[German version] I. Ancient Near East see Cuneiform, legal texts in Thür, Gerhard (Graz) [German version] II. Greek Succession laws in Greece primarily followed the concept of family succession. Greek law therefore contained several provisions to secure succession within the family group even where there were no legitimate sons (
gnesioi). For example,
eispoíēsis allowed the nomination of a non-testamentary heir, a process akin to adoption. Where such a replacement heir was also absent, the inheritance (
klḗros ) either passed to lateral kin (
anchisteía ) or via the daughters to descendants in the female line (
epíklēros ). In addition to the transfer of the inheritance to these heirs variously, so to speak, 'born' or (in the case of the
eispoiesis) 'chosen', the apportioning of individual objects of bequest within the inheritance or of the entire inheritance by will (in detail s.
diathḗkē) was also widespread in Greek law. However, freedom of testatorship was by no means recognized throughout Greece. The inheritance passed automatically to the legitimate sons (natural and adopted wi…