I 28. Tyras. Honorific inscription for emperor Severus Alexander, 222-235 C.E.





Marble, gray with blue veins, large-grained. 

Dimensions (cm)

H. 41.5, W. 22.0-31.5, Th. 8.0.

Additional description

Upper part of the panel with the right and bottom faces preserved. The top is broken off, but the epigraphic field is not affected by the break. The left side is broken off. 

Place of Origin


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Modern location


Institution and inventory

Unknown In 2001, it was in a private collection in Kiev, no inventory number. 


N.A. Son, 2001. 

Epigraphic field


On the front. Broken off on the left. Unknown


Neatly cut letters, traced in red paint; light neat serifs. Some letters (sigma, omega) are angular, in the manner typical of the "square" script of the late Severan period, but they are found in combination with round omicron. Ypsilon with decorative crossbar, except in smaller-sized letters in lines 1, 5 and 8. The cutter apparently didn't estimate the space needed for the inscription correctly: starting with line 4, the letters are tightly packed and many are ligatured, letters at the end of the line are more narrow than in the middle, in the last two lines, omicron is reduced in size twice (down to 1,4cm). The last line (line 8) is cut on the bottom of the panel in small letters (1,6cm in height; the distance between the penultimate and ultimate lines is 1,0cm), and only the last letter of that line is preserved. The word δόγμ(ατι) in line 6 is abbreviated and followed by an interpunctum in the form of a small triangle (0,8cm in height). Average distance between lines: 1,4-1,6cm. 

Letterheights (cm)

2.2-2.3 (line 1). 3.3-4.0 (the rest) см.



Honorific inscription 


222-235 C.E. 

Dating criteria

Explicit date, prosopography. 


L1. Ivantchik, Son 2002; 1.1. Ivantchik, Son 2004; 1.2. AE 2002 (2005), 439, No. 1251; 1.3. SEG 52.748. 


vac. [Ἀγαθῇ] τύχῃ vac.
[Αὐτοκράτορα] Κ̣αίσαρα Μ(ᾶρκον) Αὐρ(ήλιον)
[Σεουῆρον Ἀλέξα]ν̣δρον Εὐτυχῆ
[Εὐσεβῆ Σεβαστὸν] Μ̣(ᾶρκος) Αὐρ(ήλιος) Ἀρτέµων Ἰ-
5[στριανὸς, (Ethnicum), Ἡ]ρ̣ακλεώτης, Τυ-
[ρανὸς, (Ethnicum) β]ο̣υλευτὴς δόγμ(ατι) •
[τῆς ἱερωτάτης β(ουλῆς) κα]ὶ τοῦ λαμπρο-
[τάτου δήμο]υ


[...... ........].ΑΥΡΑΡΤΕΜΩΝΙ

EpiDoc (XML)

<div type="edition" xml:lang="grc">
      		<lb n="1"/><space extent="unknown" unit="character"/> <supplied reason="lost">Ἀγαθῇ</supplied> 
               τύχῃ <space extent="unknown" unit="character"/>
      		<lb n="2"/><supplied reason="lost">Αὐτοκράτορα</supplied> <unclear>Κ</unclear>αίσαρα 
      		<lb n="3"/><supplied reason="lost">Σεουῆρον</supplied> 
               <supplied reason="lost">Ἀλέξα</supplied><unclear>ν</unclear>δρον 
      		<lb n="4"/><supplied reason="lost">Εὐσεβῆ</supplied> 
      		       <supplied reason="lost">Σεβαστὸν</supplied> 
               Ἀρτέµων Ἰ
      		<lb n="5" break="no"/><supplied reason="lost">στριανὸς,</supplied> <supplied reason="lost"><note>Ethnicum</note>,</supplied> 
               <supplied reason="lost">Ἡ</supplied><unclear>ρ</unclear>ακλεώτης, 
      		<lb n="6" break="no"/><supplied reason="lost">ρανὸς,</supplied> <supplied reason="lost"><note>Ethnicum</note></supplied> 
               <supplied reason="lost">β</supplied><unclear>ο</unclear>υλευτὴς 
               <expan><abbr>δόγμ</abbr><ex>ατι</ex></expan> <g ref="#stop"/>
      		<lb n="7"/><supplied reason="lost">τῆς ἱερωτάτης <expan><abbr>β</abbr><ex>ουλῆς</ex></expan></supplied> 
               <supplied reason="lost">κα</supplied>ὶ τοῦ λαμπρο
      		<lb n="8" break="no"/><supplied reason="lost">τάτου</supplied> <supplied reason="lost">δήμο</supplied>υ
Apparatus criticus

