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An Exedra for Demosthenes of Oenoanda and his Relatives*

  • N. P. Milner and S. Mitchell


The Roman–Lycian notable and ex-procurator of Sicily, C. Julius Demosthenes of Oenoanda, who flourished under the Flavian Emperors, under Trajan and under Hadrian, is now well-known, following the publication of the richly-detailed Demostheneia Festival inscription by M. Wörrle. New investigation in 1994 into the archaeological context of Demosthenes' statue base (YÇ 1024), found on the site of Oenoanda in 1895 and published by Heberdey and Kalinka, has revealed that it was not re-used as stated by Hall and Milner, but shaped specifically for its original construction as the western anta of a semicircular exedra. In this article we trace the location, design and decoration of the exedra and discuss the inscriptions which adorned it.



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1 Wörrle, M., Stadt und Fest im kaiserzeitlichen Kleinasien, Vestigia vol. 39 (Munich, 1988).

2 Heberdey, R., Kalinka, E., Bericht über zwei Reisen im südwestlichen Kleinasien, Denkschr. Akad. Wien, phil.-hist. Kl. 45 (1896), 47 no. 62; also IGR III 487; republished by Hall, Alan and Milner, Nicholas, in French, D. H. (ed.), Studies in the history and topography of Lycia and Pisidia in memoriam A. S. Hall, B.I.A.A. monograph 19 (London, 1994), 32, no. 21, hereinafter “Hall and Milner”.

3 The Upper Agora has been called the “Esplanade” since Cousin's, article in BCH XVI (1892), 56–8, but there is now sufficient evidence to show that it was the Hellenistic and early Imperial agora of the city.

4 See Coulton, J. J., “Oenoanda: the Agora”, AS XXXVI (1986), 6190, at 76.

5 We did not measure or sketch the garlands of the frieze, so the drawing is exempli gratia at this point; readers should refer to Pl. XII (a, b) for a better impression of how they really looked.

6 Hall and Milner, loc. cit., Pl. 2.7 (squeeze).

7 Contrary to what was suggested by Hall and Milner, loc. cit., after Cagnat. There would have been room if Demosthenes' filiation and ethnics had both been omitted, but the filiation is unlikely to have been left out in view of the fact that the honourer included his own filiation (line 16). We propose to follow the form of Demosthenes' filiation offered by the Demostheneia Festival inscr. line 7 (Wörrle, op. cit. (n. 1) 4).

8 IGR III 500 ii 53 ff.

9 For line 3, Cf. IGR III 493–4 for a similar expression of Roman and Oenoandan citizenship of contemporaries.

10 Cagnat, , IGR III 487, n. 5, lists the islands involved.

11 So Pflaum, H.-G., Les carrières procuratoriennes équestres sous le haut-empire romain (Paris, 1960), I, 173 no. 76. See also Kienast, D., Römische Kaisertabelle (Darmstadt, 1990), 123.

12 Cf. Eck, W., Chiron V (1975), 367. Most inscriptions give the imperial titulature current at the time of engraving, but some give instead that current at the time of the office held.

13 Wörrle, 61.

14 Assuming that her father was a C. Julius. The relationship does not arise from Moles II having married a sister of Demosthenes, for that would make him his brother-in-law γαμβρός, πενθεριδεύς), nor from Moles I having married Demosthenes' sister, which would make Demosthenes the maternal uncle (μήτρως) of Moles II.

15 Cf. Wörrle, 73. It seems clear that Demosthenes' birth falls approximately between A.D. 40 and 60, which would put him in his 20s or 30s when he mounted the Vespasianeia. Since his son Julius Antoninus married a previously-married woman who was politically active in the A.D. 70S (see below), and had a daughter by her (c. A.D. 90?), on a conservative estimate she is likely to have been born by c. A.D. 60, and Julius Antoninus by c. A.D. 70. The latest alternative dating is to assume she was twice his age, having a daughter at 40 when he was only 20 in c. A.D. 100; this would also make their daughter Julia Lysimache only 15 when her son Claudius Agrippinus was born c. A.D. 115 (see below). The earlier dating is to be preferred, therefore, according to which Demosthenes was most likely born c. A.D. 45–50. See also n. 50 below.

16 In 1994 we found that the large square building south of the Upper Agora, which had been a candidate for the agora biotike, was best interpreted as a late antique dwelling house rather than as a public building; cf. Hall and Milner, loc. cit, p. 45.

17 J. J. Coulton, loc. cit., (n. 4), and id., “The Buildings of Oinoanda”, PCPS 209, n.s. 29 (1983), 9–10.

18 Wörrle, 238, n. 66.

19 IGR III 500 ii 53 ff.: ὃς ἐγένετο χειλίαρχος…ἔπαρχος…ἐπίτροπος…καὶ μετὰ τοῦτο λυκιάρχης

20 Cf. Wörrle, 72. What the Lyciarchy actually was is still unresolved; for a recent but insufficient treatment of a similar question about the Asiarchy, see Friesen, S. J., Twice Neokoros: Ephesus, Asia and the Cult of the Flavian Imperial Family, Religion in the Graeco-Roman World 116 (Leiden, 1993), ch. 4. See also Wörrle, M., Chiron XXII (1992), 370, who supports the orthodox view that identifies the provincial high-priesthood of Asia with the Asiarchy.

