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Le Mort dans la ville

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Olivier Henry

Divine Kingship at the City Centre

Anne Marie Carstens

Résumé

When the Persian dynast and Karian King Maussollos died in 352/351 BC he was interred in the most incredible dynastic monument the world had ever seen, the eponymous ruler’s tomb to be, the Maussolleion at Halikarnassos. The Maussolleion was placed in the city centre of the newly planned residential city and capital of Hekatomnid Karia, and it was staged as the biggest of the sanctuaries of Halikarnassos. Surely, neither discretion nor modesty was involved in this endeavour. It was soon counted as one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, and already in the 18th century it was included as one of the canonical yet quite mysterious monuments of Classical Antiquity. This contribution focuses on the Maussolleion as both a dynastic tomb and as a sanctuary celebrating the Hekatomnid dynasty in an Ancient Near Eastern tradition of Divine Kingship. It explores local, regional and supra-regional contexts of similar phenomena in Antiquity. Furthermore, it also focuses on the Maussolleion as a building type, forming a vital part of aristocratic culture by offering a phenomenological view of rulers’ tombs and their role in urban planning.

Texte intégral

Ancestors, aristocracy, and the importance of dying well

  • 1 Carstens 2009, 37-38.

1It was important to die well. For the sovereign a good death, a proper funeral and an everlasting monument form the fundamental ingredients in keeping the position of the house, their territorial rights to the land, and the security of the people1.

  • 2 Crumley 2002, 39 et passim.

2The handling of the death of a sovereign is a vital part of the social memory of a society. Social memory may be described as a means by which information of who we were and are is transmitted among individuals and groups and from one generation to another. Not necessarily aware that they are doing so, individuals pass on their behaviors and attitudes to others especially through emotional and practical ties and in relationships among generations2. These ties are especially vibrant and fundamental, and they structure the self-representation and self-sense of aristocratic culture.

3There is a special link between aristocracy and ancestors. Aristocrats bridge the gap between past and present, and between this world and the divine. This mediating capability is what forms the core or the backbone of what enables us to define a diachronic, universal notion of aristocratic culture.

  • 3 On aristocratic culture and the importance of ancestry, Helms 1998.

4Origins and age are denoting legitimacy to power and prevalence. And ancient origin is vital for maintaining the indisputable status of the aristocracy. A successful (and well attested) method of establishing a dynasty was to build monumental royal tombs, which worked both by asserting territorial rights – the royal tomb overlooking the plain – and through claims of ancestry: We were always here3.

5When the Persian dynast and Karian King Maussollos died in 352/351 BC he was interred in the most incredible dynastic monument the world had ever seen, the eponymous ruler’s tomb, the Maussolleion at Halikarnassos.

  • 4 Root 1979.

6The Maussolleion was placed directly at the city centre of the newly planned residential city and capital of Hekatomnid Karia, and it was staged as the biggest of the sanctuaries of Halikarnassos. Surely, neither discretion nor modesty was involved in this endeavour. This was the result of a fascinating political programme, an iconography of ideology, to copy the words of Margaret Cool Root in describing the Achaemenid programmatic state art4.

  • 5 On Hekatomnid patronage in Karia and abroad, Carstens 2009, 111-119.
  • 6 I have elsewhere argued that this new language may be successfully read as a conscious creolization (...)

7Thus, the Maussolleion, the foundation of Halikarnassos as the dynastic capital, and the Hekatomnid endeavours in Karia – and perhaps even beyond –, were in my view results of political propaganda: a carefully planned and well-performed act of creating a dynasty (fig 1)5. Following an Ancient Near Eastern tradition of Divine Kingship, yet in new garments, now also making sense to a Hellenic – or even an internationally inclined –, protoHellenistic audience. Written in a new language, so to speak6.

