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Who Was Sitting in the Theatre at Miletos? An Epigraphical Application of a Novel Theory

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Stephen Mitchell has proposed a broad view of the cult of the Most High God (Theos Hypsistos) in which the followers describe themselves as theosebes. This provides a robust identity for these God-fearers and allows for a wider local context for theosebes (and other God-fearer) inscriptions. Mitchell's view is applied to the famous seating inscription for Jews and God-fearers in the theatre in Miletos. Here a quiet Jewish community is associated with a community of followers of the Most High God which included prominent members. The inscription should be read as, "The place of the Jews [real Jews], who are called [are part of] the group of theosebioi [followers of the Most High God]."


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