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Wooden tablets were commonly employed in ancient Rome. These wooden tablets were by the Romans 'pugillares', that is ''note books'', or literally ''hand books''.
Various types of wood were used in making the tablet. Into the recess cut into the center of the board, warm wax, usually black, was poured in to fill the space. When hardened a sharp pencil like instrument called, a Stylus, was used to scratch on notes which could later be smoothed over for new writings. The number of such boards tied together varied, with double boarded tablets such as is shown here were known as 'diptychon'.
Such tablets were therefore suitable for ephemual notes, accounts, memoranda, lists of names, and so forth. They were particularly used by schoolboys.

2001-2002 Museum of Biblical World