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Last Updated on 18 Jun 2019

Author: Stella Skaltsa

CAPInv. 954: thiaseitai


i. Geographical area Western Asia Minor
ii. Region Aiolis
iii. Site Kyme


i. Full name (original language) thiaseitai (I.Kyme 17 l. 15)
ii. Full name (transliterated) thiaseitai


i. Date(s) 27 BC


i. Name in other forms [θίασος?]: fully restored. This restoration has been suggested by Charbonnel (SEG 29: 1217) who argues that the inscription was set up by the thiasos.


i. Source(s) I.Kyme 17 (27 BC)
Note Ed. pr. Pleket 1958: no. 57

Other editions:
Sherk 1984: no. 95 = Sherk 1988: no. 2
Jaccottet 2003, vol. 2: no. 104
Harland 2014 no. 104

For a complete list of publications on this inscription see Harland 2014: 81.
Online Resources I.Kyme 17

For a new reading of lines 1-4 see SEG 29: 1217

AGRW 103
i.a. Source type(s) Epigraphic source(s)
i.b. Document(s) typology & language/script Bilingual inscription (Greek and Latin). The stele contains two texts - a decree and a letter-, the second one given in both Latin and Greek:

Lines 1-11 (in Greek): edict of the consuls Augustus and Agrippa, prescribing the restitution of public and sacred properties as well as dedications, which were subject to looting in the period of civil wars.

Lines 12-22 (in Latin): letter of the proconsul of Asia (not dated with precision), L. Vinicius, to the magistrates of Kyme. He orders them to investigate the truth of a declaration that the sanctuary of Dionysos is indeed privately owned, and, if true, to see to it that the individual is made both to accept the price offered and to return the property to the ownership of the god.
Lines 22-28 (in Greek): the Greek translation of the letter.
i.c. Physical format(s) Marble stele broken at the bottom, damaged on the right and left sides, moulding at the top. Ivy crown in relief above the text.
H. 47.5 x W. 31 x Th. 7.5 cm.
ii. Source(s) provenance Kyme.


ii. References to buildings/objects Liberei Patris fanum (ll. 13, 16, 18-9)
Διονύσου ἱερὸν, Dionysou hieron (l. 25)


iii. Members thiaseitai (in Latin, l. 15)


ii. Realty It seems that the thiaseitai owned the sanctuary of Dionysos at Kyme, before they mortgaged it (l. 13: [ven]ḍitiones) to a cretain Lysias, a citizen from Kyme. It seems that the thiaseitai pledged the sanctuary as collateral for a loan (ll. 25-6: ὄνομ[α πράσεις κ]α̣τ̣έ̣χ̣ε̣σθαι). After the edict of Augustus and Agrippa, the thiaseitai claimed back the sanctuary. They wanted to pay back Lysias the amount of money written on the temple-wall (l. 16 pretio soluto quod est inscriptum fano [Patris Li[berei).


iii. Worship The sanctuary was consecrated to Dionysos/ Liber Pater (ll. 13, 25)
Deities worshipped Dionysos/ Liber Pater


ii. Interaction abroad The thiaseitai appealed to the proconsul, Vinicius (uncertain whether M. Vicinius or L. Vicinius), through a citizen of Kyme, Apollonides son of Leukios Norakeios, to restore the 'sacra' (l. 15: sacred objects or cult) to the god (i.e. to claim back the sanctuary of Dionysos from Lysias). It appears that the thiaseitai had borrowed money from Lysias and gave him the sanctuary as security. After the edict of Augustus and Agrippa, the thiaseitai offered Lysias the amount of money written on the temple-wall in order to restore the sanctuary to Dionysos. Lysias refuted the amount of money and the thiaseitai resorted to the local governor to settle the affair. In turn, the proconsul wrote to the magistrates of Kyme to take on the settlement of the affair.
This document shows the interaction of associations with civic authorities and in particular with Rome.


i. Comments There is a scholarly dispute about the precise content of the first document (line 1-11), especially with regard to the authority who commissioned the inscription, i.e. the thiaseitai mentioned in the second document (Charbonnel 1979) or the civic authorities (Pleket 1958).
Charbonnel (1979) argues that the first document is an extract of a consular letter in which Augustus and Agrippa informed the provincial governors of the contents of a senatus consultum, and that is was the Kymaian thiasos, mentioned in L. Vinicius' letter, which made that extract.

About the cult of Dionysos in Kyme see CAPInv. 966.
iii. Bibliography Charbonnel, N. (1979), 'À propos de l'inscription de Kymé et des pouvoirs d'Auguste dans les provinces au lendemain du reglèment de 27 A.C.N.', RIDA 26: 177-225.

Engelmann, H. (1976), Die Inschriften von Kyme. (IGSK 5). Bonn.

Giovannini, A. (1999), 'Les pouvoirs d'Auguste de 27 à 23 av. J.-C. Une relecture de l'ordennance de Kymè de l'an 27 (IK 5, no. 17)', ZPE 124: 95-105.

Harland, Ph. (2014), Greco-Roman Associations: Volume II. North Coast of the Black Sea, Asia Minor. Berlin.

Millar, F. (2002), The Roman Republic and the Augustan Revolution.

Oliver, J.H. (1963), 'The main problem of the Augustus inscription from Cyme', GRBS 4: 115-22.

Pleket, H.W. (1958), The Greek Inscriptions in the Rijksmuseum van Oudheden at Leyden. Leiden.


i. Private association Probable
Note It is not clear whether the thiaseitai are members of a private cult association centered around the worship of Dionysos or whether they are worshippers of the public cult of Dionysos. Both a public and private cult of Dionysos is attested in Kyme (see CAPInv. 966).
Pleket is in favour of a public thiasos (Pleket 1958: 60), whereas Engelmann speaks of a private association (Engelmann 1976: 54).
The fact that the thiaseitai by-pass the civic authorities, appealing first to the proconsul, may indicate that the sanctuary of Dionysos may have been administered/ owned by a private group before 'ownership' was passed to Lysias.