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Studies in Greek epigraphy and history in honor of Stefen V. Tracy

 | 
Gary Reger
, 
Francis X. Ryan
, 
Timothy Francis Winters

1. Athens and Attica

Chapter 17. A Joint Dedication of Demetrios Poliorketes and Stratonike in the Delian Artemision

Elizabeth Kosmetatou

Note de l’auteur

This paper is the result of a long-standing interest in inventory lists which I first pursued in 1993-1994, during a post-doctoral fellowship at the Center for Epigraphical Studies of the Ohio State University, then under the directorship of Stephen V. Tracy. My thanks should therefore go first to the honoree of this volume for his invaluable advice as well as for our extensive discussions on Delos and its epigraphy. I also owe a debt of gratitude to Stella Miller-Collett for discussing with me Demetrios Poliorketes’ dedications and for generously sharing her vast knowledge of Macedonia and ancient jewellery. Wendy Watkins and Philip Forsythe should be gratefully acknowledged for their practical help and advice. A version of this paper was presented before the 2001-2002 Senior and Junior Fellows of the Harvard Center for Hellenic Studies whose input is much appreciated. In the end, I am responsible for any errors or flaws in this paper.

Texte intégral

  • 2 Cf. Naiden 1999, 135-149; Kosmetatou 2004a, 142. There is evidence that Herodotos may have used unp (...)
  • 3 These were probably the reasons behind the publication of annual stelai in Athens and Delos for ext (...)
  • 4 On inventories, financial administration, and record-keeping see Aleshire 1989, 103-112; Harris 199 (...)
  • 5 On Semos of Delos see FGrH, 396; Boshnakov 2004. On Polemon of Ilion see Preller 1838. On ancient e (...)

1There is little doubt that Greek sanctuaries consistently recorded votives that were kept in temple treasuries2. Yet archaeological evidence suggests that while these were surely booked as divine property on the sacred general ledgers, they were not necessarily destined for publication on stone for the benefit of the public. Of course, the priestly establishment who recorded and controlled temple inventories occasionally decided to make the most out of these valuable assets which, besides their obvious association with individual and state piety, also functioned as investment generating passive income3. Indeed, they could be liquidated and reinvested both in times of peace and crisis, or even when damage due to accident or the passage of time necessitated their kathairesis4. Additionally, recording and eventually copying them on stones that were set up in sacred space impressed visitors, if only by means of their sheer size. They also inspired periegets like Semos of Delos and Polemon of Ilion (3rd c. BC), as well as Hellenistic epigrammatists, who created virtual inventories in their works, real, but also imaginary on occasion, at least in the case of the latter5.

  • 6 The earliest surviving inventory of the Athenian Akropolis is IG, I3, 292, dated to 434 BC. For a v (...)
  • 7 The expense of producing an annual inventory list on stone was considerable judging from the fact t (...)
  • 8 Reger 1994, 15-47; Hamilton 2000, 7, n. 2, 12-13, who groups the Amphictyonic inventories into two (...)
  • 9 On the complex history of Delos in the early Hellenistic period see Buraselis 1982, 41-44, 60-67, 9 (...)

2Evidence suggests that it was the Athenians who set up these types of documents for the first time in the 430’s BC, perhaps following the completion of the temple known today as the Parthenon which also served as a major treasury6. The fact that the production of stone inventories could become a significant cost-driver in terms of materials, letter-cutters’wages, and installation, most likely led Athens to discontinue this practice at the end of the 4th or early 3rd centuries BC7. The intermittent “protector” of Delos in the Classical period, the city produced stone inventories of votives that were kept in the main Delian temples following a reorganization of its Amphictyonic administration in 367. These annual lists were set up on the Athenian Akropolis for a short period only, the latest surviving inscription dating to 341 BC. Their discontinuation may be related to the decline of Athenian domination over the Cyclades following the end of the Social War (357-355 BC)8. Delos resumed financing stone inventories immediately after Dioskourides, general of Antigonos Monophthalmos and Demetrios Poliorketes, awarded it nominal independence from the joint control of Athens and Andros in 314 BC. While this move was probably occasioned in celebration of the island’s newly-found self-determination, Delos nevertheless went through more turbulent times in the early third century: Antigonid domination over the Cyclades ended in 287 and Ptolemy I subjugated the islands in 2859.

3A study of the large corpus of Delian inventories reveals that the temple treasuries had been significantly augmented during the early 3rd century BC. Indeed the survival of several annual lists, especially of votives associated with the period of the island’s independence (314-167 BC), allows us to determine, when possible, when a certain item entered a treasury, as well as when, and, more rarely, how it disappeared. Absolute or approximate dates for the original dedication and/or kathairesis of votives are not as easy to deduce, although internal evidence from the text and its historical context sometimes allows it. Dedicatory inscriptions accompanying ex-votos are more often than not noted down when available, but little is known about the occasion for the dedication which may have been associated with an exceptional event in the life both of average and of famous dedicants. In this respect, a close reading of the proposed joint dedication of lavish gifts by Demetrios Poliorketes and his daughter to the Delian sanctuary associates these with important events in the struggle of the Diadochoi. Additionally it casts light on a number of votive types, including leg jewellery known in the sources as periskelides whose interpretation has remained somewhat elusive.

  • 10 Cf. Roux 1971, 61-71; Basch 1987, 345-352.
  • 11 Excluding the votives discussed in the article, both Demetrios and Stratonike offered several objec (...)
  • 12 Cf. for example a figurine of Apollo that was always kept in the Artemision: IG, XI, 2, 161, B, 60- (...)
  • 13 Each entry that follows is associated with a single dedicant. It is described in Greek and in Engli (...)

