Greek Mythology and Poetics

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Chapter 12. Mythical Foundations of Greek Society and the Concept of the City-State

The problem is, efforts to study the Indo-European heritage of tribal organization have been impeded by the fact that most Indo-European languages are attested in the historical context of societies that happen to reflect what we recognize as institutions of a state, not of a tribe. At the present time there is much uncertainty, particularly in the case of the ancient Greek evidence, where the current consensus among specialists in archaic and Classical Greek history is that the institutions of the Greek pólis ‘city-state’ cannot be derived from the institutions of any tribal form of society. The object of my presentation is to argue against this consensus and to show that the ancient Greek evidence affords a {276|277} particularly valuable comparative insight into the nature of Indo-European society.

All this internal evidence can lead to valuable comparative insights. For example, the semantic relationship between the name of the lowest in the order of three phūlaí, the Pámphūloi, and the word phūlḗ itself, corresponds to the semantic relationship between the name of the lowest in the order of the three leading social classes or varṇa-s in Indic traditions, [31] the vaiśya-, and the word from which it is derived, viś– ‘tribe’: just as the word Pámphūloi implies the whole community while designating the lowest of three parts, so also the word vaiśya-, by virtue of its derivation, implies the whole community, the viś-, while specifically designating, again, the lowest of three parts. We have in fact already noted that the word viś– stands for the concept of a whole community, as we could see from the semantic relationship between viś– and the derivative viśva- ‘all’. [32] Moreover, in Rig-Veda 8.35.13, the expression devāsaḥ sarvayā viśā, literally ‘gods, with the viś– complete’, denotes the completion of the speech-act of listing the gods of all three social functions corresponding to the three leading varṇa-s: Mitra-Varuṇa as the first (sovereignly/priesthood), the Maruts as the second (warrior class), and the Aśvins as the third (agriculture/herding). [33] The symbolic inclusive-ness of the third part is evident in other ways as well: for example, the word viś– is sufficient for designating, all by itself, the lowest of the three {281|282} leading varṇa-s, the vaiśya– (e.g. Rig-Veda 8.35. 18). [34] The semantic bivalence of The Indic word viś-, in designating both the third part of totality and totality itself, has been compared by Georges Dumézil with the situation in Latin, where the word Quirītes, related to Quirīnus, the god representing the third function in the pre-Capitoline triad, designates not only ‘civilians’ as opposed to milites but also the totality of the Roman people (note the proposed etymology: *co-uiro-). [35] I might add that, just as Indic viś– may alternatively include the two upper functions or exclude them, [36] so also Greek dêmos may designate either the whole community [37] or else the community minus its hēgemónes ‘leaders’. [38]

  • sheep of the Hulleîs: parà tò Hērakleîon ‘at the precinct of Herakles’
  • sheep of the Dumânes: parà tò Anaxílea ‘at the precinct [called] Anaxílea
  • sheep of the Pámphūloi: parà tò Dāmā́trion ‘at the precinct of Demeter’.

Having just surveyed the basics of what little we are told about the political system of Athens before the reform of Kleisthenes, I raise the {286|287} possibility, however tenuous, of an inherited territorial principle in tthe distribution of phūlaí. True, what Kleisthenes had changed was not only the naming and numbering of the phūlaí also the actual constituency of the phūlaí, in that the subdivisions of old trittúes or phrātríai were replaced by subdivisions of new trittúes, further subdivided into territorial entities called dêmoi. Aristotle says explicitly, it is also true, that Kleisthenes did not reform the phrātríai or their constituencies, the génē ‘lineages’ (Constitution of the. Athenians 21.6), so that the phrātríai could survive and in limited ways even cooperate with the dêmoi. [61] Still, the fact that the new trittúes were territorial units does not necessarily mean that the phrātríai, ousted from functioning as subdivisions of the phūlaí, had been devoid of any territorial principle. The subdivisions of the polis need not he conceived as marking differentiations exclusively in terms of territory or exclusively in terms of kinship (in the: broader, political sense of the word). After all, the Athenian dêmoi, by virtue of being subdivisions of the new phūlaí, became functional determinants of actual ancestry. [62] Moreover, the concept of trittús, equated with phrātríai by Aristotle in the fragment that we have been considering, suggests some kind of territorially distributive mechanism: we may recall that the concept of the new trittús, as established alter Kleisthenes, served to distribute each of the ten new phūlaí into three distinct territorial variations.

