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Phoros

(1,696 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
(φόρος/ phóros, plural phóroi, 'tribute', 'contribution', from phérein, 'carry', 'take', 'bring'). [German version] A. Definition Phóroi were payments by states to a superior power or to an organization to which they belonged. In particular phoros was the term for the financial contributions made by the members of the Delian League. Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) [German version] B. Size and administration At the foundation of the Delian League in 478/7 BC, the contributions of members were assessed by Aristides [1] from Athens; they were either to provide sh…

Gynaikonomoi

(161 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (γυναικονόμοι; gynaikonómoi). The officials who were responsible in various Greek towns for compliance with laws regarding the behaviour of women, especially at festivals and at funerals, were called gynaikonomoi (‘Women's overseers’). Aristotle regarded this office as neither democratic nor oligarchical but as aristocratic (Pol. 4, 1300a4-8; 6, 1323a3-6). Actually gynaikonomoi are however found in states in varying ways, for instance in Thasos ([2. no. 141, 154-155]; 4th-3rd cents. BC), Gambrea (Syll.3 1219; 3rd cent. BC) or Sparta (IG V 1, 170; 3…

Liturgy

(1,615 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) | Feulner, Hans-Jürgen (Tübingen)
(λειτουργία; Leitourgía). I. Political [German version] A. Definition In the ancient Greek world leitourgía signified a ‘benefit/service for the people’, especially a benefit for the state or a part of the state, which was provided by rich citizens from their own means. Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) [German version] B. Athens The two main forms of liturgy in Athens were the ‘encyclical’, recurring festive liturgy with the responsibility to endow the performers and the celebrations themselves, and the trierarchia with the task of fitting out a shi…

Agraphoi nomoi

(193 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (ἄγραφοι νόμοι; ágraphoi nómoi, ‘unwritten laws’). The earliest laws of the Greek states were unwritten and lived on in the memory of the leading families. Already in archaic times, people began to write them down as in the laws of  Dracon and  Solon in Athens (621/20 and 594/93 BC, respectively) or in a constitutional law in Dreros on Crete (ML 2). Because not all valid laws were written down right away, unwritten laws existed alongside the written ones (e.g. Andoc. 1,115-6, where i…

Symmachia

(494 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (συμμαχία; symmachía). An alliance, literally an agreement between two or more states to fight (Gr. máchesthai) together ( syn-). Such alliances might be made either for a limited period or for all time. Thuc. 1,44,1; 5,48,2, distinguishes between a symmachia, as a full offensive and defensive alliance, and an epimachia, as a purely defensive alliance; but that use of the two terms is not widespread, and, for instance, the 'prospectus' of the (Second) Athenian League, which was a defensive alliance, consistently uses symmacheîn and cognate words (Tod 123). In a full …

Cleisthenes

(764 words)

Author(s): Patzek, Barbara (Wiesbaden) | Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
(Κλεισθένης; Kleisthénōs). [German version] [1] Tyrant of Sicyon c. 600-570 BC Tyrant of Sicyon ( c. 600-570 BC), son of Aristonymus, from the family of Orthagoras, whose tyranny lasted about 100 years ( c. 665-565 BC.; Aristot. Pol. 1315b 11ff.; cf. Nicolaus of Damascus FGrH 90 F 61). During the war with Argus C. pursued an anti-Argive domestic ideology, including prohibition of the presentation of the Homeric epics because they favoured Argos. The Argive hero  Adrastus [1] was replaced by the Theban hero  Melanippus (Hdt. 5,6…

Prostates

(354 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (προστάτης/ prostátēs, pl. προστάται/ prostátai), a person 'standing at the fore', either as leader (e.g. Aesch. Supp. 963 f.) or protector (e.g. Aesch. Sept. 408). Both aspects converged when Cyrus [2] became the prostates who freed the Persians from the yoke of the Medes (Hdt. 1,127,1), or Megabazus [1] what Myrcinus may do with Histiaeus [1] as prostates (Hdt. 5,23,2). When the Spartans were regarded as the prostatai of Greece at the time of Croesus (mid-6th cent. BC) (Hdt. 1,69,2), this was no expression of a leading position; when they were t…

