Filonik J. (Warsaw) Athenian Laws On Impiety – Some Notes On The Procedures
J. Filonik *
ATHENIAN LAWS ON IMPIETY –
The text is given in author’s edition. Текст приводится в авторской редакции.
In the sources from various periods of antiquity we see numerous remarks about the trials for ἀσέβεια, “impiety”, which were said to have taken place in 5th— and 4th-century1 democratic Athens. Apart from the several trials well attested in the contemporary accounts, these remarks come mostly from the times a few centuries later than the events which they describe, some of them being first mentioned by biographers as late as Plutarch (1st-2nd centuries A.D.) or Diogenes Laertius (3rd century A.D.).
These trials have attracted considerable attention, and the historicity of most of them has been put in doubt by some of the scholars2. It is not the place to discuss the issues of authenticity in detail3, but let it be enough for current purposes to state that we have to be very cautious in dealing with the late sources regarding this matter. However, there are some legal procedures and regulations already mentioned in Classical literary and epigraphic sources, which are not discussed fully in handbooks on ancient Greek law4. This paper aims at discussing them, while focusing on the cases which actually mention the procedure involved.
Unfortunately, we lack the precise definition of the Greek term ἀσέβεια, and, especially, its possible legal scope. It has been opposed to piety, εὐσέβεια, the term which could mean (showing) reverence in agreement with the tradition towards the gods, parents, dead or even the fatherland5, but we have to accept that the legal term of the actual accusation was considerably narrower6. We find the words from this stem already in the fragments of Hipponax’s poetry (fr. 85. 4 West) and in the Theognidea (1179f.), but within the surviving sources they appear commonly only since the 5th century. In the texts of Classical period the noun ἀσέβεια and the verb ἀσέβεῖν usually signify lack of reverence towards and profanation of the “sacred matters”7 (the temples, monuments of gods, religious festivals or functions). The charge of impiety would thus simply mean the charge of desecration of the sacred. It has happened, however, that these accusations were sometimes meant as a way of dealing with transgression against a certain tradition and world view, and against the state laws which inherited the latter two. It could simply mean lack of acceptance of the cult officially recognised by the polis, as in the accusation against Socrates (Xen. Mem. I. 1. 1).
What we can infer from the sources about the legal procedure appropriate for prosecuting ἀσέβεια leaves us with much uncertainty. The only definite legal remarks which survived from the 5th century are those connected with the Hermocopidae affair8 and the profanation of the Mysteries in 415. The εἰσαγγελία procedure was applied in this case9, which normally required a preliminary hearing in the ἐκκλησία, before the actual trial in a δικαστήριον10. It seems, nevertheless, that the regular forensic procedure in prosecuting ἀσέβεια would be a γραϕή, a procedure employed ordinarily in the “public” cases, and the one which could be initiated by anyone, not only by the party of a dispute, and would be then formally brought before a δικαστήριον by a relevant magistrate. However, we actually hear of the γραϕαί in the impiety trials only in the 4th century, beginning with Socrates’ trial in 399. Probably less frequently such cases were brought before the Areopagus Council, consisting of the ex-archons, in which power lay judging some religious offences, at least in the 4th century11. It is plausible that the reforms after the restoration of democracy in 403 influenced the legal system in this respect, but we cannot be sure as to the extent and rapidity of these changes.
Along with lack of definition of the term, we are given no precise basis for the charges for impiety in Athenian law, which is actually sometimes argued to have been a typical trait of Greek law in general, whether we believe it to have been of a “substantive” or rather “procedural” nature12, or as consisting of an “open texture”13. Presumably the prosecutors had a wide choice of possibilities, just as in case of the suits for attempts to overthrow democracy, κατάλυσις τοῦ δήμου, for which the punishment was death. The latter was in fact linked to ἀσέβεια accusations in the trials for desecration of the Mysteries of 415, so the courts would gain additional powers to prosecute14. R. Bauman compares it to the crimen maiestatis accusation in the Roman Empire and stresses the fact that it was the only possible way to interrogate (through torture, βάσανος) tens of slaves, who were brought to courts as witnesses, without the approval of their masters and without further “formalities”15. As a result, 22 persons were sentenced to death and confiscation of property, some of whom have fled Athens16. The use of the εἰσαγγελία procedure and the general anxiety of 415 can be partly explained by the justified fear of the secret ἑταιρείαι, responsible for both oligarchic coups d’état of 411 and 404.
