OGIS: 194


Greek text:   OGIS_194
Date:   c. 39 B.C.
Tags:     corn_supply

This decree has been translated into English by J.P.Mahaffy, "A History of Egypt under the Ptolemaic Dynasty", page 245 ( ); by S.Burstein, "The Hellenistic Age from the Battle of Ipsos to the Death of Kleopatra" no. 111 ( Google Books ); and by A.Blasius, "Army and Society in Ptolemaic Egypt - A Question of Loyalty", page 96 ( ).

[In the reign of] Cleopatra, Goddess Philopator, [and of] Ptolemy also called Caesar, the God Philopator Philometor, [year 13] month Artemisios 18 which is Phamenoth 18; it was resolved by the priests of the [great god] Amonrasonther from Diospolis Magna and the elders and all the rest of the inhabitants. Since Kallimachos the kinsman and [strategos and overseer of the] revenues of the district around Thebes and gymnasiarch and hipparch has also formerly, when [terrible] and manifold troubles wasted the city, nursed it kindly [so as to keep the district] in perfect peace; and he piously maintained the temples of the greatest and national gods, and [he preserved] the lives [of those inside them]; in general he preserved everyone, and with great expense he revived them all, and restored everything [to its former] prosperous state; he strengthened truth and justice, and [provided] good conditions, always [attending to their needs with kindness] and extraordinary benefactions. Also now . . . when a terrible famine 10 [was caused] by unparalleled paucity, and [neediness] almost destroyed the city, he magnaminously devoted himself, without being asked, to preserving each of the local residents. Labouring [like a father over] his fatherland and his own children, with the favour of the gods he continually kept almost all of them supplied with all kinds of [food], although they did not realise from what circumstances he was providing the abundance. When the famine continued and in the current year became even worse and unending, [and] at the same time the river failed to flood, misery far worse than before gripped the whole [land]; the city was completely despondent, and no-one retained any [hope] of surviving. When all were reduced by want to feebleness, and almost everyone was begging for everything, [but not] obtaining it, he, imploring the assistance of Amonrasonther, relieved by his generosity all this distress, and shone out like a star and good daimon for everyone. 20 He consecrated his life to those who had need of him, [and gave] magnificent [help] to the inhabitants of the district around Thebes. Having saved them all with their wives and children, he brought them from great tempests into a placid harbour. But the greatest and highest praise is for his [piety], with which [he took] every possible care of all that appertained to the worship of the gods, showing pious and untiring concern [for the temples] - as the father of his father Kallimachos, the kinsman and epistrategos, had done - [and restored] the local feasts and festivals of the gods with great piety and splendour, just as in [ancient times]. Therefore with good fortune, it is resolved that he shall be called Saviour of the city, which is (?) the residence of the god, and on [his] birthday [three statues of him shall be erected] in conspicuous places in the temple of the great god Amonrasonther, [one] by the priests, made of hard stone, and two by the city, one made of bronze and the other of hard stone; [every year] this day [shall be celebrated] in his name, and the inhabitants shall sacrifice to the sovereign gods and shall wear wreaths and hold festive banquets, [as is customary]. 30 This decree shall be inscribed on a stele in demotic and Greek characters, [and set up on] the floor of the sanctuary, so that he publicly receives [the favour] of the great god [Amonrasonther], in order that his benefactions may be remembered for all time.

inscription 195

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