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Titre du document / Document title

Civitas heracleotarum. A new epigraphic inscription indicating the name of the ancient city near the Village of Rupite, Petrich Region

Auteur(s) / Author(s)

MITREV Georgi ; TARAKOV Todor ;

Résumé / Abstract

One of the most important archaeological sites from the Hellenistic period in the Middle Struma valley is situated in the neighborhood of the village of Rupite (earlier known as Shirbanovo and Muletarovo). Currently thereare three hypotheses regarding the name of this ancient town: Petra, Orthopolis and Tristolos. Archaeological research reveals that the town occupied its largest area during the Hellenistic period. Geographically it was situated on the territory of the Thracian Sintoi that also bordered with the Thracian Maidoi (Maedi). In March 2002, the collection of the Municipal Museum in Petrich was enriched with the acquisition of a marble stela with an inscription in Latin consisting of 24 lines that was found in the Chervenite skali locality near the village of Rupite, Petrich region. The stela was reused in the construction of a Late Antique tomb dated to the 5th - 6th centuries. That there is a relationship between the stela and the Hellenistic town is beyond any doubt. The stela is rectangular in shape and has the following dimensions: height - 1,56 m, width - 0,76 m and thickness - 0,18-20 m. The field for the inscription measures 1,15 x 0,76 m, and the height of the letters is between 4-12 cm. A letter from Augustus Galerius and Caesar Maximinus Daza from AD 308/309 was copied on the stela. It was addressed to the quattuorviri and the decuriones of the Heracleians (salutem dicunt IIII viris et decc(urionibus) Heracleotarum). The name of the city and its rank are indicated clearly - civitas Heracleotarum. There were three cities that carried this name in Macedonia: Heracleia Linkestis in Upper Macedonia, near the modern town of Bitolia in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia; 2) Heracleia in Macedonian Pieria, in Greece near the modern village of Platamon on the western coast of the Thermaic Bay; 3) Heracleia Sintica, located on the Struma river in Southwestern Bulgaria in the territory of the Sintoi whose exact location is also the subject of various hypotheses. According to W. M. Leake, C. Muller and P. Collart the town was situated in present day Greece near the village of Zervokhorion, Nigrita region; according to N.G.L. Hammond also in modern day Greece near the village of Vergi, Serres region; according to K. Miler and D. Samsaris near the town of Sidhirokastron in Northern Greece; according to A. Manner in Southwestern Bulgaria near the town of Melnik; and finally according to H. Kiepert and F. Papazoglou near the town of Neon Petritsion in Northern Greece. However, none of these hypotheses are supported by epigraphic evidence. It is our opinion that the letter of Galerius and Maximinus Daza refers Heracleia Sintica. The inscription provides valuable information regarding the status of Heracleia. It says that Galerius and Maximinus Daza were willing to honour the «fatherland» of the Heracleians with the signs and the rights of civitas (ornamentis et iure civitatis patriam vestram). This act was promulgated for several reasons: to show the Emperor's and Caesar's love of the state and the need to demonstrate their care and benevolence. Another reason was the statement by the Heracleians that their town had the rank of civitas in the past. The mention of the quattuorviri and decuriones does not contradict the rest of the information as the stela is dated to the period later than the Constitutio Antoniana (AD 212).

Revue / Journal Title

Arheologiâ    ISSN  0324-1203 

Source / Source

2002, vol. 43, no4, pp. 25-32 [8 page(s) (article)]

Langue / Language

Revue : Bulgare

Editeur / Publisher

Izdatel'stvo na B"lgarska akademiâ na naukite, Sofiâ, BULGARIE  (1959) (Revue)

Localisation / Location

INIST-CNRS, Cote INIST : 23057, 35400010429414.0030

Nº notice refdoc (ud4) : 14583114

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