V 174. Theodoro. Building inscription of an unknown, 1224–1225 C.E.
H. 26.0, W. 60.0.
Covered with soot.
Place of Origin
Tabana-Dere, monastery, church, southern wall, over arcosolium, in the centre.
1913, survey of R.Ch. Loeper and M.I. Skubetov.
Institution and inventory
In situ, no inventory number.
Within a frame.
Lapidary style. Alpha with slanting crossbar; upsilon Y-shaped.
L1. Vinogradov 2011, 240–242, № 13.
<div type="edition" xml:lang="grc"> <ab> <lb n="1"/><date>Ἔτους <num value="6733">ςψλγ</num> </date>. <lb n="2"/><g ref="#stauros"/> Γύνεται νῦν <gap reason="lost" extent="unknown" unit="character"/> <lb n="3" break="no"/><w part="F">κου</w> πα<supplied reason="lost">ρὰ</supplied> <unclear>κ</unclear>υροῦ <gap reason="lost" extent="unknown" unit="character"/><orig>Ε</orig><gap reason="lost" extent="unknown" unit="character"/><orig>Υ</orig> <lb n="4"/><orig>ΟΥΟ</orig> πα<supplied reason="lost">ν</supplied><gap reason="lost" extent="unknown" unit="character"/><supplied reason="lost">τά</supplied> του ἱερο<supplied reason="lost">μ</supplied>ο<unclear>νά</unclear>χου <unclear>κ</unclear>αὶ <orig>ΠΕ</orig> <lb n="5"/><orig>ΟΣ</orig> τοῦ <gap reason="lost" extent="unknown" unit="character"/> </ab> </div>
In the year 6733. ... is being built [by...] the most [...] hieromonk and...
Latyshev did not offer a reading (Latyshev 1897, 154, no. 49a; Latyshev 1918a, 21, no. 6). At present, the inscription is covered with soot and difficult to read - one must rely on the facsimile drawing of Yu.N. Voronin (Mogarichev 1997, 313, рис. 265.).
Because the building inscription is placed over an arcosolium containing a tomb, it is possible that the church was intended to serve as a funerary chapel. The cave complex surrounding the church does, however, look very much like a monastery. Since the builder was a hieromonk, it is likely that he would have also been the founder of this monastery.
1. The date of the inscription fits well with another one from the same complex: V 196 (1220-1221 C.E.). A comparison with the latter brings up an interesting question: why the cutter made an unusual choice to put the year date at the beginning (similarly to the other inscription) and then to inscribe the rest of the lengthy text.
3. The beginning of the line contains either a saint's name ending in -κος or that of the Mother of God (Θεοτόκου), to whom the church might have been sacred.
Judging by its architectural and liturgical design, the church of the monastery complex at Taban-dere dates to the XIIIth century (see Vinogradov, Gaydukov, Zheltov 2005, 75).