The Oldest Handwritten Documents Ever Discovered in England

Interesting stuff!

Nicholas C. Rossis

Ancient Roman writing tablet | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books A Roman writing tablet found in the mud. Photo: MOLA / Atlas Obscura

On January 8, 57 AD, Tibullus, a freed slave in London, promised to repay 105 denarii, a hefty sum, to another freed slave named Gratus. Meanwhile, one friend admonished another that he’s lent too much money and is being gossiped about. And a merchant was making a desperate plea for repayment of debts owed to him.

We know all this, thanks to an archeological treasure recently unearthed, as reported by Atlas Obscura: over 400 writing tablets that document financial transactions that are the oldest handwritten documents discovered in England.

Notekeeping, the Roman Way

Ancient Roman writing tablet | From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books Image: Erik Kwakkel / British Museum: Wooden shaft with nib excavated at Vindolanda (late Antique)

As befits a business people, Romans founded London around 40 AD in order to facilitate commerce. And commerce means records. When recording something for posterity, the Romans used

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3 thoughts on “The Oldest Handwritten Documents Ever Discovered in England

  1. Pingback: The Oldest Handwritten Documents Ever Discovered in England — Station Stories | OUR POETRY CORNER

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