The statue, that was found in 1936 in Milet and brought to the Archaeological Museum in Izmir, has been taken case of since that time registered in the invantory book as “a piece of Hellenistic statue” drew our attention during our studies in the depot of the museum in Basmahane. The unresemlance of this piece, that we do not meet İn the old and new Milet publications, of the archaic works at first sight is the reason of its being hidden in a depot corner for a long time. After a little cleaning with the appearance of its all archaic characteristics and inscription we set to work to publish it and with the permission of Mr. Hakkı Gültekin, the Director of the Archaeological Museum of Izmir, it has been possible to introduce it to the world of science. I want to present my thanks to Mr. Gültekin who has always been kind and helpful.

As it is told above the statue, according to the inventory registrations, was found in Milct, but we do not have a definite idea of its place, stile and time. As the transition of the statue to the museum is in 1936 for sure it is not a finding of excavation. Because in that case, it would have been possible to find an information, though short, in the reports of excavation, about this kouros which can be considered important for the East-Greek sculpture. Our opinion is that the kouros piece is like the other findings of chance that came from the area of Milet.

The piece of statue which is 32 cm. high is made of white marble which consists of fine shiny green molecules. On its upper surface yellowish patina traces can be easily seen. The statue, of which the total height should be about a metre is broken under the belly at the level of groins from the body and the arms that stick to the legs between the elbow-wrist are lost. (Fig. 1-4). During this break and splitting the penis was destroyed to a great extent too but its testis is kept clear enough to be noticed. The right side of the belly completely damaged. The fact that the back of the statue is protected better, shows us that the statue is overturned towards the front and that the upper part of the body and arms and legs are broken at the time, and the piece at band makes it possible to us to think that it stayed on soft soil untouched by any collision till now. (Fig .2).

Although the statue at first sight resembles the works of the late period when carefully examined it strikes the eye that it has anatomical prominent faults and also characteristics of the archaic period. At the carving of the groins the iliac crest is not made clear, it is joined softly and straight to the leg as it is in small, healthy children. The legs where they join the hip unlike the actual are narrow. This is the result of the body counters that resemble a trapez normally counted in a rectangular shape and the necessity of the fist shaped arms hanging down on either sides sticking to the legs, not to go out of this limit. For this reason, hips and the upper part of the legs arc purposely made narrow so prominently. Although its testis is normal, the abnormality of its penis is clearly noticed. The arms that stick to the sides seem longer than the normal arms. The fisted band to be so lower than the hips even among very long-armed men is an uncommon situation. The left leg, as common in other archaic kouroi, steps forth and treads on the ground with its whole sole. For the reason that the right leg treads on the ground with effort the knee and the carving of the knee muscles also arc solved in a way peculiar to the archaic period, the muscles arc shown swollen with the same width of the knee around it. (Fig. 1).

It is possible to find the characteristics of the period from its back view too. As a result of one leg steppign-forth the condition that should take place in the hips, one side higher and the other lower, is not made clear. In spite of the movement the hips are made at the same level. In addition to this the cavity that should take place as a result of this not shown too (Fig. 2).

When looked at the piece that should belong to a young man from the profile, the hips are not out in proportion to the waist as it is in some archaic statues, on the contrary are very briefly shown. (Fig. 3).

The arms that stick to the body just beneath the elbow, the hands that are made fists, thumb coming to the front are clear from the traces on the statue. Also it can easily be followed from the traces that the arms are stretched straight (Fig. 3-4).

One of the most striking characteristics of the statue is undoubtly the dedicator inscription that takes place in front of the legs. The forth line of the three-lined inscription that is written as boustrophedon on the right leg is on the left leg. Although we have solved the inscription which is written in Ionian alphabet briefly we knew that it is beyond our capacity to say what an epigraphist whould. I find it useful to present, by the recommendiations of Prof. Dr. Kenan Erim, Miss L. H. Jeffery’s note, depending on the knowledge that we gave but which does not sum it up in anyway, at the end of the article. It is a pleasurable debt to thank here both for Prof. Kenan Erim and Miss L. H. Jeffery who took great pains to prepare this note.

The statue which is dedicated to Apollo by Pythomandros, son of Phitys, is one of the works of art that can be counted beautiful for West Anatolian archaic sculpture. Although we do not have the upper part of its body and its head at hand it is possible to find similar sitilistic ones. At first sight though resembles the statue[1] that cames into possesion in Samos dedicated to Apollo by Leukos it distinguishes by the carving of the groins that are deeper in Leukos and the arms that are longer in our statue reaching the knee. Only we must admit that the carvings of the knees are the same in both statues. It looks like the kouros carrying a calf which was found in Klaros and is in the archaeological Museum of Izmir, with its general appearance. But Tekirdağ[2] and Erdek[3] kouroi, recent examples from the sculptural school of Milet show great likeness both in working and proportions. The statue in Milas[4] although we do not have the lower part of its body, is among the works of art that can be counted recent in time and stile too. Finally a kouros found in Didyma[5] still protected in Berlin perhaps shows likeness as if it was the handwork of the same artist. It can be easily seen that the statue is not very far in time from the statues mentioned above and in any case it must be a work of the third quarter of the sixth century B. C. or 540-530 B. C. if a definite date is necessary to give.

