Associations in the Greco-Roman World (AGRW)

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

[188] Honors by Civic Institutions and Initiates for Two Female Theologians (I-II CE) Smyrna - Ionia

Smyrna (Ionia, Asia Minor — Pleiades map), I-II CE
AGRW 188 = GRA 138 = ISmyrna 653 = CIG 3199 = PHI 255060 = AGRW ID# 1420
Copenhagen Inventory info: 1148


Statue base of white marble, now in the Ashmolean Museum at Oxford (74 x 131 x ca. 31 cm). As their title indicates, “theologians” (theologoi) expounded the stories (logoi) or accomplishments of gods or goddesses. The goddess remains unnamed in this inscription, but Demeter or Kore is probably in mind, as initiates for each of these goddesses are attested at Smyrna in this period (ISmyrna 655 and 726). Members described with the term “ancestral initiate” (patromystēs) are likely descendants of initiates from previous generations.

The Council, the People (dēmos), and the synod (synodos) of initiates (mystai) of the goddess honoured the sisters Claudia Antonia Sabina Prokliane and Claudia Antonia Juliane, the theologians (theologoi), for everything which they zealously offered with respect to piety towards the goddess and the festival of the initiates.  Claudius Antonius Lamos, their father, set up the honours when T. Claudius Zenon and M. Vibius Theodoros were treasurers.

Translation by: Harland

ἡ βουλὴ καὶ ὁ δῆμος καὶ ἡ σύνοδος τῶν τῆς θεοῦ μυστῶν ἐτείμησαν | Κλαυδίας Ἀντωνίας Σαβεῖναν Προκλιανὴν καὶ Ἰουλιανὴν ἀδελφάς, | τὰς θεολόγους, πάντα τὰ περὶ τὴν εὐσέβειαν τῆς | θεοῦ καὶ τὴν τῶν μυστῶν ἑορτὴν ἐκτενῶς παρασχούσας· || στήσαντος τὰς τειμὰς Κλ. Ἀντωνίου Λάμου τοῦ πατρὸς αὐτῶν, | ἐπὶ ταμιῶν Τι. Κλ. Ζήνωνος καὶ Μ. Βε̣ιβίου Θεοδώρου.

Item added: December 19, 2011
Item modified: November 6, 2020
ID number: 1420
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