The cursus honorum appears to have belonged to a legion physician by the name of L. Hortensius Paulinus. It is made from limestone, and is located on the frontal side of a well-chiseled rectangular block. The lower part of the cursus is broken; however, this does not pose any problem with regards to the condition of the inscription. The inscription was discovered within the city limits of Antiocheia in 2011, while the excavation for the construction was carried to a military garrison, and it was later moved to the Yalvaç Museum. However, the inscription has not yet received an inventory number.
The broken stone has a height of approximately 53. 5 cm, a width of approximately 59 cm, and a lateral depth of approximately 45 cm. The frontal surface on which the inscription is located has been chiseled rather smoothly, and the inscription area is approximately 32 cm.
The height and width of the letters varies slightly between the upper and lower parts of the inscription. On the 1st and 2nd lines of the inscription, the height for the letters (L) and (P) is 4 cm; while on the 5th line, the height for the letter (H) is approximately 0.60 cm. The width of the letters on the 1st line varies between 2.70 cm and 3. 60 cm.
Ligature has been applied for the letters (TP) of the 3rd line, and (ΝΤ) and (ΠΡ) on the 7th line. This practice is commonly observed in inscriptions from the 2nd and 3rd centuries AD found in the city of Antiocheia.
δ´ Φλαουίας Εὐτυχοῦς
5 καὶ λεγεῶνος β´ ᾿Ιταλικῆς,
ἄρχοντα πρῶτον, εἰρή-
ναρχον, ἱερέα διὰ βίου
L(ucios) Horte(n)sios Pauleinos, the chief physician of the IV Flavia Eutyches and II Italica legions, treasurer, controller of the market, first archon, ruler of peace (and) the lifelong priest of Asclepios (has been honored).
It is the first time to encounter any inscriptions from Antiocheia written on behalf of Λ(ούκιος) Ὁρτήσιος Παυλεῖνος (Lines 1-3) . The inscription does not specify the party or parties which are honoring L. Hortensius Paulinus . The important official services and tasks assumed by this person in the city suggests that he was honored by public authorities. We have no information about his homeland or his family. The legions in which he was assigned, as well as his nomen gentilicium, clearly indicate that he was not native to Antiocheia.
It is possible that L. Hortensius Paulinus might be a relative of M. Cassius Hortensius Paulinus, who is described as a patricius puer in an inscription from Ankara . This child, presumed to be native to Northern Italy , is believed to be the same person Senator M. Cassius Hortensius Paulinus , and the owner of a pottery by the name of Hortensius Paulinus in Rome during the Commodus’ reign . Furthermore, another inscription from a later period found in Rome describes the same person as a praetor urbanus and XVvir sacris facundis .
The same surname and family origins in Northern Italy suggests that the two individuals in question might have been relatives. The fact that all of the soldiers serving in legio II Italica were selected from people living in Northern Italy further reinforces this possibility. If this is indeed the case, then it is somewhat difficult to determine why L. Hortensius Paulinus choose medicine as an occupation – a profession generally preferred by emancipated slaves and non-citizens in the Roman Empire. Therefore, it is clear that more evidence and information other than a similarity in name and origin is necessary before reaching a definite conclusion regarding the kinship between these individuals.
In line 3, the title of ἀρχιατρός (medicus ordinarius or medicus legionis) carried by Hortensius Paulinus reflects his extensive experience in the profession of medicine . The time and legion in which L. Hortensius Paulinus began his profession are both unknown. The term ἀρχιατρός is encountered quite frequently in inscriptions , and has been used for many royal physicians since the Hellenistic period. This word is also quite common in inscriptions from the Imperial period, and has been employed not only for legion physicians (medicus legionis), but also for experienced physicians serving in palaces and gladiator schools. It is known that Galen of Pergamum, who acquired his fame by working in gladiator schools for a long period, was eventually able to rise to the office of palace physician at Marcus Aurelius Antoninus’ palace.