There still remain major problems, however, with the numbers recorded in Aristotle’s report (Constitution of the Athenians, F 385 Rose) of the old subdivision of Athens into four phūlaí, each further subdivided into three trittúes or phrātríai, each further subdivided into thirty génē, The purported number of old trittúes, twelve, seems far too low in comparison with the number of new trittúes after Kleisthenes, that is, thirty. Perhaps a solution can be found if we do not assume that Aristotle’s report applies to all of Athenian territory. The report begins by stating that the population was subdivided into gēorgoí and dēmiourgoí, and what then follows in the text may be interpreted to mean that each of these two subdivisions was further subdivided into four phūlaí, each further subdivided into three old trittúes or phrātríai. With (his reckoning we would have a total of twenty-four phrātríai as a territorial grid for the even distribution of phūlaí. [63] There may be a parallel situation in {287|288} Corinth, where eight phūlaí seem to be further subdivided into three units each, yielding a territorial grid of, again, twenty-four units. [64] The eight- phūlaí system of Corinth apparently reflects the politics of the dynasty of tyrants known as the Kypselidai, [65] who promoted a clear delineation between countryside and city proper (Ephorus FGH 70 F 179; Aristotle Constitution of the Corinthians, F 516 Rose [cf. F 611.20]), and it may he argued that the Corinthian eight- phūlaí system reflects a countryside/city split of a modified Dorian four-phūlaí system. [66] There is a remote possibility that the system described by Aristotle as prevailing in Athens before Kleisthenes can be attributed to the tyranny of the Peisistratidai: in this case, if my interpretation of the Aristotle fragment has any merit, the basic Ionian four-phūlaí system was split along the lines of gēorgoí in the countryside, dēmiourgoí in the city proper. [67]

To sum up the discussion of the phrātríai as they existed both before and after the reform of Kleisthenes: I conclude that this social subdivision is a matter of both kinship (in the broader, political sense of the word) and territoriality. The Athenian elimination of phrātríai as functional subdivisions of the polis reflects a movement away from a social structure that would have tended to exclude newer inhabitants by placing a stress on inherited kinship. The retention of the concept of phūlḗ as the largest political subdivision of Athens is thus but a camouflage for the fact that the kinship-related grouping of the phrātríai has been replaced by the territorial grouping of the trittús as the functional subdivision of the phūlḗ. If we follow this interpretation of Aristotle, then it may be that twenty-four old phrātríai are replaced by thirty new trittúes and four old phūlaí (times two) are replaced by ten new ones. As Aristotle observes elsewhere (Politics 1319b23-27), the successful formula for {289|290} achieving democracy in a polis is to increase the number of phūlaí and phrātríai, “so that all people may be mixed with each other as much as possible.”

Aristotle’s remark about “mixing” implies that social structuring along the lines of phūlaí and phrātríai is equivalent to the regulating of marriage along the lines of kinship. So also in the Constitution of the Athenians Aristotle says that Kleisthenes distributed the entire population of the Athenians into ten new phūlaí in place of the old four because he wanted to “mix” the population (21.2): the “mixing” led to greater participation in the polity, which Aristotle (ibid.) connects with the expression mḗ phūlokrīneîn (μὴ φυλοκρινεῖν) ‘not to make distinctions according to phūlḗ’ as it applies to those who wish to verify the pedigrees (génē) of their fellow citizens. The injunction ‘not to make distinctions according to phūlḗ’ applies not to the new phūlḗ of the social reform but to the old phūlḗ that still reflects more faithfully the institutions of the tribe. [72] In fact, the notion ‘to make distinctions according to phūlḗ’ reveals something basic about the inherited semantics of both phūlḗ and phûlon. As Nicole Loraux points out, [73] the noun phûlon ‘race, kind’ conveys the distinctiveness of one entity as opposed to another: thus, for example, the phûlon of gods is distinct from the phūlḗ of men (Iliad V 441-442); the emphasis is on closure of categories, on separation—which is also why the plural phūla conveys the diversity of subcategories within a category, [74] Both notions, distinctiveness and diversity, are evident in the Homeric usage of phûlon as a synonym (or better, as a diachronic equivalent) of phūlḗ: in Iliad II 362, Agamemnon is advised to set up battle formations by arranging the warriors katà phûla ‘according to phūlaí and katà phrḗtrās ‘according to phrātríai’. [75] Moreover, the verb for ‘arrange’ in this passage is krīnein, the same element that we find in the expression phūlokrīneîn; in other words, the act of arranging katà phûla and kata phrḗtrās is itself an act of selection, setting apart, distinguishing. [76] But there is another side of distinctiveness here, and that is complementarity; again in the same context, we see that each distinct military unit can then help the other (Iliad 11 363)—while all along they fight in their own categories, katà sphéas (II 366). Thus group solidarity is not at odds with {290|291} the distinctiveness of subgroups. The semantics of categorization by phûlon are reminiscent of the opposition “marked/unmarked” in language: the phûlon is the marked member in an opposition with any other member of a totality. So also with the kinship term phūlḗ: ‘to make distinctions about phūlḗ’ is an exercise in maintaining categories of markedness. If we turn for just a moment to consider an analogue in a society that is otherwise very different from that of the Greeks, I am reminded of how the Tonga reportedly describe to outsiders the function of the main kinship subdivisions of their society: for them such a subdivision is their “flag.” [77] It is something given to them by divinity “so that we could marry properly.” [78]


[ back ] 1. For a detailed study of Indo-European kinship terminology, with a rich bibliography, see Szemerényi 1978.