The Maussolleion and the city plan of Halikarnassos

  • 7 Flensted-Jensen/Carstens 2004, with further references.
  • 8 Pedersen 2001/2002, 102-110.
  • 9 Pedersen 2010.
  • 10 Pedersen 2009.

8When Maussollos sometime in the 370s BC decided to move the residential centre of Karia from inland Mylasa to coastal Halikarnassos, the number of inhabitants was increased by means of synoikism, where several minor towns in the hinterlands of Halikarnassos were abandoned and the people moved to the new capital7. Here, there was an overwhelming need for a labour force to build the modern city, an impressive masterpiece of planning and engineering. Although there are only few and scattered remains of the Late Classical Halikarnassos left, city archaeology and intensive studies of the ancient remains in modern Bodrum houses and gardens have enabled us to reconstruct what the re-foundation of Halikarnassos implied8. A city plan was laid out according to a grid; a magnificent city wall, a so-called Geländemauer, was added9, and large temples, a satrapal palace and the dynast’s tomb were built10. Everything was reorganised according to a master plan that must have included or been based on political/centralized planning.

Fig. 1

Fig. 1

The so-called Ada from Priene, perhaps a part of large scaled Hekatomnid patronage in the Karian/Ionian borderland.

Trustees of the British Museum.

Fig. 2

Fig. 2

City plan of Halikarnassos a) Maussolleion. b). Palace of Maussollos. c) Sanctuary of Ares. d). Main street of Halikarnassos. e) Mylasa Gate. f) Myndos Gate. g) Pedasa Gate. m) Charidemos’ house, a late Roman domus. n) Salmakis Fountain. p) Theatre. q) Sanctuary of Demeter. r) Stadion

Pedersen 2010, fig. I

Fig. 3

Fig. 3

Model of the Maussolleion, the propylon and the terrace

Model by Aksel Sønderborg, The Museum of Ancient Art, Aarhus University

9The Maussolleion was built at the city centre, next to the agora (fig. 2). A 15 m wide procession street (the modern Turgutreis Caddesi follows its main route) crossed the city from the eastern Mylasa Gate, to the western Myndos Gate, and flanked the Maussolleion terrace to the north. A propylon building probably led from the agora to the Maussolleion precinct and the large terrace. Visitors to the monument entered the area from the south-east and approached the tomb as they would approach a temple.

10The Maussolleion was, at its core, a peristyle podium tomb, i.e. even in its unadorned architectonic language there was a strong reference to sacred architecture and the settings of sanctuaries: the tomb was built inside a temenos, approached via a gate-building. It alluded to a temple, and the King on High by its dimensions. Maussollos was buried in a sanctuary, inside a temple building.

11It is tempting to say that the world had never ever seen anything like this before (fig. 3). But it is of course not quite right, while all the same quite close to the case. As stated before, neither modesty nor discretion were among the cardinal virtues of the Hekatomnids.

12But I think that the entire complex of the Maussolleion, its position, layout and the sculptural program, was the result of deliberate choices made to encapsulate what a new Karianness was supposed to be. Placing the Hekatomnid dynasty in its rightful position. It is a monument stuffed with relations to political networks, alliances in this world and the divine. It rested on the past and pointed to the future.

Divine Kingship

13The Maussolleion was not just a dynastic tomb, it was also staged as and became a sanctuary celebrating the Hekatomnid dynasty in an Ancient Near Eastern tradition of Divine Kingship.

  • 11 Haas 1984, 181-182; van den Hout 1995, 546; Tinney 1998; 26-28.

14In the Ancient Near Eastern perception of royalty, the notion of Divine Kingship is explicitly expressed in iconography representing the king as the tutelary deity protecting and securing a land and a people, because of the mandate entrusted to him by both the God on High and by his subalterns11.

15In the Hittite enthronement ritual the king rests on the lap of the throne goddess. He is blessed by the gods, receives a new name as king, a new identity and he is transferred from the profane to the sacred world (fig. 4).

