List of Supplies for Bayasa (Bessus)

ink on leather

written in Official Aramaic, in two columns

33 x 39.5cm

Bayasa is the Aramaic spelling of the Iranian name familiar through Greek transmission as Bessus. Bessus proclaimed himself king under the name Artaxerxes V after he killed Darius III, and was subsequently killed when he fled from Alexander to Sogdiana.

The document lists provisions for him in Maithanaka, when he passed from Bactra (modern Balkh) to Varnu. These include 1 horse; 1 sheltered bovine; 1 calf; 2 grazing bovines; 1 donkey; 33 sheltered sheep; 33 lambs; 100 grazing sheep; 5 geese; 30 chickens; and specified quantities of fine flour; white flour; plain flour; lapis-lazuli-coloured (?); barley meal; spices; cheese (pieces); white oil; oil for fire; vinegar; sour milk; wine of Chistakana (?); [wine of[ Arachosia; and fodder.

J. Naveh & S. Shaked, Aramaic Documents from Ancient Bactria (Fourth Century BCE), London 2012, no.C1, pp.174–85.