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42; cf. Pollini (1993): Cartoceto Bronzes. women beyond rome 27 Topica 23, which states: ‘When a woman comes into her husband’s legal power (manus), everything which belonged to the woman becomes the husband’s as dowry’. By the late Republic, however, marriages in manu had become rare, and wives were not usually legally controlled by their husbands. In addition, the social legislation of the Augustan era increased the possibility for women to have control over their property: Augustus’ marriage legislation created a system whereby women who were mothers of three children might qualify to be exempt from guardianship.

1; Hemelrijk (2005). Dixon (1983). women beyond rome 29 of the behaviour expected for their gender. Developments under Augustus should be seen as part of a continuing process rather than a sudden change. 33 She suggested that new features of the period included the participation of women in public life as builders and benefactors, patrons and property-owners. 34 There is no doubt that these scholars are right to see a significant shift in the representations of women in literature, but epigraphic and archaeological evidence from beyond Rome offers a slightly different perspective, giving a more prominent role to the initiative taken by the women among Italy’s municipal elite in raising their public profile within their cities and in going beyond what would traditionally be expected of their gender.

The interpretation of this inscription is complex,11 since it is difficult to calculate how many letters are missing. We can read: [D(is)] M(anibus). / [Cla]udiae Ti(beri) f(iliae) / [---]nillae flam/[inic(ae) co]lon(iae) Aug(ustae) Arim/[ini sace]r(doti) divae Sabinae. / T(estamento) p(oni) i(ussit). However, if the point engraved by the stonecutter between D(is) and M(anibus) marks 8 Veyne (1976); Lomas and Cornell (2003); Hemelrijk (2005); Hemelrijk (2006); Melchor Gil (2008); Melchor Gil (2009).

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