[ back ] 2. Watt 1962.15.4.

[ back ] 3. Watt p. 153. For an instructive essay on descent and symbolic filiation, see Moore 1964; also Calame 1987.

[ back ] 4. Roussel 1976.163.

[ back ] 5. For more on the éthnos, see Snodgrass 1980.42-47.

[ back ] 6. Weber [1956],776-780; cf. Laue 1941.994-995.

[ back ] 7. See esp. Roussel 1976.257-260.

[ back ] 8. On tribal politics, see e.g. Gluckman 1965.

[ back ] 9. Benveniste 1969 1:366, Note that the concept of viś– stands for a whole community as ruled by a king: see the discussion by Drekmeier 1962,20, 49. Cf. Old Persian viθ ‘royal house, court’, There is a parallel concept in Old Irish, where the tuath ‘tribe, people’ is ruled by the ri ‘king’. For the Irish evidence, see Byrne 1971, esp. p. 132; cf. also Dillon 1975.98-105, I should add that the reference to the choosing of a king by the viśaḥ [plural of viś-] in Rig-Veda 10,124.8 seems comparable to the choosing of an over-king by a grouping of tuatha in Old Irish traditions (on which see Byrne p. 133 and Dillon p. 105). In the diction of the Rig-Veda the theme of universal kingship as applicable to gods leads to an emphasis on the concept of over-kingship, so that a given god as rājan– ‘king’ is predominantly described as lord over viśaḥ (plural), not over any single viś-. The compound viśpati– ‘lord of the viś-’ seems to be synonymous with rājan-: cf. Atharva-Veda 4.22.3 and the comments of Gonda 1976.139n66. But note the attestation of the periphrases viśaḥ pati-’lord of the viś– [singular]’ at Rig-Veda 10.152.2 and viśām pati– ‘lord of the viśaḥ [plural]’ at e.g. Atharva-Veda 1.21.1, I would compare Old Irish rí tuaithe ‘king of the tuath [singular]’ and rí tuath ‘king of the tuatha [plural]’ = over-king, respectively (see Byrne pp. 132-134}. As for the cognate of Indic viśpati-, Lithuanian viešpats ‘[sovereign] lord’, I find no evidence to justify the translation ‘chief of clan’ (as in Benveniste 1:295). For arguments against translating Indic viś– as ‘clan’, see Gonda pp, 138-139, who adduces passages like Rig-Veda 4.4.3, where the poet refers to his community as ‘this viś– [singular]’. Note, too, that the semantics of Lithuanian viēškelis ‘Landstrasse, öffentlicher Weg’ (LEW 1244) suggest that viēš– stands for the concept of a whole community.

[ back ] 10. The semantics of Latin tribus are discussed immediately below.

[ back ] 11. The correlation seems to he in terms of political vs. territorial distinctions: whereas tuta is political, trifu is territorial. Cf. the usage of “tribus” in Umbrian place-names as reported by Livy 31.2.G and 33.37.1 (Poultney 1959.274). For more on the semantics of Umbrian tuta, Old Irish tuath, and German Deutsch, see Benveniste 1969 1:364.

[ back ] 12. Benveniste 1:258-259. Otherwise Watkins 1966.45-19.

[ back ] 13. Benveniste 1:258-259; there is no need to posit, as Benveniste does, that the name “Triphylia” reflects a specifically Dorian pedigree.

[ back ] 14. Benveniste 1:258-259.

[ back ] 15. On this topic, see further at p. 284n51.

[ back ] 16. For a parallel, cf. the discussion of the sunoikismos at Rhodes at p, 285n53.

[ back ] 17. On the trifunctional association of the three primordial tribus with the three distinct ethnic groups of Latins/Etruscans/Sabines, I cite the updated views of Dumézil 1969.214. Also Alföldi 1974.59-60, who points to patterns of Etruscan linguistic borrowings from Italic in arguing against the notion that the Roman concept of tribus was borrowed from the Etruscans.

