Sunday, 25 May 2014

The Cursed Ring


Mr GBT took this photo yesterday when we had a clan gathering over at The Vyne in Hampshire. The ring is Roman and was discovered in Silchester in 1785. From its inscription it's owner was a fellow called Silvianus. Unusually one Latin inscription is Christian and the other Pagan. It is not recorded how it came to be part of the collection at the property.

In the early 19th century [info from Wiki] a lead tablet was found at a Roman Temple site near Lydney Gloucestershire. It was inscribed with the following curse:
"For the God Nodens.  Silvanianus has lost a ring and has donated one half  [its worth] to Nodens. Among those named Senicianus permit no good health until it is returned to the Temple of Nodens"

In 1929 the archaeologist Mortimer Wheeler, whilst digging at the Lydney site, linked the ring and the tablet. He approached an Oxford Don to research Nodens. That don was a little known chap called Mr Tolkien. Speculation is that this historical incident of the cursed ring may have influenced the creation of The Lord of the Rings.

Arilx

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