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Classics Presents... Dr. Patrick Baker

Wednesday, February 28, 2024
2:30 PM – 4:00 PM
Watson Hall
Room: 517
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Local celebrations on the territory of Xanthos in the late Hellenistic period. The work of the Canadian epigraphic mission to Xanthos-Letoon

From 2000 to 2010, the Canadian epigraphic mission of Xanthos-Letoon worked on collecting and studying the Greek and Latin inscriptions of the two sites in Lycia, Turkey, and publishing the results in print and online. Though the Turkish government suspended field work in 2011, research has continued into the documents themselves. This paper begins with a brief overview of the mission, both during the 10 years devoted to field work and since this was suspended. The emphasis is on the nature of the field work carried out by epigraphists, as well as the use of 3D technologies for epigraphical research. We then turn to a particularly illuminating case. Survey work in 2009 on the site of Aklar, a village of the Xanthian eschatiai on the mountainous borders of the territory of Xanthos, led to the discovery of two similar inscriptions. The nearly 180 lines, once deciphered (a challenge in itself), present the regularly-structured list of contributors to an unnamed annual religious celebration. Drawing on Lycian parallels, notably from Phellos, we address a number of key questions, such as the status of the anonymous kōmē on the territory of Xanthos during the Hellenistic period, the nature of local cultic celebrations far from the urban center, and the validity of archaeologist F. Işık's initial interpretation of the site of Aklar.

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