Associations in the Greco-Roman World (AGRW)

An expanding collection of inscriptions, papyri, and other sources in translation (run by Philip A. Harland)

[11] Decree of Sacrificing Associates of Bendis (330-323 BCE) Piraeus - Attica

Piraeus (Attica, Greece and Macedonia — Pleiades map), 330-323 BCE
AGRW 11 = GRA I 4 = IG II² 1361 = LSCG 45 = PHI 3577 = AGRW ID# 3049
Copenhagen Inventory info: 230


Plaque of Pentelic marble damaged at the top and bottom, now in Epigraphical Museum, Athens. The occurrence of sacrifices after the 16th in the month of Thargelion suggests a connection with Bendis, a goddess associated with Thrace.

. . . as many persons as are inscribed on the monument (stele) and their descendants. If any of the sacrificing associates (orgeōnes) who have a claim in the sanctuary should sacrifice to the goddess, they shall do so without any cost. However, if a private individual should sacrifice to the goddess, he shall pay the priestess for a suckling pig: 1 and 1/2 obols, along with the skin and the entire right thigh; for a mature animal: 3 obols, along with the skin and the thigh on the same conditions; and, for an ox: 1 and 1/2 obols and the skin. They shall give the priestly portion of females to the priestess and of males to the priest. No one is permitted to sacrifice anything in the sanctuary beside the altar. If they do, they will owe a fine of 50 drachmas.

In order that the house and the sanctuary be maintained in good repair, the income from the house and the sale of water – however much it costs for the maintenance of the sanctuary and the house – is to be spent on it and not for any other reason, until the sanctuary and the house are repaired, unless the sacrificing associates agree by a vote to do something different . . . for the sanctuary. They should leave water for the occupant of the house so that he may use it. If someone should move or introduce a motion in violation of this law, they will owe 50 drachmas to the goddess – both the one who formulated the motion and the one who moved it – and let them not participate in the common activities. The supervisors (epimelētai) are also to inscribe on a monument (stele) the names of these persons who owe this money to the goddess.

The supervisors and performers of the sacrifices (hieropoioi) shall arrange an assembly and convocation in the sanctuary to discuss the association’s affairs on the second day of each month. Each of the sacrificing associates who have a claim in the sanctuary shall give to the performers of the sacrifices 2 drachmas during the month of Thargelian for the sacrifice, before the 16th day. Whoever is at home in Athens and in good health but does not contribute, owes 2 drachmas, sacred to the goddess.

So that there may be as many sacrificing associates of the sanctuary as possible, it is permitted for anyone who wishes to contribute . . . x drachmas to become a member of the sanctuary and to be inscribed on the monument (stele). Let the members approve those who are to be inscribed on the monument, and hand over the names of those approved to the secretary in the month of Thargelion. . .

