V 265. Pantikapaion. Building inscription of Tiberius Iulius Douptounos, 479–492 C.E.






Dimensions (cm)

H. 47.0, W. 96.0, Th. 12.0.

Additional description

Left bottom corner is broken off, the surface is chipped. 

Place of Origin


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Find context

Corner of Vorontsovskaya (modern Lenina) Street and Predtechenskaya (modern Lenina) Square, house of Tomasini, yard. 

Find circumstances


Modern location

Saint Petersburg, Russia. 

Institution and inventory

State Hermitage, П.1888.13. 


November 2003, November 2006. 

Epigraphic field


Within the frame. 


Lapidary; letters with light serifs. Alpha with broken crossbar, lunate epsilon and sigma, pi with extended horizontal, short omega. 

Letterheights (cm)




Building inscription. 


479–492 C.E. 

Dating criteria



L1. Latyshev 1891b, 22-25, № 31; 1.1. IOSPE II, 491; 1.1.1. Minns 1913, 657, № 66; 2. Kulakovsky 1891, 181–182; 2.1. Kulakovsky 1891, 24–25; 3. Latyshev 1892a; 4. КБНCIRB, 67; 4.1. Diatroptov, Yemets 1995, № 2; 5. Vinogradov 1998, 233–247; 5.1. SEG 48, 993; 6. Vinogradov 2007, 257–259, № 4; 6.1. Vinogradov 2011, 247–250, № 16. 


Α̣ + Ω̣ (?) Ἀγαθ̣ῇ̣ τ̣ύ̣χ̣ῃ̣.
+ Ἐπὶ Τιβερίου Ἰουλίου Δοιπτουνο[υ]
βασιλ(έως) εὐσεβοῦς, φιλοκέσαρος καὶ
φ̣ιλορωμέου, ἀ̣ν̣έστη ὁ πύργος οὗ-
5[το]ς̣ καὶ ἐπὶ ἐπάρχου Εἰσγουδίου
[καὶ ἐ]π̣ὶ τοῦ κόμ(ητος) Σπαδινου τοῦ ἐ-
[πὶ τῆς] π̣ι̣νακίδος καὶ ἐπὶ τοῦ πρώ-
[του ἐπὶ κόμ]η̣τας Σαυαγου καὶ ἐπὶ τοῦ
[ἐπιμελετο]ῦ τοῦ ἐπὶ τοῦ ἔργου
10[τοῦ δεῖνος], [μηνὸς] Γορπιαίου κ´· οἰκ[ο-]
[δομοῦντος τοῦ δεῖνος] μ̣αγίστορ̣[ος].
[Ἔτους ..ψ]´.



EpiDoc (XML)

<div type="edition" xml:lang="grc">
      <lb n="1"/><unclear>Α</unclear> <g ref="#stauros"/>
      <unclear>Ω</unclear> <note>?</note> 
      Ἀγα<unclear>θῇ</unclear> <unclear>τύχῃ</unclear>.
      <lb n="2"/><g ref="#stauros"/> Ἐπὶ
      Δοιπτουνο<supplied reason="lost">υ</supplied>
      <lb n="3"/><expan><abbr>βασιλ</abbr><ex>έως</ex></expan>
      εὐσεβοῦς, φιλοκέσαρος καὶ
      <lb n="4"/><unclear>φ</unclear>ιλορωμέου, 
      <unclear>ἀν</unclear>έστη ὁ 
      πύργος οὗ<lb n="5" break="no"/><supplied reason="lost">το</supplied><unclear>ς</unclear> 
      καὶ ἐπὶ ἐπάρχου 
      <lb n="6"/><supplied reason="lost">καὶ</supplied>
      <supplied reason="lost">ἐ</supplied><unclear>π</unclear>ὶ 
      τοῦ <expan><abbr>κόμ</abbr><ex>ητος</ex></expan> 
      Σπαδινου τοῦ 
      ἐ<lb n="7" break="no"/><supplied reason="lost">πὶ</supplied>
      <supplied reason="lost">τῆς</supplied> 
      <unclear>πι</unclear>νακίδος καὶ ἐπὶ
      πρώ<lb n="8" break="no"/><supplied reason="lost">του</supplied>
      <supplied reason="lost">ἐπὶ</supplied> 
      <supplied reason="lost">κόμ</supplied><unclear>η</unclear>τας 
      καὶ ἐπὶ τοῦ
      <lb n="9"/><supplied reason="lost">ἐπιμελετο</supplied>ῦ τοῦ
      ἐπὶ τοῦ ἔργου
      <lb n="10"/><supplied reason="lost">τοῦ
      <date><supplied reason="lost">μηνὸς</supplied>
      Γορπιαίου <num value="20">κ</num></date>· 
      οἰκ<supplied reason="lost">ο</supplied><lb n="11" break="no"/><supplied reason="lost">δομοῦντος</supplied> 
      <supplied reason="lost">τοῦ
      <unclear>μ</unclear>αγίστο<unclear>ρ</unclear><supplied reason="lost">ος</supplied>.
      <lb n="12"/><date><supplied reason="lost">Ἔτους</supplied> 
      <num value="7" type="fraction"><gap reason="lost" quantity="2" unit="character"/><supplied reason="lost">ψ</supplied></num></date>.
Apparatus criticus