In lines 3 to 5, it can be seen that L. Hortensius Paulinus has served as chief physician in both the IV Flavia Felix and the II Italica legions. The fact that the names of the legions have been explicitly stated is highly important for the correct dating of the inscription. Since these types of honorary documents are generally organized by taking into account the chronological order of the relevant person’s successive assignments, it is highly likely that legio IV Flavia Felix was L. Hortensius Paulinus’ first assignment.
IV Flavia Felix was formed from the remaining soldiers of the legio IV Macedonica, which was disbanded immediately after the Batavian Revolt (69/70 AD). The legion was founded by Emperor Vespasian, receiving the name Flavia in his honor. The epithet felix (εὐτυχής) included in the legion’s name indicates a previous military success. The first headquarters of the legio IV Flavia Felix was located at Burnum (Kistanje), and was later moved to Singidunum in 86 AD. This legion was responsible for the safety of the route known as the via militaris, which stretched from Singidunum (Belgrade) to Constantinopolis. The legion participated to Trajan’s Dacian Wars (101-106 AD), and was stationed for a short period of time at Sarmizegetusa after the war. Inscriptions referring to the officers and soldiers serving in this legion have been found in Ephesus, Alexandreia/Troia, Synnada/Phrygia, Ankara and Zeugma. Some of the units associated with legio IV Flavia Felix are known to have taken part in the civil wars that occurred in the East towards the end of the 2nd century AD; however, this is the first time to encounter the name of this legion in inscriptions from Antiocheia.
The presence of legio II Italica in Antiocheia was first suggested by a disputed inscription published by M. A. Byrne and G. Labarre. The reason why this inscription belonging to a high-ranking military official by the name of C. Flavonius Paullinus Lollianus was subject to debate was due to the uncertainty as to whether the legion mentioned in the inscription’s line 4 referred to II Italica or III Italica. Since there have been no published documents concerning the legions stationed in the city, it has not been possible to determine the exact identity of this legion until now. However, with the new inscription regarding L. Hortensius Paulinus, we are now able to identify the legion mentioned in line 4 of the inscription below as legio II Italica. As such, the inscription in question can be revised as follows:
L[eg(ionis)] II Italicae
5 filio C. Flavoni
Patr(on)i col(oniae) munici
pes vici fel(iciter) vac.
Legio II Italica was – along with the similarly named legio III Italica – founded by Marcus Aurelius in 165/6 AD. Marcus Aurelius was compelled to create these legions due to the shift of most Roman legions towards the East due to the Parthian Wars, and the continuous border raids performed by the German and Marcomanni tribes in the West. The mention of this legion’s name in the inscription indicates a terminus post quem for the document. Although the location of the legio II Italica’s initial headquarters is still subject to debate, it is known that the legion was temporarily relocated to a fort in Lotschitz (Lociča) in 168/169 AD, or a later year. The legion was later transferred by Commodus to Lauriacum (Lorch/Austria) within the boundaries of Noricum, where they remained until the 5th century AD. Initially, the legion only bore the title of pia in its name; this was changed to pia fidelis after 170 AD. On the other hand, in the inscription belonging to L. Hortensius Paulinus, the legion is only named as II Italica. Unless this is due to a writing error, it seems possible to suggest that the legion was only designated as II Italica starting from the first half of the 3rd century AD.
Assuming that the cursus has been written in a chronological order, it appears possible that L. Hortensius Paulinus came to the East while serving in the legio II Italica; however, this does not necessarily exclude the possibility that he might have come East while serving in the legio IV Flavia Felix. Regardless of the legion with which he came to the East, it is clear that the reason for his (as well as the legions’) presence in the region was the civil war between Septimius Severus and Pescennius Niger. New evidence indicates that Septimius Severus actively used both of these legions during the civil war against Pescennius Niger. It is known that the legio IV Flavia Felix and the legio II Italica both fought in the Battle of Issus, in which all or some of the units belonging to approximately 12 legions participated. The new inscription for L. Hortensius Paulinus serves as definite evidence of these legions’ involvement in this battle. This suggests that L. Hortensius Paulinus came to the East in 193/194 at the earliest, and that, some time after the end of the civil war, he retired to settle in Antiocheia. We have no information as to why he might have preferred to stay at Antiocheia. In this context, it is likely that he was honored in the second quarter of the 3rd century AD. This chronology appears to be compatible with the writing style of the inscription.