4Evidence suggests that of all Hellenistic kings the Antigonids were by far the greatest benefactors of Delos. Even though their exclusive control over the islands ceased in 287, they nevertheless remained involved in conflicts over Aegean supremacy in the ensuing decades, a fact that is reflected in their continuing patronage of the sanctuary. Numerous references to votives and chorus endowments in surviving inventory lists testify to the activities of the Antigonid royal family and their cronies on Delos. At least three major buildings which were sponsored by the Macedonian kings played an important role in defining sacred space and forging Greek collective memory. These included: a) the enigmatic Neorion, perhaps built by Demetrios Poliorketes in the early 3rd century or Antigonos II Gonatas after 255 BC; b) the Stoa of Antigonos, built by the latter king around that time; and c) a stoa built by Philip V10. Demetrios Poliorketes and his daughter Stratonike are arguably the most frequent Macedonian dedicants, but owing to lack or the fragmentary state of surviving key inventories, we may only date their dedications by approximation based on a combination of chronological data. Termini ante quem are offered by the dates of the dedicants’deaths in 283 and 254, respectively, as well as by the earliest inventories listing their votives11. Excepted from this rule is an identifiable group of jewellery which allows us to refine chronology and draw conclusions as to the occasion for its dedication. It was kept in the Artemision, the oldest and largest temple treasury throughout the period of Delian Independence, possibly to the 1st century BC. It is unclear whether it was part of a larger group, as votives by the same dedicants were not necessarily stored together, nor were they always housed in the sanctuary of the god to whom they were offered12. A catalogue of the specific votives representing Stratonike’s act of piety follows13:

5Demetrios and Stratonike’s Dedication Lot

6ἐνὀθνίωι Δημητρίου βασιλέως περιδέραια χρυσᾶ καὶ φιάλια καὶ περισκελίδες δύο καὶ ψίλιον, ἄστατα
(Wrapped?) in linen: king Demetrios’gold necklaces, two thighbands and an psilion (oriental bracelet)

7(H Art. B 117b)
Artemision Ba
IG
, XI, 2, 164, A, 74-5 (276 BC)
[περιδέραια τὰ Δημητρίου καὶ φιάλια καὶ περισκελίδα Στρ[ατονικης] ἀνἀθεμα
IG, XI, 2, 199, B, 51 (274 BC)
περιδέραια τὰ Δημητρίου καὶ φιἀλια καὶ περισκελίδα ἀνέθηκε Στρατονίκη, ἄστατα
IG, XI, 2, 203, 69-70 (269 BC)
Δημητρίου περιδέραια χρυσᾶ σὺν τοῖς φιαλίοις : ΔΔΔΙ:
στατα·περισκελίδες III φυκ(ί)α δύο [στ]ατα
IG, XI, 2, 223, B, 28 (262 BC)
** Δημητ[ρίου] περιδέραια χρυσᾶ·περισκελίδες καὶ ψίλιο[ν ἄστατα?]
a) IG, XI, 2, 261, 5
καὶ φυκία δύο ἄστατα, [Στρατονίκης ἀνάθεμα]
b) IG, XI, 2, 261, 6-7
**
[Δημητρίου βασιλέως περιδέραια χρυσ κα περισκελί]δες δύο κα ψ[ίλιον]

8Artemision Bb
IG,
XI, 2, 287, B, 20-1 (249 BC)
Δημητρίου βασιλέως περιδέραια χρυσά κα περισκελίδες δύο κα ψί<λ>ιον· καὶ φυκία δύο ἄστατα κα περισκελίδα Στρατονίκης άνάθεμα
ID, 296, B, 37 (243 or 242 BC)
βασιλως Δημητ[ρίου περιδέραια χρυσ κα περισκελίδες δύο κα ψίλιον· Στρατονίκης φυκ]ία δύο]
ID, 298, A, 141 (241 BC)
** β[α]σιλ[έω]ς Δη[μητρίου περιδέραια χρυσᾶ καί περισκελίδες δύο καὶ ψίλιον
· Στρατονίκης φυκία δύο]
ID, 313, fr. ab, 109 (235 or 234 BC)
** [Δημητρίου βασιλέως περιδέραια χρυσᾶ καὶ περι]σκελίδες δύ[ο καὶ ψίλιον· Στρατονίκης φυκία δύο]

(H Art. C 83+ 84+ 85)
Artemision C
ID
, 399, B, 139-140 (193 BC)
βασιλέως Δημητρίου περιδεριδ[ια χρυσά ---, ριθμòς τῶν] κ τῆς σειρᾶς κρεμαμένων μειζόνων ΔΔΙΙI τῶν λασσόνων Image 100000000000000C0000000C987A5618.jpgΔΙI έν ὀθονίωι περισκελίδες II [καψέλιον, στατα, έν όθονίωι]
ΙD, 407, 10-11 (ca. 190 BC)
**
στατα' βασιλέως Δημητρίου χ[ρυσᾶ περιδερίδα' ριθμòς τν κ τῆς σειρᾶς κρεμαμένων μειζόνων ΔΔI I I I τν λασσόνων Image 100000000000000C0000000C987A5618.jpg Δ I I I έν όθονίωι περισκελίδες I I I καὶ ψέλιον]
ID, 439, c, 5 (181 BC)
[περισκ]ελίδες [II καὶ ψέλιον, αστατα έν όθονίωι]
ID, 442, B, 200-201 (179 BC)
[σ]τατα' βασιλέως Δημητρίου [περιδέραια χρυσά έπί ταινιδίου' ἀριθμός τῶν έκ τῆς σει]ράς κρεμαμένων μειζόνων ΔΔ I I I I τῶν ἐλασσόνων Image 100000000000000C0000000C987A5618.jpg Δ I I I έν όθονίωι περισκελίδες I I I καὶ ψέλιον]
ID, 443, B, 124-125 (178 BC)
στατα' βασιλέως Δημη[τρίου χρυσά περιδέραια έ]πί ται[νιδίου' ἀριθμός τῶν έκ τῆς σειράς κρεμαμένων τῶν μειζόνων ΔΔ I I I I, τῶν ἐλασσόνων Image 100000000000000C0000000C987A5618.jpg Δ I I I περισκελίδες I I I καὶ ψέλιον, αστατα]
ID, 444, B, 44 (177 BC)
στατα' βασιλέω[ς Δημητρίου περιδέραια χρυσά έπί ταινιδ]ίου ἀριθμός τῶν έκ τῆς σειράς κρεμαμένων τώ[ν μειζόνων ΔΔ] ΙΙΙΙ, τῶν έλασσόν[ων Image 100000000000000C0000000C987A5618.jpg ΔI I περισκελ]ίδες I I κα<ὶ> ψέλιον, σ[τατα έν όθονίωι]
ID, 461, Bb, 32-33 (169 BC)
στατα' βασιλέως Δημητρίου περιδέραια χρυσά έπί ταινιδίου ἀριθμός τῶν έκ τῆς σειράς κρεμαμένων τῶν μειζόνων είκοσι τρία, τ(ώ)ν ελασσόνων έξήκοντ[α] δύο' περισκελίδες I I καὶ ψέλι]ον, στατ[α έν όθονίωι]
ID, 469, 22
[βασιλέως Δημητρίου περιδέραια χρυσά έ]πί ται[νιδίου
ἀριθμός τῶν έκ τῆς σειράς κρεμαμένων τῶν μειζόνων ΔΔ ΙΙΙΙ, τῶν έλασσόν[ων Image 100000000000000C0000000C987A5618.jpg Δ III]

