Inscriptions in Corinth: Erastus

DSCN1108One of the most famous inscriptions of Corinth, in addition to the Synegogue inscription (see below), is the one located in the theater area, mentioning a certain Erastus:

[ ..] Erastus pro aedilit[at]e s(ua) p(ecunia) stravit. “[ .. ]Erastus for his aedileship laid (the pavement) at his own expense.”

This might very well be the Erastus mentioned in Romans 16:23; 2 Tim 4:20.
We were so litle informed about its location that we had problems finding it. But it is located in situ, propably in connection with the pavement that the inscription celebrates. If this is about the same Erastus who is mentioned in the New testament, it is one of the very very few inscriptions we have mentioning New Testament characters.
Here is a link to some info about another comparable inscription:
Andrew D. Clarke, Another Corinthian Erastus Inscription, Tyndale Bulletin 42.1 (May, 1991) 146-151.

Author: TorreyS


One thought on “Inscriptions in Corinth: Erastus”

  1. A literal translation without embellishment is “Erastus for Aedileship. His money paved (it)” It is like advertising “Obama for President”. An election campaign like this may or may not have had a successful result. The pavement was given as advertising collateral prior to his hopeful appointment. Where better in Roman times to place your advertising than on a pavement upon which everyone walked? My guess is that either Erastus was not elected Aedile, or else this pavement post-dates St Paul’s stay in Corinth in 50-52 AD. When St Paul wrote in Romans 16 v23 “Erastus, the city treasurer, sends you his greetings”, Erastus is not referred to as Aedile but instead as city treasurer. One presumes Erastus wrote “S. P. STRAVIT” to make it clear it was his own money he used and not that of the city treasury!

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