[ back ] 18. Pace Täubler 1930, who considers the Roman model primary, and the Umbrian, secondary. I should add that the pattern of three cities in the territory of the Vestini (Täubler pp. 6-10), as also the tripartition of the territory of the Paeligni (pp. 12-14), resembles the Roman model to the extent that the equivalent of tribus in these instances figures as a “third” of a larger whole (whence the description by Ovid Amores 2.16.1 of his home town Sulmo as a “third” of Paelignian territory: pars me Sulmo tenet Pafligni lerlia nuis).

[ back ] 19. Roussel 1976.166.

[ back ] 20. Roussel pp. 221-263.

[ back ] 21. Jones 1980a.

[ back ] 22. As for the hierarchy in Dorian cities with four phūlaí, see below.

[ back ] 23. Jones 1980a.204.

[ back ] 24. In an inscription from Cos (DGE no. 253), for example, we read of a resolution by “those phūlaí who share in the rites of Apollo and Herakles” (lines 1-6). Further evidence from this and other related inscriptions from Cos leads to the conclusion that the phūlē associated with the rites of Apollo was in this case the Dumânes, that the phūlē associated with the rites of Herakles was the Hulleîs; and that the phūlē excluded from these rites was the Pámphūloi, See e.g. Jones 1980a.210.

[ back ] 25. For testimonia on the incorporation of non-Dorian elements at Sikyon, Phleious, Epidauiros, Trozen, Meninone, see Pausanias 2.6.7, 2.13.1-2, 2.26.1-2, 2.30,10, 2.34.5, respectively. Cf. Wörrle 1964.13, who adduces the interesting remarks of Isocrates 12.177f

[ back ] 26. Jones 19980a.205. In Argive inscriptions of this period, the naming of citizens follows the pattern: name plus adjective naming the phūlē (no patronymic necessary). See Wörrle pp. 16-19.

[ back ] 27. This change is dated to some time in the 460s, but no later than 462 B.C.; see Wörrle p. 20, 122-126; also Jones p. 206.

[ back ] 28. Jones p. 206.

[ back ] 29. Jones p. 212.

[ back ] 30. Jones p. 212. He finds just two exceptions to the sequence Dumânes/Hulleîs/Pámphūloi (pp. 209, 211). Both occur in one set of inscriptions, DGE no. 251 (Cos, iv/iii B.C.) A 10-13 and С 1-5. The first passage concerns the selection of an ox to be sacrificed to Zens Polieus. A priest and a panel of hieropoioí ‘sacrificers’ must select one ox out of three triads of oxen, each triad being presented by each of the three phūlaí. If no ox is selected from the triad presented by the Pámphūloi, then the Hulleîs are to present their triad; if no ox is selected from the triad presented by them, then the Dumânes are to present their triad. In the second passage, which will be discussed again in another context below, three sheep are to be selected for sacrifice, one on behalf of each of the three phūlaí in three different sacred precincts. The sequence of enumeration is Dumânes/Hulleîs/Pámphūloi. I should note that, exceptionally, both these passages are concerned with the rituals of sacrifice. In the first passage the sequence may reflect an ascending order of importance in a climactic ideology of sacrifice. In the second passage the sequence may have been affected by the special importance of the cult of Herakles at Соs (to repeat, the precinti of Herakles was associated with the phūlē of the Hulleîs: p. 280n24). In any case, the expression parà tà Anaxílea, to be discussed below, suggests that the Dumânes outranked the Hulleîs.

[ back ] 31. The stratification of the varṇa-s is attested already in e.g, Rig-Veda 10.90.11-12: cf. Dumézil 1958.7-8 and Benveniste 1:279-288. The people of the fourth varṇa-, namely the śūdra, are ideologically the servants, of the leading three varṇa-s.

[ back ] 32. Cognate with Indic viśνa– is Avestan vispa– ‘all,’ just as Indic viś– is cognate with Avestan vīs. In Iranian society the vīs seems to have been a subdivision of the zantu (< *gen-tu-): see Benveniste 1969 1:294-295. Whereas the Vedic viś– and the Avestan vīs may not necessarily represem any longer the same type of social organization, the convergence of meanings in Vedic viśva– and Avestan vispa-, both meaning ‘all’, suggests that the Indo-Iranian *viš– is analogous to, say, the Old Irish tuath. Both the Indic viś– and the Old Irish tuath, as we have seen (p. 277n9), apparently designate a community as ruled by a king. In this light, we may note the findings of Dubuisson (1978a and 1978b)the basis of Indo-Iranian and Celtic rituals of royal inauguration, to the effect that the Indo-European king embodies a totality of the triad of three social functions, If, then, we maintain that the third social function is the completing function that allows the totality to happen, it follows that the image of the king as a totality should be articulated expressly in terms of the third function. I cite as an example the generative connotations of Germanic *kuningaz ‘king’ (root akin to Latin gen– as in genitor; cf. also Hittite ḫaššuš king’—in light of the argument that this word is derived from ḫaš– ‘beget’: see pp. 145ff.). Then the Avestan expression vīsō puθra, as discussed by Benveniste 1:305, may represent a variation on this theme.

