IRCyr   Inscriptions of Roman Cyrenaica

C.336. Fragmentary acclamation

Description: Rock-cut channel, with multiple informal inscriptions, C.336 to C.392; some are traced in the mud that coats the walls of the channel, others have been modelled by attaching strips of clay or mud to the rock.
Text: Graffito; partly overlaid with ?19th century graffiti
Letters: Lunate sigma, cursive alpha.

Date: Second to early fourth century CE

Findspot: Cyrene: Fountain of Apollo, rock-cut channel behind the fountain, on the left wall.
Original location: Fountain of Apollo
Last recorded location: Fountain of Apollo; no longer accessible.





English translation

Translation by: Editors



This might be a personal name (otherwise unattested); but it seems better to take it as an acclamation of the spring, which is good to use.

For the exploration of this drainage system see L.Cariddi, Documenti di G. Oliverio su fonti e drenaggi nel santuario di Apollo (2014).

Numbers C.336 to C.392 are all apparently private inscriptions. Oliverio reckoned that the earliest were of the mid second century CE, and the latest of the fourth century.

The formulae in use vary from a bare record of the visitor's name, sometimes preceded by ἐγω or ἐγὼ εἰμι or followed by a verb of coming/arriving, to acclamations and statements that some absent relation or friend has been remembered. The wealth of such pilgrim graffiti in Egypt and Syria is well known; it is also considerable in Cyrenaica. While some of the Cyrenaican graffiti are the product of visitors from the Levant more seem to have been written by locals, and it may be relevant that there are also a number of pilgrim graffiti in the island of Thera, from which Cyrene was founded.

The channel was sacred to the Nymphs, see C.352, C.361, C.362, C.366, C.372, C.378 and C.382. For other evidence of their cult in the sanctuary see GVCyr 24, C.317 and for their close association with Apollo, C.317.

Bibliography: The channel and its inscriptions were described by Della Cella, 1819 and Beechey, 1828, 550-556 and Toutain, 1913; the first publication of the texts was Oliverio, 1927a; Oliverio, 1927a, 3, p.218, with a drawing, p.221 tav.I, fig.1, whence SEG 9.254, PHI 324103, Oliverio, 1940, 401; mentioned Kenrick, 2013, 216.
Text constituted from: From previous publications and drawing (Reynolds)


None available (2020).