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Last Updated on 04 Jul 2019

Author: Annelies Cazemier

CAPInv. 905: [elai]opolai ?


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


i. Full name (original language) [ἐλαι]οπῶλαι ? (I.Délos 1713, l. 1; cf. 1714, l. 1)
ii. Full name (transliterated) [elai]opolai ?


i. Date(s) 100 - 89 BC


i. Name in other forms olearei (i.e., olearii) (I.Délos 1712, l. 2) -- On the connection between this Latin inscription and the two Greek texts, see 'Comments'.
ii. Name elements
Professional:elaiopolai ? (largely restored, in two Greek texts) -- See 'Comments'.
olearei (attested in a different text, wholly in Latin) -- See 'Comments'


i. Source(s) I.Délos 1712 (99-89 BC)
I.Délos 1713 (ca. 100 BC)
I.Délos 1714 (ca. 96/5 BC)
Note old eds.:
Jouguet 1899: 73-4, no. 16 (= I.Délos 1712)
Jouguet 1899: 74-7, no. 17 (= I.Délos 1713)
Hatzfeld and Roussel 1909: 491-3, no. 14 (= I.Délos 1714)
concordance I.Délos 1712 (Latin text):
CIL III 14203.6
ILS 7272
see also:
Durrbach, Choix 141 (= I.Délos 1712) (incl. French translation)
AGRW 234 (= I.Délos 1713) (incl. English translation)
Trümper 2011: 79, no. 27?
Online Resources I.Délos 1712
I.Délos 1713
I.Délos 1714
i.a. Source type(s) Epigraphic source(s)
i.b. Document(s) typology & language/script dedications, two in Greek (I.Délos 1713 and 1714) and one in Latin (I.Délos 1712)
i.c. Physical format(s) I.Délos 1712: cylindrical marble base, broken at the top
I.Délos 1713: marble base, with in the upper part a 'trou de scellement avec tenon de plomb et canal de coulée'
I.Délos 1714: block of marble, with broken top left corner
ii. Source(s) provenance I.Délos 1712: found in front of a 'magasin' south of the 'Agora des Compétaliastes'
I.Délos 1713: found in the port, on the beach
I.Délos 1714: re-used in a modern building northwest of the 'Agora de Théophrastos'


ii. References to buildings/objects ναός, naos (I.Délos 1713, l. 1; 1714, l. 2)
Ἡρακλῆς, Herakles (I.Délos 1713, l. 2; 1714, l. 1)
θύραι, thyrai (I.Délos 1714, l. 2)
βάσις τοῦ Ἡρακλέους, basis tou Herakleous (I.Délos 1714, l. 4)


v. Other staff A group of 7 or 8 men were appointed to take care of the construction (I.Délos 1713, ll. 3-4: καθεσταμένοι ἐπὶ τὴν κατασκευὴν, kathestamenoi epi ten kataskeuen) of a shrine (naos).


ii. Realty The association had its own shrine (naos), whose construction was to be taken care of by a committee of men appointed to the task (see 'Other staff'). The same association later seems to have taken care of repairing (I.Délos 1713, ll. 2-3: [ἐπισ]κευάσαντες, [epis]keuasantes) the doors (thyrai) of the shrine, for a second time (l. 2: to deuteron).


i. Number We know the names of 7-8 members of the association (I.Délos 1713).
ii. Gender Men
Note The named members of the association (I.Délos 1713) are men.
iv. Status The named members of the association (I.Délos 1713) are Italians from Elea, Herakleia, and Azetium.
v. Relations Two of the men appointed as supervisors for the construction of the naos (Zenon and Theon) were brothers (I.Délos 1713).


iii. Worship The group made dedications to Herakles and Hermes (I.Délos 1713, l. 15; cf. 2; I.Délos 1714, l. 7; cf.1, 4), including a shrine (naos), a statue of Herakles, and a base for (the statue of) Herakles. Cf. Delorme 1951; Bruneau 1970: 408-9; Hasenohr 2008: 36.
Deities worshipped Herakles


ii. Interaction abroad The olearei made a dedication (I.Délos 1712) to C. Julius Caesar (father of the dictator of the same name) while he was proconsul.


