Corpus of South Arabian Inscriptions

Maraqten, Mohammed


LanguageAncient South Arabian » Qatabanic » Central Qatabanic
AlphabetAncient South Arabian
Script typologyMonumental writing
Writing techniqueCast
Textual typologyDedicatory text


   1  Ṯwbʾl w-ʿmḏkr bnw Qdrn s¹qn—
   2  yw Ḥwkm Nbṭ w-ʾlhy bytn S²bʿ—
   3  n s¹qnytn w-ʾbn mgnn w-hrrnyw
   4  s²ʾmynyw w-ms³ndyhn [..]w ykw—
   5  nn mdlwt-s¹my s¹lʿt ʾḥlf w-ʿs²r
   6  krkr ḏhbm qyḥm [...] s²lt ʾkr—
   7  mn ywm ʿlw w-s¹wfy (Ḥwkm) w-ʾlh—
   8  w bytn S²bʿn Ṯwbʾl w-ʿmḏkr bn
   9  ʾrḍtw w-ʾhgr s²ʾmt w-Nbṭm w-Ks²—
  10  d w-Mṣr w-Ywnm w-ywm ʿlw w-s¹wf—
  11  y Ḥwkm w-ʾlhw bytn S²bʿn Ṯwb—
  12  ʾl bn hgrn Rqmm s¹bʾtm s¹bʾ
  13  b-qdmw ḏtn s¹bʾtn b-ybs¹n w-bḥr—
  14  n w-mlʾt l-yʿlw w-(ġ)wr w-s¹n{|}s²y Ḥ—
  15  wkm w-ʾlhw bytn S²bʿn Ṯwbʾl
  16  w-ʿmḏkr ʿd hgr-s¹my Mrymtm b-w—
  17  fy ʾʾḏn-s¹mw w-mqmhy-s¹my w-[kl]
  18  ḏm qnyw b-ʿṯtr w-b ʿm
  19  w-b Ḥwkm w-rṯdw Ḥwkm [w-ʾlhw b]—
  20  ytn S²bʿn kl s¹qnyt w-[... ... bn kl ms¹]—
  21  nkrm w-ms¹fʾ[ym bn brṯ-s¹m]

4The editor reads ḏw, but it is not easy to propose a grammatically convincing integration.
4-5The subject of the verb ykwnn is mdlwt, perhaps a plural noun.
6If s²lt is "three" it seems very unusual in Qatabanic where "three" is always ṯlt.
14The editor reads: mls¹t surely to be corrected into mlʾt.
After yʿlw the reading is uncertain, it seems better to read ġwr instead of mwr (both of them hapax in Qatabanic). Then I prefer to read a third verb and not, as the editor did: ws¹n s²y), but a word separator is between s¹n and s²y.
21Indeed, it could be: brṯ-s¹. The editor integrates: brṯ-s¹w.



   1  Ṯwbʾl and ʿmḏkr, of the family Qdrn, dedicated
   2  to Ḥwkm Nbṭ and to the gods of the temple S²bʿn
   3  the dedication and the stone of the garden and two northern
   4  warehouses and two inscriptions, the values of them
   5  should be s¹lʿt ʾḥlf and ten
   6  krkr of red bronze and .. three (?) ʾkrm,
   7  when Ḥwkm and the gods of the temple S²bʿn
   8  raised and save Ṯwbʾl e ʿmḏkr from
   9  the lands and the towns of the North: Nbṭm, Ks²d,
  10  Mṣr e Ywnm; and when Ḥwkm and the gods of the temple S²bʿn
  11  raised and save Ṯwbʾl
  12  from the town of Rqmm, during the expedition he did
  13  before this expedition, by sea and by land.
  14  Forever might Ḥwkm
  15  and the gods of S²bʿn bring up, and made go back and return Ṯwbʾl
  16  and ʾmḏkr into their city Mrymtm in
  17  safety of their faculties, their resources and
  18  that they have possessed. By ʿṯtr, ʿm
  19  and by Ḥwkm. And they entrusted to Ḥwkm [and to the gods]
  20  of the temple S²bʿn the whole of dedication against whomever
  21  could damage or move it from its place.


Support typeArtefact » Plaque » With framework
Measuresh. 66, w. 30
Link to object record


Modern siteHajar al-ʿĀdī
Ancient siteMrymtm
Geographical areaWādī Ḥarīb
Archaeological contextReligious context: Temple S²bʿn of Ḥwkm Nbṭ
Link to site record


The historical importance of the text is remarkable. The Qatabanian caravans went towards the North, by land and by sea, to the lands of Nabataeans, Chaldeans, Egyptians, Ionians. In the inscription there is the first attestation in ASA of Petra (Rqmm).


Maraqten 2014 b: 97-114, figs 3-4Maraqten, Mohammed 2014. On the relations between Bilād al-Shām and Yemen in the pre-Islamic period. Pages 97-114 in Mohammed Maraqten. A pioneer of Arabia. Studies in the Archaeology and Epigraphy of the Levant and the Arabian Peninsula in Honor of Moawiyah Ibrahim. Ed. by Zeidan Kafafi. (Rome «La Sapienza» Studies on the Archaeology of Palestine & Transjordan, 10). Rome: La Sapienza.