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Intellect

Roman plates display at BYU relocated to Special Collections

Visitors who missed “Two Ancient Roman Plates: Bronze Military Diplomas and Other Sealed Documents,” when it was displayed on the third floor of the Harold B. Lee Library at Brigham Young University, can still view the two ancient plates in the L. Tom Perry Special Collections on the library's first level during the summer.

The set of Roman plates were issued by imperial decree on Oct. 14, AD 109 during the rule of Emperor Trajan. Called a military diploma, these plates conferred citizenship and military honors to a retiring Roman soldier in Dacia, and outlined that he was allowed to freely travel throughout the empire and wear a toga as a Roman citizen.

The library’s acquisition of these 2,000-year-old bronze plates was made possible by a group of donors brought together by John W. Welch, a BYU law professor and editor-in-chief of BYU Studies. Interested parties who cannot visit Special Collections in person can view images, explanations and videos about the exhibit at romanplates.byu.edu.

For more information, contact Roger Layton, Harold B. Lee Library communications manager, at (801) 422-6687, or roger_layton@byu.edu.

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