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E01859: Fragmentary Greek inscription with an invocation, just possibly of *Domninos, and *Theophilos (martyrs in Palestine, S00190, S00935). Found at Ḥarāke near Apamea on the Orontes and Androna (central Syria). Probably late 5th or 6th c.

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posted on 15.09.2016, 00:00 by pnowakowski
[+ ἅγι]ε Δω- μν[ῖνε (?) καὶ ἅγιε (?)]
[Θεόφ]ιλε (?), φ- υλά[ξατε]
[τὴν] εἴσοδ(ον) ἐμ[ῶν]

'[+ Saint] Domninos (?) [and Saint Theophilos (?)], protect [our] entrance!'

Text: IGLS 4, no. 1583.

History

Evidence ID

E01859

Saint Name

Domninos, martyr in Palestine, ob. 308 : S00190 Theophilos, martyr in Palestine, ob. 308 : S00935

Saint Name in Source

Δωμνῖνος Θεόφιλος

Type of Evidence

Inscriptions - Formal inscriptions (stone, mosaic, etc.)

Language

Greek

Evidence not before

450

Evidence not after

750

Activity not before

450

Activity not after

750

Place of Evidence - Region

Syria with Phoenicia Syria with Phoenicia Syria with Phoenicia

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc

Ḥarāke Apamea on the Orontes Androna

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

Ḥarāke Thabbora Thabbora Apamea on the Orontes Thabbora Thabbora Androna Thabbora Thabbora

Cult activities - Non Liturgical Practices and Customs

Prayer/supplication/invocation

Source

Fragment of a basalt lintel, broken and lost at the right-hand end; the left-hand end was buried when recorded. Preserved dimensions: H. 0.44 m; W. 1.01 m. Decorated with low-relief carving of a cross with eight arms, within a circle (0.43 m in diameter). Found in the outskirts of the village of Ḥarāke by the Princeton Archaeological Expedition to Syria. First published by William Prentice in 1922. Republished by René Mouterde in 1955, based on the edition by Prentice.

Discussion

The inscription is very fragmentarily preserved, but given the form of the stone with the characteristic cross in the centre and the text written in two columns to the right and to the left of it, we can safely assume that it was once displayed on a lintel, over a doorway. Prentice offered a possible reconstruction of the text with saints Domninos and Theophilos as addressees of this invocation, but this completion is entirely hypothetical. Domninos and Theophilos belong to a group of Palestinian martyrs, venerated on 5th November according to the Synaxary of the Church of Constantinople. Halkin was reluctant to acknowledge this text as an attestation to their cult. Mouterde commented that this restoration is very dubious, but he reprinted it as the main text of his edition, and not in the apparatus. Peña accepts the restoration without any discussion. Dating: This kind of Syriac lintel inscription is characteristic of the late 5th or 6th c.

Bibliography

Edition: Jalabert, L., Mouterde, R., Mondésert, Cl., Inscriptions grecques et latines de la Syrie, vol. 4: Laodicée, Apamène (BAH 61, Paris: Librairie orientalise Paul Geuthner, 1955), no. 1583. Prentice, W.K. (ed.), Publications of the Princeton University of archaeological Expeditions to Syria in 1904-1905 and 1909, Division III: Greek and Latin Inscriptions, Section B: Northern Syria (Leyden: E.J. Brill, 1922), 101, no. 1033. Further reading: Halkin, F., "Inscriptions grecques relatives à l'hagiographie, II, Les deux Phénicies et et les deux Syries", Analecta Bollandiana 67 (1949), 102, note 9. Peña, I., Lieux de pèlerinage en Syrie (Milan: Franciscan Printing Press, 2000), 32.

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