9(H Art. D 23)
Artemision D
ID,
1409, Ba, 97-98 (post 166 BC)
περιδέραια χρυσᾶ έπί ται[νιδ]ίου βασιλέως Δημητρίου καὶ περισκελίδια τρία ἄστατα ἀριθμός δὲ [τῶν] τῆς σειράς κρεμαμένων μειζόνων ΔΔ I I
ID, 1443, B, col. I, 109 (ca. 145-141 BC)
** [περιδέραια χρυσᾶ] ἐπί [ταινιδί]oυ βασιλέως Δημητρίου καί περισκελίδια τρία ν τò ἒν [ψέλιον?]

  • 14 On ψέλια see Kosmetatou 2004a, 152-153, which reviews previous bibliography and considers the artif (...)

10There are various indications that this group of jewellery represents a single lot. It comprises: a) an unclear number of necklaces that are referred to as περιδέραια and περιδερίδια; b) two περισκελίδες (thighbands?); and c) an oriental-type bracelet (ψέλιον), all of which were clearly identified as belonging to Demetrios, and d) lastly two φυκία (rouge-pots) also referred to as φιάλια 14. They all appear together for the first time in the Artemision inventory of 276 BC (IG, XI, 2, 164), but their date of dedication is unclear.

  • 15 Tarn 1912, 350-351, n. 26.

11These votives have received the attention of scholarship. Tarn credited Stratonike as the dedicant of the entire group that included family heirlooms and the dedicatory inscription: περιδέραια τὰ Δημητρίου καί περισκελίδα ἀνέθηκε Στρατονίκη He further interpreted later references to two περισκελίδες as a variant and reference to the dedication of the anklets of Phila, Stratonike’s daughter on the occasion of her marriage to Antigonos Gonatas in 277 or 276 BC15. Taken together with the rest of her dedications on Delos, the specific votives reflect, according to Tarn, Stratonike’s presumed statement of independence from the Syrian court. Through it, the queen thus honored the memory of her father who died in the captivity imposed on him by her first husband Seleukos I in 283 BC. Tarn further took note of Stratonike’s use of the title βασίλισσα on several dedicatory inscriptions that accompanied her gifts, which was combined with emphasis on her being the daughter of king Demetrios and queen Phila and a Macedonian (Μακτα) without any reference to her second husband Antiochos I. He interpreted this as the queen’s presumed silent protest after Antiochos executed their eldest son Seleukos on unknown charges in 267/266 BC.

  • 16 Plut., Dem., 41; Athen., 535, 537; cf. Hdt. 8,113; Macurdy 1932, 27-28. Ameling, Bringman and Schmi (...)

12While accepting Tarn’s association of the group’s dedication with Stratonike’s activities on Delos, Macurdy offered a different interpretation of the provenance of the votives. Evidence from post-269 BC inventories clearly involves the dedication of a ψέλιον along with necklaces and two περισκελίδες. Citing Plutarch and Athenaios’references to Demetrios’extravagant lifestyle and particular love for the exotic, including lavish dress and specifically of eastern-style jewellery such as ψίλια, Macurdy suggests that Stratonike offered Demetrios’favorite jewellery to the Delian sanctuary16.

13Neither Tarn nor Macurdy had the benefit of consulting the surviving Delian corpus, which was still largely unpublished at the time, and could therefore not comment on the number, type, and nomenclature associated with the items comprising the dedication lot under study as it differs from inventory to inventory. Most importantly, they could not draw conclusions on the type of inscriptions that accompanied royal dedications. Indeed the picture appears complicated:

  1. The earliest inventories dating to 276 and 274 refer to several necklaces, rather than one as both Tarn and Macurdy suggest, and one περισκελίς.

  2. In 269 BC Stratonike’s lot involves necklaces, phialai, three περισκελίδες, and two φυκία.

  3. After 262 and until 234 the lot comprises necklaces, two περισκελίδες, a ψίλιον, and two φυκία.

  4. Following an unknown incident that caused the well-documented destruction of several precious votives in the Artemision and the Temple of Apollo between 224 and 196, Demetrios’ necklaces were damaged to the extent that they had to be kept in linen, while several pendants were detached and were carefully counted in the following years. This destruction may account for the use of the diminutive περιδερίδια in reference to Demetrios’ necklaces. The two disappear as of 193, but the two περισκελίδες and ψίλιον are preserved along with the damaged necklaces in linen and on a little band (ταινίδιον) as of 178.

  • 17 Kosmetatou 2004c, 225-246; Thompson 2005, 269-283.
  • 18 Macurdy 1932, 28.