In case of the trial of Socrates in 399 we can be sure that the γραϕή procedure was applied17. Most of the sources speak of Meletos as an accuser and of the charges of corrupting the youth and of impiety (i.e. introducing new gods in place of the ones recognised by the polis)18. From Plato’s Apology we learn that Socrates first had to stand before an ἄρχων βασιλεύς, a magistrate responsible for some religious regulations19, and then before the δικαστήριον consisting of 500 dicasts20. The amnesty based on the Patrocleides’ decree21 of 403/2, which was still in force in 399, did not have to be broken, but was rather bypassed, as Socrates could have been charged for the things said publicly between 403 and 399, if we presume he continued his teachings, and not for the events which happened until 403/2 and were covered by the amnesty. In Against Androtion (Dem. XXII. 2) we hear of a failed γραϕὴ ἀσεβείας against a certain Euctemon, whose prosecutor, Androtion, did not even obtain a fifth part of the votes (which is mentioned in the oration, as it would bring the imposition of ἀτιμία and a 1000-drachma fine on him). It seems that a γραϕὴ ἀσεβείας could be brought against both men and women, as we can infer from the charge against Lacedaimonius’ sister mentioned in Against Eubulides (Dem. LVII. 8), and probably against the non-citizens, as there was no obvious reason to restrain it (however we cannot be sure of it, as the charges against the non-citizens in our sources do not state the procedure involved explicitly in the cases which seem to have been γραϕαί).
Nevertheless, there were certain other procedures possible in prosecuting impiety, apart from the γραϕὴ ἀσεβείας. The trial for ἀσέβεια against Andocides in 399 or 40022 involved the procedure of ἔνδειξις, employed when someone benefited from the rights which he has already lost23. The prosecutor Cephisius argued that Andocides did not have the citizen (and thus religious) rights in Athens because of the decree of Isotimides’ from 415 (And. I. 132) which Cephisius believed to have been still valid in spite of the amnesty of 403/224. Andocides was charged with impiety not only for illegally entering the temples, which he was prohibited earlier by the Isotimides’ decree, but also for presumably leaving the branch on the altar of the two goddesses in Eleusinion (And. I. 113), for which the punishment was death. Because of the religious character of the trial it has been introduced by the ἄρχων βασιλεύς ([Lys.] VI. 11), and the dicasts unusually consisted only of the citizens who had been initiated into the Mysteries (And. I. 29).
Curiously enough it was Andocides himself who prosecuted certain Archippus for ἀσέβεια soon after the trial of Hermocopidae and before his own, stating that Archippus has “acted impiously against his own ancestral Herm”25. The case was not even brought to a court, as Andocides agreed to drop the charges in return for a compensation26, clearly already before an ἀνάκρισις ([Lys.] VI. 12). It thus seems that a case for impiety could still be abandoned after initial legal steps, however the possibility of a withdrawal existed probably due to the procedure involved. Pseudo-Lysianic author of Against Andocides calls this trial “δίκη ἀσεβείας before an ἄρχων βασιλεύς” ([Lys.] VI. 11f.), which would make it a somewhat more “private” suit than a γραϕή. We know that in private suits the law system encouraged the involvement of arbitration (πρόκλησις) and agreements to lighten the court’s load27. According to E.M. Harris28, this trial had to be a γραϕή, for it involved βασιλεύς, and even if Pseudo-Lysias’ remark is valid, we could understand it as a γραϕή in connection with Jullius Pollux’s (2nd century A.D.) comment (8. 41) that the γραϕαί are sometimes described as δίκαι, but not vice versa, which would make δίκη a general term with a meaning close to “trial”. However, in case of Archippus we have to accept δίκη as the name of the actual procedure, not only because of the “private” character of the case, but also due to Pseudo-Lysias’ use of the verb λαγχάνειν, which in the legal context always stands along with δίκη29.
