Carthaginian Tombstone for Gemellus

Illustration

Osama Shukir Muhammed Amin
by
published on 16 June 2016

This limestone monument was set up in a cemetery in Carthage, in memory of a man called Gemellus. The inscription towards the base is written in Phoenician, the native language of ancient Carthage, often known as Punic, and states "This tombstone has been set up for Gemellus, son of Selidius. He lived fifty years". Monuments like this were originally set up in tophets, open-air children's cemeteries. They showed where urns containing the cremated remains of new-born infants and children had been buried. Following the destruction and annexation of Carthage by the Romans in 146 BCE, the practice was more widely adopted and extended to mark adult burials which had not previously been commemorated in this way. From Carthage, modern-day Tunisia. Punic, 2nd to 3rd century CE. (The British Museum, London)



About the Author

Osama Shukir Muhammed Amin
Associate Professor of Neurology and lover of the Cradle of Civilization, Mesopotamia. I'm very interested in Mesopotamian history and always try to take photos of archaeological sites and artifacts in museums, both in Iraq and around the world.

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