Lettering refers to the carving of an inscription. Inscriptions are common features of many Roman monuments, used to record who paid for them, the occasion on which they were erected, what they depict and their date. Letter-carvers are sometimes specialist craftsmen but this work could also be done by an ordinary carver if they were trained in it. In the Roman period most letters were carved with the corner of a narrow flat chisel. Sometimes letters were also painted.