Lapidary Galleries, the memorial to Quintus Etuvius Capreolus
Il ricordo di Quinto Etuvio Capreolo presso le Gallerie Lapidarie del Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Aquileia. Foto di © Gianluca Baronchelli
An imposing stone monument dominates the Lapidary Galleries of the Archaeological Museum: it is the tomb of the military Quinto Etuvio Capreolo, a native of Vienne, in present-day France.
After a long and complex career, the man chose to live in Aquileia, known during his service in the Roman army, and died here in his sixties at the end of the first century AD.
The monument was discovered in 1902 in a necropolis in the northeast of the city. It was inserted in a large funerary enclosure and surrounded by eight other tombs, as in a family tomb. But Capreolo was not married and had no relatives in Aquileia.
An epigraph explains the mystery. In an unusual choice for those times, the military made his former slaves his family. Most likely the eight secondary tombs belong to them, even if the plaque only mentions five of them: Ilo, Epigono, Secundo, Illyricum and Eracla.