Tetherapeusai

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Sanctuary of Asclepius at Epidaurus

Ἐπὶ ἱερέως Πο(πλίου) Αἰλ(ίου) Ἀντιόχου.
Μ(ᾶρκος) Ἰούλιος Ἀπελλᾶς Ἰδριεὺς Μυλασεὺς μετεπέμφθην ὑπὸ τοῦ θεοῦ, πολλάκις εἰς νόσους ἐνπίπτων καὶ ἀπεψίαις χρώμενος. κατὰ δὴ τὸν πλοῦν ἐν Αἰγείνῃ ἐκέλευσέν με μὴ πολλὰ ὀργίζεσθαι. ἐπεὶ δὲ ἐγενόμην ἐν τῷ ἱερῷ, ἐκέλευσεν ἐπὶ δύο ἡμέρας συνκαλύψασθαι τὴν κεφαλήν, ἐν αἷς ὄμβροι ἐγένοντο, τυρὸν καὶ ἄρτον προλαβεῖν, σέλεινα μετὰ θρίδακος, αὐτὸν δι’ αὑτοῦ λοῦσθαι, δρόμῳ γυμνάζεσθαι, κιτρίου προλαμβάνειν τὰ ἄκρα, εἰς ὕδωρ ἀποβρέξαι, πρὸς ταῖς ἀκοαῖς ἐν βαλανείῳ προστρίβεσθαι τῷ τοίχῳ, περιπάτῳ χρῆσθαι ὑπερῴῳ, αἰώραις, ἁφῇ πηλώσασθαι, ἀνυπόδητον περιπατεῖν, πρὶν ἐνβῆναι ἐν τῷ βαλανείῳ εἰς τὸ θερμὸν ὕδωρ οἶνον περιχέασθαι, μόνον λούσασθαι καὶ Ἀττικὴν δοῦναι τῷ βαλανεῖ, κοινῇ θῦσαι Ἀσκληπιῷ, Ἠπιόνῃ, Ἐλευσεινίαις, γάλα μετὰ μέλιτος προλαβεῖν· μιᾷ δὲ ἡμέρᾳ πιόντός μου γάλα μόνον, εἶπεν· “μέλι ἔμβαλλε εἰς τὸ γάλα, ἵνα δύνηται διακόπτειν.” ἐπεὶ δὲ ἐδεήθην τοῦ θεοῦ θᾶττόν με ἀπολῦσαι, ᾤμην νάπυϊ καὶ ἁλσὶν κεχρειμένος ὅλος ἐξιέναι κατὰ τὰς ἀκοὰς ἐκ τοῦ ἀβάτου, παιδάριον δὲ ἡγεῖσθαι θυμιατήριον ἔχον ἀτμίζον καὶ τὸν ἱερέα λέγειν· “τεθεράπευσαι, χρὴ δὲ ἀποδιδόναι τὰ ἴατρα.” καὶ ἐποίησα, ἃ εἶδον, καὶ χρείμενος μὲν τοῖς ἁλσὶ καὶ τῶι νάπυϊ ὑγρῶι ἤλγησα, λούμενος δὲ οὐκ ἤλγησα. ταῦτα ἐν ἐννέα ἡμέραις ἀφ’ οὗ ἦλθον. ἥψατο δέ μου καὶ τῆς δεξιᾶς χιρὸς καὶ τοῦ μαστοῦ, τῇ δὲ ἑξῆς ἡμέρᾳ ἐπιθύοντός μου φλὸξ ἀναδραμοῦσα ἐπέφλευσε τὴν χεῖρα, ὡς καὶ φλυκταίνας ἐξανθῆσαι· μετ’ ὀλίγον δὲ ὑγιὴς ἡ χεὶρ ἐγένετο. ἐπιμείναντί μοι ἄνηθον μετ’ ἐλαίου χρήσασθαι πρὸς τὴν κεφαλαλγίαν εἶπεν. οὐ μὴν ἤλγουν τὴν κεφαλήν. συνέβη οὖν φιλολογήσαντί μοι συνπληρωθῆναι· χρησάμενος τῷ ἐλαίῳ ἀπηλάγην τῆς κεφαλαλγίας. ἀναγαργαρίζεσθαι ψυχρῷ πρὸς τὴν σταφυλὴν—καὶ γὰρ περὶ τούτου παρεκάλεσα τὸν θεὸν— τὸ αὐτὸ καὶ πρὸς παρίσθμια. ἐκέλευσεν δὲ καὶ ἀναγράψαι ταῦτα. χάριν εἰδὼς καὶ ὑγιὴς γενόμενος ἀπηλλάγην.
(IG IV².1.126 = SIG 1170)

When P. Aelius Antiochus was priest, I, Marcus Iulius Apellas, from Idrias (a suburb of Mylasa), was summoned by the god, for I was often falling into illnesses and suffering from indigestion. During my journey by boat he told me, in Aegina, not to be so irritable all the time. When I entered the sanctuary, he told me to keep my head covered for two days (it was raining during this time), to eat bread and cheese and celery with lettuce, to bathe without any assistance, to run for exercise, to take lemon rind and soak it in water, to rub myself against the wall in the bath near the “Ears” [i.e., a place where “voices” were heard?], to go for a walk on the “Upper Portico,” to swing on a swing [or: to engage in passive exercise?], to smear myself with mud, to walk barefoot, to pour wine all over myself before climbing into the hot pool in the bathing establishment, to bathe all alone, to give an Attic drachma to the attendant, to offer a joint sacrifice to Asclepius, Epione, and the goddesses of Eleusis, and to drink milk with honey. One day when I drank only milk, the god said: “Put honey in your milk, so it can strike through [or: have the right effect, i.e., act as a laxative].” When I urged the god to heal me more quickly, I had a vision: I was walking out of the sanctuary toward the “Ears,” rubbed with salt and mustard all over, and a little boy holding a smoking censer was leading me, and the priest said to me: “You are cured; now pay the fee.” I did what I had seen [i.e., acted out my vision]. When they rubbed me with salt and liquid mustard, it hurt, but after I had taken a bath, it hurt no longer. All this happened within nine days after my arrival. The god touched my left hand and my breast. On the following day, as I was offering a sacrifice, the flame leapt up and burned my hand so that blisters appeared. Soon afterward my hand healed. I stayed on, and the god told me to use anise with olive oil for my headache. Actually, I had no headache. But after I had done some studying it happened that I suffered from congestion of the brain. Taking olive oil, I got rid of my headache. [I was also told] to gargle with cold water for my swollen uvula—for I had asked the god for help with this problem, too— and the same treatment for the tonsils. The god also told me to write all this down. I left, feeling grateful and restored to health. (tr. Georg Luck)

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