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The Cult of Saints in Late Antiquity

from its origins to circa AD 700, across the entire Christian world

Greek inscription on a boundary stone of a church dedicated to *Mary (Mother of Christ, S00033), as the God-Bearer and Virgin. Found at Malaya near Kırşehir (close to ancient Paranassos, Cappadocia, central Asia Minor). Probably late 5th or 6th c.

Evidence ID


Type of Evidence

Inscriptions - Formal inscriptions (stone, mosaic, etc.)

ὅρυ τῆς ἁγί-
ας κὲ ἐνδό-
ξου Θεοτόκ-
ου κὲ παρθέ-
νου Μαρία-
ς π[α]ρασχεθ-
έντες παρὰ τ-
[οῦ] εὐσεβεσ-
[τάτου - - -]

'Boundaries (of the church) of the holy and glorious God-Bearer (
Theotokos) and Virgin Mary, granted by the most pious [- - - ].'

Text and translation: French 2007, no. 13, lightly modified.

Cult Places

Cult building - independent (church)

Non Liturgical Activity

Seeking asylum at church/shrine
Awarding privileges to cult centres

Protagonists in Cult and Narratives

Monarchs and their family


A grey marble stele, with rounded top and back, clearly a boundary stone. It was brought to the Kırşehir Museum from the Devlet Üretim Çiftliği (State Agricultural Farm) in Malaya (near Kırşehir, area of ancient Parnassos, Cappadocia, eastern Asia Minor) and inventoried in 1992 (inv. no. 6.2.92). The text is cut on a panel, below an encircled cross pattée. The lower part of the stone is broken and lost. Preserved dimensions: H. (front) 0.86 m; W. (at panel) 0.41 m; Th. (at bottom) 0.31 m; letter height 0.025-0.03 m. A squeeze and a photograph made by David French are kept at the British Institute at Ankara.


The inscription marked the boundaries of a church/monastery or estate belonging to a church/monastery dedicated to Mary as the God-Bearer (Theotokos).

Dating: probably late 5th or 6th c. (because of its similarity to other boundary stones, authorised by emperors of this period).


French, D.H., "Inscriptions from Cappadocia, II", Epigraphica Anatolica 40 (2007), no. 13.

Reference works:
L'Année épigraphique (2007), 1561.

Bulletin épigraphique
(2009), 645.

Supplementum Epigraphicum Graecum
57, 1717.

Record Created By

Pawel Nowakowski

Date Last Modified


Related Saint Records
IDNameName in SourceIdentity
S00033Mary, Mother of ChristΘεοτόκος, ΜαρίαCertain

Please quote this record referring to its author, database name, number, and, if possible, stable URL:
Pawel Nowakowski, Cult of Saints, E01016 -