14Is it then possible to draw any reasonable conclusions on the types of jewellery and the occasion for their dedication? To begin with, while the votives appear for the first time in an inventory of 276, this may not necessarily mean that they were offered to the sanctuary after Demetrios’ death. The ongoing debate on how complete ancient inventory lists were and how often votives were moved has by no means settled any of these difficult problems. Stratonike’s three silver phialai that are mentioned for the first time in the Artemision inventory of 276 BC have been plausibly associated with her marriage to Seleukos I sometime between 300 and 297 BC, because their dedicatory inscription did not include her title of βασίλισσα, and she is only referred to as Μακέτα (Macedonian), as was the habit at the time17. Similarly, the inscription that accompanied the votives under discussion here mentions Stratonike without any titles. On the other hand, the use of genitive (Δημητρίου βασιλέως) in connection with the jewellery is consistent with the wording associated with other royal dedications in Delian inventories: e. g. an ivy crown is thus identified as στέφανους χρυσοῦς κισσοῦ βασιλἐως Πτολέμαίου in IG, XI, 2, 203, B, 74 (269 BC). Last, but not least, the presence of three περισκελίδες does not necessarily suggest association with Persian attire, as Macurdy suggested, especially since the term is attested in Greece18. The group under discussion could therefore represent a joint dedication by father and daughter on a special occasion.

  • 19 See for example IG, XI, 2, 298, A, 145 (241 BC): καθετρ βασιλσσης Στρατονκης νάθημα óκν δραχμ(...)
  • 20 Demetrios Poliorketes was no exception as he appears in several inventories as the dedicant of at l (...)

15The above considerations lead us to a number of interesting conclusions: most of Stratonike’s other Delian votives seem to postdate this lot, and evidence from the votive catalogues shows that she normally mentioned the royal title she assumed after her marriage to Seleukos I and then to Antiochos I19. If this group was offered to the sanctuary in ca. 300-297, as is possible, it may therefore represent a joint father and daughter dedication. Nevertheless, Demetrios’love for extravagance notwithstanding, we would normally not expect a king to dedicate so much jewellery. Indeed, the piety of Hellenistic monarchs is attested in inventories, mostly in the form of the dedication of crowns or phialai that were associated with Deliades festival endowments20. Demetrios’s choice of what seem to be typically female votives, including instruments of makeup, may therefore be somehow related to an important occasion in his daughter’s life which necessitated her public act of piety.

  • 21 Kosmetatou 2004b, 18-36; Thompson 2005, 272-276; Bennett 2005, 91-96.

16There is little doubt that such an event could have only taken place when Stratonike was still unmarried and living under the protection of her father. Macedonian royal women enjoyed independent status that persisted among queens and princesses in the early Hellenistic period. They played a significant role in court from a very early age, and their public appearances were orchestrated in such a way as to boost their image and legitimize the power of their male royal relatives. The joint appearance of Ptolemy II and his daughter Berenice at the Isthmian chariot races of 263 and/or 261 BC, where the princess was victorious in the four-horse chariot races, was immortalized by Posidippus. The poet probably aimed at establishing Berenice, then in her late teens, as her father’s counterpart following the deaths of his queen Arsinoe II and of his mistress Bilistiche21. Similarly, Demetrios and young Stratonike’s joint Delian dedication probably aimed at putting the princess in the spotlight emphasizing a politically important event.

  • 22 Cf. Luc., Hist. conscr., 8; Them., Or., 27, 336c. For an analysis of “make-up” remains that were re (...)
  • 23 Themelis & Touratsoglou 1997, 210.
  • 24 Themelis & Touratsoglou 1997, 144-145, 183-185.
  • 25 Type I: B90, B97, B96+ B100; Type II:B35. Cf. Themelis & Touratsoglou 1997, 90-91, pl. 103. On the (...)

17The nature of Demetrios and Stratonike’s votives gives important clues as to the occasion for their dedication. First, we have typically feminine make-up instruments identified as φυκία. Φυκίον or φῦκος referred to orchil, a violet dye obtained as a pasty mass from seaweed that was used as rouge in antiquity22. Their presence in the Artemision as a set of two suggests that they were produced and used as a pair as we can also observe in female funerary contexts23. Small bowls and other make-up containers occur in pairs and were recovered from the debris of Tomb B of Derveni which has been dated to the late 4th early 3rd centuries BC24. The interchangeable use of the terms φίλια and φυκά in the inventories of the Artemision suggests that Stratonike’s rouge-pots may have been small containers, possibly jars with the body of a little phiale and a lid, probably belonging to Type I (“ink-pots”). A second type (Type II) comprises more elaborate containers, oblong in plan and oval in section. Both types were fitted with rectangular lids. Debris from Tomb B of Derveni have yielded bronze examples of Type II25.

  • 26 Περίκελίδες as bondage: Clemens Alex., Paedagogus, 2,12,123 (in connection with treatment for the m (...)
  • 27 IG, II2, 1382, 13 (405/404 BC?); IG, II2, 1408, 16-17 (398/397 BC); IG, II2, 1409, 9 (395/374BC); I (...)
  • 28 Harpok., Lexicon in decem oratores Atticos, 27.3; Plut., Mor., 142C; Suda (probably drawing from Ha (...)

18The presence of leg jewellery known as περισκελίδες among Demetrios and Stratonike’s proposed joint dedication may provide a further clue in establishing chronology. Περισκελίδες are among the less common dedications of jewellery in Greek sanctuaries. Ancient sources use the term in all likelihood to refer primarily, but not exclusively, to thighbands, occasionally also to slaves’bonds ((περισκελίδια)), as well as shoelaces in the Roman period26. While only one περισκελίς is known to have been offered to the sanctuary of Athena on the Athenian Akropolis27, at least five were dedicated to various Delian shrines. While the term περισκελίδίον may have been used to describe anklets, the two terms appear to have been interchangeable, especially at a later date28.

  • 29 Aleshire 1989, 177-248; cf. ID, 1409, B, 98. Alternatively, the term περισκελίδιον could also refer (...)
  • 30 Cf. Aleshire 1989, 237-8, citing Ar., Fr., 320, 11 Kock (= Fr. 332 Kassel-Austin); Philem., Fr., 81 (...)
  • 31 Harpok. Gramm., Lexicon in decem oratores Atticos, 27,3 (ἀμφιδέαι : εἰσι περισκελίδες τινες)]. Cf. (...)
  • 32 Fuchs 1963, pl. 14; cf. Hoffmann & Davidson 1965, 176-177, figs. 66a-b.

