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Last Updated on 24 May 2019

Author: Ursula Kunnert

CAPInv. 1782: hoi hetairoi kai Sabbatistai


i. Geographical area Eastern Asia Minor
ii. Region Cilicia
iii. Site Elaiussa Sebaste


i. Full name (original language) οἱ ἑταῖροι καὶ Σαββατισταί (GRA II no. 152, ll. 1-2)
ii. Full name (transliterated) hoi hetairoi kai Sabbatistai


i. Date(s) 27 BC - 14 AD


i. Name in other forms ἡ ἑταιρέα τῶν Σαμβατιστῶν (Poland B 450)
ii. Name elements
Theophoric:Sabbatistai, Sambatistai
iii. Descriptive terms ἑταιρεία, hetaireia
Note hetaireia: GRA II no. 152, l. 1


i. Source(s) GRA II no. 152 (27 BC - 14 AD) (with extended bibliography).
Note Other editions/commentaries:
AGRW 213
Hagel-Tomaschitz, Repertorium Kzb 9
Hicks 1891: 233-7, no. 16
OGIS 573
Hagel-Tomaschitz, Repertorium Kzb 8
Heberdey-Wilhelm, Reisen in Kilikien: 67
Hicks 1891: 237, no. 17
Online Resources AGRW ID#1519
i.a. Source type(s) Epigraphic source(s)
i.b. Document(s) typology & language/script Decree in Greek of the hetairoi and Sabbatists.
The type of the second Greek inscription is indeterminable, maybe a dedication to the god Aithibelos.
i.c. Physical format(s) Two inscriptions engraved on a rock
ii. Source(s) provenance Kızılbağ, in the territory of the ancient Elaiussa Sebaste


ii. References to buildings/objects The association prohibits any changes or demolition of stelai (l. 14) and anathemata (l. 7), which are in naoi (l. 12).


ii. Leadership The leader of the assembly is called συναγωγεύς, synagogeus (ll. 10-11).
iii. Members hetairoi
iv. Officials ὁ ἱερεύς, ho hiereus (l. 24), of the association is mentioned with his financial duties concerning the κατασκευή τοῦ τόπου, kataskeue tou topou (ll. 25-26, i.e. the preparation of the meeting-place).
vi. Laws and rules There are several regulations to protect dedications and decrees of the association from any damage or change. Potential fines are payable on equal terms (at 100 dr.) to the god Sabbatistes, the association, the city and to the ruler of the district.
Lines 22-26 mention an oath of the members to 'refrain from entertaining (non-members[?])' on a special day (probable the day of the meeting) (GRA II no. 152. Hicks 1891: 235).


i. Assemblies The inscription refers the decisions made at an assembly of the hetairoi and Sabbatists.
iii. Worship The hetairoi and Sabbatists gave the permission to erect a dedication to the god to everyone who wants to set it up. Furthermore they decided the fines for violating their set of regulations.
Deities worshipped Sabbatistes (Sambatistes), Aithibel(i)os
iv. Honours/Other activities A certain Protos put the motion to crown the leader of the gathering (the synagogeus), whose name Aithibelios refers to the god Aitheibelos in the second inscription. Therefore GRA II no. 152 suggests another possible interpretation of lines 9-11: the assembly shall decree that the synagogeus, whose name is not given, shall crown the god Aithibel(i)os.


i. Local interaction The recipients of potential fines are - beside the god Sabbatistes and the association itself - the city and the ruler of the district (the dynastes of nearby Elaiussa, cf. Hicks 1891: 235).


i. Comments The decision-making body are the hetairoi and Sabbatistai (ἔδοξε τοῖς ἑταίροις καὶ Σαββατισταῖς, edoxe tois hetairois kai Zabbatistais). Therefore M. Hengel and A.M. Schwemer thought that the organization consists of "'hetairoi', i.e. probably sympathizers in the wider sense, and 'Sabbatistai'" (Paul Between Damascus and Antioch: The Unknown Years, Louisville: 162). In a similar way Sokolowski (LSAM 80) differentiate between 'peut-être les novices et les membres réguliers'. But since the association is named hetaireia ton Sambatiston (ἑταιρέα τῶν Σαμβατιστῶν) the hetairoi and the Sabbatistai denote the same group of members.
For the identity of the god Sabbatistes (Sambatistes) and the related question, if the Sabbatistai are connected to the Jewish religion see the discussion of GRA II no. 152, who convincingly qualifies the Sabbatists as 'non-Judeans with no connection to Judean culture' (p. 429).
ii. Poland concordance Poland B449
Poland B450
iii. Bibliography Harland, P.A. (2014), Greco-Roman Associations: Texts, Translations, and Commentary, II. North Coast of the Black Sea, Asia Minor. Berlin, Boston.
Hicks, E.L. (1891), ‘Inscriptions from Western Cilicia’, JHS 12: 225-73, esp. 233-6.


i. Private association Certain
Note The term hetaireia refers to a private association (cf. CAPInv. GR-42). With a differentiated organization, a set of regulations and relevant activities the hetaireia has all the attributes of a private cultic association.
ii. Historical authenticity Certain