In Against Androtion (XXII. 27) from the middle 350s Demosthenes mentions some other less known forensic procedures possible in prosecuting ἀσέβεια. He ascribes these regulations to Solon, following the 4th-century oratorical “fashion”30, and enumerates 1. an ἀπαγωγή31, 2. a γραϕή, 3. the possibility to turn to the Eumolpidae32 through a δίκη33, and 4. bringing the case to ἄρχων βασιλεύς through a φάσις34. Besides the γραϕή, we know of no actual trials involving the other three. Nor do we have any reason to believe that the Eumolpidae would actually have any legal powers in Athens, despite having the right to pass their interpretation as the ἐξηγηταὶ of the sacred matters involving the Mysteries35. Additionally, it is worth noting that in numerous Athenian orations one party calls the other impious (ἀσεβής), but this rarely forms a basis for a legal charge, and should be understood simply as a hyperbole within the rhetorical argumentation.
In the Life of Pericles (32) Plutarch narrates a story about the impiety charges against Pericles’ friends, including Phidias and Anaxagoras, and his concubine, Aspasia. The prosecution was said to have been led by a comic playwright Hermippus and a decree (ψήφισμα) was said to have been proposed by a seer Diopeithes, whose name appears in various comedies of the 5th century. It is our only source of the so-called Diopeithes’ decree, which allegedly proposed prosecuting through εἰσαγγελία anyone accused of not believing in the gods and teaching about the celestial phenomena, which was supposed to lay suspicion on Pericles through his close connection to Anaxagoras (ibid.). All the “comic” circumstances along with the non-existence of any other remarks of this decree in our sources make this story highly doubtful36, and the chronology of the use of the procedure of εἰσαγγελία is even closer to proving it false. Out of almost 150 known cases of the use of εἰσαγγελία only 5 are from before the 430s37, which has to arouse our alertness and give us a good reason to treat this story rather as a Hellenistic or later fiction than a true account of an otherwise unknown political drama.
In the sources as late as Plutarch, Athenaeus and Diogenes Laertius we see a whole list of alleged religious trials against some pro-Macedonian philosophers and politicians, and against Theodorus of Cyrene, all carefully analysed by L. -L. O’Sullivan38. In those half-legendary trials from the late 4th century we see some recognisable persons of Athenian history standing before the Areopagus Council. It is difficult to tell how many of these had some veracity in them, but we can certainly trace the shift in the Areopagus’ powers in the second half of the 4th century (see discussion above, with n. 11). However, at least some of the Areopagus’ capacities concerning prosecuting the religious offences had to be earlier than this. Apparently one earlier religious trial before the Areopagus is Lys. VII On the Olive Stump from the middle 390s. There is no mention of ἀσέβεια in this speech, but it is clear that cutting out the σηκός of the sacred olive was regarded a serious religious offence, for which the punishment before could even be death, and in the time of the trial “only” exile and confiscation of property39. Now it is generally assumed that the procedure of γραϕή has been used, in spite of (and because of) the mention of ἀπεγράφην in Lys. VII. 240.