[ back ] 33. For more on Rig-Veda 8.35.13, see Dumézil 1977.226.

[ back ] 34. For a commentary on Rig-Veda З.З5.16-18 see Dumézil 1977.213-215. Note, too, ŚatapathaBrāmaṇa (also universal totality is equaled with tin: triad brahma/kṣatram/viś-, the· three characteristics of the three functions. Cf. Gonda 1976.132n.30.

[ back ] 35. Dumézil 1977.218n2, 226n3, 255.

[ back ] 36. For an informative collection of contexts where the viś– is in conflict with upper strata of society, see Rau 1957.59-61.

[ back ] 37. N 1979a.149. Cf. p. 3n7 and pp. 132-133 above.

[ back ] 38. N 1985а.43-44. Cf. also Donlan 1970. On the implications of third function in the word dêmos, I cite the semantics of dēmiourgoí, the word for ‘artisans’. According to Strabo 8.7.1 C383, Ion divided the population of the Athenians into four classes: the geōrgoí ‘cultivators’, dēmiourgoí ‘artisans’, hieropoioí ‘priests’, and phúlakes ‘guardians’; on the affinities of this grouping system with the four-phūlaí structure of certain Ionian city-states and with the trifunctional Indo-European ideology of (1) sovereignty/ priesthood, (2) warrior class, (3) cultivators/herders and artisans, see Benveniste 1969 1:289-291 (pace Nilsson 1951). On the differentiation of the third function between cultivators/herdsmen and artisans, see Dumézil 1977.256, with reference to his valuable outline of four different historically attested ways of integrating the emerging classes of a given society into the inherited scheme of trifunctionalism.

[ back ] 39. Note the corporeal imagery in Rig-Veda 10.90.11-12.

[ back ] 40. See p. 280n24.

[ back ] 41. See the ample documentation in Gonda 1976.131-133, with instances of either third-ranking or complete omission of the vaiśya-. On the imagery of the first two varṇa-s as resting on top of the third for support, see the citations compiled by Gonda p. 135. It goes without saying that I disagree with Gonda’s view that such hierarchization of the varṇa-s amounts to an argument against Dumézil’s construct of trifunctionalism. In this connection, I quote the following useful formulation: “La coupure initiale qui sépare les représentants des deux premières classes et ceux de la troisième est une donnée indo-européenne commune“:’Dumézil 1958.56. Cf. also Dumézil I959b.26.

[ back ] 42. Already discussed at pp. 280-281 n30.

[ back ] 45. On which see Sergent 1977/1978.

[ back ] 46. So also King Leotychides of Sparta, at Herodotus 8.131.2. In light of the tradition according to which Húllos was a Dorian only by adoption (ns the adopted son of Aigimios son of Dôros), we may note the anecdote at Herodotus 5.70.3 about King Kleomenes of Sparta: when he was barred from Athena’s inner sanctum at the Athenian acropolis on the grounds that he was a Dorian, he protested that he was not a Dōrieús but rather an Akhaiós. On the semantics of self-identification by Greeks as Dorians and Ionians, see Alty 1982; on Herodotus 5.70.3, see Alty p. 13.

[ back ] 47. See Drekmeier 1962.81-85. Note, too, the evidence of Vedic diction: at Atharva-Veda 4.22.1, for example, the king is overtly described as a kṣatriya-.

[ back ] 48. See the survey of passages by Gonda 1976.141 It does not follow, however, as Gonda seems to think, that these passages disprove Benveniste’s (1969 1:200) definition of the kṣatriya– as the man “qui a le pouvoir guerrier (qui a le pouvoir de rāj -),” The point remains that the derivative of kṣatram, kṣatriya-, clearly designates the second function in particular, and that this designation in turn particularizes the meaning of the base-form kṣatram. Thus the attestations of an earlier, more general, meaning cannot vindicate Gonda’s counterargument. Cf. Dumézil 1977.255.

[ back ] 49. So Dumézil 1941.254-257. The idea is retracted, however, in Dumézil 1953.25.

[ back ] 50. Cf. τριχῇ (=τριχῆ?) at Herodotus 3.39.2; the context of this passage is pertinent.

