Dometeinos & Tatiana


The statue was found directly in front of its base which identifies it as L. Antonius Claudius Diogenes Dometeinos (see top left). Dometeinos is portrayed as a mature man with handsome, regular features, a full beard, and the long hair of a priest. He wears tunic, himation, and sandals together with an unusually large priestly crown. He holds a book roll in his left hand, and has a bundle of eight more at his feet. Dometeinos’ stance, with the right arm caught in the sling of his cloak, represents the most common choice for portrait statues of locals in Aphrodisias and throughout the entire Greek world.

Dometeinos’ long beard and his thick, luxuriant hair recall metropolitan Roman fashions -- evident not so much in the length and cut of the hair as in the favored styling of the locks, well-known from Antonine court portraits. He also has the arching eyebrows, heavy upper-eyelids, and almond-shaped eyes of Marcus Aurelius. His priestly headdress is decorated with a series of busts that represent Aphrodite in the centre surrounded by members of the imperial family. Dometeinos belonged to the noble Aphrodisian family of the Antonii Claudii, well-attested at the site. He is grandly described here as ‘law-giver’. Other inscriptions record that he was appointed gymnasiarch for life, overseeing and maintaining the Aphrodisian gymnasion at his own expense; and he was honored for other benefactions to the city too. He was eventually granted the title ‘High Priest of Asia’, thus joining a select group that numbered among its members some of the wealthiest and best-connected families of the province. His statue stood in the north stoa of the North Agora beside one of the two main entrances into the Bouleuterion. Beside the other entrance stood the statue of Tatiana, Dometeinos' niece, on a near-identical base.



The statue represents a leading local woman, Claudia Tatiana Antonia, who was active at Aphrodisias and in the province of Asia in the late second and early third century. The statue is identified by the tall inscribed base on which it stood immediately to the right of the easternmost entrance to the Council House, inside the double stoa of the North Agora. The statue was paired with the monument of Tatiana’s uncle, Dometeinos.

The figure wears a thin dress (chiton), a mantle (himation), sandals, and an open-work crown. A small figure of Eros once stood on the base beside her. It is now broken off and only its feet remain. The Eros and the thin dress allude to the subject’s beauty and desirability. The hairstyle follows contemporary imperial fashion closely: it is close to the wig-like hairstyles worn by women of the Severan imperial family in Rome. The moulded plinth is elegantly carved and bears the signature of the statue’s maker, one Alexander son of Zenon.


Found at: Council House (Bouleuterion)
See also: Statue Bases

A Collaboration:

Republic of Turkey Ministry of Culture and Tourism New York University University of Oxford


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