IRCyr   Inscriptions of Roman Cyrenaica

A.3. List of priests of Apollo

Description: Part of a stele of white marble, probably Attic, with traces of moulding above. Perhaps associated with A.5, A.6. It was subsequently cut down for reuse first as part of an inscribed panel of the fourth to fifth cent. CE (A.4) and later as an impost block, one of three with Christian decoration, in the sixth century church (w: 0.63 x h: 0.925 x d: 0.27).
Text: Inscribed on three faces. To the left of this one, on a surface almost entirely cut away, are illegible traces of another text, probably a continuation of the priest-list. The third face bears a later inscription (A.4).
Letters: First century BCE- first century CE; 0.03.

Date: First century BCE to first century CE

Findspot: Apollonia: Baptistery in the East Church; found in 1920.
Original location: Unknown.
Last recorded location: Apollonia Museum, 2008


[Δ]ι̣όδοτος Καρνεάδ̣[ου]
[ἱ]ε̣ρειτεύων Ἀπόλλ[ωνος]
( vac. 1) Θεός. ( vac. 1) Τύχη ( vac. 1) [Ἀγαθὴ]
[ἱ]ερεῖς τοῦ Ἀπόλλω̣[νος]
5Διόδοτος Καρνεά[δου]
Ἀ̣πολλώνιος Ἀρη[ίου]
Ἀριστομένης Ἀρίσ[τωνος?]
Ἀπολλώνιος Ἀ̣πολ[---]
Καρνεάδης Καρνε[άδου]
10Εὐφράνωρ Εὐφράν[ορος]
Τυχάσιος Διονυσί[ου]
Ἀριστόπολις Δημη[τρίου]
[Ἀ]ρ[ί]σ̣τ̣ω̣ν̣ Ε[---]


  ΘΕΟΣ  ΤΥΧΗ  [.....]

3: [Ἀγαθὴ] : omitted SECir, 1961-1962
4: [ἱ]ερεῖς : ἱερεῖς SECir, 1961-1962
6: Ἀρη[ίου] : Αρη SECir, 1961-1962

English translation

Translation by: Joyce M. Reynolds

Diodotos (scil. son) of Karneades, the acting priest of Apollo, (scil. set this up). The God and [Good] Fortune (be with us). The priests of Apollo are: Diodotos (scil. son) of Karneades, Apollonios (scil. son) of Areios, Aristomenes (scil. son) of ?Ariston, Apollonios (scil. son) of Apol[l . . . ], Karneades (scil. son) of Karneades, Euphranor (scil. son) of Euphranor, Tychasios (scil. son) of Dionysios, Aristopolis (scil. son) of Deme[trios], Ariston (scil. son) of E[ . . .


Goodchild was inclined to suspect that the three pieces bearing A.3, A.5 and A.6, and possibly some other pieces found at Apollonia, were part of a consignment of material taken from decadent Cyrene for reuse in Apollonia in late antiquity; it seems more probable, however, that they originated in Apollonia, since their inscriptions lack dialect forms regular in contemporary texts in Cyrene (contrast e.g. C.140) and a number of the names listed are not attested at Cyrene (e.g. A.3, line 11, Τυχάσιος, A.5, line 3, Ἄρειος, line 6, Διόφαντος, line 7, Καρτίμαχος, line 8, Τειμόνοθος).

Line 1: Diodotos set up a stele while priest of Apollo, to contain names of future priests, and he appears in line 5 as the first name in the list. It seems clear that the priesthood of Apollo in Apollonia was analogous to that in Cyrene where similar lists are common (e.g. C.260, C.140, C.141, C.393). There they are important to the community because the priests, who changed annually, were the eponymous civic officials whose names dated both public and private documents , although undoubtedly factors such as the piety and vanity of the priests (stressed by Pugliese-Carratelli in a brief discussion of the lists, SECir, p. 359) were also involved. In many of the Cyrene lists marked differences in letter styles and sizes from entry to entry demonstrate that the lists were running records; such differences cannot be detected confidently in this list, but are clear in A.5 and A.6, while in A.6 b, line 14, one entry appears to be preceded by a formal date.

Line 3: The addition of the adjective is normal if not invariable and there is room for it on the assumption that the line was imperfectly centered.

l.7: Perhaps related to Ἀρίστων Ἀριστομένευς in A.6 a, line 10. For other probably related persons in the priesthood see note below and on A.5, and A.6; it is clear that at Apollonia, as at Cyrene (cf. Pugliese, loc.cit.), the priests tended to be drawn from a select group of families.

line 12: No doubt related to Δημήτριος Ἀριστοπόλιος, A.5, line 5.

Bibliography: SECir, 1961-1962, 201a with illustration, fig. 147 (from the photograph), whence Robert, Bulletin Épigraphique, 1964.582, Reynolds, 1972, 46; Reynolds, 1976, 6.a and pl. LVIII, whence SEG 27.1128; mentioned Kenrick, 2013, 285.
Text constituted from: Transcription (Reynolds, Tupman).


   Fig. 1. Face (Department of Antiquities, E.1389)

   Fig. 2. Face (2008, H.Walda)

   Fig. 3. Face (2008, H.Walda)

   Fig. 4. Face (2008, H.Walda)

   Fig. 5. Face (2008, H.Walda)