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Archai

(511 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (ἀρχαί; archaí, ‘office holder’). In most Greek states the powers of hereditary kings were divided in the  Dark Ages and the archaic period and distributed among a series of officials ( archai or   archontes ), who were usually appointed for a year, often without the option of re-election. This process cannot be traced in detail because the sources tend toward a too schematic reconstruction. Apart from the offices that were responsible for the state as a whole, special offices were created on occ…

Aisymnetes

(276 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (αἰσυμνήτης; aisymnḗtēs). Formed from aísa (‘fate’) and   mna (‘to have in mind’): ‘one who has fate in mind (and announces it to the one it affects)’. The Phaeacians (Hom. Od. 8,258-9) name nine aisymnetai, who are responsible for contests ( agones), in the Iliad 24,347 a prince's son appears as aisymnḗtēs. Aristotle sees in the aisymnetes of ancient Greece a kind of monarch, a ‘chosen tyrant’, as demonstrated in  Pittacus of Mytilene around 600 (Pol. 3,1285a 29 - b 1). In the 5th cent. the word appears in Teos synonymously with ‘tyrant’ (Syll.3 38 = ML 30,A; SEG 31,985…

Epimeletai

(325 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (ἐπιμεληταί; epiméletai). Functionaries, who ‘take care of something’ ( epimeleîsthai). The word is used as the title for several Greek officials; see also epískopoi, epistátai. 1. The author of the Aristotelian Athenaion Politeia mentions for Athens the epimeletai of wells (43,1), of the market (51,4), of the festival of Dionysia (56,4), and of the Eleusinian Mysteries (57,1). Also documented are epimeletai as court officials who deal with the tributes in the Delian-Athenian League (ML 68), epimeletai of shipyards (such as IG II2 1629, 178-179; Dem. Or. 22,63…

Pylagoras

(153 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (πυλαγόρας/ pylagóras; also πυλαγόρος/ pylagóros, Hdt. 7,213 f,. or πυλάγορος/ pylágoras). literally a participant in the Pýlaia [2] meetings, i.e. the meetings of the  amphiktyonía of Anthela (near Thermopylae) and Delphi. Each of the 12 éthnē of the amphiktyonía was represented in the Council by two hieromnḗmones , who could both speak and vote, and they could send further representatives who could speak but not vote. The latter were called pylágoroi in literary texts and a few inscriptions of the Roman period, but agoratroí in Hellenistic inscriptions. It has…

Demagogue

(216 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (δημαγωγός, dēmagōgós, ‘leader of the people’). Aristophanes uses demagogue to mean a political leader in the mould of  Cleon (for example in Equ. 191-193; 213-222). The word was possibly coined in the 2nd half of the 5th cent. BC in Athens for the new style of populist politician whose position depended less on the clothing of office than the ability to speak persuasively at meetings of the popular assembly and at jury trials. The older word for a political leader was prostátēs. Thucydides and Xenophon generally used prostátēs, but each of them twice used dēmagōgós to ref…

Naukraria, naukraros

(381 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (ναυκραρία/ naukraría, ναύκραρος/ naúkraros). In ancient times, naukraría (pl. naukraríai) denoted a subdivision of the Athenian citizenry; naúkraros (pl. naúkraroi) were the leaders of such subdivisions. The meaning of the terms is controversial. Generally, the naúkraros was traditionally interpreted as ‘ship's captain’ (deriving from naûs, ‘ship’), but other derivations are proposed, e.g. from naós (‘temple’; [4. 56-72]; cf. [3. 153-175], [1. 11-16]) or from naíein (‘live’); [5. 10]). However, none of these more recent interpretations is …

