Calendar Inscription of Priene

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The Priene Calendar Inscription is an inscription in stone recovered at Priene (an ancient Greek city sited in Western Turkey) that reveals the meaning of the term "gospel" as it was used in the Roman Empire in referring to Augustus Caesar. It is called the Priene "Calendar" Inscription because it refers to the birthday of Augustus Caesar as the beginning of an era - the beginning of the gospel announcing his kingdom that heralded peace and salvation for his people - and a Roman decree to start a new calendar system based on the year of Augustus Caesar's birth was published.[1][2] [3] [4]

Calendar dating of history around a ruler is the principle upon which the Julian calendar and Gregorian calendars are based. The Anno Domini calendar system is based on the traditionally reckoned year of the conception or birth of Jesus of Nazareth, with AD (or CE) counting years from the start of this epoch, and BC (or BCE) denoting years before the start of the era.

Map location of Priene Ruins.PNG [[File:Priene_Ruins_in_Google_Maps.PNG

Image https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Priene_Ruins_in_Google_Maps.PNG#filelinks]]

The Calendar Inscription of Priene features the term "Gospel" (/ˈɡɒspəl/), which is the Old English translation of Greek εὐαγγέλιον, evangelion, meaning "good news".[5] As exemplified in the Calendar Inscription of Priene, dated from 9 BC, this Koine Greek term εὐαγγέλιον was used at the time of the Roman Empire to herald the good news of the arrival of a kingdom - the reign of a king that brought a war to an end, so that all people of the world who surrendered and pledged allegiance to this king would be granted salvation from destruction. The Calendar Inscription of Priene speaks of the birthday of Caesar Augustus as the beginning of the gospel announcing his kingdom, with a Roman decree to start a new calendar system based on the year of Augustus Caesar's birth. Into this context, the words of the Gospel of Mark are striking: "The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God." (Mark 1:1 ESV)[6] Jesus is thus heralded as the king who ends war by conquering people's allegiance, in contrast to the Roman Caesar (title). The gospel recorded in Mark 1:1 heralds Jesus Christ, with Christ (title) not being a personal name but the title of the promised Messiah or "Anointed One".

The Priene Calendar Inscription text: 'It seemed good to the Greeks of Asia, in the opinion of the high priest Apollonius of Menophilus Azanitus: “Since Providence, which has ordered all things and is deeply interested in our life, has set in most perfect order by giving us Augustus, whom she filled with virtue that he might benefit humankind, sending him as a savior, both for us and for our descendants, that he might end war and arrange all things, and since he, Caesar, by his appearance (excelled even our anticipations), surpassing all previous benefactors, and not even leaving to posterity any hope of surpassing what he has done, and since the birthday of the god Augustus was the beginning of the good tidings for the world that came by reason of him,” which Asia resolved in Smyrna.' [7][8]

The Greek text of the whole inscription has been published.[9] [10] [11]

For discussion of this famous inscription, see books by Deissman, by Pfolhl, and by Koester.[12] [13] [14]

Archaelogical finding of the Calendar Inscription of Priene: It is known as the Priene text because it was found on two stones in the market-place in the old town of Priene, Turkey (or more correctly, Asia Minor).[15][16][17]

Current holding of the Calendar Inscription of Priene: The calendar inscription of Priene, dated about 9 B.C., is now in the Berlin Museum.[18][19][20]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Evans, Craig A. (2000). "Mark's Incipit and the Priene Calendar Inscription: From Jewish Gospel to Greco-Roman Gospel" (PDF). Journal of Greco-Roman Christianity and Judaism. 1: 67-81.
  2. ^ THE PRIENE INSCRIPTION OR CALENDAR INSCRIPTION OF PRIENE. http://www.masseiana.org/priene.htm. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  3. ^ Danker, Frederick W. (1982). Benefactor: Epigraphic Study of a Graeco-Roman and New Testament Semantic Field. St. Louis, MO.: Clayton Pub. House. p. 217.
  4. ^ Boring, M. E.; Berger, K.; Colpe, C. (1995). Hellenistic Commentary to the New Testament. Nashville: Abingdon. p. 169.
  5. ^ Woodhead 2004, p. 4.
  6. ^ "Mark 1". Biblehub. Retrieved 26 June 2018.
  7. ^ Evans, Craig A. (2000). "Mark's Incipit and the Priene Calendar Inscription: From Jewish Gospel to Greco-Roman Gospel" (PDF). Journal of Greco-Roman Christianity and Judaism. 1: 67-81.
  8. ^ THE PRIENE INSCRIPTION OR CALENDAR INSCRIPTION OF PRIENE. http://www.masseiana.org/priene.htm. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  9. ^ Dittenberger (ed.), W. Orientis Graecae Inscriptiones Selectae. Leipzig: S. Hirzel. p. 1903-5.
  10. ^ Ehrenberg, V.; Jones, A. H. M. (1955). Documents Illustrating the Reigns of Augustus and Tiberius (2E ed.). Oxford: Clarendon. p. 82.
  11. ^ Taylor, L. R. (1931). The Divinity of the Roman Emperor. New York: Arno.
  12. ^ Deissmann, A. (1927). Light from the Ancient East. New York: Harper & Row. p. 366.
  13. ^ Pfohl (ed.), G. (1966). Griechische Inschriften als Zeugnisse des privaten und öffentlichen Lebens. Munich: Heimeran. pp. 134–35.
  14. ^ Koester, H. (1990). Ancient Christian Gospels: Their History and Development. London: SCM Press. pp. 3–4.
  15. ^ THE PRIENE INSCRIPTION OR CALENDAR INSCRIPTION OF PRIENE. URL http://www.masseiana.org/priene.htm
  16. ^ Evans, Craig A. (2000). "Mark's Incipit and the Priene Calendar Inscription: From Jewish Gospel to Greco-Roman Gospel" (PDF). Journal of Greco-Roman Christianity and Judaism. 1: 67-81.
  17. ^ THE PRIENE INSCRIPTION OR CALENDAR INSCRIPTION OF PRIENE. http://www.masseiana.org/priene.htm. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  18. ^ THE PRIENE INSCRIPTION OR CALENDAR INSCRIPTION OF PRIENE. http://www.masseiana.org/priene.htm
  19. ^ Evans, Craig A. (2000). "Mark's Incipit and the Priene Calendar Inscription: From Jewish Gospel to Greco-Roman Gospel" (PDF). Journal of Greco-Roman Christianity and Judaism. 1: 67-81.
  20. ^ THE PRIENE INSCRIPTION OR CALENDAR INSCRIPTION OF PRIENE. http://www.masseiana.org/priene.htm. Missing or empty |title= (help)