|Object:||IT-4 unidentifiable (antler)|
|Script:||North Italic script (Magrè alphabet)|
|Direction of writing:||sinistroverse|
|Letter height:||0.9 cm – 1.3 cm|
|Number of letters:||14 – 17|
|Number of lines:||1|
|Current condition:||damaged, incomplete|
|Date of inscription:||120–15 BC [from object]|
|Date derived from:||archaeological context [from object]|
|Alternative sigla:||MLR 43|
|Sources:||Schumacher 2004: 326 ff.|
Object IT-4 unidentifiable with inscription IT-4.
Object IT-4 unidentifiable with inscription IT-4 - underside.
Object IT-4 unidentifiable with inscription IT-4 - detail underside.
First published in Schumacher 2004. Autopsied by TIR in November 2013.
Images in Tomedi 2004: 384, Fig. 2 (drawing), MLR (photo and drawing).
Length 9 cm, engraved on the "underside" (when the horse is held upright) opposite the metal pegs, starting at the non-horse-shaped end. The inscription is damaged by one vertical and two horizontal cracks and abrasion (most heavily in the lower part of the middle section). Two lacunae after the first five letters and after the vertical crack before the last three letters.
Most of the letters before the first lacuna, notwithstanding a crack along the upper parts of the first three letters, are legible without difficulty: riθi or piθi. The angle of the first letter, rounded, does not reach the hasta in the bottom. Venetoid closed or near closed Pi may be expected in the Inn valley – cp. IT-8. Partly damaged by abrasion to the left, the next letter could be or with the third bar gone, which would yield a potential Raetic individual name riθie or, more likely, well attested piθie. Depending on the interpretation of this character (larger with the leftmost line extending far into the lacuna or more slender ), there may have been another character completely vanished, but hardly broader than or a separator, of which there are, however, no traces visible on a smaller fragment fitting on top of the main one. Over the lacuna, on that same smaller fragment, the upper angle of what could most likely be or due to the slight curvature of the left scratch; the very traces of its continuation on the main fragment may be guessed at. It is followed by just another such angle whose scratches are continued clearly on the main fragment, showing or , the lower part damaged by abrasion. Like this one, the following characters are damaged both at the top by the crack between the main and the smaller upper fragment and by abrasion in the lower part of the main fragment. Next an oblique scratch slanting down from right to left – possibly the upper third of an . The following stroke could then only be read , since the next group of scratches can be identified with reasonable certainty as . After , the small fragment completing the characters at the top breaks off. Of the next two letters, only the very tips of which are missing, two large angles are left: the first with two oblique scratches – probably as in case of a trace of the bar should be left –, the second with one straight and one curved line, which could be or, considering the preceding character, more probably or . Right before the vertical crack the remains of a hasta with the trace of one bar ( or ), then the second lacuna. On the next fragment a single vertical line which can hardly be anything but , and finally only slightly damaged . A very tentative reading including all the doubtful surmises could be piθie(?)resiχurvile. The latter part of the reading (from Chi) is supported by the identical outcome of Marchesini's independent examination.
With about fifteen letters, the inscription is the second-longest one on a portable object from the Inn valley, after IT-5. IT-4, like the other classifiable inscriptions from north of Brixen, is written in a Venetoid alphabet (inverted Upsilon and Lambda, Pi with an angle). For Pi with a large angle cp. IT-8 (also rounded) and maybe ST-2 – the form is only known from North Tyrolean inscriptions.
piθie, as said above, is a well-attested Raetic individual name. Final -le suggests a pertinentive, though for a standard Raetic name formula we would expect the second part to be a patronym in -nu or -na. (Cp. -le instead of -ale in SZ-14 sletile and possibly also SZ-30 )auþile and ST-4 azile (more likely an individual name), all cases without the patronymic suffix.) Doubtful -si in the middle might be the corresponding pertinentive ending of the first name element, though it that case the name must be longer than piθie.