Epigram 9.686

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On the Eastern Gate of Thessalonica


ἠνορέης ὀλετῆρα ὑπερφιάλου Βαβυλῶνος
καὶ σέλας ἀκτεάνοιο δίκης Βασίλειον ὕπαρχον,
ξεῖνε, νόῳ σκίρτησον, ἰδὼν ἐφύπερθε πυλάων.
εὐνομίης ποτὶ χῶρον ἀριστογένεθλον ὁδεύεις,

βάρβαρον οὐ τρομέεις, οὐκ ἄρρενας ἀρρενοκοίτας.
ὅπλα Λάκων, σὺ δὲ τεῖχος ἔχεις βασίλειον ἄγαλμα.

— Paton edition

Exult in thy heart, stranger, when thou seest
above the gate the prefect Basil,¹ destroyer of the
valour of insolent Babylon and light of incorrupt jus-
tice. Thou goest to the place of good government,
the mother of excellent sons. Thou hast no need
to fear the barbarian or sodomites.² The Spartan
for a wall has his arms, and thou a royal statue (on
the statue of Basil).

— Paton edition




Paton Edition: 1 As the terms of the epigram suit the emperor Basil who conquered the Arabs in Mesopotamia and was celebrated as a legislator, it probably refers to him in spite of the title " Prefect" given him.

2 i.e. the Arabs. The Greeks at the time charged the Oriental nations with this vice. There is no reference to measures for its suppression.


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