Hyland, John. 2021. Between Amorges and Tissaphernes: Lycia and Persia in the Xanthos stele. In Annick Payne, Šárka Velhartická & Jorit Wintjes (eds.), Beyond all boundaries: Anatolia in the first millennium BC (Orbis Biblicus et Orientalis 295), 257–278. Leuven: Peeters Publishers.
The Xanthos stele, a multilingual Lycian dynastic monument of the late 5th century BCE, testifies to the importance of diplomatic interaction between Xanthos’ rulers and Achaemenid Persian administrators in western Anatolia. Yet the stele’s Persian references are unevenly and selectively distributed between its Lycian and Lycian B inscriptions, and entirely absent from its Greek epigram. Amorges, a satrap’s son turned rebel, appears briefly in the Lycian and Lycian B texts, but scholars debate whether they present him as friend or foe of Xanthos; in contrast, the final section of the Lycian text celebrates the famous satrap Tissaphernes as an ally of Xanthos, but the Lycian B omits him entirely. This paper analyzes the stele’s Persian content and proposes that its designers added the material on Tissaphernes in a late stage of composition, trying to exploit his patronage in the context of local dynastic politics.Abstract
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