The name Σαννιον has been around since the Minoan-Mycenaean period, and it’s always significant when I uncover a namesake. Recently I came across two of them in my readings – and there’s an interesting thread linking them.

The first lived in the same region as Nonnos, author of The Dionysiaka:

To Besas, son of Hieracapollon also called Demetrius and Triphiodorus son of Isidorus son of Callimachus, ex-magistrates. The most excellent senate, as it has informed me through Plutogenes the President in office, has selected you as collectors of meat for the Middle Toparchy, for the auspiciously impending visit of our ruler the Emperor Diocletian the Senior Augustus. In order, therefore, that you may know and at once take over the collection I send this communication to you by the hand of Leon my servant. And whoever first receives this communication, let him transmit it to the other. Year 15/14/7, Thoth 21st. […] Distributors and receivers of wine for the Upper Toparchy. Aelius son of Sannion son of Nilus and Petetriphis son of Paniscus son of Protus. Same form and date. Signed. (Panopolis Papyrus 1 Col. xi Line 310)

While the other had a son who was a resident alien in Athens, though originally from Naukratis:

Clearly, Naukratis was significant enough to engender demand for proxenies, and much of this significance was probably economic: flourishing trade with Egypt is evident not only from the mention of Egyptian traders and Egyptian imports in Athenian comedies, but also from the presence of Egyptian traders among the resident foreigners, metics, in the Athenian port of Piraeus, who established a shrine of Isis here. Among the several grave markers of Naukratites who died in Athens is that of Phaidimos, who was buried just before or soon after 400 BC, as well as that of Pais (‘boy’ – a generic slave name?), whose mid-4th-century BC tomb stone in the Piraeus bears both a Greek and a demotic inscription, suggesting he was of Egyptian parentage. Other individuals from Naukratis attested on 5th–4th-century BC grave markers from Athens include Parmenon, Dionysios son of Parmenon, and Olympos son of Sannion. (Alexandra Villing, Naukratis: religion in a cross-cultural context, BMSAES 24