  • 12 Van den Hout 1994, 37-38; Haas 1994, 181-219; Beckman 2002.

16The Hittite kingdom is divine, and the king holds the office of high priest. He performs sacrifices, he is the chief mediator between men and gods; and exactly this capacity holds his power. The king is both a political and a sacred/divine figure; the one is inseparable from the other12. And therefore, when the king dies, cosmos is threatened. In order to secure a satisfying transition and avoid chaos among the survivors, a complicated royal funerary ritual, lasting 14 days, is carried out. Because this is what rituals do. They structure chaos.

  • 13 Schmidt 1970, 81-83; Boyce 1982, 112, 116 for a detailed discussion of the religious meaning of the (...)

17The blessing of the Great King is the central motif in the depictions of the king before the deity Ahuramazda and the fire altar, as it occurs on the relief of Darius’ tomb. That the Great King operates through the favour of Ahuramazda is clearly stated in the beginning of the inscription accompanying the reliefs (fig. 5). Safekeeping the empire, its territory, its people, stability and prosperity13.

18It is through the blessing and favour of Ahuramazda that Darius became king, and just as Darius is king because of this blessing, the omnipotent presence of Ahuramazda is evident by Darius being king. There is a reciprocal relationship between the two, a mutual dependency, as they owe their positions to each other. To worship Ahuramazda seems to have been, by extension, to acknowledge the power and virtue of the king.

Fig. 4

Fig. 4

The god Sharrumma, wearing a horned crown, escorts the Great King Tuthaliya IV. From the open-air sanctuary at Yazılıkaya

Seeher 1999, fig. 138

Fig. 5

Fig. 5

Tomb of Darius

Curtis/Tallis 2005, 15

19This relationship, however, does not make the Great King a god, — but nor is he a man, like other men. He stands between the gods and men; he is the appointed intercessor, the chief mediator between this world and the divine.

20This, exactly, is the principal grammar of the language of the relationship between god, sovereign and subalterns in the Near Eastern tradition of Divine Kingship.

Fig. 6

Fig. 6

Plan and section of the Maussolleion tomb chamber

Jeppesen 2000, fig. 17.i

The death of the divine king

21We have no records telling how and why Maussollos died. We do not know whether he was considered divine before his death, or if it was only at his funeral that “he became god,” as outlined in the old Hittite texts of the royal funerary rituals.

  • 14 See Carstens 2011, 121-123 with further references.

22But there is no reason to assume that he was not believed to be blessed by the gods as King of Karians, as high priest in the Zeus sanctuary in Milas and Labraunda, and that he acted as chief mediator between god and man14.

23In the planning of the new capital Halikarnassos, in the layout of this new magnificent Hekatomnid city, the position of the dynastic tomb – the staging of the Maussolleion as the greatest temple in the city, in the most prominent position, just on the line of the procession street – is the most magnificent testimony of a conscious and outspoken programmatic state art.

When Maussollos died

24We do not know what actually happened when Maussollos died; but the funeral must have been impressive.

  • 15 The only source describing the actual funeral of Maussollos is found in the work of Aulus Gellius, (...)

25When Maussollos died he was, from what we know, however from a dubious source, cremated15. It is unknown where this cremation took place, maybe on the Maussolleion terrace next to the monument itself as the first of the sequence of events of the funeral.

26His remains were placed in the tomb chamber, presumably along with precious equipment, as we know it from other Anatolian dynastic tombs of Archaic and early Classical Lydia as well as Early Iron Age Phrygia or Cyprus. The tomb chamber was closed, perhaps by a small closing block between the main chamber and the anteroom and by closing the double marble doors (fig. 6). Then – perhaps – a person guarding the tomb of Maussollos was buried in a sarcophagus in the corridor and finally the plug- block was lowered down and placed in position. But in fact, we do not know whether the remains of a marble sarcophagus found during the Danish excavations of the Maussolleion 1966-1977 once stood in that corridor or somewhere else in the Maussolleion tomb complex.

