Spoken in Marruvium
Region Marsica in Abruzzo
Extinct ca. 150 BC
Language family
Writing system Inscriptions in votive offerings
Language codes
ISO 639-3 ims
Sabinium. The Marsi were to the south of Lake Fucinus shown in the lower right.
Silver denarius, coinage of the Marsian Confederation, during the Social War (89 BC). The retrograde legend right (UILETIV [víteliú = Italia][1]) is in Oscan

Marsi is the Latin exonym for a people of ancient Italy, whose chief centre was Marruvium, on the eastern shore of Lake Fucinus, drained for agricultural land in the late 19th century. The area in which they lived is now called Marsica. During the Roman Republic the people of the region spoke a language now termed Marsian in scholarly English. It is attested by several inscriptions and a few glosses. The Linguist List classifies it as one of the Umbrian Group of languages.




The Marsian inscriptions are dated by the style of the alphabet from about 300 to 150 BC (the middle Roman Republic). Conway lists nine inscriptions, two from Marruvium, two from Lecce, one from Ortona, two from Trasacco and two from Luco. In addition are a few glosses, a few place names and a few dozen personal names in Latin form.[2]


Their language differs very slightly from Roman Latin of that date; for apparently contracted forms, such as Fougno instead of Fucino, may really only be a matter of spelling. In final syllables, the diphthongs ai, ei, and oi, all appear as e. On the other hand, the older form of the name of the tribe (dat. plur. Martses = Lat. Martiis) shows its derivation and exhibits the assibilation of -tio- into -tso-, proper to the Oscan language but strange to classical Latin.

Sample text

The Bronze of Lake Fucinus was an inscribed bronze plaque taken from the bed of the lake near Luco in 1877 during the process of totally draining the lake. It was in a settlement that had been covered by the lake. The bronze was placed in the Museum of Prince Alessandro Torlonia, where it was photographed for publication. In 1894 no one could find it nor has it been seen since. The text of the photograph is as follows:[2]

caso cantouio|s aprufclano cei|p apur finem e..|salicom
en ur|bid casontonio | socieque dono|m | pro
le[gio]nibus mar|tses.


They are first mentioned as members of a confederacy with the Vestini, Paeligni and Marrucini.[3] They joined the Samnites in 308 BC,[4] and, on their submission, became allies of Rome in 304 BC.[5] After a short-lived revolt two years later, for which they were punished by loss of territory,[6] they were readmitted to the Roman alliance and remained faithful down to the Social War, their contingent[7] being always regarded as the flower of the Italian forces.[8] In this war, which, owing to the prominence of the Marsian rebels is often known as the Marsic War, they fought bravely against odds under their leader Q. Pompaedius Silo, and, though they were frequently defeated, the result of the war was the enfranchisement of the allies. The Latin colony of Alba Fucens near the northwest corner of the lake was founded in the adjoining Aequian territory in 303, so that from the beginning of the 3rd century, the Marsians were in touch with a Latin-speaking community, to say nothing of the Latin colony of Carsioli (298 BC) farther west. The earliest pure Latin inscriptions of the district seem to be C.I.L. ix. 3827 and 3848 from the neighbourhood of Supinum; its character generally is of the Gracchan period, though it might be somewhat earlier.

Ancient peoples of Central Italy in the 5th century BC.

Mommsen[9] pointed out that, in the Social War, all the coins of Pompaedius Silo have the Latin legend "Italia", while the other leaders in all but one case used Oscan.


The chief temple and grove of the goddess Angitia stood at the southwest corner of Lake Fucinus, near the inlet to the emissarius of Claudius (restored by Prince Torlonia) and the modern village of Luco. She (or they, for the name is in the plural in the Latin inscription next cited) was widely worshipped in the central highlands[10] as a goddess of healing, especially skilled to cure serpent bites by charms and the herbs of the Marsian woods. Her worshippers naturally practised the same arts—as their descendants do.[11] Their country was considered by Rome to be the home of witchcraft.[12]


  1. ^ For the phonetic transcription from Oscan to Latin alphabet see, for example, this page or this one. Please note that, all the Oscan monetary legends are retrograde, as the one running clockwise on the copy reproduced in the margin
  2. ^ a b Conway, Robert Seymour (1897). The Italic Dialects Edited with a Grammar and Glossary. Cambridge: University Press. pp. 289–299. 
  3. ^ (Livy viii. 29, cf. viii. 6, and Polybius ii. 24, 12)
  4. ^ (Liv. ix. 41)
  5. ^ (Liv. ix. 45)
  6. ^ (Liv. x. 3)
  7. ^ (e.g. Liv. xliv. 46)
  8. ^ (e.g. Horace Odes ii. 20, 18)
  9. ^ (Unteritalische Dialekten, p. 345)
  10. ^ (Sulmo, C.I.L. ix. 3074, Furfo Vestinorum, ibid. 3515)
  11. ^ (see A de Nino's charming collection of Usi e costumi abrusszest)
  12. ^ see Hor. Sat. i, 9, 29, Epod. 17, 28, &c.


  •  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed (1911). Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. 
  • R. S. Conway, The Italic Dialects, pp. 290 seq. (from which some portions of this article are taken; on the Fucino-Bronze, ib. p. 294)

See also

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См. также в других словарях:

  • Marsi — • Diocese in the province of Aquila, Central Italy, with its seat at Pescina Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Marsi     Marsi     † …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • MARSI — populi Italiae fortissimi, Picentibus, Aequiculanis, et Samnitibus finitimi, quorum urbs, quae Valeria etiam dicta, ad lacum Fucinum, excisa, sive aquis absorpta, Marci adhuc dicta. Episcopalis est apud Piscinam urbem, ubi eius Episcopus moratur …   Hofmann J. Lexicon universale

  • Marsi — (a. Geogr.), 1) sabellisches Volk in Samnium, auf den Apenninen, um den Lacus Fucinus, im jetzigen Abruzzo ulteriore; sie waren tapfer u. in Italien als Kenner von heilsamen Kräutern u. als Schlangenzähmer berühmt, daher sollten sie von Kirke… …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Marsi — ▪ ancient Italian people       ancient people of Italy, located on the eastern shore of Lake Fucinus (now drained) in the modern province of L Aquila. In 304 BC the Marsi and their allies, the Vestini, Paeligni, and Marrucini, made an alliance… …   Universalium

  • Marsi — Den Namen Marser (lateinisch: Marsi) trugen zwei Völker in der Antike: ein Volksstamm in Italien, siehe Marser (Italien) ein Volksstamm in Germanien, siehe Marser (Germanien) …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • marsi — mar·si …   English syllables

  • marsi — ˈmärˌsī noun plural Usage: usually capitalized Etymology: Latin 1. : a people of ancient Italy east of Rome 2. : a Germanic people defeated by the Roman emperor Germanicus …   Useful english dictionary

  • Marsi Hotel Bangkok — (Бангкок,Таиланд) Категория отеля: 4 звездочный отель Адрес: 125 soi sukhumvit 1 …   Каталог отелей

  • Marsi (Germanic) — This article is about the germanic people. For the italian people, see Marsi. Germanic tribes around 50 CE The Marsi (German: Marser) were a small Germanic tribe settled between the Rhine, Rur and Lippe rivers in northwest Germany. Tacitus… …   Wikipedia

  • İstiklâl Marşı — The title of this article contains the characters İ, ş, ı, and â. Where they are unavailable or not desired, the name may be represented as Istiklal Marsi. İstiklâl Marşı English: Independence March …   Wikipedia

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