We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Otherwise, we'll assume you're OK to continue.

Durham University

Department of Classics and Ancient History


Publication details for Professor Ted Kaizer

Kaizer, Ted (2016). Lucian on the temple at Heliopolis. Classical Quarterly 66(1): 273-285.

Author(s) from Durham


his paper focusses on two lines in what counts as our best available literary source for the study of religious life in the Roman Near East. In paragraph 5 of Περὶ τῆς Συρίης Θεοῦ (On the Syrian Goddess), a treatise professing to describe the temple and cult at Hierapolis, a place in northern Syria also known by its indigenous names of Manbog or Bambyce, the author writes:

ἔχουσι δὲ καὶ ἄλλο Φοίνικες ἱρόν, οὐκ Ἀσσύριον ἀλλ’ Αἰγύπτιον, τὸ ἐξ Ἡλίου πόλιος ἐς τὴν Φοινίκην ἀπίκετο. ἐγὼ μέν μιν οὐκ ὄπωπα, μέγα δὲ καὶ τόδε καὶ ἀρχαῖόν ἐστιν.

The Phoenicians have another temple, not Assyrian, but Egyptian, which came to Phoenicia from Heliopolis. I have not seen it, but it too is large and ancient.