By Rangar Cline
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Additional resources for Ancient Angels: Conceptualizing Angeloi in the Roman Empire (Religions in the Graeco-Roman World)
308 as a convenient mid-point. 3 The text of the oracular inscription is as follows: [Α]ὐτοφυὴς, ἀδίδακτος, ἀµήτωρ, ἀστυφέλικτος, οὔνοµα µὴ χωρῶν, πολυώνυµος, ἐν πυρὶ ναίων, τοῦτο θεός· µεικρὰ δὲ θεοῦ µερὶς ἄγγελοι ἡµεῖς. τοῦτο πευθοµένοισι θεοῦ πέρι ὅστις ὑπάρχει, Αἰ[θ]έ[ρ]α πανδερκ[ῆ θε]ὸν ἔννεπεν, εἰς ὁν ὁρῶντας εὔχεσθᾤ ἠῴους πρὸς ἀντολίην ἐσορῶ[ν]τα[ς]4 Self-generated, untaught, without-mother, un-moveable, not using a name, many-named, in-fire-dwelling, this is God. We angels [Gk: angeloi] are a small part of God.
They date from the second to early-fourth centuries and illustrate both the widespread nature of angelos veneration and the function of the Greek language in allowing local religious traditions to communicate similar ideas about such beings in a cosmopolitan manner. Chapter Four examines Christian, Jewish, and pagan inscriptions, textual evidence, and artistic representations that illustrate beliefs in angeloi that guard the living, protect tombs, and escort the dead. The chapter brings together epigraphic evidence (from Asia Minor, the Aegean Islands, and Rome) dating from the late second to early fourth centuries.
Chapter Five examines evidence which suggests that angelos invocation was believed to be more efficacious in some places than others. The chapter examines the archaeological and literary evidence for Christian and non-Christian rituals at cult sites associated with angeloi. The chapter focuses on Mamre and the Bethesda Pool in Judea/Palestine, Colossae in Asia Minor, and the Fountain of the Lamps at Corinth, Greece. The chapter also includes discussion of the shrine of Anna Perenna in Italy. The chapter illustrates both the ritual power of sites associated with angeloi and the steps that Christian authorities took in the fourth and fifth centuries to control and supervise potentially heterodox practices at such sites.