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Last Updated on 21 Jun 2019

Author: Stella Skaltsa

CAPInv. 1659: U-WAM-027


i. Geographical area Western Asia Minor
ii. Region Mysia
iii. Site Pergamon


i. Association with unknown name U-WAM-027


i. Date(s) ii AD


iii. Descriptive terms σύστημα, systema
συνέδριον, synedrion
Note systema [a l. 8], bc l. 10
synedrion bc l. 5


i. Source(s) MDAI (A) 32 (1907), 293-6 no. 18 (Hadrianic times)
Note Hepding (1907: 294-5) compares the letterforms to those in I.Pergamon 374 and MDAI (A) 27 (1902), 78 no. 2, and he dates the inscription to Hadrianic times.
Online Resources MDAI (A) 32 (1907), 293-6 no. 18
i.a. Source type(s) Epigraphic source(s)
i.b. Document(s) typology & language/script Poorly preserved text setting out the entrance criteria to a group.
i.c. Physical format(s) Four fragments of a marble stele, partly preserved. The stele is 49 cm wide, whereas its height cannot be determined. Preserved height: 187 cm.
ii. Source(s) provenance Fragments a, c and d were found in the 'Kellerstadion' in the gymnasium of Pergamon


i. Archaeological remains The gymnasium at Pergamon lies near the Sanctuary of Hera on the south slopes of the Acropolis. Built probably in the reign of Eumenes II (197-159 BC) it extended over three terraces, encompassing an area of more than 20,000 sqm.


iii. Members μετέχοντες, metechontes (bc, ll. 7-8)
iv. Officials γραμματεύς, grammateus, d ll. 5-7

In d ll. 5 and 7 the grammateus is further specific as τὸ β´, to b, a phrase that could indicate that the office of the grammateus was annual and the current grammateus was holding his second tenure in office.

The participle ἐπι]μεληθέντων, epimelethenton (d l. 4) may refer to past epimeletes in office but it may also refer to ad hoc officials assuming specific duties. Due to the fragmentary state of preservation the precise nature of the epimeletai cannot be elucidated any further.
vi. Laws and rules Fragments bc of the stele (bc ll. 1-15) list the admission criteria for new members, which seems to fall into different categories. As the stele is mutilated, only a part of the admission critera has been preserved.
All categories underwent a δοκιμασία, dokimasia (bc ll. 4, 8), yet what seems to differ are the admission criteria as well as the entrance fee (εἰσηλύσιον, eiselysion, bc ll. 8-9):
- If more than one candidates are competing for one place, then the issue should be settled by vote (διαψηφοφορεῖσθαι, diapsephophoreisthai, bc ll. 6-7).
- If the father has been a member for at least five years, then his son must pay 50 denaria (bc ll. 7-10).
- If the son enter at the same time as the father or if the father is a member for less than five years, then the son must pay the fee of non-members, namely a fee paid by those whose father was not a member (bc, ll. 10-14). According to Hepding (1907: 295) this rule is attested for the first time in this inscription.

On an occasion, which cannot be determined due to the nature of the evidence, two thirds of members must be present (bc ll. 3-4).


i. Treasury/Funds Members paid an entrance fee (see


ii. Gender Men
Note See below IX.iii
iii. Age Children
Note The text refers to fathers (pateres, bc ll. 9, 10, 11, 13) and sons (υἱοὶ, hyioi, bc ll. 7). The age of the sons is further determined in line 11 as παῖδες, paides.
v. Relations In light of the terminology used to define the members, kinship relations are apparent (see above IX.iii)


ii. Meetings and events The group would convene to carry out the dokimasia (examination) of new members.


i. Comments The term systema normally designates the gerousia in Greek cities (Poland 1909: 158; Giannakopoulos 2008).
iii. Bibliography Giannakopoulos, N. (2008), Ο θεσμός της γερουσίας των ελληνικών πόλεων κατά τους ρωμαϊκούς χρόνους. Οργάνωση και λειτουργίες. Thessalonike.
Hepding, H. (1907), 'Die Inschriften. Die Arbeiten zu Pergamon 1904-1905', MDAI (A) 32: 241-377.


i. Private association Possible
Note Although the name of the group is not preserved, the admission criteria and the internal hierarchy (e.g. grammateus) point to a formally organized body. What seems to pose some problems is the identification of the group with corporate bodies that present a similar organization and structure. Hepding (1907: 294-5), taking into account the findspot of the inscription (gymnasium of Pergamon) and the absence of any mention to the neoi, argued that this text should be linked to the gerousia of Pergamon, something than can be further supported by the attestation of the terms synedrion and systema in the text. Both terms can designate the gerousia (Giannakopoulos 2008). If the text sets out the admission criteria for the Pergamene gerousia centered around the gymnasium, then we are dealing with an official body of the city of Pergamon and not with a private association.