At Paphos

The PHRC digital library

Uncovering the ritual and social aspects of cultic honours for human beings

Until now, the study of cultic honours for Hellenistic political leaders and benefactors has mainly focused on the ideological and diplomatic features of the phenomenon. The project "Practicalities of Hellenistic Ruler Cults" (PHRC) shifts the focus on its practical aspects: the materiality of media, ritual action and space, actors, administration, and the funding of cults. In doing so, PHRC aims to set the debate on ritual honours for human beings in the broader context of Greek religious and social history in the post-classical period.


The PHRC digital library

The sources of PHRC comprise Greek epigraphic texts from the Eastern Mediterranean, between the ages of Alexander and Augustus. At this first stage of the project, the discussed documents were exclusively related to three main geographical areas: the Aegean islands, Western Asia Minor, and Cyprus. Also thanks to new collaborators, recent releases have started including items from mainlang Greece, Egypt, and the Eastern coast of the Mediterranean.
This website is the dissemination portal of PHRC. It provides access to a growing digital library of Greek inscriptions which have been geo-referenced, xml-encoded and semantically annotated in order to allow researchers and students to browse the material through a wide range of queries in compliance with their interests. Each inscription is showcased with an introduction providing archaeological and philological information, an English commentary, and multilingual translations. When useful, a selective critical apparatus focuses on the debated sections of the text concerning the topic of cultic honours for human beings.
The specific purposes of this project justify the choice of a selective commentary. The PHRC commentaries are not meant to entirely replace other paper or digital commented editions of the relevant inscriptions, but to provide a specific insight in the treatment of cultic honours. In compliance with a logic of linked open data for research, the PHRC website is provided with a series of authority lists by which users not only can browse the content of the PHRC digital library through a varied set of queries, but also have access via external links to the complementary information provided by other relevant Digital Classics portals.

The Current version: PHRC 1.0 (released June 2021)

PHRC 1.0 implements previous versions of the PHRC digital library with the introduction of a permanent ID for each entry.  More functions will be implemented in the future versions. Therefore, we encourage users to share their feedbacks, criticisms, and suggestions so that we may correct errors, add more external links and improve the discoverability of content.

The PHRC digital library follows the current "sharing is caring" philosophy of linked open data. Accordingly, new items are published as soon as the editing process is finished, so that they can start circulating among the users’ community and thus promote a dynamic process of discussion, improvement, reuse.

Especially at this early stage, this policy gives PHRC the characteristics of a growing collection of texts rather than of a coherent – and closed – corpus. Similarly, users might notice that the coverage of the PHRC library follows an archipelago effect: specific areas and periods are more represented than others depending on the priorities of the research team rather than on the actual distribution of sources.

While this implies that we discourage users of PHRC to draw quantitative conclusions on the basis of the available texts at this early stage, it is our purpose to fill the inevitable gaps at the fastest rhythm for which our time and energies allow. In the meantime, commentaries already contain a set of references and external links which are meant to provide a broader overview of the discussed topics. 

Updating process

As stated above, new PHRC items are released soon after the end of the editing process. Because previously-released items may need updating due to new relevant publications, we advise you to check the “Revisions” section at the bottom of each item’s page in order to keep track of the current version of each text.

Open Data for Research

In order to ensure the openness and reusability of the research results, all the contents created by the PHRC project and published on this website are released with a CC BY-SA 4.0 International license. When the materials showcased on this website are associated with Intellectual Property Rights pertaining to persons and entities other than the PHRC team, a specific disclaimer will mention the name of the IPR owner(s) as well as the types of rights under which these materials have been released.


Meet the PHRC Team!

Stefano Caneva
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Travocial - Social Travel & Storytelling Practicalities of Hellenistic Ruler Cults
Marie Curie PISCOPIA project no. PISC14IGRU, University of Padova (2015-2017)
FNRS project no. 98368 (2017-2020)
Stefano Caneva
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The research leading to these results has received funding from the European Commission, Seventh Framework Programme, under Grant Agreement n° 600376 (2015-2017), and from the Fonds National de la Recherche Scientifique (FNRS), Belgium (2017-2020).
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