27This series of events must have included some sort of procession placing the equipment in the tomb chamber, as well as the urn or the box with the remains of Maussollos.

28And surely placing the enormous plug-block must have created some commotion (fig. 6).

  • 16 Højlund/Aaris Sørensen 1981; Carstens forthcoming b.

29What happened next was the performance of a huge raw meat sacrifice. The chosen animals, at least 5 oxen, 25 sheep/goats, 8 lambs/kids, 3 cocks, 10 hens, 1 chicken and 8 pigeons, may have been kept on the terrace in a fence or tied together, and the slaughtering and butchering of the animals could have been performed as part of the theatrical performance of the funeral16. Preparing and arranging the meat must have formed part of the funeral feast, a tumultuous event including considerable labour, and probably watched by an audience. I think this was done as a ritual act of feeding the god, the divine ruler Maussollos in order to please him and to ensure his continuant protection.

30Thus, Maussollos was buried in a manner proper for a divine king. This was to be understood and respected by a diverse audience: the gods, his allies participating in the funeral feasting, the dynastic network of peers (friends and opponents alike), and his subalterns. A dynastic funeral was always a political event.

The everlasting monument

31The construction of a past, of a history, of dynastic traditions, is crucial in the efforts to establish a new dynastic house. It is by referring to this past that the dynasty obtains influence and indisputable political weight. History or historical references to a mythological past serve a legitimizing function. The living uses the dead as resource, vision, and representation.

32The dynastic tomb is always a monument of power; it is a central focus for the conservation of the aristocracy, and is a political monument. Thus, the building of the Maussolleion was an important element in the inauguration of a new world order, a new Karian rule. It was an unusual building, grandiose, lavishly decorated, planned and executed by the finest craftsmen in the best materials. It was staged on a large terrace as a sanctuary of the dynasty and it followed, or paid respect to, well- established concepts of the dynast’s tomb.

  • 17 This is detailed in Carstens 2009, 65-74; Carstens forthcoming a.

33In the Maussolleion, many facets of the new dynasty were incorporated: the local ancestry, the Persian dresses of the ancestral portraits, the Hellenic motifs, and inspiration from Lykian podium tombs17.

  • 18 See Jeppesen 1994.

34If the Maussolleion is only perceived as a piece of Greek architecture and sculpture it seems unredeemed. However, placed in a broader Anatolian perspective, it unfolds itself into numerous facets: it was not (only) placed in the city centre because Maussollos was the founding father of the new capital18, but because it was the foremost sanctuary of the new Karian dynasty. The cult of Maussollos was intended to unite the Karians, and to confirm the Hekatomnids as dynasts.

The death of the sovereign – the Maussolleion as idea

  • 19 Davies 2004, 49-51.

35The Maussolleion was soon counted as one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, and it was already in the 18th century included as one of the canonical yet quite mysterious monuments of Classical Antiquity. But the mausoleum as a building type and the ruler’s tomb as a political phenomenon was adopted already by Augustus in impressive scale with the Mausoleum of Augustus, already planned early in his reign, as part of an ideological program, as a definite political monument19. Perhaps resting on a mixture of both Egyptian, Etruscan, and, I think, also Karian foundations. Since Maussollos created his own tomb and cult place, so ostentatiously, it has formed the model of dynastic self-representation, remembering that a dynasty is a house, its peer, its people and its land.

  • 20 Wilson 2007.

36The construction of the memorial tomb, the Anıtkabir, the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, took nine years, from October 1944 to September 1953. It was built on the Rasattepe in central Ankara, clearly visible from all parts of the city. And it was a project inaugurated because the Turkish republic needed a place to celebrate the state20. The complex consists of four parts: the ‘Hittite’ road of Lions, the ceremonial plaza, with its kilim floors, the hall of honour in Seljuk and Ottoman style, and the peace park, the paradeisos, representing Turkey in the world.

