The following is an epitaph of a priestess who served many goddesses throughout her life, including Cybele. As a priestess of Cybele, she was a protector and mentor of the galli, (trans woman followers of this goddess).
Ἱερέη Δήμητρος ἐγώ ποτε, καὶ πάλιν Καβείρων,
ὦνερ, καὶ μετέπειτα Δινδυμήνης,
ἡ γρηῢς γενόμην, ἡ νῦν κόνις, ἡνο ...
πολλῶν προστασίη νέων γυναικῶν. καί μοι τέκν᾽ ἐγένοντο δύ᾽ ἄρσενα, κἠπέμυς1᾽ ἐκείνων
εὐγήρως ἐνὶ χερσίν. ἕρπε χαίρων.
Virgo sacerdos Cereris ego olim, et rursus Cabirorum,
o homo, et deinde Dindymenae,
anus fui, quae nunc sum cinis
multarum patrocinium iuvenum mulierum.
Et mihi pueri fuerunt duo mares, et oculos clausi illorum
grandaeva in manibus. Repta gaudens.
--Callimachus, Greek Anthology 7.728; Translated into Latin by Hugo Grotius
I was once the sacred priestess of Demeter, then the Cabeiri,
O traveler, and then I served Cybele.
Then I became an old woman, and now I’m ashes;
I was a momma bear for many young ladies.
I had two male children, and I closed my eyes a final time in their arms.
Go on your merry way.
CALLIMACHUS / Καλλίμαχος
Date: 305 – 240 BCE
Works: Aitia (Causes)
Pinakes (Table of Contents)
REGION 3 / 4
Callimachus is often regarded as one of the best Alexandrian [Greek] poets. Born in raised in Cyrene, Libya, he spent a majority of his career at the famous Library of Alexandria, where he used the resources there to create refined, artful poetry. Although much of his poetry is lost, the fragments that remain are a testament to both his talent as an artist and his erudition as a scholar.
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