A Bronze Steelyard from Tripolis
Bahadır Duman1, Arzu Deniz Duman2
1Pamukkale Üniversitesi Fen Edebiyat Fakültesi, Arkeoloji Bölümü, Denizli/TÜRKİYE
2Pamukkale Üniversitesi, Arkeoloji Enstitüsü, Denizli/TÜRKİYE
Keywords: Tripolis, Lydia, Steelyard, Bronze, Late Antiquity
Excavations by the north wall of the north Portico of the Sanctuary of Tripolis in Lydia in 2016 brought to daylight a bronze steelyard intact other than the missing upper half of the weight and the chain connecting to the force arm. The steelyard beam comprises the force arm with three scales and the load arm with three suspended hooks. The moveable weight on the force arm and the load placed at the end of the load arm are the non-fixed parts of the steelyard. The three scales feature letters, symbols and units placed at intervals, representing numbers. With regards to production and distribution areas, the Tripolitan steelyard can be categorized under Constantinopolitan type, which is attested all over the Mediterranean basin. The inscription on the load arm of the Tripolitan steelyard reads “Ioannes”, which indicates a bishop of the same name. The councils attended by this bishop may indicate that this steelyard could not have been manufactured after the fifth century AD. The symbols on this steelyard reveal much information on the commercial activities as well as religious and social life of the city in Late Antiquity.