19The earliest mention of the term περισκελίς comes from an inventory of the Athenian Asklepieion (IG, II2, 1534A) dated to 274/3 BC, while three more references are known from ID, 1409 which is dated after 166 BC29. The weights of all these are unfortunately unspecified. Aleshire believes that they may have been similar to the shackles or braces (πέδαί), that were dedicated by a Praxagora to the Asklepieion on behalf of herself and her daughter and weighed 10 drs. Although she does not exclude the possibility that the περισκελίδια, and consequently also the περισκελίδια, were dedicated as thank-offerings for release from bondage or some foot ailment, Aleshire opts for their identification as anklets or bangles30. Arguing in favor of her interpretation is Harpokration’s report, according to which περισκελίδια could also serve as ἀμφιδέαί,, a term apparently used to indicate identical bracelets or anklets, thus dubbed in analogy to the περισκελίδες worn on the leg31. The Eros figurine from the Mahdia wreck (ca. 100 BC), who wears a single thighband and identical twisted snake-headed anklets, suggests that the latter usually came in pairs and did not differ from bracelets32.

  • 33 Hoffmann & Davidson 1965, 209 ff.; nos. 83-89; Miller 1993, 580; Naumann-Steckner 1998, 97; Pfromme (...)
  • 34 Amandry 1953, 118; Davidson 1966-1967, 94-95; Hoffmann & Davidson 1965, 6, 209-221; Greifenhagen 19 (...)
  • 35 Thighbands are worn by Eros and Aphrodite on South Italian vases. Cf. Trendall & Cambitoglou 1982, (...)

20Scholars have plausibly associated the term περισκελίς with extant chain thighbands, usually between 0.38 and 0.44 m. long, whose terminals are formed of lions’heads on either side of a Herakles knot. Although many “thighbands”, particularly those of doubtful provenance have since been proved to be forgeries or modern replicas33, securely dated examples have been discovered in the fourth-and third-century BC archaeological contexts in Macedonia, Thessaly, and Southern Italy34. This peculiar piece of jewellery was probably in vogue throughout the Hellenistic period. Surviving Late Hellenistic terracotta figurines show exactly how it was worn, on mid-thigh, above the knee, much like modern garters. To be sure, extant representations of thighband bearers are all associated with nude images of Aphrodite and Eros, but, according to temple inventory lists, unspecified gods, including perhaps Athena, Apollo, and Artemis, were the recipients of such gifts35.

  • 36 Miller 1979, 15.
  • 37 Trendall & Cambitoglou 1982, pl. 329, 223 (Type I); pl. 224 (Type II).

21In extant examples of περισκελίδες,, the style of the chain varied, from a simple open-link to the characteristically loop-in-loop technique. It was fastened to the clasps with a collar that could be plain or more elaborate, decorated with fine palmettes or twisted wire in spirals interspersed with granules. Similarly, the knot that constituted the jewel’s focal point could be made of a plain wire or heavily ornamented with filigreed vegetal motifs36. The thighbands that are illustrated on South Italian vases usually belong to two types: The first one a simple single or double chain made of rounded beads (indicated by painted white dots) ending in what may be a Heracles knot. Alternatively, thighbands could take the shape of a snake hoop, similar to another one worn by one of the figurines of Eros from the Mahdia wreck37.

22It is noteworthy that earlier careless excavation of intact burials contributed to the occasional confusion of thighbands with necklaces. In this respect, it is certainly to be hoped that future excavators will pay particular attention to the position of jewellery within grave complexes, thereby clarifying their types and uses. That confusion may have also occurred in antiquity, in which case it may account for the description of Demetrios and Stratonie’s thighbands as necklaces in the 276 and 274 inventories. Subsequent record-keepers were more careful in distinguishing and correctly identifying the objects. We may safely conclude then that two of the three περισκελίδες were chain thighbands, while the third one was a ψίλιον, most likely an oriental-style anklet. All three are described as περισκελίδια in the post-167 inventories, which may have been a reference to their fine workmanship rather than their use.

  • 38 Hoffmann 1972, 25-26, fig. 47,1, where previous bibliography can be found. Cf. also Papalexandrou 2 (...)
  • 39 Naumann-Steckner 1998, 97-98; cf. Dierichs 1988, 36, 40. Besides not discussing the significance of (...)

23Both the fact that ancient jewellers produced particularly elaborate leg jewellery that was made of precious materials, as well as its association with nude deities in iconography, make it difficult to imagine the occasion on which ancient women might wear περισκελίδες. However, it seems that they may have been part of the attire of young girls and occasionally of boys as early as the Archaic period, visible during dances for which their owners wore a short chiton, or a diaphanous garment. A peculiar accessory that could be interpreted as a thighband figures in an Archaic mitra which was found on Crete (Rethymnon?). It depicts two pairs of dancing youths facing in on either side of an epiphany. They wear a short-sleeved belted garment that barely covers their buttocks and is tucked between their legs. Each youth has a dot-rosette on their thighs, and two bands above their rear knee are held by two garter-like straps of unclear material and purpose. No other such scene survives from such an early period, and no known artifact bears any resemblance to this thigh-ornament38. Citing the representation of hetairai wearing thighbands on two 4th century BC drinking cups from Tarquinia, Naumann-Steckner suggested that this type of jewelry would not be considered as suitable grave goods for respectable ladies39. Nevertheless, thighbands have been discovered in female burials within family graves that belonged to nobility, a fact that can hardly suggest that their owners ever practiced prostitution.

  • 40 Austin 1973, F. 240, lines 23-27. The segment in question bears resemblance to the recognition scen (...)
  • 41 Trendall & Cambitoglou 1982, 645, no. 453, pl. 240, 9 (lebes gamikos).

24Evidence from the ancient literature may provide a solution: a fragmentary papyrus preserving substantial parts of a recognition scene from the lost work of an unknown representative of Attic New Comedy mentions a presumably Athenian girl who was exposed at birth in a chlamys together with an unknown number of necklaces (περιδέραια) and a single thighband (περισκελίς) 40. The wording of the text echoes the Delian inventory listing Demetrios’votives. The presence of this relatively rare type of leg jewellery among a newborn girl’s belongings would be associated then with her status as a maiden. Interestingly enough it features occasionally in wedding iconography on Southern Italian red-figured vase painting that is dated to the same period (4th c. BC)41.

