Translations of Hellenistic Inscriptions: 217


Greek text:   MDAI(A)_32.10
Provenance:     Pergamon , Mysia
Date:     133-100 B.C.
Tags:     gymnasiarchs
Format:   see key to translations

After the demise of the Attalid kings, the gymnasiarch was one one of the most prestigious officials in the city of Pergamon, and various wealthy individuals used this role to demonstrate their generosity. In the case of Metrodorus, he was particularly keen to stress his fairness {isotēs} in ensuring equal opportunities for poorer citizens; see B.D. Gray, "The Hellenistic Reception of Classical Athenian Democracy and Political Thought", sect. 8.4.1 ( Google Books ). Some traces of the improvements in the gymnasium made by Metrodoros may have been found by archaeologists; see M. Trümper, "Modernization and Change of Function of Hellenistic Gymnasia in the Imperial Period", pp.183-185 ( ).

. . . for the prizes . . . he provided a service {chorēgia} that was second to none [? of the citizens], sacrificing an ox at the erection of the statue; and he held contests for the ephebes and youths, and in other ways he [provided services] to the magistrates and the instructors and the public officials, and he [also] took thought for the older men {presbyteroi}, taking on a considerable expense so that they would receive [careful] attention and would not be prevented from having anything that contributed to their health; and in addition 10 he brought many public basins [into] the bath-house, in order that the bath-house might have suitable distinction and might supply sufficient water; and similarly he put two public wash-tubs in the ball-court, disregarding the additional cost for the sponges; and in arranging for the clothes to be suitably guarded, on top of his other contrivances, he attracted exceptional praise; and in the Hermaia festival itself he dedicated the (?) shield in a manner worthy of the people who appointed him, and justly and piously gave crowns to those who were deserving; on account of this, it happened that he was not only adorned with a head-band according to the tradition for everyone, but also honoured with golden crowns by the youths and the ephebes and the foreigners; and with exceptional care 20 and hardship he showed excellent attention to funerals; and in general he was never behind in what he did, but he personally led the youths in a notable manner, as a result of which it happened that even very lowly persons were honoured in this respect no less than those who were of higher rank; and in the processions he ensured that conspicuous glory was given to the gods and benefactors, who were enhanced by the large number of youths and their orderly behaviour; he associated with the youths in a worthy manner, bringing those who were disobedient to a fitting punishment, and distributing praise and generosity to those who were dutiful; and on other special days he made contributions towards public feasting, and at the Kabeiria festival he provided a magnificent service, taking on considerable expense 30 because of his benevolence towards the people. Therefore, so that the people may be seen to acknowlege men who act nobly, and to reward them with suitable marks of gratitude, with good fortune it is resolved by the council and the people to praise Metrodoros for the reasons stated above and to crown him with a golden crown, the largest sanctioned by law, and with a bronze statue, which shall be placed in the open-air track {paradromis} of the gymnasium; and the agonothete shall make the announcement about this at the next festival that is celebrated; and that he shall be given meals in the prytaneion and exemption from liturgies and exemption from billeting. The decree of the people shall be inscribed on a stele of white stone and placed next to the statue. 40 Since the youths, coming together as a body, have expressed a wish to honour him with a golden crown and with a bronze statue, as they bear witness to his fair and just conduct in office, this too shall be agreed. The inscription on the base of the statue shall be: "The people honoured Metrodoros son of Herakleon, who has served as gymnasiarch in a fine and glorious manner, and has taken care of the training and good conduct of the ephebes and youths, and has overseen the affairs of the gymnasium in a manner worthy of the people who appointed him;" and on the base of the statue set up by the youths shall be: "The youths honoured Metrodoros son of Herakleon for the virtue and fairness which he exhibited when he was leader of them." Two men shall be chosen from the citizens, who shall oversee 50 the manufacture and erection of what has been voted.   The following men were appointed to be overseers: Eubiotos son of Eubiotos and Menophilos son of Metrodoros.

inscription 218

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