1800-year-old inscription discovered in Hadrianopolis indicates existence of Asklepian cult

Date:

Share post:

An inscription indicating the existence of the cult of Asklepios was found in the ancient city of Hadrianopolis in Paphlagonia (Greek: Ἁδριανούπολις ἐν Παφλαγονίᾳ). Located in southwestern Paphlagonia (Asia Minor), near the present-day Turkish Eskipazar district in the Black Sea region, the ancient city was inhabited at least from the 1st century BC to the 8th century AD. It was named after the Roman emperor Hadrian in the 2nd century AD. The city also bore the names of Kaisareia (Καισάρεια) and Proseilemmene.

Credit: AA

The excavations, which started in 2003 under the guidance of Professor Ersin Çelikbaş from the Department of Archaeology of Karabuk University, have been going on throughout the year without interruption.

The inscription, which dates back to the 2nd century AD, reads: “[For] Noble Tyche//and Saviour Asklepios//Aelios Deiotaros” and was found on a limestone slab during the ongoing excavations in a square structure uncovered during last year’s excavation period.

Credit: AA

Ersin Çelikbaş told Anadolu Agency that the inscription is very important for the archaeology of Hadrianopolis and the Black Sea since it points to the existence of the cult of Asklepios, the Greek god of medicine, in the ancient city.

In places where the culture of Asklepios exists, there are usually therapeutic facilities, i.e. hospitals of the ancient period,” he said.

Noting that similar structures have been found in the Greek cities of Allianoi and Pergamum, Çelikbaş explains: “We can say that for the first time the cult of Asklepios was found in the Black Sea. We have seen depictions of the god Asklepios on the coins minted by Hadrian’s City. We have seen the depiction of an adult with snakes on a memorial stele. We thought it was related to Asklepios, but the discovery of the inscription clearly reveals that there was indeed a cult of Asklepios in Hadrianopolis.”

Credit: AA

“Usually, the cult of Asklepios is located around hot water springs”, adds Çelikbaş. “The main reason why the cult of Asklepios is located here is probably the existence of the Akkaya thermal springs located to the south. We can say that Hadrianopolis was one of the most important cult centres of the ancient period, especially during the Roman period.”

Source: Anadolu Agency [September 27, 2022]

ADVERTISEMENT

spot_img

Related articles

Remote sensing and machine learning reveal Archaic shell rings

Deep in the dense coastal forests and marshes of the American Southeast lie shell rings and shell mounds...

Wild birds as offerings to the Egyptian gods

Millions of ibis and birds of prey mummies, sacrificed to the Egyptian gods Horus, Ra or Thoth, have...

Silver tornese coins from Principality of Achaea found in Bulgaria’s Rusocastro fortress

A hoard of seven silver coins minted in the Principality of Achaea, also known as Morea, a 13th...

Central European prehistory was highly dynamic

Recent archaeogenetic studies have shown that human movements like migrations and expansions played a major role in driving...

Oldest-known Astrologer’s Board discovered

A research team has discovered what may be the oldest astrologer's board, engraved with zodiac signs and used...

Archaeologists search for lost graves at Uncle Tom’s Cabin Historic Site

Archaeologists plan to begin a high-tech search today for lost graves at the Uncle Tom's Cabin historic site...

Turkish student convicted for carving name on ancient Roman column

“Aziz”. Four letters, carved using a 10-cent coin on a column on the Palatine Hill, have now become...

Museum to be built in ancient settlement Goytapa

The Azerbaijani Culture and Tourism Ministry has designed an action plan. The Azerbaijani Culture and Tourism Ministry has...