Dioikesis

(730 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) | Bleckmann, Bruno (Strasbourg)
(διοίκησις ; dioíkēsis, Lat. dioecesis). [German version] I. Greece ‘Housekeeping’ in the sense of administration, especially in the financial realm. Dioikesis is used for the administration of the state in general (for example, Pl. Prt. 319d; [Aristot.] Ath. Pol. 43,1), also for the financial administration (for example, Xen. Hell. 6,1,2; Dem. Or. 24,96f.), and, in an extended sense by the author of the Aristotelian Athenaion Politeia, for maintenance payments made by the state (24,3). In later 4th-cent. BC Athens, an office for the upper financial administr…

Political administration

(4,328 words)

Author(s): Eder, Walter (Berlin) | Renger, Johannes (Berlin) | Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) | Eck, Werner (Cologne) | Tinnefeld, Franz (Munich)
[German version] I. General The states of antiquity had no executive PA independent of government and legislature in the sense of the modern separation of powers. The triple division of constitutions, indicated in Aristot. Pol. 1297b 35-1301a 15 ( tría mória, 1297b 37), into a decision-making, legislating organ ( tò bouleuómenon), an executive element ('on the offices': tò perì tàs archás) and judicature ( tò dikázon) owes more to the schematically working mind of the author than to a political concept as such, especially since the fields defined show conside…

Ateleia

(187 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (ἀτέλεια; atéleia). Freedom from obligations, especially from taxes and other financial obligations, was regarded as a privilege, which the state could bestow in order to honour someone. This term and the adjective atelḗs were used in Athens in connection with the freedom from liturgies (Dem. Or. 20,1, etc.), from contributions in the Delian League (ML 65) and from the metic tax (Tod, 178). Other examples include elsewhere the freedom from sales taxes (Syll.3 330, Ilium), from import and export taxes (Syll.3 348, Eretria), from duties that were levied against…

Diobelia

(116 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (διωβελία; diōbelía). A payment of two   oboloí in Athens. According to the author of the Aristotelian Athenaion Politeia (28,3), the diobelia was introduced by Cleophon whereupon a certain Callicrates promised to increase the sum but in fact abolished the diobelia. The diobelia is attested from 410 to 406/5 BC from inscriptions (in 406 temporarily reduced to an obolos) and in 405/4 was probably replaced by a distribution of grain. The basis for the payment is uncertain but it was probably granted during the Decelean War …

Epicheirotonia

(84 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (ἐπιχειροτονία; epicheirotonía). Epicheirotonia generally means voting (literally: ‘raising one's hand’). In particular epicheirotonia was used in the 4th cent. in Athens to mean a vote of confidence in officials that was cast in every prytany ([Aristot.] Ath. Pol. 43,5; 61,2; but epicheirotonia used in connection with an ostracism in 43,5 is probably an error for diacheirotonía) and a vote of confidence conducted annually for each of the four different subject areas of law (Dem. Or. 24,20-23). Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)

Isonomia

(250 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (ἰσονομία; isonomía). The concept of isonomia, (equality before the law) - along with other compounds formed with the element iso- (‘equal’) - seems to have played a significant role in political discourse in Greece during the late 6th and early 5th cents. BC. In the constitutional debate at the Persian Court, Herodotus uses isonomia to refer to democracy (3,80,6; 83,1), and in other places (3,142,3; 5,37,2) he employs isonomia to designate a constitutional government in contrast to one that is tyrannical ( Tyrannis); in the latter sense he also uses the words isēgoría

Tettarakonta

(191 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (οἱ τετταράκοντα/ hoi tettarákonta, 'the Forty'). In Athens, a college of forty judges appointed by lot, four each out of the ten phylai ( phyle [1]) after 404/3 BC. They were assigned to a phyle other than their own and handled cases concerning defendants of that phyle. They decided private suits for sums up to 10 drachmae on their own, and referred private suits ( dike [2]) for larger sums to the diaitetai [2]. However, it was possible to appeal against the decision of the diaitetes to a dikasterion presided over by one of the Forty. The college succeeded the dikastai kata de…