[ back ] 51. See Benveniste 1969 1:310. In connection with this proposed etymology, I note the claim by Roussel 1976.230 that Benveniste confuses the semantic subdivisions of family/clan/tribe. This is to miss one of Benveniste’s main points, which is that the diachronic perspective reveals shifts in meaning from category to subcategory or from subcategory to category. As for the morphology of trikhā́īkes, it is admittedly opaque, partly because the phonology is opaque: Homeric and Hesiodic traditional diction guarantees only the vowel quantities here, not the precise vowel qualities (in this case, *u̯eik-? *u̯oik-? *u̯īk-?).

[ back ] 52. Whether kalaphūladón reflects an underlying noun phūlḗ or phûlon is irrelevant to the argument, since Homeric phûlon can be used in the sense of Classical phūlḗ (Iliad II 362, on which see further below).

[ back ] 53. I interpret Iliad II 655 (in conjunction with 668) as saying that the whole island was subdivided into three cities, Lindos, Ialysos, and Kameiros, and that this tripartition of the whole island was like a subdivision into three phūlaí within оne city, The three cities are mentioned explicitly as cities in Herodotus 1.144.3. The Homeric testimony should not be misinterpreted lo mean that each of these cities did not have its own phūlaí. On the available epigraphical evidence for the existence of phūlaí in each of the three Rhodian cities and for the political principle of rotation-by-phūlḗ, see Fraser 1953, esp. pp. 40-41n1; one phūlḗ at Lindos is known as Argeíā, which leads to his inference that the traditional Dorian names of Dumânes/Hulleîs/Pámphūloi became obsolete in Rhodes, possibly at an early stage (cf. also the discussion in Roussel 1976.261). In the sunoikismós ‘urban consolidation’ of 408/7, the three cities were united as the one city of Rhodes, apparently consisting of three phūlaí known as Lindia, Ialysia, and Kameiris (Latte 1941.096). Note that Karmirís is attested as the name of a phūlḗ in Hierapytna (DCE no. 200. 1). For further discussion of the subdivisions of Rhodes, see Momigliano 1936, esp. pp. 50-63. Momigliano points out (p, 51) that the Iliad (II 653—657) assigns the three cities of Rhodes to a single leader, Tlepolemos. (In this connection, note the report of Pherecydes FGH 3 F 80 that the maternal grandfather of Tlepolemos was one Phūlās; cf. Robertson 1980.8.) Even before the sunoikismós of 408/7, certain sacral institutions of one of the three cities, Lindos, are known to have been shared by the other two (Momigliano p. 51); note, too, the report that the text of Pindar’s Olympian 7, in honor of Diagoras of Ialysos, was inscribed in gold and deposited at the temple of Athena at Lindos (scholia to Pindar Olympian 7.1 p. 195 Drachmann; cf. Momigliano p. 51), Finally, I should note that it may be productive to study further the Rhodian institution of the ktoínā, which is obviously a territorial subdivision (see Momigliano p. 59) and at the same time an aristocratic kinship subdivision (cf. Hesychius s.v. κτύναι ἢ κτοῖναι‧ χωρήσεις προγονικῶν ἱερειῶν ἢ δῆμος μεμερισμένος ‘ktoînai; categories of inherited priesthoods or a subdivision of a district [dêmos] ‘). Note, too, the morphological parallelism of Rhodian ktoinétai (DGE no. 281, note to line 14) and Linear B ko-to-ne-ta (Pylos Eb901.1).

[ back ] 54. Thus the Rhodian model of three cities seems in fact exceptional in its outward simplicity —hence perhaps the emphasis on the theme of the tripartition of Rhodes in the Iliad. See again p. 285n53. As for the testimony of Socrates of Argos FGH 310 F 6 about a locale within the city of Argos called the Pamphūliakón, it is hard to determine whether this locale is a city sector or just a place of assembly: see Wörrle 1954.13. For possible evidence adduced in favor of territorial subdivisions implied by phūlaí-divisions, see Szanto 1906 [1901].226. In this connection, I cite the interesting usage of the concept Zeùs homóphūlos in Plato Laws 843а.

[ back ] 55. It is instructive to study a map that shows only the phūlaí and the trittúes of Attica, not the dêmoi: see Lévêque and Vidal-Naquet 1964.15.

[ back ] 56. On the politics of this distribution, see Leveque and Vidal-Naquet pp. 13-18.

[ back ] 57. For an extensive commentary on this fragment, see Bourriot 1976.460-491. In discussing the concept of phrātríā, I shall use this form throughout, though there exist other by-forms: phrātrā, phātrā, etc.

[ back ] 58. The form Argádai in Herodotus corresponds to Argadeîs elsewhere (e.g. Plutarch Solon 23.4).

[ back ] 59. For a survey of the situation in Miletus, Ephesus, Teos, and Samos, see Roussel 1976.209-220.

[ back ] 60. Benveniste 1969 1:289-291.

