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The Carrot and the Stick:
This Man Trained Winners

CIL VI.10069 = ILS 5295


[image ALT: A small Roman inscription.]
Transcribed and expanded:
1
 
 
 
5
AQVILO N. . . K. . . AQVI
LONIS · VICIT C · XXX
SECVND
as TVLIT
LXXXVIII
TER
tias
TVL
it
XXX
VII
HIRPINVS Nepos? AQVI
LONIS · VICIT CXIIII
SECV
nDAS · TVLIT
LVI TERT
ias · TVLit ·
XXXVI ·

9
10

14
15
Dis · Manibus
CLAVDIA · HELICE
FEC
it · Lucio · AVILLo DIONYSIO
COND
octori · GRegis · RVSSATAE
CONIVG
i · DIGNISSImo
• the final NV is a modern cataloguing mark! •
Translated:
Aquilo, ?grandfoal of Aquilo,
won 130 races,
placed 88 times,
and showed 37 times.
Hirpinus, ?foal of Aquilo,
won 114 races,
placed 56 times,
and showed 36 times.
To the gods of the afterlife:
Claudia Helice
erected this for Lucius Avillus Dionysius,
trainer of the Red Team,
her most worthy spouse.

A bit of commentary here:

The stick is quite visible: no argument there. The carrot is less so, and you should not take me too literally. As far as we know, this common vegetable (Daucus carota esculens) was unknown in Roman times: it seems to be a mediaeval cultivar of the wild carrot, known to most Americans as Queen Anne's lace (Daucus carota); and certainly, the modern carrot we take for granted, sweet-flavored and bright orange, is a recent development. At best, the Romans used the proto-carrot (possibly among the roots collectively known as pastinaca) much as we do the rutabaga — i.e., not if we can avoid it, and mostly for feeding. . . horses.

Still, just to be perverse, let me show you what appears to be a carrot, accompanying olives and a little bowl of dip, from a wall painting in a Roman tavern in Ostia (Caseggiato del Termopolio). Remember, though, that the painting has surely been restored by someone who has eaten carrots all their life:


[image ALT: zzz]


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Page updated: 23 Feb 01