37This mausoleum, as well as the tomb of Lenin, Mao and Che Guavara, are all responses to the soundboard of divine kinship, the keeping of the house or the constitution of the modern state, the territorial rights and the security of the people.

Bibliographie

Beckman, G. 2002, “The Religion of the Hittites”, in D.C. Hopkins (ed.), Across the Anatolian Plateau. Readings in the archaeology of ancient Turkey, Boston, MA, 2002, 133-143.

Boyce, M. 1982, A History of Zoroastrianism II, Leyde, 1982.

Carstens, A.M. 2009, Karia and the Hekatomnids. The creation of a dynasty, Oxford, 2009.

Carstens, A.M. 2011, “Achaemenids in Labraunda. A case of imperial presence in a rural sanctuary in Karia”, in L. Karlsson / S. Carlsson (eds.), Labraunda and Karia. Proceedings of the International Symposium Commemorationg Sixty Years of Swedish Archaeological Work in Labraunda, Uppsala, 2011, 121-131.

Carstens, A.M. forthcoming a, “Karian Identity – A Game of Opportunistic Politics or a Case of Creolization?”, in O. Henry (ed.), 4th century Karia [Varia Anatolica XXVIII], Istanbul.

Carstens, A.M. forthcoming b, “Bridging the boundary: the sacrificial deposit of the Maussolleion of Halikarnassos and its symbolic language”, in C. Draycott / M. Stamatopoulou (eds.), Dining & Death: Interdisciplinary perspectives on the ‘funerary banquet’ in ancient art, burial and belief, Louvain.

Crumley, C.L. 2002, “Exploring venues of social memory”, in J.J. Climo / M.G. Cattell (eds.), Memory and History: Anthropological Perspectives, Lanham, 2002, 39-52.

Curtis, J. / Tallis, N. 2005, Forgotten Empire. The world of Ancient Persia, Londres, 2005.

Davies, P.J.E. 2004, Death and the emperor: Roman imperial funerary monuments from Augustus to Marcus Aurelius, Austin, 2004.

Flensted-Jensen, P. / Carstens, A.M. 2004, “Halikarnassos and the Lelegians”, in S. Isager / P. Pedersen (eds.), The Salmakis Inscription and Hellenistic Halikarnassos [Halicarnassian Studies 4], Odense, 109-123.

Haas, V. 1984, Geschichte der hethitischen Religion, Leyde, 1994. Helms.

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Højlund, F. / Aaris-Sørensen, K. 1981, The Maussolleion at Halikarnassos. Reports of the Danish Archaeological Expedition to Bodrum, volume 1: The Sacrificial Deposit, Højbjerg, 1981.

Jeppesen, K. 1994, “Founder cult and Mausssolleion”, in J. Isager (ed.), Hekatomnid Caria and the Ionian Renaissance [Halicarnassian Studies I], 1994, 73-84.

Jeppesen, K. 2000, The Maussolleion at Halikarnassos. Reports of the Danish Archaeological Expedition to Bodrum, volume 4: The Quadrangle. The Foundations of the Maussolleion and its Sepulchral Compartments, Højbjerg, 2000.

Pedersen, P. 2001/2002, “Reflections on the Ionian Renaissance in Greek Architecture and its Historical Background”, Hephaistos 19-20, 2001/2002, 97-130.

Pedersen, P. 2009, “The Palace of Maussollos in Halikarnassos and Some Thoughts on Its Karian and International Context”, in F. Rumscheid (ed.), Die Karer und die Anderen [Internationales Kolloquium an der Freien Universität Berlin 13. Bis 15. Oktober 2005], Bonn, 2009, 315-348.

Pedersen, P. 2010, “The city wall of Halikarnassos”, in R. van Bremen / J.-M. Carbon (eds.), Hellenistic Karia, Bordeaux, 269-316.