Euclides

(2,633 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) | Döring, Klaus (Bamberg) | Folkerts, Menso (Munich) | Zaminer, Frieder (Berlin) | Di Marco, Massimo (Fondi Latina) | Et al.
(Εὐκλείδης; Eukleídēs). [German version] [1] Athenian archon in 403/2 BC Athenian archon in 403/2 BC. During his year in office Athens made a new start following the Oligarchy of the Thirty (e.g., see And. 1,87-94) and, among others, officially adopted the Ionian alphabet (Theopomp. FGrH 115 F 155). Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) Bibliography Develin 199 LGPN 2, Εὐκλείδης (9). [German version] [2] of Megara Student of Socrates Student of Socrates, founder of the  Megarian School; born between 450 and 435, probably died early in the 360s. In Plato's Phaedon (59c) E. is named among those …

Psephisma

(328 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (ψήφισμα, Pl. ψηφίσματα/ psēphísmata), literally a decision made by voting using 'voting stones' ( psêphoi) as opposed to voting by show of hands ( cheirotonía ). But in normal Greek usage, psephisma was applied to decrees and cheirotonía to elections, irrespective of the method of voting.  Psephisma is the most widespread word for 'decree'; dógma is fairly frequent; gnṓmē usually means 'proposal' but is sometimes used for 'decree', especially in north-western Asia Minor and in the adjacent islands (e.g. IK Ilion 1 = Syll.3 330); also found are hádos, rhḗtra and tethmós…

Cheirotonia

(152 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (χειροτονία; cheirotonía, ‘raising the hand’). Method of voting in popular assemblies and other Greek committees. In large assemblies votes thus given were probably not counted: the chairman would have to decide where the majority voice lay. Distinct from cheirotonía is voting by psēphophoría (‘throwing-in of ballot stones’), which made possible the precise counting of votes in a secret ballot. Notwithstanding the method actually used, the tendency in Athens and generally was to use the term cheirotoneín in the case of elections and the term psēphízesthai in the …

Zetetai

(181 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (ζητηταί/ zētētaí, 'investigators') were appointed ad hoc in Athens to enquire into breaches of law; the lexicographers (e.g. Harpocration [2], s. v. Ζ.) attribute an 'office' ( archḗ) to them, which was constructed in Athens from time to time. Z. are recorded in three instances: in 415 BC z. were assigned to look into the Mutilation of the Herms (Herms, Mutilation of the) and related religious offences (And. 1,40;  cf. 1,14; 1,36). Three members of the board are known (Diognetus, Peisander [7], Charicles [1]); Peisander was a…

Epidosis

(53 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (ἐπίδοσις; epídosis). Voluntary tax requested by Greek states during special emergencies to supplement the revenue from regular taxes and contributions furnished through public office. In Athens, epidóseis are documented since the 4th cent. (see for example Dem. Or. 21,161); they were probably introduced by Eubulus. Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)

Nesiotai

(273 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
(νησιῶται/ nēsiôtai). [German version] [1] See Hecatonnesi See Hecatonnesi Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) [German version] [2] Aegean league of islanders, with Delos as its centre, c. 315 BC League ( k oinon ) of islanders in the Aegean with Delos as its centre, probably founded by Antigonus [1] Monophthalmus in 315/4 BC rather than by Ptolemaeus in 308 BC. After the defeat of Demetrius [2] Poliorcetes 286 BC, the league was taken over by Ptolemaeus. It served as a political alliance and celebrated festivities in honour of its patron. Under the Ptolemies, there were a nēsíarchos (‘island ruler…

Decate

(231 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (δεκάτη; dekátē), ‘the tenth (part)’, primarily refers to various forms of tithe: 1. Crop yield taxation, e.g. in Athens under  Peisistratus (Aristot. Ath. Pol. 16,4; but perhaps it is a ‘twentieth’, eikostḗ, in Thuc. 6,54,5, and decate is a generic term in the Ath. Pol.), in Crannon (Polyaenus, Strat. 2,34), in Delos (IG XI 2, 161, 27) and in Pergamum (IPergamon 158, 17-18; a twentieth on wine and a tenth on other field crops). The lex Hieronica for Sicily, too, includes a decate (Cic. Verr. 2,3,20). 2. Building taxation, e.g. in Delos (IG XI 2, 161, 26) and Egypt…

