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E00785: Greek invocation of *Michael (the Archangel, S00181) scratched in plaster in the church of *Mary (Mother of Christ, S00033) in Ephesos (western Asia Minor). Probably 6th c. or later.

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posted on 15.10.2015, 00:00 by pnowakowski
ἀρχιστράτηγε, στρατηγὲ τõν ἀγγέλον,
βοήθη τὸν δοῦλον σου Ἠοάννη

'O commander-in-chief, captain of the angels, help your servant Ioannes!'

Text: I. Ephesos, no. 4145.

History

Evidence ID

E00785

Saint Name

Michael, the Archangel : S00181

Saint Name in Source

ἀρχιστράτηγος, στράτηγος τῶν ἀγγγέλων

Type of Evidence

Inscriptions - Graffiti Archaeological and architectural - Cult buildings (churches, mausolea)

Language

Greek

Evidence not before

500

Evidence not after

800

Activity not before

500

Activity not after

800

Place of Evidence - Region

Asia Minor

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc

Ephesus

Place of evidence - City name in other Language(s)

Ephesus Nicomedia Νικομήδεια Nikomēdeia Izmit Πραίνετος Prainetos Nicomedia

Cult activities - Non Liturgical Practices and Customs

Prayer/supplication/invocation

Cult Activities - Protagonists in Cult and Narratives

Other lay individuals/ people

Source

One of numerous graffiti scratched in plaster on the eastern wall of the southern nave in the church of *Mary in Ephesos. Letter height 0.018-0.025 m.

Discussion

The inscription is an invocation of *Michael the Archangel by an otherwise unknown Ioannes. The archangel is called with his two usual by-names, ἀρχιστάτηγος (commander-in-chief) and στράτηγος τῶν ἀγγέλων (captain of the angels), that derive from the function he plays in the Heavenly Host. This kind of inscription is undatable but it is unlikely to occur before the 6th c.

Bibliography

Edition: Die Inschriften von Ephesos, no. 4145. Keil, J., Reisch, E., Knoll, F. (eds.), Forschungen in Ephesos, vol. 4/1: Die Marienkirche in Ephesos (Vienna: Selbstverlag des ÖAI Wien, 1932), no. 45.

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