4: ΤΕ, ΜΩ in ligatura
5: ΩΤ, ΗΣ in ligatura
6: πολίτης καὶ? β]ο̣υλευτὴς; δόγμα(τι) ΤΗΣ, ΓΜ in ligatura
7: ΠΡ in ligatura


[Good] fortune. (A statue) [of emperor] Caesar Marcus Aurelius [Severus Alexa]nder, Felix, [Pius Augustus], Marcus Aurelius Artemon, a citizen of Hi[stria (?), of ..., of He]rakleia, of Ty[ras - - -C]ouncil member, by the decision of [the illustrious Council and] the illust[rious peo]ple (set up).



The inscription tells us that M. Arurelius Artemon set up a statue of Severus Alexander in Tyras (if the provenance is correctly supplied) at his own expense, in accordance with the decision of the city government. The marble panel, bearing the inscription, was apparently inserted into a statue base, possibly built from cheaper material (brick, limestone). M. Aurelius Artemon was most certainly a member of the provincial elite and held both Roman citizenship and also that of several Greek cities. Judging by his name, he or his ancestors had acquired Roman citizeship before 212 C.E., that is, before it was extended to all freeborn residents of the empire, but not before 161 C.E. In such cases, as we know, a new Roman citizen received as his praenomen and nomen the names of the ruling emperor (the names Marcus Aurelius were used by Roman emperors from Marcus Aurelius (161-180 C.E.) to Severus Alexander), and these names were then inherited by his posterity. M. Aurelius Artemon was apparently a native of Histria (since this ethnicon appears as the first in the list of his affiliations), but became a citizen of Herakleia, Tyras and of at least two other poleis. In all of these cities, he must have belonged to the privileged group of Council members. In most Greek cities of the Roman period, Council membership was a life-time position, and local Councils functioned as a type of senate (Lévy 1895, 219-231; Liebenam 1900, 227-252; Jones 1940, 170-191; Magie 1950, 640-643; de Ste Croix 1981, 308, 530-531; Sartre 1991, 129-130). Membership in a Council often, if not always, was hereditary, and could be granted to foreigners alongside with citizeship. There are well known cases of members of provincial elites who held not only specific local franchises, but also posts of Council members in those poleis, see Ivantchik, Son 2002; Ivantchik, Son 2004.

1-2. The name of emperor Severus Alexander appears in a standard, for Greek inscriptions, form, which is the exact translation of Latin: Imperator Caesar M. Aurelius Severus Alexander Felix Pius Augustus.

4-6. The lines contain a list of poleis where M. Aurelius Artemon held citizenship. There are five ethnics, two of which are lost, and the list ends with the word βουλευτής. This method of listing ethnics is found in other contemporary inscriptions (e.g.: I.Ephesos IV 1154; IG XII, 2 (1899), No 562.1-2; MAMA VIII (1962), No 521.1-6; Moretti 1968, p. 208, No 240.9-10.

Восстановление πολίτης καὶ? в шестой строке неуместно и не подтверждается аналогиями. Стоящие в предыдущих строках слова уже и без того указывает на гражданство Артемона. Сочетание πολίτης καὶ βουλευτὴς было бы уместно вместе с оборотом вроде πολλῶν ἄλλων πόλεων (ср. например, SEG 36.259), но по-видимому никогда не встречается после ряда этниконов.

The restoration πολίτης καὶ? in line 6 is not suitable and has no parallels. The words in preceding lines already point to Artemon's citizenship. Such a phrase as πολίτης καὶ βουλευτὴς would be fitting in conjunction with the phrase πολλῶν ἄλλων πόλεων (cf. e.g. SEG 36.259), but is does not seem to occur after a list of ethnics.

6-8. In the last two lines, a reference to a decision of the Council and the People appears with the typical for that time ornamental epithets. The name of the Council, judging by the size of the lacuna, was abbreviated, which is also common in inscriptions. Typically, a city name appears after the mention of the Council and the People, although there are examples when it is absent (e.g. IGBR, III,2, No 1574: 7-9, also with the abbreviation of βουλή). Contrary to S.Follet (AE), line 6 ends not with an alpha, but an interpunctum in the shape of a triangle.



(cc) © 2017 Askold Ivantchik (edition), Irene Polinskaya (translation)
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