§49 First Cohort of legio X Fretensis

First Cohort of legio X Fretensis

(0049) Text: Imp(eratori) Caes(ari) Traiano | Hadriano Aug(usto) | p(atri) p(atriae) leg(io) X Fret(ensis) coh(ors) I

Translation: To the Imperator Caesar Traianus Hadrianus, father of the country. Dedicated by the first cohort of legio X Fretensis. (Trans. Christopher B. Zeichmann)

Commentary: This inscription also depicts the god Neptune, which is relevant to scholars who see the aquatic imagery of Mark 5:1-20 evoking legio X Fretensis (see below, to the left of the inscription). This is all the more significant because the demon in the story is named “Legion” and Jesus dismisses the demon into pigs (legio X Fretensis adopted boars as a symbol on their countermarks, tile stamps, and even their standard).

Provenience: Scythopolis, Decapolis (Beth Shean) 130 CE

Bibliography: CIL 3.13589; CIL 3.14155.14