[ back ] 61. Cf. Roussel 1976.139-151.

[ back ] 62. Cf. Roussel p. 5.

[ back ] 63. The emphasis on numbering system in terms of four phūlaí rather than in terms of eight phūlaí could possibly be motivated by a desire for parallelism with the scheme of twelve months consisting of thirty days each, corresponding to twelve· phrātríai consisting of thirty génē each. This parallelism is in fuel the point of Aristotle’s discussion. Moreover, we may still expect only four names for only four phūlaí, each further qualified as either gēorgoí or dēmiourgoí. In any case, we would still be left with a territorial grid of twenty-four rather than twelve phrātríai. All this is not to say that a scheme of twelve subdivisions, as emphasized by Aristotle, could not hav« preceded a scheme of twenty-four. We may recall the myth that tells how Kekrops, primaeval king of Athens, divided all the territory into twelve “póleis” (Philochorus FGH .128 F 94). Aristotle’s emphasis on the symbolic correlation of a twelve-part subdivision with the twelve months of the year should not be dismissed as an idiosyncratic exercise in numerology: the twelve months are a conventional mytho-poeic device for expressing the totality of society and the equitable distribution of functions among its members. Consider the adoption of such a device by Solomon in I Kings 4.7ff, where the number 12 is surely correlated with the pre-existing ideology of the twelve phūlaí of Israel (e.g. Joshua 7.16-18; cf. Wolf 1946a).

[ back ] 64. See Stroud 1968, esp. p. 241; Jones 1980b.164-165 disagrees on the details of subdivison.

[ back ] 65. Jones pp. 187-193.

[ back ] 66. For the presence of the three basic Dorian phūlaí in the Corinthian daughter-cities of Syracuse and Corcyra, see the bibliography cited by Jones 1980b.187. Note, too, that Aletes, the founding hero of Corinth, who as we have seen was credited with dividing the city into eight phūlaí (Suda π 225 Adler s.v. pánta oktṓ), has two ancestors called Phūlās: see Robertson 1980.7. The younger ancestor is the paternal grandfather of Aletes, whereas the older Phūlās is not only the great-grandfather of the younger but also the grandfather of Tlepolemos, the founding hero of Rhodes (on whom see p. 285no3). As a possible parallel for the proposed split of a four-phūlaí system at Corinth into an eight-phūlaí system, we may compare the early split of the three Roman tribūs into six, where the old and the new three members of the ensemble are distinguished simply by the titles for “first” and “second,” that is, primi and secundi Titienses, Ramnes, Luceres (Festus 468.3 Lindsay); on this split from three to six tribūs in Rome, see Alföldi 1974.63.

[ back ] 67. The tradition that insists on a three-way split among the eupatrídai/gēorgoí/dēmiourgoí (Plutarch Theseus 24-25) reflects political considerations that are different from those of the Peisistratidai: cf. the discussion of Figueira 1984, who detects tendencies of political polarization, fostered by the aristocracy, between gēorgoí and dēmiourgoí.

[ back ] 68. See Roussel 1976. 211-212.

[ back ] 69. See Burkert 1975.10.

[ back ] 70. Burkert pp. 9-10.

[ back ] 71. Cf. Plutarch Lycurgus 6: in the text of the Great Rhetra, the injunction about safeguarding the phūlaí is articulated in the context of prescribing the seasonal holding of apéllai. See also Robertson 1980.17: at Cos as well, there were three phūlaí apparently subdivided into nine phrātríai each.

[ back ] 72. Cf. Day and Chambers 1962,112-114 and Bourriot 1976.496.

[ back ] 73. Loraux 1978.77n78.

[ back ] 74. See Loraux p. 54 on e.g. phūla gunaikōn at Semonides F 7.94 W.

[ back ] 75. For testimonia on military formations arranged according to phūlaí, see e.g. Jones 1980a. 197-198 on Herodotus 6.111.1; for details on military formations arranged according to phūlaí and phrātríai, see e.g. Robertson 1980.17 on Athenaeus 141e-f). Note, too, the reference in Tyrtaeus F 19.8 W to the three Dorian phūlaí of Sparta as they are deployed in battle.

[ back ] 76. Note the nuances of phūlokrīneîn in the context of Thucydides 6.18.2.

[ back ] 77. Gluckman 1965.97.

[ back ] 78. Gluckman p. 97.

[ back ] 79. Gluckman p. 97. Cf. also p. 165 on the concept of multiple and therefore divided loyalties.

