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Last Updated on 21 May 2019

Author: Nikolaos Giannakopoulos

CAPInv. 651: geitosyne


i. Geographical area Western Asia Minor
ii. Region Bithynia
iii. Site Prusa ad Olympum


i. Full name (original language) γειτοσύνη (I.Prusa 50, l. 3)
ii. Full name (transliterated) geitosyne


i. Date(s) ii AD


iii. Descriptive terms γειτοσύνη, geitosyne
Note geitosyne: I.Prusa 50, l. 3


i. Source(s) I.Prusa 50 (ii AD)
Note See also:
Schwertheim 1978: 799-800 no. 11
SEG 28: 1062
BE 1979: 360
Online Resources I.Prusa 50
AGRW ID# 13322
i.a. Source type(s) Epigraphic source(s)
i.b. Document(s) typology & language/script Private dedication in Greek to Kybele as a fulfilment of a promise to a geitosyne.
i.c. Physical format(s) Stele with relief representing Kybele seating on a throne and a lion seating on an altar.
ii. Source(s) provenance The inscription was found at Tahtali köyü in the borders between Phrygia and Bithynia.


iii. Worship The relief of the stele suggests that that the deity worshipped was Kybele.
Deities worshipped Mother of Gods (Kybele)


i. Local interaction Epikrates’ dedication to Kybele (in light of the iconography) was a fulfillment of an earlier promise to the geitosyne. This suggests that the dedicator, presumably a member of the group, acted as a benefactor supporting the local cult of Kybele, perhaps in successfully pursuing the assumption of an office in the internal organization of the group (cf. the remarks of Corsten in I.Prusa 50, p. 75).


i. Comments No specific act of cult is attested but the iconography of the stele and the fact that the dedication resulted from a promise made to the geitosyne suggests a particular devotion to the Mother of Gods (Kybele) which may have been the patron-deity of the club (see Schwertheim 1978: 800; on cultic activities of neighborhood associatiosn cf. Fernoux 2004: 517).
iii. Bibliography Fernoux, H.-L. (2004), Notables et elites des cités de Bithynie aux époques hellénistique et romaine (IIIe siècle av. J.-C. – IIIe siècle ap. J.-C.). Essai d’histoire sociale. Lyon.
Poland, F. (1909), Geschichte des griechischen Vereinswesens. Leipzig.
Pont, A.-V. (2013), ‘Les groupes de voisinage dans les villes d’Asie Mineure occidentale à l’époque impériale’ in P. Fröhlich and P. Hamon (eds.), Groupes et associations dans les cités grecques (IIIe siècle av. J.-C. – IIe siècle apr. J.-C.), Genève: 129-56.
Schwertheim E. (1978), ‘Denkmäler zur Meterverehrung in Bithynien und Mysien’ in S. Şahin, E. Schwertheim and J. Wagner (eds.), Studien zur Religion und Kultur Kleinasiens. Festschrift für Friedrich Karl Dörner zum 65. Geburtstag am 28. Februar 1976. 2 vols, Leiden: 791-837.
Van Nijf, O. (1997), The Civic World of Professional Associations in the Roman East. Amsterdam.


i. Private association Possible
Note The term geitosyne may refer either to an urban neighborhood association (Poland 1909: 85; cf. Van Nijf 1997: 181-2 with further bibliography) or to a rural settlement and its residents (cf. Pont 2013: 133 with further bibliography). The finding spot of the inscription indicates that the geitosyne to which Epikrates had made a promise belongs to the second category. Thus, the private character of this group cannot be established.