An inscription on an archaic kouros :

Pythomandros son of Phitys dedicated me, a tithe, to Apollo Termintheus.

The inscription is cut on the legs of the statue, following a practice common in archaic Ionia; in most cases one leg suffices for a text, but an overspill onto the second, as occurs here, is not unnatural. The first three lines run boustrophedon with the first cut retrograde, while the fourth, which stands alone on the left leg, is again retrograde. The layout, with lines of varying length and poor horizontal alignment, shows some carelessness of aesthetic effect, matched by an equal carelessness in the drawing of the letters. The alphabet used is Ionic and of a date, it would seem, when certain letter-forms were in transition, for theta appears both in the earlier form .. (1.1) and in the later .. (1.3) and rho both in the earlier form D (1.3) and in the later P (1.1) ; there are some peculiarities, notably the pi in I.I with the second upright quite as long as the first, and the awkwardly distorted nu in 1.2 - but these are perhaps due to carelessness. Taking all the features of cutting and design into account, it seems reasonable to suggest that the text is of the third quarter of the sixth century B. C.[1]

The dedicator’s name, Pythomandros, is, as Letronne pointed out[2], compounded of two divine names- that of the Anatolian divinity Mandros, which forms an element in a very considerable number of Ionian names, and that of Apollo Pythios, which may indicate a special devotion to the Apolline cult in his family. It appears in a fragment of Anacreon and several times in the office-holding class at Miletus in the late sixth and early fifth centuries B. C.[3] Of his father’s name I have found no other example, but it is presumably the noun φϊτυς (begetter) used as a name.

The dedication of tithes to Apollo seems widespread in the Greek world in the relevant area it is attested, c.g., at Didyma[4]. The cult title given to the god is at first sight puzzling, but Dr. John Chadwick of the University of Cambridge has very kindly provided the explanation. He writes as follows :

“I would suggest first that Θ....Θ.. recalls the numerous dialect forms” with one aspirate too many (prehistoric changes removed all cases of two aspirates in adjacent syllables, like φαρθένος, θέθμος, ένβαΰθα; see Buck, Greek Dialects, P. 60. Thus θερμιθ could be for τερμιθ. Secondly omission of v before stops occurs, especially in non-Greek words. Note especially the variant τρέμιθος = τέρμινθος (Nicander). This leads me to sugges we restore θερμιθ[ήι= τερμινθηι. For τερμινθεύς as an epithet of Apollo see Lycophron 1207 and for this kind of epithet cf. Σμινθεύς.

In fact there is a reference to Apollo τερβινθεύς = (τερμινθεύς)[5] in a treaty of the early second century B. C. between Miletus and Heraclea by Latmus-sacred land belonging to him lay in a mountainous tract disputed between the two cities and claimed by the Milesians as part of the territory of Myus[6]. This has led to the theory that he was a god of Myus; and an inscription to Apollo θερμινθεύς reported on a reused stone in the theatre of Miletus is in consequence, thought to be part of a load brought there by Roman builders from a ruined archaic temple on the site of Myus[7]. It seems indeed to be possible that our statue was originally dedicated at Myus. It may even have been found there, or, it at Miletus, have been one of the looted stones removed from Myus for reuse at Miletus.

Footnotes :

In preparing this note I have had invaluable help from Miss L. H. Jeffery of the University of Oxford and Dr. John Chadwick of the University of Cambridge; they are not to be held responsible for the use that I have made of their advice.


  1. On the characteristics of archaic Ionian inscriptions see L. H. Jeffery, The Local Scripts of Archaic Greece (Oxford, 196t) 325 f. and Μ. Guarducci, Epigrafia Greca I (Roma, 1967) 257 f. Miss Jeffery informs me that slapdash design of letters occurs in a number of Ionian inscriptions of the period, especially in Miletus and Samos.
  2. Ch. Letronne, Oeuvres II, 41, cf. L. Robert, Études Épigraphiques et Philologiques (Paris, 1938) 214.
  3. Anacreon, fr. 60 (Bergk); Th. Wiegand (G. Kawerau and A. Rehm), Milet III (Berlin, 1914) no. 122 ^1, 11. 20, 27, 39, where the names in 11. 27, 39 suggest a family connection with the cult of Artemis, which may be relevant.
  4. Th. Wiegand (A. Rehm and R. Harder), Didyma II (Berlin, 1958) nos. 1,7 c.g.
  5. For the identity see PW V A, col. 576, s.v. Terbintheus and col. 577, s.v. Terebinthus·, the title is there connected with the terebinth tree and perhaps its medicinal use since Lycophron associates it with latros.
  6. Milet III (see n. 3), no. 150, 11.78 f.
  7. See PW XVI, s.v. Myus, especially cols. 1433 and 1436/7.

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