I 23. Tyras. Building inscription by the Odrysian king Rhoimetalkes , 19-26/38 C.E.






Dimensions (cm)

H. 28.2, W. 36.6, Th. 15.3-16.7.

Additional description

On the front: Greek inscription; on the back: Latin inscription, signifying secondary usage. The front and back are polished, the rest are broken off. The front is planed. In the center, there is a circular depression (Diam. 10cm) from an object that rested on the base in tertiary usage. The circle damaged the Latin inscription. 

Place of Origin


Find place


Find context

In secondary context; in the first courtyard of the fortress (after the removal of the Turkish {mound?} {sand bank?}, in the area of Pushkin Tower. 

Find circumstances

Random find by V.P. Pushkarev in 1982. The latter passed it on to the museum. Field catalogue number БД-82, № 58. 

Modern location


Institution and inventory

Odessa Archaeological Museum, 88366. 


A.I. Ivantchik, August 2007. 

Epigraphic field


On the front. Broken off on all sides except the bottom. Distance from the bottom line of the inscription to the bottom of the block is 10,5cm. H. 14.5, W. 26.8


Deeply, evenly and neatly cut letters, adorned with serifs. Sigma with parallel horizontal bars. Average distance between lines: 4,0cm. 

Letterheights (cm)




Building inscription. 


19-26/38 C.E. 

Dating criteria

Palaeography, prosopography. 


L1. Karyshkovsky, Kleiman 1985, 87-88, рис. 30; 1.1. Saprykin 1995, 412-425 (= Latyshev 1895d, 46-57); 1.1.1. SEG 45, 1025. 


[Ῥοιμητάλκης Θρᾳκῶν βασιλεὺς resp. δυνάστης βασ]ιλέως Κ̣[ότυος υἱωνὸς καὶ βασιλέως Ῥοιμητάλκου θυγατριδοῦς]
[Ῥησκουπόρεως δὲ Θρᾳκῶν δυνάστου] υἱὸς τὴν̣ [---]



EpiDoc (XML)

<div type="edition" xml:lang="grc">
      		<lb n="1"/><supplied reason="lost">Ῥοιμητάλκης</supplied> <supplied reason="lost">Θρᾳκῶν 
      		       <app type="alternative"><lem>βασιλεὺς</lem><rdg>δυνάστης</rdg></app></supplied> <supplied reason="lost">βασ</supplied>ιλέως 
            <unclear>Κ</unclear><supplied reason="lost">ότυος</supplied> 
            <supplied reason="lost">υἱωνὸς καὶ βασιλέως Ῥοιμητάλκου 
      		<lb n="2"/><supplied reason="lost">Ῥησκουπόρεως δὲ 
            Θρᾳκῶν δυνάστου</supplied> υἱὸς τὴ<unclear>ν</unclear> 
            <gap reason="lost" extent="unknown" unit="character"/>
Apparatus criticus

[Γάϊος Ἰούλιος βασιλεὺς Θρᾳκῶν Ῥοιμητάλκας βασιλέως Κότυος υἱωνὸς | καὶ βασ]ιλέως Ῥ̣[οιμητάλκου θυγατριδοῦς καὶ Ῥησκουπόρεως δὲ Θρᾳκῶν δυ|νάστου] υἱὸς τῆι̣ [Τυρανῶν πόλει διὰ τὴν πρὸς αὐτὸν εὔνοιαν τε καὶ τείμην] Saprykin


[Rhoimetalkes, king and dynast of the Thracians, paternal grandson of king Kotys and maternal grandson of king Rhoimetalkes], son of [Rheskoupores, dynast of the Thracians, this [- - -]



The block apparently was part of a Doric architrave and reused multiple times. Karyshkovsky (with Kleiman, 1985, 87) suggested that the text refers to a dedication of some building by a man calling himself a "son of a king," and that the latter was the Odrysian king. S.Yu. Saprykin supports the attribution to one of Thracian kings. Historical data make this supposition most likely.

Saprykin also proposed to attribute the inscription to king Rhoimetalkes II who ruled from 19 C.E. till either 26 or 38 C.E., first with the title of dynast, then of king; this attribution appears to be most probable. At the same time, the restoration of the text, proposed by Saprykin, is doubtful, with the exception of the king's titulature. The titulature is securely restored on the basis of epigraphic comparanda (IGBulg II, 743 and Dawkins, Hasluck 1905, 178, No. 3); additionally, there is no need to restore Γάϊος Ἰούλιος at the beginning. Overall, the text could have fit in two lines, not three, as Saprykin suggests.

In line 2, we may restore the name of the building (e.g. τὴν στοάν, or similar), as well as possibly the recipient, who may well have been other than the poeple of Tyras.



(cc) © 2017 Askold Ivantchik (edition), Irene Polinskaya (translation)
You may download this inscription in EpiDoc XML. (This file should validate to the EpiDoc schema.)