Translations of Hellenistic Inscriptions: 33


Greek text:   Labraunda_15 , Labraunda_40 , Labraunda_69   ( I.Labr. 8 )
Provenance:     Labraunda , Caria
Date:   c. 235 B.C.
Tags:     democracy ,   land_ownership ,   royal_letters
Format:   see key to translations

For some other letters from Olympichos to Mylasa, see M.Austin, "The Hellenistic World from Alexander to the Roman Conquest", no. 179.   In this letter Olympichos "initiated a mechanism of donating or selling private lands to a sanctuary and then leasing them back to the original owner with interest" ( Christina Williamson ). He thereby set a precedent that was followed by many other local landowners: see Beate Dignas, "The Leases of Sacred Property at Mylasa" ( PDF ).

[A]   { part of a decree of Mylasa } . . . Olympichos hired the land from us as inherited property at a fixed charge per year of ... Alexandrian drachmas.

[B]   Olympichos to the council and people, greetings. Since we have aimed at every opportunity to bestow great benefits on your homeland, we have never at any time desisted from anything that might lead to your glory and honour, and have undergone great dangers on your behalf. For when we took over your city, we removed the garrison from the citadel and restored the city to you to be free and democratically governed. Since we have chosen to be in no respect second to the previous benefactors of your city, we wish to favour you by improving the status of the temples in your homeland. All our existing land and gardens and the buildings on this land and everything that appertains to the land within the existing borders, which I bought from queen Laodike - all this I dedicate to Zeus Osogo, and the revenues from this shall belong to the god for all time. This shall supply funds for the monthly festival of Zeus; and the offerings set up by us shall be remembered and kept; and the revenues shall be increased. You will do well therefore to vote to let out this land for hire as inherited property at a fixed charge, and to inscribe what we have written in the most prominent places within the temple of Zeus Osogo and the temple of Zeus Labraundos. Farewell.

[C]   Olympichos son of Olympichos dedicated to Zeus Osogo the land in the plain around the city called "in Komoöondoi", which borders on:

inscription 31

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