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E02537: Fragmentary Greek inscription from an architrave or altar (?), referring to martyrs whose names are lost. Found at Madaba (Roman province of Arabia/Jordan). Probably 6th c.

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posted on 09.03.2017, 00:00 by Bryan
μέρος τῶν μαρτύρων [- - -]

'District of the martyrs [- - -].'

Text: I. Jordanie 2, no. 151.

History

Evidence ID

E02537

Saint Name

Martyrs, unnamed or name lost : S00060

Type of Evidence

Inscriptions - Formal inscriptions (stone, mosaic, etc.) Archaeological and architectural - Altars with relics Inscriptions - Inscribed architectural elements

Language

Greek

Evidence not before

500

Evidence not after

750

Activity not before

500

Activity not after

750

Place of Evidence - Region

Arabia

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc

Madaba

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

Madaba Sakkaia / Maximianopolis Σακκαια Sakkaia Saccaea Eaccaea Maximianopolis Shaqqa Schaqqa Shakka

Cult activities - Places

Cult building - unspecified

Cult activities - Places Named after Saint

  • Towns, villages, districts and fortresses

Source

Fragment of an architrave, reused in a modern house. The stone is said by its editors to have once formed a part of an altar. There is no published description. First published in 1897 by Kleofas Koikylides. Re-published from his edition by Henry Stevenson and R. Kraetzchmar in 1897. Revisited by Giuseppe Manfredi and re-edited by him in 1899, based on his own copy. Pierre-Louis Gatier did not examine the object for his edition in I. Jordanie 2. The stone is now probably lost.

Discussion

The inscription probably records a district named after martyrs. See: E04324, E04326, and E04314. The late 19th c. editors dealing with this text suggested that it referred to a place where relics of martyrs were deposited. Gatier points out that the term μέρος is sometimes used in Syria as a designation of a tomb (e.g. in IGLS 5, no. 2400). He concludes that the author of the inscription might have meant a sarcophagus, but does not say clearly whether it would be an original burial place of martyrs or a reliquary shaped in the form of a sarcophagus.

Bibliography

Edition: Gatier, P.-L., Inscriptions de la Jordanie, vol. 2: Région centrale (Amman, Hesban, Madaba, Main, Dhiban) (Paris: Librairie orientaliste Paul Geuthner, 1986), no. 151. Manfredi, G., "Piano generale delle antichità di Madaba", Nuovo Bulletino di Archeologia Cristiana 5 (1899), 166. Kraetzschmar, R., "", Mitteilungen und Nachrichten des deutschen Palästina-Vereins (1897), 54. Stevenson, H., "Di un insigne pavimento in musaico esprimente la geografia dei luoghi santi scoperto in una basilica cristiana di Madaba in nella Palestina", Nuovo Bulletino di Archeologia Cristiana 3 (1897), 101. Koikylides, K., Ὁ ἐν Μαδηβᾳ μοσαϊκός (Jerusalem, 1897), 24.

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