Translation by: Kloppenborg

[ - - - ]ε̣ναικε[ - - - ]Ε[ - - -] ας ὁπόσοι ἐν τῆ[ι στήλ]|η[ι ἐ]γ[γεγρα]μμένοι εἰσὶν ἢ το[ὺς τ]ούτων ἐκγόνους vvv· ἐὰν δέ τις θύηι|τῆι θεῶι τῶν ὀργεώνων οἷς μέτεστιν τοῦ ἱεροῦ ἀτελεῖς αὐτοὺς θύειν· | [ἐ]ὰν δὲ ἰδιώτης τις θύηι τῆι θεῶι διδόναι τῆι ἱερέαι γαλαθηνοῦ μὲν ∶IC (Attic symbol for 1 1/2 obols) || [κ]αὶ τὸ δέρμα καὶ κωλῆν διανε[κ]ῆ δεξιάν, τοῦ δὲ τελέου ∶III∶ (Attic symbol for 3 obols) καὶ δέρμα καὶ | [κ]ωλῆν κατὰ ταὐτά, βοὸς δὲ ∶IC∶ καὶ τὸ δέρμα· διδόναι δὲ τὰ ἱερεώσυνα τῶ|[ν μὲ]ν θηλ[ε]ιῶν τῆι ἱερέαι, τῶν δὲ ἀρρένων τῶι ἱερεῖ· παραβώμια δὲ μὴ | [θύ]ειν [μ]ηδένα ἐν τῶι ἱερῶ[ι ἢ] ὀφείλε[ι]ν ∶(partial pi with a delta beneath)∶ (Attic symbol for 50) δραχμάς. v ὅπως δ’ ἂν ἡ οἰκία καὶ | τὸ ἱερὸν ἐπισκε[υ]άζηται, τὸ ἐν[οίκιον τῆ]ς οἰ[κίας] καὶ τὸ ὕδωρ ὅσου ἂμ πραθῆι, ε||[ἰς τὴν ἐ]πισκευὴν τοῦ ἱεροῦ [καὶ τῆς] οἰκίας, εἰς ἄλλο δὲ μηδὲν ἀναλίσκειν, ἕ|[ως] ἂν [τὸ ἱερὸ]ν ἐπισκευ[ασ]θῆι κ[αὶ ἡ οἰκία], ἐὰν μή τι ἄλλο ψηφίσωνται οἱ ὀργεῶνε[ς] | [․․․․․․]ν εἰς τὸ ἱερόν. vv ὑπολι[μπά]νειν δὲ ὕδωρ τῶι ἐνοικοῦντι ὥστε χρῆσθ[αι]. | [ἐὰ]ν δ[έ τι]ς [ε]ἴπ[ηι] ἢ ἐπιψηφίσηι παρὰ τόνδε τὸν νόμον, ὀφειλέτω ∶(partial pi with a delta beneath)∶ (Attic symbol for 50) δραχμὰς τῆι | [θεῶι] ὅ τ[ε εἰπὼν καὶ] ὁ ἐπιψηφίσας καὶ μὴ μετέστω αὐτῶι τῶν κοινῶν. ἀναγράφειν δ||[ὲ αὐτὸν ὀφείλο]ντα τῆι θεῶι τοῦτο τὸ ἀργύριον εἰς τὴν στήλην τοὺς ἐπιμελητά[ς]. | ἀγο[ρὰν δὲ κ]αὶ [ξ]ύ[λλ]ογον ποιεῖν τοὺς ἐπιμελητὰς καὶ τοὺς ἱεροποιοὺς ἐν τῶι ἱερ|[ῶι] πε[ρὶ τῶν κοιν]ῶν τῆι δευτέραι ἱσταμένου τοῦ μηνὸς ἑκάστου. vv διδόναι δὲ | [τοῖς ἱ]εροποιοῖς εἰς τὴν θυσίαν ∶˫˫∶ (symbol for 2 drachmas) δραχμὰς ἕκαστον τῶν ὀργεώνων οἷς μέτεστι | [το]ῦ [ἱε]ροῦ τοῦ Θαργηλιῶνος πρὸ τῆς ἕκτης ἐπὶ δέκα, ὃς δ’ ἂν ἐπιδημῶν Ἀθήνη||[σι] καὶ ὑγιαίνων μὴ συνβάλληται, ὀφειλέτω ∶˫˫∶ (symbol for 2 drachmas) ἱερὰς τῆι θε[ῶι]. v ὅπως δ’ ἂν ὡ|[ς πλ]εῖστοι ὦσιν ὀργεῶνες τοῦ ἱερο[ῦ], ἐξεῖναι [τῶι] βουλομένωι εἰσεν[έ]γκαντι|[ - δ]ραχμὰς μετεῖναι αὐτῶι τοῦ ἱεροῦ καὶ εἰς τὴν στήλην ἐγγράφεσθαι, τ[οὺς] | [δὲ γεγραμ]μένους εἰς τὴν στήλην δο[κιμά]ζειν τοὺς ὀργεῶνας καὶ παρ[α —]|[ - - - το]ῦ Θαρ[γηλ]||[ιῶνος - - - ]

Another monument from the Piraeus depicting athletic youths approaching the goddess Bendis
(ca. 400-375 BCE; inv. BMI 1895.10-28.1).
© John S. Kloppenborg 2012.

Item added: September 14, 2012
Item modified: May 2, 2020
ID number: 3049
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