Dedication to Hermes and Heracles


Trismegistos ID: 203019

Source Description


Museum of Libya, Tripoli, inv. number unknown.


Two joining fragments of a white marble panel broken off at left and right (0.18; 0.205;0.045).


Inscribed in five lines on front face.


0.02; slight serifs, alpha with dropped bar, omicron slightly smaller, non-slanting sigma, widely open upsilon.

Place of Origin



End of second or beginning of first century B.C. (lettering)


Found in 1934 by G. Oliverio at Cyrene : Sanctuary of Apollo , in a building near the Wall of Nicodamos.

Later recorded Location

Seen by G. Pugliese Carratelli in 1960 at Tripoli : Museum of Libya .

Last recorded Location

Seen by A. Laronde in 1978 at the same place.

Present Location

Not seen by IGCyr team.

Text constituted from

Transcription from previous editors.


Caputo, 1947 (mention) and Reynolds-Ward-Perkins, 1951 , n. 848 (ph.), both as from Tripolitania; Oliverio, Taccuini inediti VI.64, whence SECir , 163; Luni, 1976 , n. 7; Dobias-Lalou, Bulletin Épigraphique , 1988.1011; Marengo, 1987 , p. 307 (ph., dr.) and Dobias-Lalou, Bulletin Épigraphique , 1989.832, whence SEG , 37.1674; Dobias-Lalou, 2010 , p. 165.


 [c. 5 - 6]  [c. 1 - 2]υ̣σανίου [γυμνασι]αρχήσας [ἱαρὰς? ξ]ύστρας [ὀγδ]οήκοντα 5[Ἑρμᾶ]ι (vac. 1) Ἡρακλε[ῖ]


1  [c. 1 - 2]υ̣σανίου : Reynolds-Ward-Perkins, 1951  [Πα]υσανίου : Reynolds-Ward-Perkins, 1951  [Λ]υσανίου : SECir  [Πα]υ̣σανίου

2 SECir  [γυμνασι]αρχήσας : Reynolds-Ward-Perkins, 1951  [---] αρχήσας

3 [ἱαρὰς?] : Dobias-Lalou, 2010  [ἱερὰς?] : Dobias-Lalou, Bulletin Épigraphique  [νεὰς] (, 1989.832) : Marengo, 1987  [τὰς] : SEG  [χαλκᾶς] (Moretti's restoration per litteras) : Reynolds-Ward-Perkins, 1951 , SECir  [---]  || Marengo, 1987  [ξ]ύστρας : Reynolds-Ward-Perkins, 1951 , SECir  [---] ΥΣΤΡΑΣ

4 Reynolds-Ward-Perkins, 1951  [ὀγδ]οήκοντα : SECir  [---] θ̣ήκοντα || SECir  [Ἑρμᾶ]ι (vac. 1) Ἡρακλε[ῖ] : Reynolds-Ward-Perkins, 1951  [---] [τῶ]ι Ἡρακλε[ῖ] : SEG  [Ἑρμᾶι κα]ὶ Ἡρακλε[ῖ] (Moretti's restoration per litteras)

French translation

(Untel) fils de  [---] ysanias, après avoir exercé la gymnasiarchie (a consacré) [comme biens des dieux] quatre-vingt strigiles à [ Hermès] et Héraclès.

English translation

(So-and-so) son of  [---] ysanias, after having been gymnasiarch, (dedicated) [as sacred] eighty strigils to [Hermes] and Heracles.

Italian translation

(Il tale) figlio di  [---] ysanias, dopo essere stato ginnasiarco, (ha dedicato) [come sacri] ottanta strigili a [Ermes] e a Eracle.

Arabic translation

(فلان) بن [---] يسانياس، بعد أن كان جمنازيارخ (مشرف بالجمنازيوم)، (أهدى) ثمانين مكشطاً[مقدسة] إلى [هرمس] وهيراكلس.


Brought to Tripoli during World War II, this inscription has been kept there as if coming from Marsa Diba (or Dila) in North-Western Tripolitania, whence its mention by Caputo, 1947 and its edition by Reynolds-Ward-Perkins, 1951 . Pugliese Carratelli, not aware of the latter, published it at SECir , 163 from Oliverio's papers and apparently from his own observation at Tripoli. It was Marengo's merit at Marengo, 1987 to fill the gap and definitely establish the findspot with the help of an unpublished excavation report. Another report mentioning the find is now available at Luni, 2014 , p. 147.This item was thus duly deleted from the electronic enhanced issue of IRT 2009.

The restoration of ἱαράς, proposed by C. Dobias-Lalou at line 3 is far from sure, but seems plausible to fit the gap; the adjective would have a predicative value, reinforcing the meaning of the subaudible verb of dedication. S. Marengo's restoration νέας gives a slightly different meaning: the gymnasiarch would have provided new strigils as a necessary duty of his charge. However this does not account for the aorist participle (he was then out of charge) nor for the act of dedication (why new strigils offered to the godsn whence useless ?) ; moreover the restored word seems rather short for the space available.

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