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Last Updated on 28 Feb 2017

Author: Sophia Zoumbaki

CAPInv. 555: hoi t[e]lesteres [tas Megala]s Matros


i. Geographical area Peloponnese with Adjacent Islands
ii. Region Argolis
iii. Site Troizen


i. Full name (original language) οἱ τ[ε]λεστῆρες [τᾶς Μεγάλα]ς Ματρός (IG IV. 757, B1, ll. 10-11)
ii. Full name (transliterated) hoi t[e]lesteres [tas Megala]s Matros


i. Date(s) 146 BC


ii. Name elements
Cultic:Telester or telestes is the initiate (see LSJ s.v.). T[e]lesteres [tas Megala]s Matros were those who were initiated, the mystai of the cult of Kybele.


i. Source(s) IG IV. 757
Online Resources IG IV. 757
i.a. Source type(s) Epigraphic source(s)
i.b. Document(s) typology & language/script A decree of the polis of Troizen followed by a list of various groups who contribute for the
construction of a diateichisma.
i.c. Physical format(s) A plaque of white stone written on two sides, A and B. The stone is very damaged and the text is
extremely lacunose.
ii. Source(s) provenance Found in a private field at the village Damala (ancient Troizen).


ii. References to buildings/objects The contributions mentioned in the inscription aim at the construction of a diateichisma. Remains of the diateichisma are preserved. The t[e]lesteres [tas Megala]s Matros offer τὰν οἰκίαν, tan oikian,"the house" for this purpose.


ii. Realty On Face B1, l. 11 of the inscription it is mentioned that the t[e]lesteres [tas Megala]s Matros offer their house (τὰν οἰκίαν, tan oikian) to the state for the construction of a diateichisma.


iii. Worship The t[e]lesteres [tas Megala]s Matros were the initiated persons into the related ceremonies.
Deities worshipped Kybele
iv. Honours/Other activities The resolution of the telesteres to contribute for the construction of the diateichisma by providing their οἰκία, oikia, shows that they took decisions as a body.


i. Local interaction The telesteres contribute to the construction of a diateichisma for the protection of the town.


i. Comments For a commentary of the text and the other groups involved in the contribution, see CAPInv. 552, CAPInv. 553, and CAPInv. 556.
Further indications for the cult of Kybele in Troizen are a marble relief in the form of a double naiskos depicting in its right part Kybele and in its left part Demeter (see Vermasseren 1982: 150 no. 478) and a decree in honour of a certain Soterichos from Troizen in the Metroon of Piraeus (see Vermasseren 1982: no. 258).
ii. Poland concordance Poland B 9
iii. Bibliography Hennig, D. (1995), ‘Staatliche Ansprüche an privaten Immobilienbesitz in der klassischen und hellenistischen Polis’, Chiron 25: 235-82 esp. 261.
Jones, N.F. (1987), Public Organization in Ancient Greece: A Documentary Study. Philadelphia: 111.
Maier, F.G. (1959), Griechische Mauerbauinschriften I, Heidelberg: 140-145, no. 32.
Meyer, E. (1939), ‘Troizen’, RE VII.A.1: 617-54 esp. 647.
Migeotte, L. (1992), Les souscriptions poubliques dans les cités grecques, Genève, Québec: 49-54, no. 21.
Mylonas, K.D. (1886), ‘Επιγραφή εκ της Τροιζήνος’, BCH 10: 136-147.
Vermasseren, M.J. (1982), Corpus Cultus Cybelae Attidisque, vol II. Leiden.


i. Private association Possible
Note As no further indication exists about the nature of this religious group, it is difficult to decide, whether it was a private cultic association or the initiates into the cult of Kybele in the region. The fact that they possessed an οἰκία, oikia, and their resolution for their contribution to the protection of the town are to be regarded as features of an organized group; yet they cannot lead to a certain conclusion that we have to do with a private religious association.
However, Meyer 1939: 647 regards the religious groups which are listed in the inscription as "Kultvereine".