It seems that there was no law that prohibited introducing new gods to Athens, but, as R. Parker notes, trying to introduce them in the wrong moment could have led to an impiety trial, so it was certainly safer to honour the gods in agreement with the tradition and laws, and introduce new ones with approval of the Ecclesia and oracles41. There existed in Athens various private associations, even though in the late 5th century the elitist clubs called ἑταιρείαι were commonly taken for the birthplace of antidemocratic political thought and even oligarchic coups d'état. Among them there emerged numerous cult associations42, whose members offered sacrifices to a variety of deities in public and in private, among them the widespread ὀργεώνες and now scarcely known θίασοι. We know of no law that would prohibit or limit their existence43, if we count out the late 4th-century laws meant to protect democracy against any attempts to overthrow it (Hyp. IV. 8; SEG XII 87). The first in our sources to speak of the law on associations in Athens is unfortunately a Roman jurist Gaius (2nd cent. A.D.) cited in Digesta (XLVII. 22. 4) from the 6th century A.D. The Solonian law on associations cited there was said to have recognised inner arrangements of the associations as valid until consistent with common Athenian laws (δημόσια γράμματα)44. Moreover, the author of [Lys.] VI Against Andocides mentions the possibility of the use of the ἄγραφοι νόμοι in the ἀσέβεια trials (VI. 10). It has been argued45 to have meant laws “not inscribed in stone” rather than “unwritten”, or to have been linked specifically to the law revision and the Teisamenus’ decree of 403 (And. I. 83f.), but we cannot be sure of its scope or even any actual historical value of this remark.
It seems that in all impiety accusations in democratic Athens the rule of presenting each case before a court and not sentencing anyone to death without a trial (μηδένα ἄκριτον ἀποκτεῖναι) has been preserved, along with relevant forensic procedures ([Lys.] VI. 54; cf. Din. II; Dem. XXV. hypoth. 1-2; XXV. 87). Athens were not the only polis to make use of the impiety accusations in the political struggles, as we learn from Thucydides’ remark about the stasis on Korkyra (III. 70. 3-6). In connection with the obvious prevalence of the Athenian sources, we have to discard Arnaldo Momigliano’s sentiment that the impiety trials were a uniquely Athenian way of dealing with politics46. Unfortunately, we know nothing about the non-Athenian trials for ἀσέβεια, apart from their apparent existence.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR. ИНФОРМАЦИЯ ОБ АВТОРЕ
* Jakub Filonik, PhD. Student, University of Warsaw.
** I would like to thank Prof. Chris Carey and Dr Marek Węcowski for their time and support in improving various versions of this paper. Needless to say, I am responsible for any mistakes that remain.
1 All dates mentioned will be B.C. unless stated otherwise.
2 See e.g.: Davison J.A. Protagoras, Democritus, and Anaxagoras // CQ. 1953. Vol. 3. P. 33-45; Dover K.J. The Freedom of the Intellectual in Greek Society // Talanta. 1976. Vol. 7. P. 24-54; Lefkowitz M.R. The Lives of the Greek Poets. London, 1981; Stone I.F. The Trial of Socrates. New York, 1988; Cohen D. The Prosecution of Impiety in Athenian Law // Symposion 1985: Vorträge zur griechischen und hellenistischen Rechtsgeschichte. Hrsg. G. Thür. Köln, 1989. S. 99-107; idem. Law, Sexuality, And Society: The Enforcement of Morals in Classical Athens. Cambridge, 1991; Wallace R.W. Private Lives and Public Enemies: Freedom of Thought in Classical Athens // Athenian Identity and Civic Ideology. A.L. Boegehold, A. Scafuro. Baltimore, 1994. P. 127-155.
3 I have done so in the two papers written in Polish, to appear in Meander journal (soon to be translated into English).
4 J. Lipsius, A.R.W. Harrison, D.M. MacDowell and S.C. Todd all treat various aspects of the impiety trials and form a very helpful guide to legal issues concerning impiety, but still do not give a comprehensive account of the procedures and regulations mentioned in the ancient sources and do not include recent discussion on selected questions which these issues raise (Lipsius J. Das attische Recht und Rechtsverfahren. Leipzig, 1905—1915; Harrison A.R.W. The Law of Athens. Vol. 2: Procedure. Oxford, 1971; MacDowell D.M. The Law in Classical Athens. Ithaca, New York, 1978; Todd S.C. The Shape of Athenian Law. Oxford, 1993).