  • 42 Oakley & Sinos 1993, 14-15.
  • 43 Hom., Il., 14; Od., 11,250.
  • 44 The bibliography is vast, but see Rehm 1994 for a discussion of the fusion of wedding and funerary (...)

25The following interpretation is offered: the dedication of thighbands, a type of jewellery that was typically associated with young girls, may be related to the rites of passage marking their entering married life. In this respect it may have played more or less the same role as the bridal dedication of a virgin’s belt to Artemis. Various personal objects are typically associated to a maiden’s giving up of her virgin status, including veils and locks of hair42. Belts were obvious references to the “loosening of the bride’s belt”, which was an allusion to sex, within or outside wedlock, already in Homer43. As wedding and death were typically conflated in antiquity to allude to the premature passing of maidens, it would be normal for the unknown New Comedy poet to include a περισκελίς among the infant clothes of a baby-girl’s περισκελίς when she was exposed to die soon after her birth44.

  • 45 Plut., Dem., 31, 3-4. Cf. Carney 2000, 171-172.

26In conclusion then, Demetrios Poliorketes and Stratonike may have made a joint dedication to Delian Artemis between 300 and 297 BC in commemoration of the princess’unexpected and most welcome wedding to Seleukos I of Syria. Following his defeat at Ipsos in 301 and the increasing difficulties in sustaining his position and realizing his ambitions, Demetrios had realized that he needed allies. Reacting to an alliance between Lysimachos and Ptolemy, Seleukos I offered him the muchhoped support in exchange for the hand of his daughter Stratonike at the time that Demetrios resided on Cyprus. The sources tell us that the wedding was celebrated with great pomp, festivities, and undoubtedly with the customary lavish offerings to any gods who would provide propitious signs for the bride’s passage and her father’s change of fortunes45.

Appendix. New Readings

271) IG, XI, 2, 223, B, 28 (262 BC)
Δημητ[ρίου] περιδέραια χρυσᾶ· περισκελίδες καί ψίλιο[ν ἂστατα?]
Roussel restored as ψίλια [---], which is impossible given the fact that Demetrios dedicated only one oriental bracelet. My reading of Dürrbach’s early squeeze revealed traces of the left part of an omikron.

282) IG, XI, 2, 261, 6-7
[Δημητρίου βασιλέως περιδέραια χρυσᾶ καί περισκελί]δες δύο καί ψ[ιλιον]
Roussel restores only [περισκελί]δες δύο καὶ ψ[ιλιον] when it is obvious that this is Demetrios’dedication lot. My proposed restoration is in analogy to IG, XI, 2, 287, B, 20-21 (249 BC).

293) ID, 298, A, 141 (241 BC)
β[α]σιλ[έω]ς Δη[μητρίου περιδέραια χρυσ καί περισκελίδες δύο καί ψιλιον· Στρατοίνκης φυκία δύο]
Stratonike’s dedication is restored in analogy with the wording of the specific master inventory reflected in IG, XI, 2, 287, B, 20-21 (249 BC).

304) ID, 313, fr. ab, 109 (235 or 234 BC)
[Δημητρίου βασιλέως περιδέραια χρυσ καί περι]σκελίδες δύ[ο καί ψιλιον· Στρατονίκης φυκία δύο]
Stratonike’s dedication is restored in analogy with the wording of the specific master inventory reflected in IG, XI, 2, 287, B, 20-21 (249 BC).

315) ID, 407, 10-1 (ca. 190 BC)
στατα· βασιλέως Δημητρίου χ[ρυσ περιδερίδια·· ριθμòς τν κ τς σειρς κρεμαμένων μειζόνων ΔΔIII· ν θονίωι περισκελίδες I I κα ψέλιον]
Roussel restores only στατα· βασιλέως Δημητρίου χ[ρυσ περιδερίδια, but the rest is possible in analogy to ID, 399, B, 139-140 (193 BC) and ID, 439, c, 5 (181 BC) that are based on the same master inventory.

326) ID, 1443, B, col. I, 109 (ca. 145-141 BC): [περιδέραια χρυσ] πί [ταινιδί]ου βασιλέως Δημητρίου κα περισκελίδια τρία τò ἓν [ψέλιον?]
While the fragmentary state of the inscription does not make it possible to determine how many more letters are missing, except by approximation, it is possible that there was a reference to the anklet recorded elsewhere as ψέλιον.

Notes

2 Cf. Naiden 1999, 135-149; Kosmetatou 2004a, 142. There is evidence that Herodotos may have used unpublished Delphic inventories when he discussed the Lydian king Kroisos’s (560-546 BC) dedications to Apollo (1, 46-55.92). A paper on Herodotos and his possible use of inventory lists as a source was presented ath the 2009 Manchester conference on “Inscriptions and their Uses in Ancient Literature” by the author.

3 These were probably the reasons behind the publication of annual stelai in Athens and Delos for extended periods of time. Cf. Vial 1984, 220-222; Linders 1988, 41; Hamilton 2000, 1-2. In the case of Athens issues related to freedom of information in a democratic context may also have come into play. Cf. Harris 1994, 213-226.

4 On inventories, financial administration, and record-keeping see Aleshire 1989, 103-112; Harris 1991,75-82; Dignas 2002, 235-244; Kosmetatou 2003, 35-45. On the completeness of inventories see review of literature and theories in Hamilton 2000, 29-31, 46. Evidence for massive damage suffered by several votives in the Delian Artemision and temple of Apollo between 224 and 196 BC is discussed in Kosmetatou 2009, forthcoming. Cf. ID, 338, B, fr. A, 15 (224 BC) and ID, 385, A, fr. A-e, 6-8, 12-22 (196 BC).

