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E01679: Greek dedicatory inscription on a golden leaf, probably from a reliquary, commemorating an offering to God and 'saint Symeonios' (probably *Symeon the Younger, stylite near Antioch, ob. 592, S00860). Exact provenance unknown, probably central Syria. Probably late 6th-7th c.

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posted on 29.06.2016, 00:00 by Bryan
A silver or golden leaf (lamella) with edges framed by a garland. Decorated with a depiction of a stylite on a column, attacked by a serpent, and a dedicatory inscription. Now in the Louvre Museum. Probably once fixed on a side of a reliquary. H. max. 0.296 m; W. max. 0.255 m. Dimensions of the inscribed field: H. 0.04 m; W. 0.214 m; letter height 0.007 m.

First published by Jean Lassus in 1960. Provenance: central Syria. The object appeared in the antiquities market after the discovery of the so-called second Byzantine silver treasure from Ḥamāh/Amathe/Epiphaneia, see: Ross 1950, 162-163.

Inscription:

[ε]ὐχαριστῶν τῷ θ(ε)ῷ καὶ τῷ ἁγίῳ
[Σ]υμεωνίῳ προσήνεγκα

'Giving thanks to God and to Saint Symeonios I brought this offering.'

Text: Lassus 1960, 162-163.

History

Evidence ID

E01679

Saint Name

Symeon the Younger, stylite near Antioch, ob. 592. : S00860

Saint Name in Source

Συμεώνιος

Type of Evidence

Inscriptions - Inscribed objects Archaeological and architectural - Extant reliquaries and related fixtures Images and objects - Other portable objects (metalwork, ivory, etc.)

Language

Greek

Evidence not before

592

Evidence not after

700

Activity not before

592

Activity not after

700

Place of Evidence - Region

Syria with Phoenicia

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc

Ḥamāh

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

Ḥamāh Thabbora Thabbora

Cult activities - Non Liturgical Practices and Customs

Prayer/supplication/invocation

Cult Activities - Relics

Reliquary – institutionally owned

Cult Activities - Cult Related Objects

Ex-votos Precious material objects

Discussion

Jean Lassus suggests that the saint, depicted here, is Symeon Stylites the Younger. The name Symeonios, which occurs in the inscription instead of Symeon, might have been used as a diminutive, to distinguish the stylite from his earlier namesake, Symeon Stylites the Elder. Dating: the object has been stylistically dated to the late 6th or 7th c. If it commemorates the younger Symeon, it almost certainly postdates his death in 592.

Bibliography

Edition: Lassus, J., “Une image de saint Syméon le Jeune sur un fragment de reliquaire syrien du Musée du Louvre”, Monuments et mémoires de la Fondation Eugène Piot 51 (1960), 129-150. Further reading: Ross, M.C., "A second Byzantine treasure from Hamah", Archaeology 3/3 (1950), 162-163. Reference works: Bulletin épigraphique (1961), 770.

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