The CBd
Bonner, SMA, 177.

with no genitive, on the reverse of a carnelian described by Huebner, probably refers to Zeus Hypsistos, since the other side is inscribed τὸν θεὸν σοι τὸν ὕψισστον, μή με ἀδικήσις, “By the Highest I adjure you, wrong me not.”74 At the time when I examined B. M. 56136, a green jasper inscribed μέγα τὸ ὄνομα τοῦ μόν‹ου› θεοῦ, I did not know that Peterson had expressed a doubt of its genuineness.75 I saw no reason to suspect it. The use of μόνος suggests a Judaeo-Christian origin.
Χαῖρε, “hail,” is used, as we have seen, on the “trinitarian” stone of the British Museum, but is not a common acclamation for amulets. A black glass paste of the Seyrig collection represents the dead Osiris lying on a bier at the foot of which an uncertain figure with an animal head and hoofs seated.76 It may be the ass-headed Set or, less probably, the cow-headed Hathor; but the head is injured by the collapse of a bubble in the paste, and the interpretation is not certain. Above are the words χαῖρε Ὄσιρι,77 but χαῖρε here is scarcely an acclamation in the ordinary sense:but rather the “farewell” to the dead which is a part of many sepulchral inscriptions.78
Such words as ὑγίεια, ζωή, τύχη, χάρις, χαρά, δύναμις, when inscribed on amulets, are naturally understood as good wishes for the wearer; such is surely the intent of the words χάρις ζοή ὑγία cut in relief on a carnelian the Cabinet des Médailles.79 ὑγία follows εἷς θεός on the reverse of a haematite in London; the obverse represents the Rider Saint with the inscription Σολομ‹ῶν›.80 The object is probably of Syrian origin, and Perdrizet thinks that all inscriptions of the ζωή, ὑγίεια type come from the Orient.81 τύχη is a pagan analogue; it appears with a figure of Anubis on a nicolo at the University of Michigan.82 δύναμις also, though it came to be used in Christian acclamations, occurs with pagan deities. A haematite in the British Museum bears the word on the reverse of a design showing a mummy (Osiris) upheld by an animal-headed god, probably Anubis, the funerary attendant of Osiris.83 Peterson calls attention to several places in P. Oxy. 1381 where δύναμις attributed to Imouthes-Asklepios.84
Χαρά, joy, has been found inscribed on houses and tombs in Syria, all of the late imperial period, and on a bronze stamp, also from Syria;85 it is rarely found on amulets of the ordinary sort. On two closely similar gems

74 Bull. dell'Instit., 1861, 24; see also Kopp, Pal. Crit., IV, 313.
75 Peterson, op. cit., p. 209.
76 D. 11.
77 The use of the four-stroke sigma, which occurs in the word Osiris and in a magical word on the reverse, is so rare on magical stones as to deserve mention.
78 For several examples from Egypt see Sammelbuch, 5839–5857; Rostovtzeff, Soc. and Econ. Hist. of the Hellenistic World, I, Pl. 37, 1.
79 Chabouillet 274. Such words might, of course, be understood as referring to the life and health of the soul; but there is no proof that it is a Christian inscription.
81 REG 27 (1914), 278.
84 Peterson, Heis Theos, p. 198, 2.
85 Perdrizet, REG 27, 272–273.

Last modified: 2012-10-31 13:48:04

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