V 71. Cherson. Epitaph of Theodorakis, VIth century C.E.
H. 44.0, W. 46.0, Th. 16.0.
The bottom of this rectangular panel is broken off.
Place of Origin
Church No 19 ("Church with the reliquary"), near the southern wall.
1903, excavations of K.K. Kostsyushko-Valyuzhinich.
Institution and inventory
National Preserve of Tauric Chersonesos, 4134.
May 1999, August 2001, September 2002, September 2003, September 2004, September 2005, September 2006, September 2007.
On the front.
Lapidary. Alpha with broken crossbar, lunate epsilon and sigma, lambda with projecting right diagonal; abbreviating overline.
VIth century C.E.
L1. Latyshev 1905, 109, № 20.
<div type="edition" xml:lang="grc"> <ab> <lb n="1"/><g ref="#stauros"/> Ἔνθα κατ<lb n="2" break="no"/>άκιται ὁ τοῦ <roleName><expan><abbr>θ</abbr><ex>εο</ex><abbr>ῦ</abbr></expan></roleName> <lb n="3"/><expan><abbr>δοῦλ</abbr><ex>ος</ex></expan> Θεοδω<lb n="4" break="no"/>ράκις· ἐτελε<lb n="5" break="no"/>ύτησεν <date><expan><abbr>μη</abbr><ex>νὶ</ex></expan> <expan><abbr>Φε<lb n="6" break="no"/>υρ</abbr><ex>ουαρίῳ</ex></expan> <num value="3"><unclear>γ</unclear></num>, <expan><abbr>ἰνδ</abbr><ex>ικτιῶνος</ex></expan> <num value="15"><unclear>ει</unclear></num></date>. </ab> </div>
6: .´, ἰνδ(ικτιῶνος), .´ Latyshev
Here lies a servant of God, Theodorakis. Died February 3rd, in the 15th indiction.
1-3. On the formula, see IV.3.F.d. The formula (which includes "servant of God") and the physical characteristics (shape, script) of this inscription differ from other Early Byzantine epitaphs of Cherson, indicating a possible influence of some external tradition (see below).
3-4. The name Theodorakis (diminutive of Theodoros) is attested in a bilingual inscription CIL III 9534 (= Wessel 1989, № 117, Salona, V–VIth century; see also PLRE II, Euphrasius 2, where it is dated to the VI-VIIth century), which is also almost identical to ours in the formula used: Ἐνθάδε κατάκειται Θεοδωράκις, υἱὸς Εὐφρασίου κόμητος· ἐτελεύτησεν μη(νὶ) Αὐγούστῳ κθ´, ἰνδ(ικτιῶνος) ια´. Of particular note is the common abbreviation for the word μηνί. The name Theodorakis is also attested in Syrian Gerasa (Gerasa 344), among purely Syrian names.
4-5. On the formula, see Introduction IV.3.F.g.
Church 19 is variously dated (see commentary to V 104). The present monument, which clearly belongs with it, supports the widely accepted date of the VIth century. The tombstone's isolated position, away from traditional Chersonian necropoleis (see III.1.B.d), together with its distinct look, help to build a hypothesis of a burial of some visiting official (see commentary to V 329).