Lot, election by

(2,381 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) | Ameling, Walter (Jena) | Kierdorf, Wilhelm (Cologne) | Nollé, Johannes (Munich) | Heimgartner, Martin (Halle)
(Greek κλῆρος/ klêros , Lat. sors). I. Political [German version] A. Greece The lot was used especially in democracies, but not only in such, as a means to distribute office among those who were equally eligible, rather than appointing the best candidate under the circumstances. For Athens, the Aristotelian Athenaion Politeia states that Solon introduced the selection of the archons by lot from a short list of pre-selected candidates ([Aristot.] Ath. pol. 8,1; but differing: Aristot. Pol. 2,1273b 35-1274a 3; 1274a 16-17; 3,1281b 25-34). In the…

Sitesis

(218 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (σίτησις/ sítēsis). Provision of food at public expense, on a particular occasion or regularly. There were three categories of recipients [5.308f.]: (a) Officials had the right of sitesis during their term of office; in Athens the prytáneis ate in the tholos (Ath. Pol. 43,3), and secretaries ( grammateîs ) and other officials ate with them [1.7-20] (these officials are called aeísitoi , 'regular eaters'; [1.86,84]). The archons (árchontes) ate in the thesmotheteîon (Schol. Plat. Phd. 235d; location unknown). (b) Recipients of major honours were given…

Dioiketes

(83 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (διοικητής; dioikētḗs). In Ptolemaic Egypt as well as in other parts of the Greek world, the word dioíkēsis was used to designate the administration in general and the financial administration in particular. The title of dioiketes was held by the official in charge of the king's financial administration (see, for instance, OGIS 59; Cic. Rab. Post. 28). Local financial officials may also have held this title (Pol. 27,13,2 with Walbank, Commentary on Polybius, ad. loc.).  Dioikesis Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)

Demarchos

(417 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) | Tinnefeld, Franz (Munich)
(Δήμαρχος; Dḗmarchos). Holder of office with political and/or religious duties in Greek communities. Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) [German version] I. Greece until late antiquity (1) In Athens the demarchos was the highest office-holder in each of the 139 demes ( Demos [2]), into which Cleisthenes had divided the polis ([Aristot.] Ath. Pol. 54,8). By no later than the 4th cent. BC the demarchos was elected by lot in each   dḗmos for one year; the demarchos for Piraeus on the other hand was appointed by the polis (Ath. Pol. 54,8). He convened and chaired the assembly of th…

Euthynai

(257 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (εὔθυναι; eúthynai). The term euthynai (‘straightening out’) was used specifically in reference to the audits of the official conduct of administrators after their departure from office. In Athens, this procedure was split into two parts: on the one hand, there was the lógos (‘statement of accounts’), which looked into the way officials handled public funds, carried out by a committee of ten logistaí (‘auditors’) plus one synḗgoros each (‘legal advisor’) ([Aristot.] Ath. Pol. 54,2), and on the other the euthynae in a stricter sense, offering the opportunity …

Ekklesia

(1,051 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) | Gerber, Simon (Kiel)
(ἐκκλησία; ekklēsía). Assembly of the adult male citizens, which was entitled to the ultimate decision-making authority in the Greek states. At times also called (h)ēliaía (with differences due to dialect) or agorá. The frequency of meetings, the areas of authority, the degree to which independent actions were restricted by the officials' and/or the council's realm of authority, and the number of members of the ekklesia varied depending on the type of the political organisation; thus, oligarchies can exclude the poor from the ekklesia by requiring a minimum of wealth. In the Homeric…

Prohedria

(286 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (προεδρία/ pro(h)edría). The right to occupy a place in the front row in institutions of various kinds; it was conferred by the state on prominent fellow citizens and visitors and is recorded for many poleis. In the 6th cent. BC pro(h)edría was bestowed by Delphi on Croesus of Lydia (Hdt. 1,54,2), and Olympia gave it to a Spartan próxenos (SEG 11, 1180a). In Athens among the recipients of pro(h)edría were the oldest living descendents of Harmodius and Aristogiton (Isaeus 5,47); Demosthenes [2] provided the ambassadors of Philip [4] II of Macedonia with pro(h)edría at the…
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