5 On Semos of Delos see FGrH, 396; Boshnakov 2004. On Polemon of Ilion see Preller 1838. On ancient epigrammatists and the transition of epigrams from stone to book see Bing 1995, 115-131; idem 1998, 21-43; Fantuzzi and Hunter 2004, 283-338.

6 The earliest surviving inventory of the Athenian Akropolis is IG, I3, 292, dated to 434 BC. For a valuable discussion of the phases of the inventories of the Athenian Akropolis, including a catalogue of the votives see Hamilton 2000, 247-348, who also reviews previous bibliography.

7 The expense of producing an annual inventory list on stone was considerable judging from the fact that the production of IG, XI, 2, 161 cost 100 drachms in 279 BC. Cf. Hamilton 2000, 2, n. 5; Kosmetatou 2002, 195.

8 Reger 1994, 15-47; Hamilton 2000, 7, n. 2, 12-13, who groups the Amphictyonic inventories into two chronological phases: from 367 to 355 and from 354 to 341 BC. A significant reorganization of the inventories occurs in 355 BC coinciding with the end of the Social War. Interestingly the Athenians set up inventories of additional sanctuaries under their control on their Akropolis in the fourth century before ceasing this practice altogether, most notably the treasure records of Artemis Brauronia (349/348-336/335 BC). Cf. Linders 1972; Cleland 2005.

9 On the complex history of Delos in the early Hellenistic period see Buraselis 1982, 41-44, 60-67, 93-94; Reger 1994, 16-18 citing previous bibliography. The earliest, now fragmentary, inventory of Early Independence is ID 135 dated to ca. 313 BC.

10 Cf. Roux 1971, 61-71; Basch 1987, 345-352.

11 Excluding the votives discussed in the article, both Demetrios and Stratonike offered several objects that were kept in Delian temples. Dedications by Demetrios: a) a gold laurel crown weighing 67+ drs. in the Artemision (IG, XI, 2, 161, B, 56 [279 BC]); b) a gold laurel crown weighing 88+ drs. in the Temple of Apollo (IG, XI, 2, 161, B, 85 [279 BC]). Dedications by Stratonike: a) three silver phialai on a base (IG, XI, 2, 199, B, 71 [274 BC]; b) two large silver craters on a stone base (IG, XI, 2, 161, B, 77 [279 BC]); c) a gold crown with which Apollo’s cult statue was crowned weighing 119+ drs. in the Temple of Apollo (IG, XI, 2, 287, B, 66 [250 BC]); d) three gold crowns with which the statues of the three Graces were crowned, weighing 30+ drs. in the temple of Apollo (IG, XI, 2, 287, B, 67 [250 BC]); e) a gold katheter necklace with precious stones weighing 45+ drs. in the temple of Apollo (IG, XI, 2, 287, B, 68-70 [250 BC]); f) a gold chain with 20 onyx shields weighing 430+ drs. in the temple of Apollo (IG, XI, 2, 287, B, 70 [250 BC]); g) two gold phialai with precious stones weighing 537+ drs. in the temple of Apollo (IG, XI, 2, 287, B, l. 69 [250 BC]); h) a gold ring with an amethyst stone in the Artemision (IG, XI, 2 287, B, 22 [250 BC]); i) a gilded sacrificial basket described as “delphic” in the temple of Apollo (ID, 1429, A, col. II, 13-15 [155/4? BC]). Cf. Ameling, Bringman and Schmidt-Dounas 1995, 189-190, 212-215.

12 Cf. for example a figurine of Apollo that was always kept in the Artemision: IG, XI, 2, 161, B, 60-61 (279 BC).

13 Each entry that follows is associated with a single dedicant. It is described in Greek and in English, but the Greek text is a composite based on the available epigraphical evidence which varies from inventory to inventory. Next, a list is given of relevant citations allowing us to determine the life-span of the votives in the Artemision treasury. H numbers in parenthesis correspond to Hamilton’s Artemision catalogue and phases (A, B, C, D). Because the wording of the inscriptions in question is important to the argument presented in this article, all Greek citations are given. A double asterisk preceding these signifies a new reading by this author that is discussed briefly in the appendix.

14 On ψέλια see Kosmetatou 2004a, 152-153, which reviews previous bibliography and considers the artifact’s oriental associations.

15 Tarn 1912, 350-351, n. 26.

16 Plut., Dem., 41; Athen., 535, 537; cf. Hdt. 8,113; Macurdy 1932, 27-28. Ameling, Bringman and Schmidt-Dounas 1995, 213, K Nr.: 158 [E] accept Macurdy’s interpretation.

17 Kosmetatou 2004c, 225-246; Thompson 2005, 269-283.

18 Macurdy 1932, 28.

19 See for example IG, XI, 2, 298, A, 145 (241 BC): καθετρ βασιλσσης Στρατονκης νάθημα óκν δραχμς HΔΠ I – I -. The use of the title βασίλισσα in reference to an unmarried princess appears to be Ptolemaic. See Thompson 2005, 276 discussing the evidence.

20 Demetrios Poliorketes was no exception as he appears in several inventories as the dedicant of at least one laurel crown. Cf. IG, XI, 2, 161, B, 56-57 (279 BC). The Lydian king Kroisos offered jewellery, among other votives, to the sanctuary of Apollo at Delphi, but Herodotos (1, 46-55, 92) makes it clear that most of it belonged to his wife. The dedication of jewellery by men is rare: a gold strepton on Delos was dedicated by Batesis, son of Babis and was stored in the Artemision. Cf. ID, I, 103, 65-67 (376/6 BC).

21 Kosmetatou 2004b, 18-36; Thompson 2005, 272-276; Bennett 2005, 91-96.

22 Cf. Luc., Hist. conscr., 8; Them., Or., 27, 336c. For an analysis of “make-up” remains that were recovered from Tomb B of Derveni see Themelis & Touratsoglou 1997, 91 (B109a-g and B 142). Cf. also Levidis 1994, 210-213, § 37.