5 See Arist. Vir. 1251a30-33; Thgn. 1179—1180; Lys. XXX. 17-21; Xen. Mem. I. 1. 16, 20; Cyn. XIII. 17; Pl. Eutyphr. 5c, 12e; Crat. 394e; Leg. 716d-718a, 907d-e; Lycurg. Leocr. 93-94; IG II² 204; Polyb. XXXVI. 9. 15.
6 Cf. Cohen D. The Prosecution of Impiety... (incl. the comprehensive selection of sources regarding the meaning of the term).
7 Cf. LSJ, s.v. ἀσέβεια, ἀσεβέω; Burkert W. Greek Religion. Transl. J. Raffan. Oxford, 1985. P. 274f.
8 These events are well attested in the contemporary sources: Thuc. VI. 27, 53, 60; Xen. Hell. I. 4 (both authors, when writing about the profanation of the Mysteries by Alcibiades, use the verb ἀσεβέω; Cf. And. I).
9 Cf. And. I. 43; I. 11f.; Plut. Alc. 22. 3.
10 Hansen M.H. Eisangelia: The Sovereignty of the People’s Court in Athens in the Fourth Century B.C. and the Impeachment of Generals and Politicians. Odense, 1975.
11 Cf. Lys. VII; [Arist.] Ath. Pol. 60. 2; [Dem.] LIX. 78-83; IG II2 204. 16-33. The Areopagus’ supervision over religious and moral matters was significantly broadened in the late 4th century, see e.g.: Din. I. 3-5, 62, 82f.; Lycurg. I. 52; Dem. XVIII. 133f.; Aeschin. I. 81-83; Cf. Dem. XXIII. 65-70; Cf. Sullivan J. Demosthenes’ Areopagus Legislation: Yet Again // CQ. 2003. Vol. 53. P. 130-134.
12 Todd S.C. The Shape of Athenian Law...; Bauman R.A. Political Trials in Ancient Greece. London, New York, 1990. P. 3f.
13 Harris E.M. Open Texture in Athenian Law // DIKE: rivista di storia del diritto greco ed ellenistico. 2000. Vol. 3. P. 27-79; idem. More Thoughts on Open Texture in Athenian Law // Nomos. Direito e sociedade na Antiguidade Clássica. Ed. D.F. Leão, L. Rossetti, Céu G.Z. Fialho. Coimbra, Madrid, 2004. P. 241-262.
14 Cf. And. I. 36; Thuc. VI. 27f.; Cf. Lys. XIII. 20.
15 Bauman R.A. Op. cit. P. 64f.; cf. And. I. 22, 64. Among the accused was Andocides (Cf. [Lys.] VI. 22f.; And. I. 32-46), acquitted for the information provided, only to be tried for impiety again some years later (see below).
16 Hansen M.H. Eisangelia... P. 79f.
17 See e.g.: Pl. Apol. 19b, 26b, 26e, 27a, 27e, 28a, 31d; Euthphr. 2a-c; Tht. 210d; Xen. Mem. I (passim); Cf. Pl. Apol. 18b.
18 See e.g.: Xen. Mem. I. 1. 1; Pl. Apol. 24b, Euthphr. 3b, 5c; for Meletos’ charges of impiety, see Pl. Apol. 35d; cf. Favironus’ account of the document in Metroon mentioned in: D.L. 2. 40.
19 Cf. [Arist.] Ath. Pol. 57. 2; Hyp. IV. 6; Dem. XXXV. 48.
20 This is the number that comes from counting up the 280 voices „for” and 220 „against” the conviction mentioned by Plato.
