were Egyptian priests, so called because
they carried in processions small shrines (παστοὺ
) of their deity. They formed an inferior order of the
priesthood: according to Diodorus (1.29
corresponded in rank to
the Eumolpidae, the παστοφόροι
of Isis to
of the Eleusinian worship. They
were introduced into Italy along with the worship of Isis, and formed into
collegia in various towns. Apuleius (Met.
11.17), speaking of
pastophori, says, “quod sacrosancti collegii nomen est.” In an
inscription (C. I. L.
5.2806) the tablet seems to be
dedicated by a “perpetuus sacerdos Isidis Augustae
pastophorus;” and in another (C. I. L.
5.7468) we have
a tablet of Industria in the plain of the Po, dedicated to their patronus,
the Curator calendarii in that town, by the “Collegium Pastophorum
Industriensium.” Their lodgings, attached to the temple which
they served, were called παστοφόριον,
whence this name was sometimes given by the LXX. and by Josephus to the
priests' apartments attached to the Jewish temple. (Jer. 25.4; Joseph.