Translations of Hellenistic Inscriptions: 205


Greek text:   (A) IKnidos_58,   (B-F) IKnidos_51-55,   (G) IKnidos_59
Provenance:   Cnidus
Date:   (A) c. 47,   (B-F) c. 44-30,   (G) c. 30-20 B.C.
Tags:     autonomy ,   democracy ,   freedom ,   inviolability ,   saviours
Format:   see key to translations

Theopompos was a friend of Julius Caesar.   In November 45 B.C., a treaty was agreed between Knidos and Rome (see inscription 4), and Theopompos and his sons were present in Rome for this agreement. Artemidoros remained in Rome until March 44 B.C., when he was involved in the events leading up to the assassination of Caesar (see Plutarch, Caes_65 ). No doubt the family returned to Knidos soon after the death of Caesar, and after the death of Theopompos a monument was set up in their honour, which is the source of inscriptions B-F. Artemidoros may have used his influence in Rome to obtain further privileges for Knidos, perhaps after the battle of Actium - although this is not mentioned elsewhere; at any rate, exceptional honours were voted for him in G, which may be a later copy of a decree passed in his lifetime.

Theopompos became a man of much influence in the Greek world. The city of Laodikeia in Syria set up a statue of him in Knidos (inscription A), probably in acknowledgement of his assistance in winning concessions from Caesar after the Battle of Pharsalus. Laodikeia adopted the name 'Julian', and began a new era which was used on its coins, in 47 B.C.; see G.M. Cohen, "The Hellenistic Settlements in Syria, the Red Sea Basin, and North Africa", pp.112-3 ( Google Books ).

The inscriptions in honour of Theopompos and his family have been discussed in French by G. Thériault. "Évergétisme grec et administration romaine: la famille cnidienne de Gaios Ioulios Théopompos" (Phoenix, 2003/57, pp. 232-256); and in German by Chr. Bruns-Özgan, "Eine feine Familie: Theopompos von Knidos und seine Nachkommen," ( PDF ). For the 'god-like' honours awarded to Artemidoros in inscription G, see J. Strubbe, "Cultic honours for benefactors in the cities of Asia Minor", p. 324 ( PDF ).

[A]   The people of Julia-Laodikeia by the sea, the sacred and inviolable and autonomous city, honours Gaius Julius Theopompos, son of Artemidoros, on account of his goodwill.

[B]   [The people of Knidos honoured with the greatest honours Gaius] Julius Theopompos, son of Artemidoros, because when he was in charge of public affairs [both] in peace and in war, he continually said and did such things that have made the Knidians safe in freedom and autonomy, and have made them citizens of a democratically governed homeland. To the gods.

[C]   [The people of Knidos honoured with the greatest honours] Telesteira, daughter of Hippokritos, by adoption daughter of Theopompos, because, being descended from ancestors who performed many great services for the city, throughout all her life she was pious and chaste and steadfast, and living together with Theopompos, the saviour of the city, she provided children of her children for his homeland, through whom the people has been saved and is governed in harmony and democracy. To the gods.

[D]   The people of Knidos honoured with the greatest [honours] Julia Nossis, [daughter of] Theopompos, because she is [pious] towards the gods and throughout her life she has been chaste, and she has chosen to act towrds the city [in a manner worthy] of her father and in keeping [with her family], and she has made many great contributions [to the people], towards their security and safety.

[E]   [The people of Knidos honoured with the greatest] honours [Gaius Julius] Hippokritos, son [of Gaius], [for his piety] towards the divinity [and on account of his virtue and his goodwill] towards the populace [of Knidos and because he is a good man] otherwise [regarding the state], and [along with his] father [and brother he has continually] said [and done] everything to ensure that the people, [having recovered] its ancestral [freedom], has a democratic [government].

[F]   [The people of Knidos honoured] with the greatest honours [Gaius Julius] Artemidoros, son of Gaius, for his [piety] towards the divinity and on account of his virtue and his goodwill towards the populace of Knidos and because he is a good man otherwise in respect of the government of the state, and along with his father and brother he has continually said and done everything to ensure that the people, having recovered its ancestral freedom, has a democratic government.

[G]   [The people honoured . . .] with with a golden crown of olive, and three other golden crowns, and three bronze statues, and three marble statues, and three gold statues; and his name shall be proclaimed and he shall be permitted to wear a crown and he shall be given privileged seating at all the city’s games, both himself and his descendants; and he shall be given meals in the damiorgion for as long as he lives; and when he departs from life, he shall be honoured with a public funeral and burial in the city in the most prominent place within the gymnasium; and the people  has erected a golden statue of him, as a  partner in temple of Artemis Hiakynthotrophos and Epiphanes, of whom he is the priest for life; and it has honoured him with god-like honours, setting up an altar for him and decreeing sacrifices and a procession and gymnastic games every four years, called Artemidoreia . . .

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