PHRC034 : Dedication to Arsinoe Philadelphos, Palaipaphos - Cyprus (270-240 BC) Dedication

This large limestone block differs from the others inscribed objects of Arsinoe Philaldelphos in the Paphos area. Because of its size and shape it cannot be interpreted as an altar. On the contrary, comparison with other similar specimens from Cyprus (Yalousa) and Halikarnassos suggests that this block was either part of a wall or a boundary stone indicating the limits of an area consecrated to the cult of Arsinoe inside the sanctuary of Aphrodite at Palaipaphos.

Permanent ID

Current location

Kouklia, Local Archaeological Museum Palaipaphos
Inv. No. KM 190 (previously 127)


Object Type: Block
Rectangular block with broken on top and below. The surface and the inscription are worn.
Material: Limestone
Height: max.65 cm
Width (shaft): 35 cm; top: 36.5 cm
Depth: 27 cm


Two lines of text occupying the high part of the front face.
Well-formed letters of the reign of Ptolemy II: small O, Σ with diverging horizontal bars, A with horizontal crossbar, Φ with the circle replaced by an arch, large N and H.
Letter height between 1.6 cm (O) and 3 cm (Φ).


Date: Between 270 and 240 BC
Justification: Formulary and lettering
Provenance: Found at Evretadhes, a depression east of the hill of the sanctuary of Aphrodite.


Text constituted from: I.Paphos 8.

Other editions:

See also: Nicolaou 1964, p. 211, no. 22; Nicolaou 1993, p. 227, cat. j; Anastassiades 1998, p. 138, no. 8; Caneva 2014, no. 26.

Images: I.Paphos, fig. 39.

Further bibliography:

Online record: PHI




(S. Caneva)
Of Arsinoe Philadelphos


(S. Caneva)
Di Arsinoe Philadelphos


Because of its size, this block stands out from the dossier of Arsinoe’s dedications in the Paphos area and cannot be interpreted as an altar, but rather as part of a bigger structure (a wall?) or as a boundary stone indicating the limits of a part of the sanctuary of Aphrodite which was consecrated to Arsinoe Philadelphos (Caneva 2020). The only two comparable specimens for shape and size are a large block from Yalousa, in the north-east of Cyprus (Perdrizet 1896, p. 359, n° 9; Perdrizet 1906, p. 156), for which the editor proposed an interpretation as a boundary stone, and another block recently discovered near Halikarnassos (Diler et al. 2010, p. 193-194; SEG LXI 867). The most plausible interpretation is therefore that the sanctuary of Aphrodite Paphia at Palaipaphos hosted an area consecrated to the cult of Arsinoe Philadelphos, just as was the case of the sanctuary of Apollo Amyklos / Reshef Mikal at Idalion (Masson 1968, p. 400-402).

Stefano Caneva, on 02.03.2019

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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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