21 Wörrle, 60–2.

22 Cf. Roueché, C., Performers and Partisans at Aphrodisias in the Roman and Late Roman Periods, JRS monograph no. 6 (1993), 61; Price, S. R. F., Rituals and Power (1984), 89. That the Vespasianeia was a league festival, held in a major metropolis (not Oenoanda), is advocated by Wörrle, 238, n. 66, correctly we think.

23 Cf. a priest of Vespasian at Antioch, Pisidian, JRS II (1912), 102 no. 34. Contra Wörrle, 62, who less plausibly dates the Vespasianeia to the reign of Hadrian. For Vespasian's reorganisation of Lycia, see Wörrle, 97–100.

24 Cf. Devijver, H., Prosopographia militarium equestrium I (1976), no. 155.

25 See also IGR III 500 ii 15 ff.: Μαρκίας [Γης, θ]υγατρὸς Μαρκίου Μο[λε]βου Λουβασιος.

26 N.b., her father is not termed “Marcius” by her, and is only so in the much later Genealogy of Flavilla, Licinnia, IGR III 500. The latter is thus likely to be erroneous. If so, she may well have been enfranchised as a Roman citizen at the same time as her husband.

27 Larfeld, W., Handbuch der grieechischen Epigraphik (Leipzig, 1902), II, 490.

28 Welles, C. B., Gerasa: City of the Decapolis (New Haven, 1938), 359, no. 3, no. 1.

29 Was he perhaps adopted by Demosthenes? But then he would have to be C. Julius Apollonios. Conceivably, the missing top block was inscribed to this effect. Wörrle, 73–4, shrewdly infers that Demosthenes adopted his nephew (C. Julius) Simonides III, the first agonothete of the Demostheneia (see our Stemma). He is probably not right, however, to identify (p. 73) Loubasis, grandfather of Moles II, with Loubasis, father of Marcius Molebes, whose daughter Marcia Ge married Thoas, Marcius (IGR III 496; 500 ii 13 ff.), because the former Loubasis was a generation younger than the latter (see Jameson's, S. stemma I, AS XVI (1966), facing p. 137). Our inscr. 5 reveals a third and a fourth Loubasis; a fifth(?) Loubasis should be restored to IGR III 1504 (YÇ 1060), on a decorated architrave from a small building on the slope c. 50 m. north of the Upper Agora, dedicated to the Emperor Hadrian by Ammia alias Polykleia, daughter of [L]oubasis. The name was evidently not so rare at Oenoanda, even if unattested elsewhere.

30 Zgusta, L., Kleinasiatische Personennamen (Prague, 1964), §948 and §1590.2.

31 Ibid. §948.

32 Ibid. §946.1.

33 Ibid. §852.

34 Arkwright, W. G., “Lycian and Phrygian names,” JHS XXXVIII (1918), 59 n. 114.

35 Pape, W., Benseler, G. E., Wörterbuch der griechischen Eigennamen3 (1911), s.v.

36 Cf. Wörrle, 63 ff. See also the reflections of MacMullen, R., Changes in the Roman Empire (1990), 169–76, at 175–6, and Corruption and the Decline of Rome (1988), 75–7.

37 IGR III 500 ii 46 ff.

38 Cf. Devijver, H., Prosopographia militarium equestrium I (1976), 435 no. 120.

39 Cf. n. 29 above. Further evidence in the shape of a simple, square funerary base inscribed to C. Julius Antoninus and erected by “his parents” was found in a disused cemetery in the Seki plain in 1994: Γαίῳ Ἰουλίῳ ∣ Ἀντωνείνῳ ∣ ᾕρωι ∣ οἱ γονεῖς. Despite its modest size, the presumption must be that it is for the son of Demosthenes, but it has perhaps been removed from the ruins of a larger family funerary monument.

40 Wörrle, 58 on OGIS 555, cf. Hall, A. S., Coulton, J. J., Chiron XX (1990), 133 n. 79. Obviously this Moles will have been vitally important when the Oenoandans came to build bridges to Octavian after they had enthusiastically collaborated with Brutus in the sack of Xanthos in 42 B.C., cf. Appian, B. Civ. 4.79.

41 Cf. Bier, L., “The Upper Theatre of Balboura”, AS XLIV (1994), 2746, at 44 (YÇ 1129).

42 Cf. Hepding, H., Ath. Mit. XXXIV (1909), 329 ff., Tuchelt, K., Frühe Denkmäler Roms in Kleinasien I (1979), 82, IGR IV 293 ii 61 ff., 64 ff. (for Diodorus Pasporos of Pergamon), on which Hepding, H., Ath. Mit. XXXII (1907), 271. Cf. also Milner, N. P., Smith, Martin F., “New votive reliefs from Oinoanda”, AS XLIV (1994), 6576, at 69.

