Saint NameMary, Mother of Christ : S00033
Saint Name in SourceΜαρία
Type of EvidenceInscriptions - Formal inscriptions (stone, mosaic, etc.)
Inscriptions - Inscribed architectural elements
Evidence not before450
Evidence not after750
Activity not before450
Activity not after750
Place of Evidence - RegionSyria with Phoenicia
Syria with Phoenicia
Syria with Phoenicia
Place of Evidence - City, village, etcBeroia
Place of evidence - City name in other Language(s)Beroia
Cult activities - PlacesCult building - dependent (chapel, baptistery, etc.)
Cult activities - Non Liturgical Practices and CustomsPrayer/supplication/invocation
Cult Activities - Protagonists in Cult and NarrativesOther lay individuals/ people
SourceA moulded corner block. H. 0.39 m; side A: W. 0,60 m; side B: W. 0.69 m. Found at Mektebeh, near a block with the Trisagion prayer. When recorded, the stone was partially buried.
The inscription is in low-relief; above, a band decorated with carvings of vines; below, mouldings. Letter height 0.08-0.09 m.
First published in 1908 by William Prentice, from his own copy. Republished in 1939 by Rene Mouterde and Louis Jalabert. There is no published image.
DiscussionWilliam Prentice identified the block as the cap of a pier from the apse-arch of a church. If so, this might be a part of a building inscription with a prayer of the founder of this apse/chapel. For another invocation of Mary from Mektebeh, see: E01793. The character of these inscriptions (fine architectural elements) suggests that a church dedicated to Mary was constructed here.
The inscription contains a very common invocation of Mary. Prentice suggested that the name of the supplicant was a form of the name Dometios (Δομέτιος) or Domitios (Δομίτιος), possibly created under the influence of the Syriac language, and thus indeclinable and accented Δομετίς. He hypothesised that this might also be the case of the epithet 'holy', here spelt ἁγι instead of ἁγία.
Dating: this kind of invocation, with the formula βοήθει/'help' is usually dated to the late 5th or 6th/7th c.
Mouterde, R., Jalabert, L., Inscriptions grecques et latines de la Syrie, vol. 2: Chalcidique et Antiochène: nos 257-698 (Paris: P. Geuthner, 1939), no. 339.
Prentice, W.K. (ed.), Greek and Latin inscriptions (Publications of an American archaeological expedition to Syria in 1899-1900 3, New York: Century 1908), 248, no. 313.