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E04545: Greek text inscribed on a window transom, asking God to remember *Kosmas and Damianos (physicians and martyrs of Syria, S00385), supplicants visiting their shrine (ktisis), and the artisans who built it. Found at Vaphes Apokoronou near ancient Kydonia (Crete). Probably 6th-7th c.

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posted on 2017-12-30, 00:00 authored by pnowakowski
μνίστι(τι) Κ(ύρι)ε τῶν Ἁγίων Ἐν-
αργύρο Κοσμᾶ καὶ Δαμι-
ανοῦ καὶ τõ συνδραμό-
το εἰς τὶν κτίσιν αὐτõν·
ἐντεκτιῶ(νος) α΄, ἐπὲ τοῦ
ἁγιωτάτου ἐπισκόπ-
ου Ἐπιφανίο(υ)·

μνίστι(τι) Κ(ύρι)ε
καὶ τõν τεχνιτõν

'O Lord, remember the Holy Unmercenaries (Anargyroi), Kosmas and Damians, and those who run to their shrine (ktisis)! In the 1st indiction, under the most holy bishop Epiphanios. O Lord, remember also the artisans! +'

Text: SEG 59, 1058, lightly adapted regarding the placement of parentheses.


Evidence ID


Saint Name

Kosmas and Damianos, brothers, physician martyrs of Syria : S00385

Saint Name in Source

οἱ Ἅγοι Ἐναργύροι Κοσμᾶς καὶ Δαμιανός

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

Aegean islands and Cyprus Aegean islands and Cyprus Aegean islands and Cyprus

Place of Evidence - City, village, etc

Crete Kydonia Vaphes Apokoronou

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

Crete Salamis Σαλαμίς Salamis Salamis Farmagusta Far Κωνσταντία Konstantia Constantia Kydonia Salamis Σαλαμίς Salamis Salamis Farmagusta Far Κωνσταντία Konstantia Constantia Vaphes Apokoronou Salamis Σαλαμίς Salamis Salamis Farmagusta Far Κωνσταντία Konstantia Constantia

Cult activities - Liturgical Activity

  • Ceremony of dedication

Cult activities - Places

Cult building - independent (church)

Cult activities - Non Liturgical Practices and Customs


Cult Activities - Protagonists in Cult and Narratives

Ecclesiastics - bishops Merchants and artisans Crowds Other lay individuals/ people


The inscription is carved on a moulded stone block identified by the first editor as a window transom with two half-columns (amphikioniskos parathyrou). Poor, irregular lettering. When recorded the inscription was reused in a grave sited to the east of a small rural church (c. 10.10 m x 8 m) dedicated to Ἅγιοι Ἀσώματοι/Hagioi Asomatoi, located at Vaphes Apokoronou near ancient Kydonia, and built over the foundations of an earlier church. First published in 2009 by A. Mylopotamaki who offers the text in majuscules, and a photograph. We present the text with diacritics, as published by Angelos Chaniotis in the Supplementum Epigraphicum Graecum. Tombs are sited both to the east and west, and in the narthex of the church. Based on clay lamps and small objects found in the tombs, they were dated to the 6th or 7th c.


The inscription commemorates the completion of a shrine dedicated to Kosmas and Damianos. Interestingly, God is invoked here not only to remember the future visitors of the shrine, but also the saints themselves. The inscription ends with a request for God's help for the artisans who built the shrine. Dating: The inscription contains a dating formula in lines 5-7, but the indiction year alone is non-convertible, and bishop Epiphanios is otherwise unattested. The dating must be, therefore, be based on the archaeological context of the tombs (6th-7th c.) and the shape of letters (arguably dated to the 6th or 7th c. by Mylopotakami). As the stone was reused in one of the tombs, the church where the plaque was originally displayed, must predate them.


Edition: Mylopotamaki, A., "[Reports of the 13th Ephorate of Byzantine Antiquities:] Ναός Αγίων Ασωμάτων (Gerola, Κατάλογος, αριθ. 72)", Archaiologikon Deltion 55 (2000) [2009], Chronika: B2, 1070-1071 (Greek text in majuscules, photograph). Reference works: Supplementum Epigraphicum Graecum 59, 1058.

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    Evidence -  The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity



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