On the other hand, another military inscription dated towards the end of the 2nd century AD suggests that the legio II Italica may have also participated in Septimius Severus’ Parthian campaign. Although this inscription does not, at first, seem significant when considered on its own, its relevance can be better understood when considered together with the inscriptions relating to C. Flavonius Paullinus Lollianus and L. Hortensius Paulinus. The inscription in question indicates that the reason for these two individuals’ arrival to the East may have been related to Septimius Severus’ Parthian campaign. However, further evidence is clearly necessary before reaching a definite conclusion on this matter.
It appears that L. Hortensius Paulinus assumed highly prestigious public offices in the city of Antiocheia. Individuals assigned to such offices can certainly be expected to have significant economic strength and social reputation to support their tenure. It thus appears that Paulinus was able to amass considerable wealth before his retirement certainly enough to gain important offices and duties in the society in which he lived.
In line 6, it can be seen that L. Hortensius Paulinus assumed highly strategic offices in the city, such as ταμίας (tamias) and ἀγορανόμος (agoranomos). The presence of these two public offices in Antiocheia demonstrates that the administrative approach of Roman colonies was compatible with those of traditional Hellenistic cities. The ταμίας – which corresponds to the office of “public treasurer” or “revenue officer” – was the leading public official dealing with the city’s financial affairs. The financial office of ταμίας and ἀργυροταμίας can be observed in many other Anatolian cities of the Imperial Era.
Similarly, the ἀγορανόμος was responsible for ensuring price stability at markets or bazaars, as well as the reliability of scales and measures. Depending on a city’s requirements and level of activity, the number of ἀγορανόμος in a city could reach two or three. The ἀγορανόμος had prime responsibility in guaranteeing that wheat, olive oil, and other foodstuffs could enter the city market in sufficient amounts and suitable prices. The duty of these officials became even more important during times of famine, scarcity, war, or extraordinary events. In times of difficulty, individuals holding this office were responsible for ensuring the adequate supply of basic foodstuffs required by the people. It was possible for a person to be assigned more than once to this post. While most public offices in Hellenistic cities were held for a period of at least one year, the term of an agoranomos’ office was generally limited to several months due to weight of the financial responsibilities he assumed. Agoranomos remained in Office for a period of four months in cities such as Thyateira and Erythrai, while those in Side and Perge assumed this office for a period of only three months. However, certain honorary inscriptions from the Imperial Period indicate that, in rare instances, the term of office of certain agoranomos could be extended up to a full year. In this context, the office of agoranomos held by L. Hortensius Paulinus further illustrates the wealth and reputation he held in the city.
Lines 7 and 8 of the inscription indicate that, in addition to his many other public offices, Paulinus also served as ἄρχων πρῶτος and εἰρηναρχός. These two official duties described in the last lines of the cursus were highly strategic and expensive offices that could only be assumed by the city elite. Archons, who assumed their office through election, were the highest ranking and most influential public official of a city. References to archons can be found since the Hellenistic period; these officials have existed in ancient Athens since the 8th century BC, were quite common in the Hellenistic cities of Anatolia during both the Hellenistic and Roman Period. The expression ἄρχων πρῶτος or πρῶτος ἄρχων in the inscription, which means “first archon”, indicated that the city had an “official committee” (βουλευτκαὶ ἀρχαί)  consisting of highranking officials of different assignments, and that this committee was presided by L. Hortensius Paulinus under the title of πρῶτος ἄρχων. In other words, this expression reflects that L. Hortensius Paulinus was a ἄρχων ἐπώνυμος, an “archon eponymos”, and that the city recorded the calendar year corresponding to his tenure by using his name. Numerous epigraphic documents found in the cities of the Province of Asia, as well as the cities of the other Roman Provinces established in Anatolia, indicate that many individuals holding the office of πρῶτος ἄρχων were honored in a similar fashion.
