Monday, June 20, 2022


Epicurean Advice

Corpus Inscriptionum Graecarum III 3846.L (Aizanoi, Phrygia) = Philippe Le Bas, Voyage archéologique en Grèce et en Asie Mineure fait pendant les années 1843 et 1844, Tome III, Première Partie: Inscriptions (Paris: Didot, 1870), p. 266, number 977 (my translation):
Anthos to the passersby: greetings! Bathe, drink, eat, copulate. For down here you have none of these things.

Ἄνθος τοῖς παροδείταις χαίριν· λοῦσαι, πίε, φαγὲ, βείνησον· τούτων γὰρ ὧδε κάτω [οὐ]δὲ<ν> ἔχις.
The Packard Humanities Institute's Searchable Greek Inscriptions lists the source as C.W.M. Cox et al., Monumenta Asiae Minoris Antiqua, Vol. IX: Monuments from the Aezanitis (London: Society for the Promotion of Roman Studies, 1988 = Journal of Roman Studies Monographs, 4), p. 189 (number P300), which is next to worthless, since MAMA IX doesn't print the Greek and merely refers to the publications listed above.

"Down here" means in the grave. I take Anthos to be a personal name, rather than "a flower". See e.g. T. Corsten, ed., A Lexicon of Greek Personal Names, Vol. V.A: Coastal Asia Minor: Pontos to Ionia (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 2010), p. 34. Franz Cumont, "Une pierre tombale érotique de Rome," L'Antiquité Classique 9 (1940) 5–11 (at 8), also regards it as a proper name, but Andrzej Wypustek, "Laughing in the Face of Death: a Survey of Unconventional Hellenistic and Greek-Roman Funerary Verse-Inscriptions," Klio 103 (2021) 160-187 (at 174), translates it (wrongly, in my view) as "the flower".

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