Friday, April 20, 2007


An Impious Lumberjack

Robin Lane Fox, Pagans and Christians (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1989), pp. 127-128:
In the year 194/5, "Stratonicos, son of Euangelos, in ignorance cut down an oak of Zeus of the Twin Oak Trees and because of Stratonicos's lack of faith, Zeus summoned up his own power." He almost killed the offender, who "recovered from great danger and made this dedication by way of thanks"; "and I proclaim, let no one belittle Zeus's powers nor cut down an oak again."
On p. 703, n. 13, Fox cites "T.A.M. V. 179 B with F. Petzl (1978) 253." F. Petzl is a mistake for Georg Petzl, and the reference is to his "Inschriften aus der Umgebung von Saittai (I)," Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik 30 (1978) 249-273, which I have not seen. T.A.M. is Tituli Asiae Minoris. Here is the inscription:
μέγας Ζεὺς ἐγ διδύμων δρυ-
ῶν. Στρατόνεικος Εὐανγέ-
λου διὰ τὸ ἀγνοεῖν αὐτὸν Δι-
ὸς Διδυμείτου ἔκκοψε δρῦ-
ν, κὲ ἀναζητήσας ὁ θεὸς τὴν
ἰδίαν δύναμιν διὰ τὸ ἀπιστῖν
αὐτὸν κατέθηκεν ΟΛΟΔΟΥΜΕ
ἰσοθανάτους, καὶ σωθεὶς ἐγ
μεγάλου κινδύνου εὐχαρισ-
τῶν ἀνέθηκεν· παρανγέλ-
λω δέ, αὐτοῦ τὰς δυνάμις μή
τίς ποτε κατευτελήσι καὶ
κόψει δρῦν. ἔτους σοθʹ, μη(νὸς) Πα-
νήμου ηιʹ.
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