The title εἰρηναρχός, which can be described as the “preserver of public peace” or the “police director” of a city, is also mentioned in various inscriptions as εἰρηνάρχης, εἰρηνηφύλακης, εἰρήνης ἄρξας, all of which have nearly the same meaning. The honorary inscription shows that L. Hortensius Paulinus also successfully assumed the public office of εἰρηναρχία at the city. A number of honorary inscriptions described other important individuals who have also assumed this office at Antiocheia. Eirenarches were public officials that were commonly found in many Anatolian cities since the Hellenistic period. It is known that in the Eastern Provinces of the Roman Empire, duties relating to public peace and security were generally under the responsibility of military officials of the Roman legions referred to as beneficiarii and stationarii. However, in the cities of Anatolian provinces that did not have a permanent military presence, duties relating to public peace and security were largely assumed and executed by the εἰρηνάρχαι – the equivalent of present-day “police directors” – who were assigned for a period of one year. A decree issued by Antoninus Pius (130-135 AD), the governor of the Asia Province during Hadrian’s Period, strictly delineated the tasks and areas of responsibility of eirenarches. These officials assumed a highly important role and duty in their city, and were assigned directly by the provincial governor for a period of one year. Eirenarches were only appointed among leading citi zens who willingly applied for this post. Under the command of the eirenarches was the διωγμῖται, a large and well-armed security force. Considering that eirenarches were personally responsible for financing this force, it is clear that those assigned to this office were required to spend an immense sum during their tenure. For this reason, this office does not appear to be one very enthusiastically assumed by the city elite. Beginning with the period of Antoninus Pius, the cities of Asia Minor saw a significant rise in banditry and pillage. The problem gradually became so severe that cities were compelled to hire experts on security from other provinces to deal with the issue. Antiocheia was inevitably affected by this general deterioration in security across Asia Minor. In this context, Antiocheia’s strategic and logistic importance due to its location on the via Sebasta, as well as its proximate location to mountain tribes engaged in banditry, rendered the duty of eirenarches even more important for this city.
Line 9 of the inscription describes L. Hortensius Paulinus as a lifelong priest of the god of medicine Asclepius, a title which he clearly received owing to his profession. Epigraphic evidence found in Antiocheia reveals other famous physicians who have received this lifelong title, or task, at the city, such as L. Gellius Maximus, the close friend and physician of Caracalla. Furthermore, it is also known that cult of Asclepius has played an important role in the establishment of close relations between Antiocheia and Pergamum. New and unpublished inscriptions indicate the presence of a cult of Asclepius in Antiocheia, as well as a sacred area in the city dedicated to this cult and its deity.
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AE L’Année épigraphique
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AS Anatolian Studies
BCH Bulletin de correspondance hellénique
CIG Corpus Inscriptionum Graecarum
CIL Corpus Inscriptionum Latinarum
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IGR Inscriptiones Graecae ad res Romanas pertinenses
IK Inschriften griechischer Städte aus Kleinasien
ILS Inscriptiones Latinae Selectae
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JRS The Journal of Roman Studies
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MAMA Monumenta Asiae Minoris Antiqua
ÖJh Jahreshefte des Österreichischen Archäologischen Instituts
PIR Prosopographia Imperii Romani
RE Paulys Real Encyclopädie der classischen Altertumswissenschaft
RECAM Regional epigraphic catalogues of Asia Minor (B.A.R. Oxford 1982- )
SEG Supplementum Epigraphicum Graecum
TAM Tutuli Asiae Minoris
TAPA Transactions of American Philological Association
ZPE Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik