1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Marrucini

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MARRUCINI, an ancient tribe which occupied a small strip of territory round about Teate (mod. Chieti), on the east coast of Italy. It is first mentioned in history as a member of a confederacy with which the Romans came into conflict in the second Samnite War, 325 B.C., and it entered the Roman Alliance as a separate unit at the end of that war (see further Paeligni). We know something of the language of the Marrucini from an inscription known as the “Bronze of Rapino,” which belongs to about the middle of the 3rd century B.C. It is written in Latin alphabet, but in a dialect which belongs to the North Oscan group (see Paeligni). The name of the city or tribe which it gives us is touta marouca, and it mentions also a citadel with the epithet tarincris. Several of its linguistic features, both in vocabulary and in syntax, are of considerable interest to the student of Latin or Italic grammar (e.g. the use of the subjunctive, without any conjunction, to express purpose, a clause prescribing a sacrifice to Ceres being followed immediately by pacr si ut propitia sit). The earliest Latin inscriptions are of Ciceronian date.

The form of the name is of considerable interest, as it shows the suffix -NO- superimposed upon the suflix -CO-, a change which probably indicates some conquest of an earlier tribe by the invading Safini (or Sabini, q.v.).

For further details as to Marrucine inscriptions and place-names see R. S. Conway, The Italic Dialects, p. 253 seq. (R. S. C.)