This post represents the first installment at Current Epigraphy of what will be a summer-long “Virtual Seminar on some Unpublished Inscriptions from Corinth.” For the next few months about every two weeks I will upload Don Laing’s and my preliminary text of a Greek or Latin inscription from Corinth and invite suggestions for restorations or comments on the context, date, etc. Tom Elliott and Gabriel Bodard will then work up an EpiDoc version of the resulting texts. As Tom Elliott explained here, the purpose of this first-ever virtual epigraphical seminar is to promote a new model of collaboration and publication of epigraphical texts with the following benefits: a preliminary text will be made available more quickly; scholars or those interested will be able to “attend” the seminar at their leisure from anywhere in the world with an internet connection; students will see how epigraphers work and it may raise more interest in the discipline; there should be more interest in the final print version that will appear in Hesperia, where proper attribution to those who proposed any particular idea or reading will be given and comments on this experiment will be included; the final print publication will be stronger (these inscriptions from Corinth, like most inscriptions from there, are very fragmentary and they lend themselves to collaborative treatment); the project will introduce more epigraphers to the advantages of EpiDoc. Special thanks are due Guy Sanders (Director of the ASCSA dig at Corinth) and Charles Watkinson (Director of ASCSA Publications) for their support of this project.
II. Historical Background to the Inscriptions
These inscriptions were unearthed on Corinth’s Temple Hill between 1970 and 1978 in the excavations conducted by the American School of Classical Studies at Athens that were overseen by H.S. Robinson and partly supported by the Temple Hill Fund administered by Case Western Reserve University. H.S. Robinson assigned Don Laing to publish them, and last year Don asked me to join him in finally getting them out. In June of 2007, therefore, the two of us went to ancient Corinth and did autopsies of the stones; the readings given in all subsequent posts will represent our joint opinion of what we saw. [As a personal side note, I want to wish Don all the best, as two weeks ago he found out that he has lymphoma and last week he underwent his first round of chemotherapy; he tells me that his first treatment went well and that he is feeling fine].
In this first post Don and I will conclusively show that a partially published fragment of an archaic text belongs with an already published sacrificial calendar (Meritt, ICor VIII,1 1). We will also follow H.S. Robinson in positing that this sacrificial calendar was housed under the Late Geometric Temple’s roof, where it was destroyed by fire ca. 570 BCE. In addition, we will present for the first time a second inscription that is inscribed on a lead tablet; it too records a sacrificial calendar that is similar, or possibly even identical, to the stone sacral calendar. Finally, based on this new material, we will suggest a new layout for ICor VIII, 1 1, proffer a historical context for the monument, and invite comments.