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E04421: Greek inscription commemorating the consecration of a church dedicated to a certain *Markos (probably *Mark the Evangelist, S00293, or possibly *Markos, bishop and confessor of Arethousa in Syria, ob. 4th c., S01563). Found at Jueîzeh, near Quneitra and Paneas/Caesarea Philippi, in the Golan Heights, to the northeast of the Sea of Galilee (Roman province of Phoenicia Paralias). Probably 5th-6th c.

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posted on 2017-11-30, 00:00 authored by pnowakowski
+ εἰσὶν τὰ ἐν- +
κένια τοῦ ἁγίου
Μάρκου, μη(νὸς) Αὐγού<σ>του

4. ιε΄ Gregg & Urman, τε΄ Schlatter in Dalman 1913, πε΄ Lohmann in Dalman 1913

'+ The consecration + (of the church) of Saint Markos. In the month of August, on the 15th (day).'

Text: Gregg & Urman 1996, no. 161. Translation: R. Gregg & D. Urman, lightly adapted.


Evidence ID


Saint Name

Mark the Evangelist : S00293 Markos, bishop of Arethousa and confessor, ob. 4th c. : S01563 Markos, a saint invoked at Nessana in the Negev desert : S01736

Saint Name in Source

Μᾶρκος Μᾶρκος Μᾶρκος

Type of Evidence

Inscriptions - Formal inscriptions (stone, mosaic, etc.)


  • Greek

Evidence not before


Evidence not after


Activity not before


Activity not after


Place of Evidence - Region

Palestine with Sinai Syria with Phoenicia Palestine with Sinai Palestine with Sinai

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc

Caesarea Philippi Quneitra Paneas Jueîzeh

Place of evidence - City name in other Language(s)

Caesarea Philippi Caesarea Maritima Καισάρεια Kaisareia Caesarea Kayseri Turris Stratonis Quneitra Thabbora Thabbora Paneas Caesarea Maritima Καισάρεια Kaisareia Caesarea Kayseri Turris Stratonis Jueîzeh Caesarea Maritima Καισάρεια Kaisareia Caesarea Kayseri Turris Stratonis

Cult activities - Liturgical Activity

  • Ceremony of dedication

Cult activities - Festivals

  • Saint’s feast

Cult activities - Places

Cult building - independent (church)

Cult activities - Non Liturgical Practices and Customs

Construction of cult buildings


Stone lintel, lightly damaged at the right-hand end. The inscription, almost certainly complete, is carved on both sides of a disc or wreath, possibly containing an unfinished or erased cross. Dimensions not specified. First recorded at Jueîzeh, a Circassian village sited 10 km to the south of Quneiṭra, during the 1911 survey of the Deutsche Evangelische Institut für Altertumswissenschaften des Heiligen Landes in Jerusalem, and published by Gustaf Dalman in 1913. Dalman did not see the stone, but published the inscription from a drawing made by Paul Lohmann and Adolf Schlatter. Revisited during surveys organised by the Israel Antiquities Authority after 1967, and re-published with a photograph by Robert Gregg and Dan Urman in 1996.


The inscription commemorates the construction of a church over whose doorway it was displayed. The term ἐγκαινία/'consecration', 'dedication' is rare in inscriptions recording shrines dedicated to saints. The saint to whom the church was dedicated is Markos. A saint bearing this name is mentioned also at Nessana in the Negev desert (E04337). This is most likely to be *Mark the Evangelist (whose cult was popular in Alexandria and Egypt, and whose feast in Jerusalem is recorded in the Church Calendar of Ioane Zosime on 6 April, E3701, and by the Georgian version of the Lectionary of Jerusalem on 24 April, E03120, 12 June, E03193, and 20 October, E03404); but it could possibly be, *Markos, bishop of Arethousa in Syria, and confessor under the emperor Julian, known to Theodoret (E04153) and Sozomen (E04103). The last line contains a dating formula. Gregg and Urman, based on their examination of the stone, argue that its last two signs are ιε΄ = 15, and that this is the day of the month when the church was dedicated (15 August). Lohmann had read these signs as πε΄ = 85, and Schlatter as τε΄= 305. The first editor, Dalman, preferred the latter reading and considered the number the 305th year of the era of the province of Arabia, which he converted as AD 410/411. The photograph published by Gregg and Urman, however, proves that their reading is correct: the first sign is an iota flanked by two dots. This is more likely to be the day of the month than the indiction year.


Edition: Gregg, R., Urman, D., Jews, Pagans, and Christians in the Golan Heights: Greek and Other Inscriptions of the Roman and Byzantine Eras (Atlanta, Ga.: Scholars Press, 1996), no. 161. Dalman, G., "Studien aus dem Deutschen evang. Institut für Altertumswissenschaft in Jerusalem. 21. Inschriften aus dem Ostjordanland nebst einem Anhang über einige andere Inschriften", Zeitschrift des deutschen Palästina-Vereins 36 (1913), 254-255. Reference works: Bulletin épigraphique (1997), 648. Supplementum Epigraphicum Graecum 46, 1959.

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    Evidence -  The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity



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