23 Themelis & Touratsoglou 1997, 210.

24 Themelis & Touratsoglou 1997, 144-145, 183-185.

25 Type I: B90, B97, B96+ B100; Type II:B35. Cf. Themelis & Touratsoglou 1997, 90-91, pl. 103. On the typology of cosmetic-cases (?) see ΘAM 1979, 65, no. 218, pl. 36; Search 1980, 170, no. 136. Cosmetics box B35 from Derveni which belonged to Type II may have been a φυκίον. Its lid was fitted with a curved swinging handle and two keyholes, while its interior was partitioned into three compartments, in one of which a hardened mass of rose-pigment was preserved. It is unclear whether the other two compartments contained different substances that were used as “cosmetics”.

26 Περίκελίδες as bondage: Clemens Alex., Paedagogus, 2,12,123 (in connection with treatment for the mentally ill); Hesychios, s. v., entries 1178, 1192 (who prefers the term περίσκέλιον to describe thighbands). As shoelaces: Gregory of Nyssa, De vita Mosis, 2,189 (as part of a priest’s attire); Johannes Laurentius Lydus, De magistratibus populi Romani, 30,21; 32,1; cf. Suda, s. v.. περίσκέλιον, entry 1283.

27 IG, II2, 1382, 13 (405/404 BC?); IG, II2, 1408, 16-17 (398/397 BC); IG, II2, 1409, 9 (395/374BC); IG, II2, 1407, 38 (385/384 BC). Cf. Harris 1995, 157, V, 240, who interprets it, surely inaccurately, as a silver band around a silver drinking cup. Indeed, all sources seem to point to the three meanings of the term offered here. The περισκελίς listed in the Athenian inventory lists was more likely simply a thighband located next to a drinking horn, as indicated by the use of the verb πρόσεστίν in its original meaning (= to be present at hand as well; cf. also LSJ, s. v.).

28 Harpok., Lexicon in decem oratores Atticos, 27.3; Plut., Mor., 142C; Suda (probably drawing from Harpokration), s. v. ἀμφιδέας, entry 1715.

29 Aleshire 1989, 177-248; cf. ID, 1409, B, 98. Alternatively, the term περισκελίδιον could also refer to περισκελίδες that were worn by pre-teenage young girls.

30 Cf. Aleshire 1989, 237-8, citing Ar., Fr., 320, 11 Kock (= Fr. 332 Kassel-Austin); Philem., Fr., 81, Kock; Luc., Lex., 9. Also: Paris (?) 396-397, s. v. Periscelis. In defense of Aleshire’s interpretation is also the fact that temple treasuries do not seem to have been strictly organized, and proximity of two items, such as πέδαι and περισκελίς, occurring in an inventory does not necessarily indicate a relationship between them. One also wonders why two items belonging to the same type would be identified by separate names.

31 Harpok. Gramm., Lexicon in decem oratores Atticos, 27,3 (ἀμφιδέαι : εἰσι περισκελίδες τινες)]. Cf. also n. 3. Both figurines wear anklets, the ones on the Mahdia Eros being the more elaborate.

32 Fuchs 1963, pl. 14; cf. Hoffmann & Davidson 1965, 176-177, figs. 66a-b.

33 Hoffmann & Davidson 1965, 209 ff.; nos. 83-89; Miller 1993, 580; Naumann-Steckner 1998, 97; Pfrommer 1998, 80, n. 13.

34 Amandry 1953, 118; Davidson 1966-1967, 94-95; Hoffmann & Davidson 1965, 6, 209-221; Greifenhagen 1968, 697; Hoffmann 1969, 448; Miller 1979, 14-15, pl. 8a-e, listing various finds.

35 Thighbands are worn by Eros and Aphrodite on South Italian vases. Cf. Trendall & Cambitoglou 1982, 586, no. 248, pl. 224, 3 (bell crater); 592, nos. 299-300, pl. 227, 2, 6 (column crater); 607, no. 24, pl. 232, 8 (alabaster); 645, no. 453, pl. 240,9 (lebes gamikos); 869, no. 44, pl. 329 (barrel amphora) [Eros]. The earliest example in small-scale sculpture is an Aphrodite from a second-century BC burial context in Çanakkale. Cf. Naumann-Steckner 1998, 95-98, col. pl. 13. It is very similar to an Aphrodite from a Heidelberg private collection that may also date from the Hellenistic period. A bronze Eros from the Mahdia Shipwreck (100 BC) wears a thighband, as well as Cf. Fuchs 1975, pl. 14; Hoffmann and Davidson 1965, 6-7, fig. C; 9, fig. D; Miller 1979, 15, n. 75.

36 Miller 1979, 15.

37 Trendall & Cambitoglou 1982, pl. 329, 223 (Type I); pl. 224 (Type II).

38 Hoffmann 1972, 25-26, fig. 47,1, where previous bibliography can be found. Cf. also Papalexandrou 2005.

39 Naumann-Steckner 1998, 97-98; cf. Dierichs 1988, 36, 40. Besides not discussing the significance of the thighbands mentioned in temple inventory lists (cf. Miller-Collett 1998, 22-23), Naumann-Steckner does not cite Miller 1979, who showed that actual thighbands did exist and were probably used in her publication of a Thessalian example from a secure archaeological context. Miller also cites several well-dated specimens of funerary proveniences. There is no reason to suggest that thighbands may have been made of soft material (like modern garters) which disintegrated with time. Ancient epigraphical and literary sources specify that περισκελίδες,, at least in their use as thighbands or anklets, were made of precious materials. On the other hand, Roman shoelaces (also called περισκελίδες)) were probably made of leather.

40 Austin 1973, F. 240, lines 23-27. The segment in question bears resemblance to the recognition scene from Menander’s Περικειρομένη.

41 Trendall & Cambitoglou 1982, 645, no. 453, pl. 240, 9 (lebes gamikos).

42 Oakley & Sinos 1993, 14-15.

43 Hom., Il., 14; Od., 11,250.

44 The bibliography is vast, but see Rehm 1994 for a discussion of the fusion of wedding and funerary rituals in Greek tragedy.

45 Plut., Dem., 31, 3-4. Cf. Carney 2000, 171-172.

Auteur

Department of History, University of Illinois at Springfield, Springfield, Illinois, USA

© Ausonius Éditions, 2010

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