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However as Moroo looked at sigmas being used as currency signs for staters, Clinton's (1996) comment probably applies, viz, that stater signs are in "a different domain and therefore irrelevant".

The argument on letter-form evolution seems to have been terminated by Chambers, Gallucci and Spanos (1990).

Segre (19) and Raubitschek (197f) asserted that the three-barred form () was replaced by the four-barred form () on inscriptions after 445 BCE.

On this basis, the dates of a number of inscriptions with three-barred sigmas (e.g. Mattingly attacked this letter-form analysis and asserted that historians had been "imprisoned by a dogma" (199) and an "over-rigid application of epigraphy" (Mattingly, 193).

Mattingly (19) has conveniently summarised Meiggs' criteria as follows: Mattingly (19) in reply to Meiggs (1966), argued that "spelling, grammar, idiom, formulae and vocabulary", along with historical context should contribute to dating an inscription.

Meiggs and Lewis (19) re-affirmed their commitment to letter-form dating.

The evidence for this alliance comes from an inscription on two fragments of a marble stele, labelled variously Inscriptiones Graecae I2 19,20 and I3 11.

The alliance has been dated as 458/7 or 454/3 or 418/17 BCE (Fornara, 20). Evidence for the first two dates is discussed and then the claims of letter-form analysis.

Kavvadias (1897) first drew attention to an earlier form of sigma () on the Athena Nike inscription.They have shown (see below) that since Antiphōn was the archon in the Egesta inscription which had three-barred sigmas, there was no mass extinction of the three-barred sigma near 445 BCE.Argument for the date 418/7 BCE Mattingly (197f) visited the Egestan region and was impressed by the realisation that the Elymite community would have been quite remote from Athens.Mattingly (1976) puzzling over a phrase contended (see below) that the "earliest allowable dating" (19) for the Egesta inscription was Epameinōn (429/8 BCE).Recently Moroo (2002) has concluded that "there were no rules for using a particular letter form" and they can only "establish general trends".Meiggs and Lewis (19) note that 454/3 BCE was the "generally accepted" date for the alliance until sometime around 1969 (1964), and Mattingly (198) rejected this completely. the rho was not readable, but Habrōn was left as the probable reading because of the probable beta.

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