Welcome to our database!

The Roman Bastards database holds all the papyrological, epigraphic and legal evidence concerning illegitimate children in the Roman Empire up to the reign of Constantine the Great. You can find tips on searching the database here.

This database is still under construction. Please be patient and check by frequently to see additions we may have added since.


Database contains:

Bastards Records


"The Legal and Social Status of Extramarital Children in the Roman Empire Up to the Reign of Constantine the Great" is a three-year project, which will investigate papyrological, epigraphic and jurisprudential evidence concerning illegitimate children, dated from Augustus to Constantine. Our dataset shall fasciliate examining frequency of occurance and distribution of the above-mentioned attestations in time and space. The data used in our research will be collected and arranged into a form of a searchable database comprising individuals from all over the Roman Empire who are directly or indirectly described as illegitimate. Each person has his or her own record containing name, terms used to characterized him or her, attestations, role in particular document, occupation, provenance, date, status civitatis, sex and the names of the mother, father, siblings and his or her children.


The project is held at the University of Warsaw and is directed by Dr Maria Nowak. The second researcher responsible especially for entering attestations to the database is Małgorzata Krawczyk.

Maria Nowak


Maria Nowak is an assistant professor of the Roman law at the University of Warsaw. Her research is focused on juristic papyrology, one of her research interests concerns illegitimacy in the Roman Empire. Her latests monograph is ‘Wills in the Roman Empire. A Documentary Approach’ (Warsaw 2015).

Małgorzata Krawczyk


Małgorzata Krawczyk is a PhD candidate in archaeology at the University of Warsaw. She holds master degree in archaeology for her thesis on epigraphic testimonies of construction projects in Scythia Minor. Her research interests include Latin and Greek epigraphy, papyrology and Roman family life.


You can search the database for direct descriptions (eg. ἀπάτωρ, filius naturalis etc.), indirect descriptions (eg. maternal nomen, paternal cognomen), attestations (according to commonly used sigla and bibliographical references, eg. link), provenance (eg. Italy, Latium - Rome), date (eg. AD 101 – 300) individuals (eg. Antonia Domina, Phaseis), occupation (eg. centurio, farmer), status civitatis (Roman, Egyptian). It is not possible to search the inscriptions and papyri documents by text content. Greek texts are available in The Duke Databank of Documentary Papyri (DDbDP) and PHI Greek Inscriptions (PHI). For the full texts of latin inscriptions see Epigraphische Datenbank Clauss – Slaby (EDCS).


If you have any comments or questions please contact us:

  • Faculty of Law and Administration
  • University of Warsaw
  • Krakowskie Przedmieście 26/28
  • 00-927 Warsaw, Poland
  • e-mail: romanbastards@wpia.uw.edu.pl