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Last Updated on 25 Jun 2019

Author: Jan-Mathieu Carbon

CAPInv. 1897: th[ia]sos Thra[i]kon Herakleotan ton syn Karpoi


i. Geographical area Aegean Islands
ii. Region Kos
iii. Site Kos


i. Full name (original language) θ[ιά]σου Θρα[ι]κῶν Ἡρακλεωτᾶν τῶν σὺν
Κάρπῳ (IG XII.4 2811, lines 1-6)
ii. Full name (transliterated) th[ia]sos Thra[i]kon Herakleotan ton syn Karpoi


i. Date(s) 1 (?) AD - 100 (?)


ii. Name elements
Cultic:thiasos (θ[ιά]σου, lines 1-2)
Ethnic:Thraikes Herakleotai (Θρα[ι]κῶν Ἡρακλεωτᾶν, lines 2-4)
Personal:syn Karpoi (σὺν Κάρπῳ, lines 5-6)
iii. Descriptive terms thiasos (θ[ιά]σου, lines 1-2)
Note The term both refers specifically to a cultic group and, more widely, to a collectivity.


i. Source(s) IG XII.4 2811.
Note Bosnakis, Epigraphes 276 with ph.; SEG 58.879; Tsouli 2013: no. 645.
Cf. also Maillot 2013: no. 42.
Online Resources PHI: Epigraphes 276
i.a. Source type(s) Epigraphic source(s)
i.b. Document(s) typology & language/script Boundary stone, horos (cf. [ὅ]ρος, line 1). Greek.
i.c. Physical format(s) Stele of white marble.
ii. Source(s) provenance Kos, uncertain provenance in the city.


ii. References to buildings/objects On the analogy with other similar documents from Kos, the point of reference of the boundary stone (ὅρος, line 1) may be presumed to be to private burial plots for the group (thekaia).


i. Founder(s) Karpos (σὺν Κάρπῳ, lines 5-6)
This individual, mentioned in the name of the association, is either its founder or its leader. The name is common.
Gender Male
ii. Leadership See above.


iii. Worship See above IV.ii.
Deities worshipped Unknown.


ii. Interaction abroad The group appears to consist (or at least to have originally consisted) of individuals coming from Thrace and from a place called Herakleia, or perhaps from both: a place called Herakleia in Thrace. If the latter interpretation is correct, but which Herakleia was meant? There are several possibilities:

- Herakleia Pontike: a strong candidate, but which might be excluded because its name is often specified in the form: ... ἀπὸ Πόντου vel sim. On the basis of the presence of merchants from Herakleia Pontike on Rhodes--IG XII.1 158 and 963--D. Bosnakis ap. Hallof in IG also prefers this option.

- Perinthos: this city was renamed Herakleia, but only from 3rd-4th c. AD (see IACGP no. 618)

- Herakleia: an obscure site in the Propontis often misidentified with Neapolis (see IACGP p. 913)

- Herakleia Sintika (IACGP no. 549): this would take us rather far afield and into inland Thrace, near Macedonia.

Thus, none of the possibilities are completely compelling. A clearer interpretation of the ethnicity of these foreigners on Kos remains to be offered.


iii. Bibliography D. Bosnakis (2008), Anekdotes epigraphes tes Ko, Epitymvia mnemeia kai horoi, Athens.

S. Maillot (2013), 'Les associations à Cos', in P. Hamon and P. Fröhlich (eds.), Groupes et associations dans les cités grecques, Geneva: 199-226.

M.H. Hansen and T.H. Nielsen (eds.) (2004) An Inventory of Archaic and Classical Greek Poleis (IACGP), Oxford.

C. Tsouli, Ταφικὰ και επιτάφια μνημεία της Κω, diss. Athens 2013.


i. Private association Certain
Note Little is known about this association and its context. But simply on the basis of its name and by comparison with other highly similar boundary stones of the burial plots of associations near the city of Kos (more than 50 in number, cf. e.g. CAPI no. 1826), we can be confident that it constituted a private association.