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Last Updated on 13 Jan 2019

Author: Mario C.D. Paganini

CAPInv. 1497: to koinon ton Traleon Thraikon kai ton paragenomenon apo tes Libyes Masylon syn autois proskeimenon kai ton Person kai Kyrenaion synstrateuomenon


i. Geographical area Egypt
ii. Nome Alexandria (L00)
iii. Site Alexandria


i. Full name (original language) τὸ κοινὸν τῶν Τραλέων [Θ]ραικῶν καὶ τῶν παραγενομένων [ἀ]πὸ τῆς Λιβύης Μάσυλ[ω]ν σύν αὐτοῖς προσκειμένων [καὶ τῶ]ν Περσῶν καὶ Κυρηναί[ω]ν συν<σ>τρατευομένων (Anc.Soc. 44: 151-161, ll. 1-4)
ii. Full name (transliterated) to koinon ton Traleon Thraikon kai ton paragenomenon apo tes Libyes Masylon syn autois proskeimenon kai ton Person kai Kyrenaion synstrateuomenon


i. Date(s) 221 - 204 BC


ii. Name elements
Ethnic:Thraikes, Thracians
Persai, Persians
Kyrenaioi, Cyrenaeans
apo Libyes, Libya
Professional:synstrateuomenoi, fellow soldiers, companions of army
Status-related:synstrateuomenoi, fellow soldiers, companions of army
iii. Descriptive terms κοινόν, koinon
Note koinon: Anc.Soc. 44: 151-161, ll. 2, 8.


i. Source(s) Anc.Soc. 44: 151-161, ll. 1-4 (dated to the reign of Ptolemy IV, 221-204 BC)
Note On a date under Ptolemy IV but before 210/9 BC or even before 217 BC, see Lanciers 2018.
i.a. Source type(s) Epigraphic source(s)
i.b. Document(s) typology & language/script Dedication of a statue of Megamedes by the koinon, in Greek.
i.c. Physical format(s) Statue base in pink granite.
ii. Source(s) provenance The stone was found in 2009, near the northern wall of the Boubasteion, uncovered under the old police station in Kom el-Dikka.


i. Treasury/Funds The koinon must have had common funds and a treasury, as they have the means to set up a statue and an inscription in honour of one of their benefactors.


ii. Gender Men
Note Supposing that the person honoured with a statue by the association was a member of the koinon (which seems very likely), this would be the only member for whom we have some information and he was a man. Given the military character of the association all the members were presumably men.
iii. Age Adults
Note On the basis of the military character of the association, it seem likely that all the members were adults.
iv. Status The koinon was formed by men in active service in the Ptolemaic army who came from four different ethno-geographical groups: Thracians from the city of Trales in the upper valley of the Nestos river (modern-day Bulgaria), Masyles from Libya who had been attached to the Thracians in their service, and their fellow soldiers Persians and Cyrenaens (these two groups may indicate regular soldiers enlisted from Egypt and Cyrene rather than mercenaries). The proud precision in indicating the exact geographical origin for the Thessalians and the Libyans points towards the fact that their ethnic origin was presumably genuine and their immigration to Egypt may have been reasonably recent. They may have been cavalrymen in service as royal guards at Alexandria.
The man honoured with a statue by the association was called Megamedes (it is very likely that he was a member of the association) and was a distinguished member of the Alexandrian community and with a position at Court or at any rate an appointment within the Ptolemaic administration and/or army (perhaps the royal horse-guard?), as he bore the title 'of the first friends of the King' (τῶν πρώτων φίλων, ton proton philon, l. 1) and was honoured by the koinon because of his merits towards the King, the Queen, their (future) children and grand-children, and their affairs, and towards the association ([ἀ]ρετῆς ἔνεκεν καὶ εὐν[οί]ας εἰς βασιλέα Πτολεμαῖον | καὶ βασίλισσαν Ἀρσινόην, θεοὺς Φιλοπάτορας, | καὶ τοὺς υἱοὺς αὐτῶν καὶ τοὺς υἱωνοὺς καὶ τὰ | πράγματα αὐτῶν καὶ τὸ κοινόν, aretes eneken kai eunoias eis basilea Ptolemaion kai basilissan Arsinoen, theous Philopatoras, kai tous hyious auton kai tous hyionous kai ta pragmata auton kai to koinon, ll. 5-8). On the interpretation of Megamedes' title 'of the first friends of the King' as indicating active involvement at Court as officer of the palace guards, see Lanciers 2018.
vi. Proper names and physical features Μεγαμήδης, τῶν πρώτων φίλων


iii. Bibliography A. Abd el-Fattah, M. Abd el-Maksoud, J.-Y. Carrez-Maratray (2014), 'Deux inscriptions grecques du Boubasteion d'Alexandrie', Anc.Soc. 44: 149-177.
E. Lanciers (2018), 'The emergence of the Ptolemaic honorific court titles', Anc.Soc. 48: 49-82.


i. Private association Certain
Note The term koinon, the setting up of a statue that points to the availability of funds and some durable intent, and the character of the group render certain its identification as a private association.