V 66. Cherson. Epitaph of John Polgos, 915 C.E.



Wall block. 



Dimensions (cm)

H. 22.0, W. 44.0, Th. 21.0.

Additional description

Cut along the top. 

Place of Origin


Find place

Sevastopol (Chersonesos). 

Find context

"Maiden" barrow, "church in church", late "minor" church, one of burial chambers, masonry of the wall, reused. 

Find circumstances

1907, survey of M.I. Skubetov. 

Modern location

Sevastopol, Crimea. 

Institution and inventory

National Preserve of Tauric Chersonesos, 3625. 


May 1999, August 2001, September 2002, September 2003, September 2004, September 2005, September 2006, September 2007. 

Epigraphic field


On the front. 


Lapidary; bouletée. Alpha with broken crossbar, lunate and diamond-shaped epsilon, the middle of mu does not reach the writing line. 

Letterheights (cm)






915 C.E. 

Dating criteria

Explicit date. 


L1. Latyshev 1908, 29–30, № 23. 


[--- Κεκοίμηται ὁ ἐν]
μακαρήᾳ τῇ μνήμι κὲ δοῦλος̣
τοῦ Θ(εο)ῦ [Ἰω]ά̣νου Πόλγος. Κεκί̣μη-
τε δὲ μηνὴ Ἠουλήου κθ´,
5ἔτος ͵ςυκγ´.



EpiDoc (XML)

<div type="edition" xml:lang="grc">
      <lb n="1"/><gap reason="lost" extent="unknown" unit="character" cert="low"/>
      <supplied reason="lost">Κεκοίμηται ὁ
      <lb n="2"/>μακαρήᾳ τῇ μνήμι
      κὲ δοῦλο<unclear>ς</unclear>
      <lb n="3"/>τοῦ
      <supplied reason="lost">Ἰω</supplied><unclear>ά</unclear>νου
      Πόλγος. Κεκ<unclear>ί</unclear>μη<lb n="4" break="no"/>τε δὲ <date>μηνὴ
      <rs type="month" ref="iul">Ἠουλήου</rs> <num value="29">κθ</num>,
      <lb n="5"/>ἔτος <num value="6423">ςυκγ</num></date>.
Apparatus criticus

1: Ἐνθάδε κατάκειται Latyshev
3: Κανουπόλιος (?) Latyshev
5: ἔτο(υ)ς Latyshev


[Fell asleep, who is in] blessed memory and a servant of God, John Polgos. He fell asleep on 29th of July, year 6423.



The text is carved between deeply cut horizontal lines. In lines 2-4, letter height is 1.3-1.7cm, while in line 5, it is 2.2-3.5cm. Latyshev represented the break between lines 3 and 4 incorrectly.

1-3. Latyshev's proposed restoration Ἐνθάδε κατάκειται is confirmed only by one example, which appears to be one of its kind outside the Northern Black Sea region - Beševliev 1964, № 249 (Odessos, 544 C.E.), and it is also much earlier than our tombstone. It seems more logical to restore the same verb at the beginning of the text as we find repeated in lines 3-4, and also by analogy with V 68 (cf. V 227). On the formula, see Introduction IV.3.F.c.

3. Latyshev restores a unique name Κανουπόλιος, which cannot be right, since there is a word divider in the form of colon before the name Polgos. An example of the name of a deceased (in fact, also John) in genitive instead of nominative is found in V 122 (Basman, X–XIth century C.E.). It is possible that the genitive form of the name is due to the influence of the preceding θεοῦ. Surname Polgos, which is clear on the stone, is otherwise unattested. On the correspondence between years "since Creation" and years Anno Domini in the Xth century, see commentary to V 11 - assuming the September start of the year in V 11, we can assume it here as well.

5. It is not necessary, as Latyshev does, to change the nominative form of the word 'year': such form is attested for the Middle Byzantine period: SEG 36.770 (776–777 C.E.), МАМА IV 38 (937–938 C.E.), Jerphanion 1936, № 186 (1060–1061 C.E), Thierry 1963, № аdd. 100 (Хth century).

The inscription was reused in the masonry of the second, later 'church in church' (XII–XIIIth century C.E.): Aynalov (1905, 120–121) reports that tombs were found only in the narthex of the later church, and belonged, judging by the style of masonry, to the second church. The date of the inscription, however, makes such a hypothesis impossible: the tombstone most likely belonged to a person buried in the first, that is, earlier, "church in church" (ca. VIth century; see Sorochan 2005, 819–820).



(cc) © 2015 Andrey Vinogradov (edition), Irene Polinskaya (translation)
You may download this inscription in EpiDoc XML. (This file should validate to the EpiDoc schema.)