study – diligence: George Damianos
creation plans: Art and science gallery.com
design material: marble of Penteli (from the same marble built Acropolis of Athens)
edition year: 2016
prototype year: 150 – 200 AC
based on: London, British Museum
copyright all over the world: Art and science gallery.com
To eternal “thank you” to the Doctor or God for the successful outcome of human suffering. People of all ages knew to thank the important things in Life
Inscribed Votive Offering 150- 200 AD
From Melos, formerly in the Collection of Louis Charles Pierre Casimir de Blacas d’Aulps, 2nd Duke of Blacas (1815-1866). London, British Museum,
A left leg is carved as if severed just above the knee and turned in profile towards the seven line inscription: Άσκλη-| πιω| καί|Ύγεία| Τύχη| εΰχορισ-| ιήριον.
This marble relief served as an offering to Asklepios and Hygieia, for the cure or prevention from some unknown affliction of the left leg. It was used during the Hellenistic period. It was discovered during the excavations in Melos.
The inscription on the example in London from Melos reads ‘To Asklepios and Hygieia Tyche (luck or good fortune) as a thank offering’. There is, however, some confusion about what the word Tyche is referring to. Forsen (Forsen 1996, 103) and Cook concluded that Tyche was the name of the person offering the stele. Forsen added that the name was both a male and female name, but usually the latter. The relief was found in 1828 in the same location on Melos as a colossal marble head of Asklepios himself, now also in The British Museum. They were found buried in a cave with other items relating to the cult of Asklepios and Hygieia. The cave was either part of or close to a sanctuary of the healing deities. The objects found within the cave may also have been taken there in late antiquity and formed part of a mini-shrine. The actual location of the cache of votive offerings is now uncertain, and thus has never been systematically excavated. A round votive altar was also found, inscribed with a dedication to Asklepios and Hygieia by a priest named Claudius Gallinus, dated to the first century AD. However, the altar, along with a number of associated fragmentary statuettes of Hygieia, was not acquired when the British Museum purchased the head and this relief in 1867. Some of the finds were published by Charles Lenormant in 1829 (Lenormant 1829). He proposed an interesting scenario for the cave and its offerings to Asklepios and Hygieia according to which Claudius Gallinus, the dedicator of the altar, was a priest of the god and gathered together broken remnants from a ruined sanctuary of the god, including the colossal head in London, and formed his own personal shrine. It is a charming supposition but one based on no tangible evidence…
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