Sylloge Inscriptionum Graecarum: 958


Greek text: IG_12.5.647
Date:   c. 200 B.C.
Tags:     games+festivals ,   gymnasiarchs
Format:   see key to translations

This inscription gives a particularly detailed account of the financial arrangements for a Greek festival, although the name and purpose of the festival are not mentioned in the surviving sections.   The translation of the first half is by R.Osborne, with changes as suggested in the commentary by P. van Minnen, "Contracting caterers on Keos" ( ). The middle part (line 20-31) has been translated by P.McKechnie, "Greeks outside the πολις in the Fourth Century B.C.", page 330 ( PDF ).   For the date, see P. van Minnen, op.cit., pp.211-2; the inscription was originally dated to the early 3rd century B.C.

. . . [(?) to revoke] the law [which was proposed . . . by] Polypeithes. The probouloi who are in office shall contract with a supplier for the . . . on the (?) 22nd day of the month of Maimakterion and shall pay the supplier 150 drachmas for sacrificial victims. The supplier shall provide a surety acceptable to the magistrates that he will give the feast as prescribed by the law. Any ox and sheep that he sacrifices must be mature. If he sacrifices a pig it must not be older than eighteen months. He shall provide a feast for the citizens, for those invited by the city, 10 for resident foreigners and all freedmen who pay taxes to Koresia. He shall provide ample supper, wine, fruit and nuts, and all the rest along with an amount of meat per man not less than two minas in raw weight, and all the edible entrails that the sacrificial beasts have. The probouloi and the treasurer and the herald shall examine the beasts and weigh the meat and preside at the sacrifice. The supper shall start (?) in the evening, and good wine must be provided until sunset. If the feast meets with the approval of the magistrates, the treasurer shall give the rest of the money to supplier on the following day. If not he shall deduct twenty per cent from the sum he hands over.

20 The probouloi shall institute a contest in connection with the festival, at a cost of 65 drachmas, and a gymnasiarch shall be chosen at the same time as the other offices are filled, who shall be not less than thirty years old. This magistrate shall organise a torch race for the young men at the festival, and shall be responsible for the other matters relating to gymnastic training, and shall lead the young men out three times per month for practice in javelin-throwing, archery, and catapult-shooting. Any of the young men who does not attend, while able to do so, shall be liable to be fined up to a drachma. The probouloi shall give prizes to the winners as follows:

They shall hold a contest for boys and they shall give prizes of a portion of meat to the winning boy archer, and a portion of meat to the winning boy javelin-thrower. The outgoing probouloi shall prepare the weapons and hand them over to the incoming probouloi; the treasurer shall give money for the cost of the weapons. They shall also give a portion of meat to a rhapsode. The probouloi in office shall retain a catapult and thirty missiles until it seems opportune to the council. Whoever receives the prizes shall not be permitted to give them away. The generals shall examine the armed display. 40 The secretary shall write down a list of the victors in each contest on a whitened tablet. If the law is approved, it shall be inscribed on a stele and placed in the sacred precinct.

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