Libmonster ID: JP-1375
Author(s) of the publication: Yu. G. Vinogradov

One of the most reliable sources for identifying economic and other contacts of Northern Pontic cities with other centers of the Black Sea region and the Mediterranean, especially in the early era, are epigraphic monuments that record the physical presence of Xenos who arrived here. Unfortunately, our data on this problem for the Archaic and Early Classical periods of Bosporus history remain very sparse. Therefore, for the development of this topic, monuments of small epigraphy are of particular importance, one of which will be discussed.

In 1977, during the excavation of the Upper City section of Phanagoria by the Phanagoria Archaeological Expedition of the IA RAS, a stalk of C - type Attic blackleaf kilik was found in a layer with material from the late sixth and first quarter of the fifth centuries BC, dating from about 500-480 BC. On the inner side of the stalk, an inscription was carved in a calligraphic handwriting around the ring:

The selection of some text tokens immediately reveals its metric character. The verse began with a word in which it would be most natural to see an adj. cf. gender, which serves as a definition for the only noun standing in the text: However, the resulting order of the sentence members (neutr. - fem. - verbum - neutr. - fem. + fem.) can only be imagined with a large amount of imagination, even in a poetic text.

The search for a solution in a different direction suggests Greek name-making, because among hypocoristic female names, a name with the meaning "snub-nosed, snub-nosed" is also found. This is the only acceptable interpretation: the author of the poetic inscription emphasized the appeal to the object of his desire - the beloved or hetaera, to whom this cup, decorated with an elegant verse, was intended as a gift.:

"Simon, my dear! I am beauty itself, kind and moderate."

In this case, both attributes naturally refer to the kilik, and the abstract concept of "beauty" is metonymically transferred to a specific object, i.e., "I am a beautiful bowl". As a result, a rather elegant bustle is obtained, when the beauty of the given thing seems to compete with the beauty of the recipient of the gift, naturally yielding to the latter. The choice of vocabulary is not accidental, but it is also very successful. Quite frequent in early lapidary poetry adj.  we can have both meanings: "sweet, pleasant to the giver" or "elegant, graceful". Select adj.  it also deserves a comment. As a number of analogies in the epigraphy of the VI-IV centuries show, in our text it should be interpreted as "a bowl of moderate, medium size".

One of the most important problems is determining the alphabet that the inscription is written in, and, accordingly, its author belongs to a particular geographical area. There is a striking contrast between the Ionian dialect of the inscription and such diagnostic alphabetic characters, as  of course, there can be no question of the author's origin

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graffiti from Miletus or Theos, the metropolis of Phanagoria: both polis were part of the Ionian Dodecapolis, and therefore always used for the sign H, and not E. The most indicator in the set of letters of the Phanagorian inscription is the form of gamma in the form of a lunar sigma (C), characteristic of the alphabets of Achaia, Arcadia, Corinth and Corcyra, Elis, Euboea, lonia Asiatica, Leucades, Locrides, Selinuntes, Rhodes and Colonies, Sycyon, Syracuse, Phera, Phocis. After the decimation of these centers on the inexorable principle of the Ionian dialect, only Euboea remains from the entire list, whose inscriptions of the Late Archaic and Early classical eras, indeed, show all the above-mentioned diagnostic symptoms of the alphabet.

Thus, the conducted analysis leaves no doubt that the anonymous person who composed an elegant poem in honor of the friend of his heart, snub-nosed Simon, and lovingly decorated his gift with it, came a long way to the Asian coast of the Cimmerian Bosporus from Aegean Euboea.

AN EUBOEAN VISITING PHANAGORIA

Yu.G. Vinogradov

The article publishes a Phanagorian graffito on the bottom of a black varnish kylix (type C) dated to 500-480 ВС.

The inscription reads as follows: "Simon, darling. I (the kylix) am good and proportionate, the beauty itself". The type of alphabet characters indicates Euboean origin of the inscription.


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Yu. G. Vinogradov, EUBOEAN VISIT TO PHANAGORIA // Tokyo: Japan (ELIB.JP). Updated: 17.06.2024. URL: https://elib.jp/m/articles/view/EUBOEAN-VISIT-TO-PHANAGORIA (date of access: 13.07.2024).

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