Athenian League (Second)

(475 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (4th cent. BC). The  Delian League had broken up in 404 at the end of the Peloponnesian War. One could remember the power which Athens had had over its allies, but Sparta's behaviour with respect to the Greeks in the early 4th cent. also led to dissatisfaction. In the King's Peace of 386, the Greeks in Asia Minor were given over to the Persians and all other Greeks were declared independent. In 384, Athens formed, explicitly in the context of this peace, an alliance with Chios (IG II2 34 = Tod 118). In 378, Athens established, after the liberation of Thebes from Spa…

Nomophylakes

(473 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) | Ameling, Walter (Jena) | Tinnefeld, Franz (Munich)
(νομοφύλακες / nomophýlakes, ‘guardians of the law’) [German version] I. Classical Period In the Classical Period, nomophýlakes were officials responsible for ensuring compliance with the laws ( nómoi). In Athens, the Areopagus (Areios Pagos) was said to have performed the function of the nomophylakía  until the reforms of Ephialtes [2] (462 BC) ([Aristot.] Ath. Pol. 3,6; [4,4]; 8,4; 25,2). According to one version in a fragment of Philochorus (FGrH 328 F 64), Ephialtes appointed a college of seven nomophýlakes, who also held some religious offices, but it is more likely…

Epimachia

(105 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] (ἐπιμαχία; epimachía). Thucydides (1,44,1; 5,48,2) uses the term epimachia for a purely defensive alliance, which obliges the participants to give assistance only in the case of an attack, as opposed to the symmachía, which is an offensive as well as defensive alliance to the full extent, wherein the participants have ‘the same friends and enemies’. The Greeks, however, failed to always make a clear distinction between the two terms: the  Athenian League of the 4th cent. was a defensive alliance, but the treatise which promoted it consistently uses symmáchein and rel…

States, confederation of

(621 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
[German version] In Greece federal states were regional units composed of separate poleis (Polis) and organised in such a way that at any rate foreign policy was in the hands of the federal organisation (Synhedrion), but the individual poleis retained their own citizenship and a greater degree of autonomy than was enjoyed by each of the demes (Demos [2]) of Attica. 'Tribal states' in the less urbanised parts of Greece were similar, with a federal organisation and smaller local units which had a degree of autonomy: as poleis were established these tended to develop into federal sta…

Demos

(1,287 words)

Author(s): Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham) | Tinnefeld, Franz (Munich)
(δῆμος; dêmos). [German version] [1] The entire citizenry Demos, meaning ‘people’, could refer to either the entire citizenry of a community or only the ‘common people’ as distinct from its more privileged members. As an extension of the first meaning it also served to designate the popular assembly, so that political decisions in many states were seen as being ‘issued by the council and the people’ (ἔδοξεν τῇ βουλῇ καὶ τῷ δήμῳ). Adjectives such as dēmotikós and the description of a democratic leader as προστάτης τοῦ δήμου (‘champion of the people’; e.g. in Thuc. 3,82,…

Polis

(1,781 words)

Author(s): Welwei, Karl-Wilhelm (Bochum) | Rhodes, Peter J. (Durham)
(πόλις, πτόλις/ pólis, ptólis; pl. πόλεις/ póleis; 'city state'). [German version] I. Topographical background and early development Depending on the particular context, p olis may have topographical, personal or legal-political connotations: a) a fortified settlement on a height, Homeric pólis akrḗ or akrotátē (Hom. Il. 6,88; 20,52), synonymous with the Acropolis in Athens until the late 5th cent. (Thuc. 2,15,3-6); b) an urban settlement; c) an urban settlement including environs, 'state territory'; d) municipal community, community of polîtai (see below II.). In the sense …
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