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Last Updated on 10 Jul 2019

Author: Fabienne Marchand

CAPInv. 984: he hiera gerousia tou Soteros [A]sklepiou


i. Geographical area Central Greece
ii. Region Boiotia
iii. Site Hyettos


i. Full name (original language) ἡ ἱερὰ γερουσία τοῦ Σωτῆρος [Ἀ]σκληπιοῦ (IG VII 2808, ll. 2-3)
ii. Full name (transliterated) he hiera gerousia tou Soteros [A]sklepiou


i. Date(s) 212 - m. iii AD


ii. Name elements
Theophoric:Asklepios Soter
iii. Descriptive terms γερουσία, gerousia
Note gerousia: IG VII 2808, l. 2


i. Source(s) IG VII 2808 (212 - m. iii AD)
Note See also:
Syll.2 740
Syll.3 1112
Oliver 1941: 143-6, no. 33, with picture (SEG 26: 527)
Roesch 1982: 153-61, no. 21 (SEG 32: 459)
Online Resources IG VII 2808
SEG 32: 459
i.a. Source type(s) Epigraphic source(s)
i.b. Document(s) typology & language/script A Greek inscription relating the decision by the gerousia to erect a stele recording (face A) gifts of land to the association by two euergetai, and (face B) regulations for the replacement of deceased members.
i.c. Physical format(s) Stele of white marble broken at the bottom. The stone is inscribed at the front (face A) and on the right side (face B).
ii. Source(s) provenance In the left hand side of the door of the church of Haghios Nikolaos south of the acropolis of ancient Hyettos.


ii. Leadership A president (προστ[άτ]ης, prost[at]es) is mentioned in ll. 32-33.
vi. Laws and rules It appears that the gerousia had a fixed number of members, and that the recruitment was taking place within the same family. Three different scenarii are envisaged to replace deceased members (these regulations all all written on the face B of the stone):
1) if the deceased has several sons, the gerousia picks one of them. This seems to imply that if a member has only one son, the son becomes automatically a member;
2) if the deceased members does not have any sons, the gerousia chooses a close relative. In that case a fee of 50 denarii is expected from the new member.
3) if the deceased member has no sons nor close relatives, the gerousia chooses a new member who must be subjected to a process of dokimasia (δοκιμα[σθ]ῇ, dokima[sth]ei, face B ll. 9-10), and immediately pay a fee of 100 denarii to the gerousia (face B ll. 10-11: εἰ[σ]φερέτω εὐθέως, ei[s]phetero eutheos).


ii. Realty The stele was to be erected ἐν κοινῷ, en koinoi indicating that the association owned some common grounds and/or a meeting place.
One euergetes, Iulius Aristeas, gives to the association in the name of the god (i.e. Asklepios Soter) a small land measuring 8 plethra at a place called 'pig' (τόπῳ συΐ, topoi sui) (ll. 5-18). All four neighbours of the land are mentioned. The gerousia is expected to work the land, and to be the rightful proprietor for ever.
Another euergetes, Aurelius Menekrates Eratonianos gives a vineyard measuring 6 plethra to the association for the same reason as the other benefactor, at a place called Hippobotos (ll. 19-31). All four neighbours are also mentioned.
iii. Income Income will be generated, among others, from the cultivation of the lands donated to the gerousia, and presumably from other lands.


i. Number On top of the president 8 members are listed. The stone is broken at the bottom, and one must assume that the list of members is not complete.
ii. Gender Men
Note No mention of women at any point, even in the regulations for the replacement of deceased members (see below). It appears that the gerousia was strictly reserved to men, and that membership was for life.
iii. Age Adults
Note Some adults at least are involved.
iv. Status All members are Aurelii.
v. Relations Some clear family links are displayed between members, such as a pair of brothers (ll. 34-35), and probably a father and son (ll. 35-6). Onomastic data hint that three generations of the same family were members.


i. Assemblies The formula [ἔ]δοξεν τῇ ἱερᾷ γερουσίᾳ τοῦ Σωτῆρος [Ἀ]σκληπιοῦ, [e]doxen tei hierai gerousiai tou Soter [A]sklepios (ll. 2-3) points to formal assemblies and decisions taken by the association.
iv. Honours/Other activities Honorific stele mentioning the gift of land by two euergetai erected in the common ground.


i. Comments The fact that not all the people named in the inscription are Aurelii indicates that the inscription dates to shortly after 212 AD.
iii. Bibliography Etienne, R., and Knoepfler, D. (1976), Hyettos de Béotie et la chronologie des archontes fédéraux entre 250 et 171 avant J.-C.. Paris: 15 and n. 50.
Giannakopoulos, N. (2008), Ὁ Θεσμός της Γερουσίας των ελληνικών πόλεων κατα τους Ρωμαικούς Χρόνους: Οργάνωση και Λειτουργία. Vanias: 404, n. 882.
Oliver, J.H. (1941), The sacred gerusia. Baltimore.
Roesch, P. (1982), Etudes béotiennes. Paris.


i. Private association Certain
Note The terminology gerousia coupled with the connection to the cult of Asklepios Soter, which was a prominent cult in Hyettos, is indicative of a private association.