2: Δοιπτούνου Kulakovsky 1891; Διουπτούνου Latyshev 1891b; Δουπτούνου Latyshev et alii
7-8: πρώ[του ἐπὶ κόμ]ητας (?) Vinogradov; πρω[τεύοντος ... ]τα Latyshev et alii
8: Σεαυάγου Latyshev
9-10: ΚΟΝ [...] ΑΓΙΕΤ. Θ Latyshev et alii; Οἰκ[τοβρίου ἰνδ(ικτιῶνος) ς´, ὡς δὲ Βόσπ](ορος) ἄγι, ἔτ(ους) θο[ψ´] Vinogradov 1998, Vinogradov 2007
11: om. alii.


Alpha, omega (?) Good fortune. In the reign of Tiberius Julius Douptounos, pious ruler, friend of Caesar and of the Romans, this tower was erected; and in the time of eparch Eisgoudios and comes secretary Spadinos, the head of comites Sauagas, and his superintendent of the works [...], on the 20th of the month Gorgipiaios, in the charge of master builder [...]. [In the year 7... (?)].



Latyshev's editio princeps and its reprint in IOSPE II had met with some critique by Kulakovsky, some of which, with regard to the name of king Douptounos and the uncertainty of date, was accepted by Latyshev, but some of it, e.g., with respect to the reading of the name Saugas, instead of Seaugas, was rejected. The editors of CIRB had access to Latyshev's archival materials (it is not stated where): in the apparatus, they simply refer to Latyshev. Finally, new readings of some obscure places in the inscription were offered by Yu.G. Vinogradov. He also offers a detailed analysis of all aspects of the inscription. We should only add that the tower mentioned in the text probably stood not far from where the monument had been found. It is, however, not archaeologically traceable (see Nadel 1977, 96, n. 62).

1. Two small signs on either side of the cross could be interpreted only as suspended alpha and omega — the stone cutter would appear to have tried to "christianise" the classical formula Ἀγαθῇ τύχῃ, similarly to other composers of Early Byzantine inscriptions who supplemented it with such Christian formulae as ζωή, ὑγία (IGLS III 305) or εἷς θεός (IGLS III 306; Bernand 1977, № 14w).

2, 4, 5, 7. On the names, see commentary to V 331.

3–4. In the late Vth century, the use of such titulature as "friend of Caesar and of the Romans, pious" retains its relevance: on the one hand, as traditional titles of Bosporan kings, and on the other, as expressions of loyalty to the empire. It is noteworthy that Douptounos places "pious" ahead of the rest (contrary to other 71 examples in CIRB): quite possibly this is not a mistake, but a deliberate move, justified in part by the Christian re-interpretation of the title. Building inscriptions with the formula ἀνέστη are unknown in the Northern Black Sea region and are also rare in Christian epigraphy, especially in this period (Studia Pontica III.1, 68 B6 (Neoclaudiopolis, 441 C.E.); SEG 29.423 (Aigion in Achaea, ca. 500 C.E.)).

7–8. The reconstruction ἐπὶ τοῦ πρώ[του ἐπὶ κόμ]η̣τας proposed by Yu.G. Vinogradov seems convincing next to the mention of comes-secretary, although the placement of the first comes after comes-secretary is a little strange, and so we should not rule out that another office was indicated by the ending -ητης.

10-11. The only part of Yu.G. Vinogradov's reconstruction, which I contest is the ending of lines 10 and 11. Militating against it are the hapax form Οἰκτοβρίου (and what would be an unparalleled phenomenon in Bosporus - double dating by the month), the absence of abbreviation in line 10, and finally, a very clear left vertical hasta in the last letter of that line, which must therefore be a rho (with slightly enlarged loop), and not an omicron. In addition, in the spot where an abbreviation is suspected, there are traces of a mu - thus, the word μαγίστορ suggests itself in line 10, a variant of a more common μαΐστωρ, attested in Anthologia graeca 1, 109 and Lefebvre 1907, № 196 (D. Feissel suggest to me in a private conversation that we should reconstruct a genetive absolute here). This term designated in Byzantium (whence its appearance in Bosporus) a master and boss of some entity (Trapp 1994, s.v.). Still, the mention of comes Sauagas supports the date of the late Vth century valid: on the one hand, prior to 491–492 C.E. — date of his death (see V 305), and on the other, apparently after 479 C.E. (and not after 478, because our inscription was carved in the month Gorgopiaios - the first of the year), where he is simply called comes (V 342).

12. The date might have occupied the centre of the last line, simmetrically with Ἀγαθῇ τύχῃ in line 1.



(cc) © 2015 Andrey Vinogradov (edition), Irene Polinskaya (translation)
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