterminous [fitted them together?]. However,
> as we (had learnt) from your letter that there was iron in the
> store, we used all the colour-mixing, like the people of old
> (taught us).
> "Steel and charcoal"?
> "People of old"?
> Fascinating material, these ostraca.
"Made Them Conterminous".
Engineering and production..
The fitting together of un-matched components in such a way as to do ones best to disguise the joint.
"Plastering over the cracks"
They were repairing broken columns.
Post Edited (28-Jun-15 20:07)