"[...] The text is written in Greek and, in it a woman named Kyrilla invokes the names of six gods to cast a curse on a man named Iennys, apparently over a legal case."
Comment: Belief in curses, magic, witchcraft, amulets and the occult in general was widespread in the ancient world, just as it is today in places like Africa, for example, and the Middle East, not to mention the United States, where a 2005 poll found that a majority of the population believes in ghosts. As far as I can tell, the modern world is just as superstitious as the ancient world and these beliefs go all the way back to the emergence of humans as a species.
According to Arcana Mundi: Magic And The Occult In The Greek And Roman Worlds (Second Edition, p.16), "[w]hen we talk abut Greco-Roman magic, we usually mean Hellenistic magic, as documented in the [Greek magical papyri.] This syncretistic, multicultural conglomerate took shape in Egypt when it was ruled by Macedonian kings, before it became a province of the Roman Empire."
Curse tablets were very common in the Roman empire. Hundreds of them have been discovered and translated. According to "Curse Tablets and Binding Spells from the Ancient World," (Oxford University Press, 1992, ed. John G. Gager), most of the curses were inscribed with bronze styluses on sheets of lead while the rest "..consist of alloys of lead and tin, sometimes fused with copper." (Intro. p.3)
"In the ancient world, it was common practice to curse or bind an enemy or rival by writing an incantation on a tablet and dedicating it to a god or spirit. These curses or binding spells, commonly called defixiones, were intended to bring other people under the power and control of those who commissioned them." (Ibid, back cover).
The video clip above is from HBO's fantastic, but short-lived series Rome.
Related: Curse Tablets From Roman Britain