i. Comments While Roussel and Launey present the Latin designation of the oil merchants in I.Délos 1712 as 'olearii',
the stone in fact reads 'olearei' (Jouguet 1899: 73-4, no.16; cf. CIL III 14203.6; Durrbach, Choix 141;
ILS 7272; ILLRP 344; see Epigraphic Database Heidelberg HD018593, incl. photos).
I.Délos 1713 was initially thought to concern [χρυ]σοπῶλαι, [chry]sopolai (Jouguet 1899: 74-7, no. 17; Poland 1909:
604, no. Z 15A), but it was later suggested that the text should read either [ἐλαι]οπῶλαι, [elai]opolai (parallel to the
Latin equivalent olearei in I.Délos 1712) or [οἰν]οπῶλαι,
[oin]opolai (parallel to I.Délos 1711; see CAPInv. 906)
(Roussel 1907: 465, n. 1; cf. Hatzfeld and Roussel 1909: 492, n. 2: no trace of a sigma on the stone). A
reading of [ἐλαι]οπῶλαι,
[elai]opolai has been favoured, due to the group's worship of Herakles (not Dionysos; cf.
I.Délos 1711). Hatzfeld and Roussel 1909: 492; Durrbach, Choix 141; Roussel and Launey in I.Délos
The word [ἐλαιοπῶ]λαι,
[elai]opolai is restored also in I.Délos 1714, since this text seems to refer to the same shrine
(naos) and statue of Herakles as mentioned in I.Délos 1713. Cf. Roussel and Launey in I.Délos 1713 and
While the restoration of ἐλαιοπῶλαι,
elaiopolai in I.Délos 1713 and 1714 has been widely accepted, some caution
regarding its certainty should be observed. Cf. Bruneau 1970: 408-9. If the two Greek texts do not
concern oil merchants, the connection with the Latin text I.Délos 1712 does not apply. Nevertheless, it is
certain that the group consisted of Italians (see: 'Status') and that they worshipped Herakles and Hermes
(see: 'Worship').
I.Délos 1714 was set up when Aropos son of Leon was epimelete (96/5 BC).
ii. Poland concordance Poland Z *15A (= I.Délos 1713)
iii. Bibliography Bruneau, P. (1970), Recherches sur les cultes de Délos à l'époque hellénistique et à l'époque impériale. Paris.
Delorme, J. (1951), 'Héraklès et les ἐλαιοπῶλαι de Délos', REA 53: 42-50.
Hasenohr, C. (2007), ‘Italiens et Phéniciens à Délos: organisation et relations de deux groupes d'étrangers résidents (IIe-Ier siècles av. J.-C.)’, in R. Compatangelo-Soussignan and C.-G. Schwentzel (eds.) Étrangers dans la cité romaine, Rennes: 77-90.
Hasenohr, C. (2008), ‘Mercure à Délos’, in A. Bouet (ed.) D'Orient et d'Occident: mélanges offerts à Pierre Aupert, Bordeaux: 27-38.
Hatzfeld, J. and Roussel, P. (1909), 'Fouilles de Délos, exécutées aux frais de M. le Duc de Loubat: inscriptions', BCH 33: 472-552.
Jouguet, P. (1899), 'Fouilles du port de Délos: inscriptions', BCH 23: 56-85.
Poland, F. (1909), Geschichte des griechischen Vereinswesens. Leipzig.
Roussel, P. (1907), 'Fouilles de Délos, exécutées aux frais de M. le Duc de Loubat (1904): inscriptions (suite)', BCH 31: 421-70.
Trümper, M. (2011), ‘Where the non-Delians met in Delos: the meeting-places of foreign associations and ethnic communities in late Hellenistic Delos’, in O.M. van Nijf and R. Alston (eds.) Political culture in the Greek city after the classical age, Leuven: 49-100.


i. Private association Certain
Note While no term for association is used, the group mentioned in I.Délos 1713 and 1714 set up a shrine, appointed a committee to supervise its construction, and later carried out repairs. This suggests that they were a durable organized group. Cf. Hasenohr 2007: 86.