43 YÇ 1067, in a pile of rubble below the “Great Wall”, south of the Upper Agora. If the name is correctly read as Erpias, it is epichoric to eastern and central Lycia, Cf. Zgusta, §353.5.

44 YÇ 1076, built into the city wall, at the north-west corner.

45 Vienna Schedae, no. 58.

46 Demostheneia Festival inscr. lines 47 and 6; cf. Wörrle, 70 and 75.

47 IGR III 500 ii 1–6; cf. Wörrle, 65 n. 79.

48 He was also her first father-in-law, when she was married to his son Licinnius Maximus, before marrying C. Julius Antoninus.

49 Hall, A. S., Epigraphica Anatolica IV (1984), 2736, with Wörrle, 74 n. 141; see also Heil, M., Chiron XIX (1989), 165–84, and Halfmann, H., Asia Minor Studien III (Bonn, 1991), 41–3. It should be here remarked that N.P.M. reads Hall's fragmentary squeeze in the B.I.A.A. in line 1 as [c. 8 ]ΦΡΟΝΤΙ[ΝΟΝ—. Frustratingly, it was found in 1994 that the relevant part of the stone has broken off in the meantime, and must be considered lost.

50 Wörrle, 60–1, 72, 74 n. 141, notes the remarkable longevity of Demosthenes and some of his circle, and would date his birth hardly much after A.D. 50. See also n. 15 above.

51 IGR III 500 iv 8 ff.

52 Cf. Wörrle, 72. n. 131.

53 Wörrle, 60 n. 48.

54 Assuming he is the son of (C. Julius) Simonides III.

55 Wörrle, 73.

56 See refs. collected by Wörrle, 65 n. 83.

57 IGR III 500 ii 65 ff. They are thus more accurately described as Dryantianos' descendants. Şahin, S., Epigraphica Anatolica XVII (1991), 114, suggests to read “uncle” instead of “great-grandfather”.

58 So Wörrle, 60 n. 48; 64 n. 71. The restoration of the name Iulianus (by N.P.M.) seems to impose itself.

59 TAM III 603, 905 no. 59. See PIR2 C 776, Alföldy, G., Konsulat und Senatorenstand unter den Antoninen (1977), 166, Halfmann, H., Die Senatoren aus dem östlichen Teil des Imperium Romanum (1979) 164 ff. no. 80.

60 Her senatorial husband Claudius Titianus was related to the Vilii; cf. Jameson, S., “Two Lycian Families”, AS XVI (1966), 125–30, with stemma 137; Raepsaet-Charlier, M.-T., Prosopographie des femmes de l'ordre senatorial [1er-IIesiècles] (1987) 230 no. 257. Her father Claudius Titianus, also called Ti. Claudius Flavianus Titianus Q. Vilius Proculus L. Marcius Celer M. Calpurnius Longus (so Raepsaet-Charlier no. 238 and others, contra Jameson), may be identical with (and is certainly related to) the Longus, M. Calpurnius (IGR IV 894, 895, cf. 897, identical acc. to Cagnat comm. ad 894) who had estates at Alastos, near Tefenni, in the Cibyratis.

61 IGR III 1505 (corrected) (YÇ 1119).

62 Hall and Milner, loc. cit., 30–1, nos. 19 and 20 (YÇ 1007 and 1006).

63 M. Aurelii may, in theory, have been enfranchised by the Emperors M. Aurelius or Commodus, but in the Cibyratis the majority of cases have to do with the effect of the Constitutio Antoniniana. The evidence of inscriptions from Balboura suggests that of those enfranchised in A.D. 212 “M(arcus)” was often prefixed to “Aur(elius)” and often omitted; cf. Coulton, J. J., Milner, N. P., Reyes, A. T., AS XXXIX (1989), 60; the same may be observed in the epigraphy of Oenoanda—see the collection in Hall and Milner, for example.

64 IGR III 500 ii 8–9.

65 Hall and Milner, 22 no. 15, 26 (YÇ 1028).

66 IGR III 1507 (YÇ 1003). Perhaps grandfather of, rather than the same as, the ambassador of 125.

67 Cf. Wörrle, 70–1, where he misdates the games put on by M. Aur. Antimachos. It was proposed by Petersen, E. and von Luschan, F., Reisen in Lykien, Milyas und Kibyratis II (1889), 181, that Polykleia was the sister of Ammia, husband of C. Licinnius Musaios.

68 Wörrle, 70. Cf. Hall and Milner, 36 no. 27 (YÇ 1118), Simonides son of Kroisos son of Tlepolemos son of Tlepolemos; 38 no. 30 (YÇ 1089), Aurelius Kroisos son of Simonides son of Kroisos son of Tlepolemos.

* In 1994 survey work at Oenoanda was resumed under the direction of Prof. S. Mitchell. We are grateful to the Turkish Government for permission to survey the site and territory, to the British Academy and the B.I.A.A. for funding the project, and to the Turkish Government representative Bay Ilhan Güceren, of Isparta museum, for his help. We also thank Dr. M. Wörrle for constructive criticism of a draft of this article.

An Exedra for Demosthenes of Oenoanda and his Relatives*

  • N. P. Milner and S. Mitchell


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