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Wilson, C.A. 2007, “The persistence of the Turkish nation in the mausoleum of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk”, in M. Young / E. Zuelow / A. Sturm (eds.), Nationalism in a global era: the persistence of nations, Abingdon, 2007, 82-103.

Notes

1 Carstens 2009, 37-38.

2 Crumley 2002, 39 et passim.

3 On aristocratic culture and the importance of ancestry, Helms 1998.

4 Root 1979.

5 On Hekatomnid patronage in Karia and abroad, Carstens 2009, 111-119.

6 I have elsewhere argued that this new language may be successfully read as a conscious creolization process, Carstens 2009, 121-126; Carstens forthcoming a.

7 Flensted-Jensen/Carstens 2004, with further references.

8 Pedersen 2001/2002, 102-110.

9 Pedersen 2010.

10 Pedersen 2009.

11 Haas 1984, 181-182; van den Hout 1995, 546; Tinney 1998; 26-28.

12 Van den Hout 1994, 37-38; Haas 1994, 181-219; Beckman 2002.

13 Schmidt 1970, 81-83; Boyce 1982, 112, 116 for a detailed discussion of the religious meaning of the relief; Root 1979, 153-161.

14 See Carstens 2011, 121-123 with further references.

15 The only source describing the actual funeral of Maussollos is found in the work of Aulus Gellius, Noctes Atticae, 10.18, written in the 2nd century AD.

16 Højlund/Aaris Sørensen 1981; Carstens forthcoming b.

17 This is detailed in Carstens 2009, 65-74; Carstens forthcoming a.

18 See Jeppesen 1994.

19 Davies 2004, 49-51.

20 Wilson 2007.

Table des illustrations

Titre Fig. 1
Légende The so-called Ada from Priene, perhaps a part of large scaled Hekatomnid patronage in the Karian/Ionian borderland.
Crédits Trustees of the British Museum.
URL http://books.openedition.org/ifeagd/docannexe/image/2405/img-1.jpg
Fichier image/jpeg, 100k
Titre Fig. 2
Légende City plan of Halikarnassos a) Maussolleion. b). Palace of Maussollos. c) Sanctuary of Ares. d). Main street of Halikarnassos. e) Mylasa Gate. f) Myndos Gate. g) Pedasa Gate. m) Charidemos’ house, a late Roman domus. n) Salmakis Fountain. p) Theatre. q) Sanctuary of Demeter. r) Stadion
Crédits Pedersen 2010, fig. I
URL http://books.openedition.org/ifeagd/docannexe/image/2405/img-2.png
Fichier image/png, 284k
Titre Fig. 3
Légende Model of the Maussolleion, the propylon and the terrace
Crédits Model by Aksel Sønderborg, The Museum of Ancient Art, Aarhus University
URL http://books.openedition.org/ifeagd/docannexe/image/2405/img-3.png
Fichier image/png, 514k
Titre Fig. 4
Légende The god Sharrumma, wearing a horned crown, escorts the Great King Tuthaliya IV. From the open-air sanctuary at Yazılıkaya
Crédits Seeher 1999, fig. 138
URL http://books.openedition.org/ifeagd/docannexe/image/2405/img-4.jpg
Fichier image/jpeg, 168k
Titre Fig. 5
Légende Tomb of Darius
Crédits Curtis/Tallis 2005, 15
URL http://books.openedition.org/ifeagd/docannexe/image/2405/img-5.jpg
Fichier image/jpeg, 228k
Titre Fig. 6
Légende Plan and section of the Maussolleion tomb chamber
Crédits Jeppesen 2000, fig. 17.i
URL http://books.openedition.org/ifeagd/docannexe/image/2405/img-6.jpg
Fichier image/jpeg, 181k

Auteur

University of Southern Denmark
Institut of History – Campusvej 55
DK-5230 Odense M
kafcarstens@yahoo.dk

© Institut français d’études anatoliennes, 2013

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