[ back ] 80. In some cities, there is further differentiation, with the phrātríā further subdivided into patríai (cf. Roussel 1976.156 and 217n9 on the situation in Miletus); in other cities, however, the patriā seems to be the equivalent of what is called phrātríā elsewhere (cf. Roussel p. 154 on the situation in Thasos). As P.-Y. Jacopin points out to me, a narrower category of lineage (as in any existing opposition between a narrower category of patriā and a broader category of phrātríā) would most probably exclude junior branches.

[ back ] 81. Cf. Gernet 1955.140n4; cf. also the semantics of phūlokrīneîn, as noted above. For a particularly valuable discussion of this word, see Bourriot 1976.501-508. For a report on a traditional interdiction of intermarriage between two particular Attic dêmoi, see Plutarch Theseus 13.2-3 and the helpful remarks of Geniet 1968.44-45 about the possible patterns of exogamy for males within a given dêmos and of endogamy for males within given groupings of dêmoi.

[ back ] 82. Essentially, women of a higher varṇa– may not begiven in marriage to men of a lower varṇa-, whereas women of a lower varṇa– may indeed be given to men of the next highest varṇa-: see Kane 1941.19-104 and Tambiah 1973, following Dumont 1980; also Yalman 1960. Ironically, the traditional constraints against intermarriage between the varṇa-s provided the ideological mechanism for integrating the emerging strata of society into the hierarchy of the varṇa-s: see Dumézil 1958.718-719 on Manu 10.46-50. They also provided the ideological mechanism for keeping a wide variety of differentiated strata at the bottom of the social pyramid; see Tambiah 1973. For example, the sūta– class, who tend horses and drive chariots, are the sons of a union between a female of the brāhmaṇa– class and a male of the kṣatriya– class. Here the ideological point of view motivates and perpetuates the genealogical point of view. In other words, it is not that the emergence of a type of “half-breed” led to the conceptualization of a new social class: rather, the emergente of new social functions led lo the conceptualization of various categories of “half-breeds” as permutations of the old social functions. On the sūta– as a court poet, see Dillon 1975.54—55.

[ back ] 83. Cf. the scholia to Pindar Isthmian 7.18a Drachmann.

[ back ] 84. The Aristotle reference is in the scholia to Pindar Isthmian 7.18c.

[ back ] 85. The Aigeidai of Sparta traced themselves, by way of their ancestor Aigeus (Herodotus 4.149.1), all the way back to Polyneikes, son of Oedipus (4.147.1-2). That the Aigeidai of Sparta originate from Thebes is proudly proclaimed in the words of Pindar Isthmian 7.14-15. There is an argument to be made that Pindar himself was a descendant of the original Theban branch of the Aigeidai; see Farnell 1932.178-179 and Hubbard 1985.129n83.

[ back ] 86. On the restructuring of the family tree of the Aigeidai in the context of Sparlali political history, see Vian 1963.219. According to Timagoras FGH 381 F 3, the Spartoi who fled from Thebes to Sparta (and these Spartoi were the Aigeidai: Vian p. 223) actually gave their name to Sparta. Aside from the Herodotean mention of the Aigeidai as a phūlḗ at Sparta, this polis İs known for its three standard Dorian phūlaí of Dymanes, Hylleis, and pamphyloi (e.g. Tyrtaeus F 19.8 W). In the account of a famous battle in the series of campaigns known as the Messenian Wars, Pausanias 4,7.8, there is a description of the battle line of the Spartans, where the left and the right wings are each commanded by one of the two Spartan kings, while the center is reserved for a descendant of the Aigeidai (4.7.8).

[ back ] 87. See further Vian p. 218n4. Note, too, Vian’s discussion of the Theban connections of Dorieus (p. 225).

[ back ] 88. Cf. Gernet 1968 [1953].349-350.

[ back ] 89. For Herodotus, endogamy on the level of lineage is a variation on the theme of incest, which in turn is correlated with the theme of the húbris of tyrants: see Vernant 1982.

[ back ] 90. The early political power of the Aigeidai is formalized in the elliptic naming of Sparta after them, as reported by Timagoras (see n86 above).

[ back ] 91. Facts and theories useful for comparison may be found e.g. in Brough 1953 on the gotra– as an exogamous grouping of the brāhmaṇa-s and on the pravara-, a pattern of listing sequences of remote ancestors that serves as a test for maintaining exogamy. Note that a kṣatriya– is allowed to assume the gotra– of his prurohita-: hence the application of the brahmanical gotra-title Gautama to the Buddha, who was actually from a kṣatriya– family (Brough p. 5n3). On the semantics of gotra-, see Lincoln 1975. Note, too, the interesting comments of Held 1935.96-97 on a five-generation framework (including the generation of the ego) for sapiṇḍa-relationships; cf. the symbolism of the number 5 in the Hesiodic myth of the five generations of mankind (on which see N 1979a. 168-172).