21 Cf. And. I. 77-79; [Arist.] Ath. Pol. XXXIX. 6.
22 See the discussion on the date: Andokides. On the Mysteries. Ed. D. MacDowell. Oxford, 1962. P. 204f.
23 Cf. And. I. 10, 29, 111; cf. [Lys.] VI. 11f. ([Lys.] VI could have been, however, a later rhetorical exercise). Cf.: Hansen M.H. Apagoge, Endeixis and Ephegesis against Kakourgoi, Atimoi and Pheugontes: A Study in the Athenian Administration of Justice in the Fourth Century B.C. Odense, 1976.
24 A similar attitude towards the amnesty can be found for example in Lys. XII, XIII. Andocides, on the contrary, argued in his defence (And. I) that this law was not valid anymore, and that it did not concern him even before.
25 Out of this remark we neither learn whether it was Andocides’, or Archippus’ Herm, nor why was it “ancestral”. Cf. Lysias. Transl. and comment. S.C. Todd. Austin, 2000. P. 67, n. 12.
26 Provided that we believe the story by the author of [Lys.] VI, which might be actually biased, just as the insults found in Aeschin. III. 52 about Demosthenes’ settlement of the dispute with Meidias.
27 Cf. Harris E.M. Democracy and The Rule of Law In Classical Athens: Essays on Law, Society, and Politics. Cambridge, 2006. P. 406.
28 Ibid. P. 417.
29 Cf. LSJ, s.v. λαγχάνω, I. 3: λαγχάνειν δίκην “obtain leave to bring a suit (esp. a private suit)”. I would like to thank Prof. Chris Carey for bringing this to my attention.
30 Cf. Harrison A.R.W. Law-Making at Athens at the End of the Fifth Century B.C. // JHS. 1955. Vol. 75. P. 26-35; MacDowell D.M. Law-Making at Athens in the Fourth Century B.C. // JHS. 1975. Vol. 95. P. 62-74; Clinton K. The Nature of the Late Fifth-Century Revision of the Athenian Law Code // Studies in Attic Epigraphy, History and Topography: Presented to Eugene Vanderpool. Hesperia Supplements. 1982. Vol. 19. P. 27-37.
31 Basically a „citizen’s arrest”, after catching the perpetrator (usually of a theft) in flagrante delicto, and a preliminary questioning before a relevant magistrate. Demosthenes probably meant a procedure employed in the cases of temple robbery. In practice, the procedure has been widely used and abused, just as various others (see e.g.: Lys. XIII). On the procedure see also: Hansen M.H. Apagoge…; Harrison A.R.W. The Law of Athens… P. 221-229; Lipsius J. Op. cit. S. 319.
32 The priestly family in charge of the Eleusinian Mysteries.
33 Applying Pollux’s remark here is also impossible, because of the fact that δίκη is put among other procedures which are named explicitly, and thus it becomes a term signifying a specific procedure.
34 Weil’s correction of MSS (φράζειν) is necessary based on the scholiast’s remarks ad loc. The possibility of the use of φάσις in the ἀσέβεια trials, otherwise unknown, seems plausible when we take into account the (partly damaged) 4th-century inscription describing legal regulations of the Eleusinian Mysteries which speaks of a φάσις in a religious context (cf. Clinton K. A Law in the City Eleusinion Concerning the Mysteries // Hesperia: The Journal of the American School of Classical Studies at Athens. 1980. Vol. 49. № 3. P. 263, v. 28f.). On the scantly attested procedure of φάσις see: MacDowell D.M. The Athenian Procedure of Phasis // Symposion 1990: Vorträge zur griechischen und hellenistischen Rechtsgeschichte. Hrsg. M.Gagarin. Köln, 1991. S. 187-198; Wallace R.W. Phainein in Athenian laws and legal procedures // Symposion 1999: Vorträge zur griechischen und hellenistischen Rechtsgeschichte. Hrsg. G. Thür, F.J.F. Nieto. Köln, 2003. S. 167-181; cf. [Dem.] LVIII. 8.
35 MacDowell D.M. The Law in Classical Athens… P. 193.
36 Numerous scholars have raised their doubts concerning the historicity of this story, see esp.: Dover K.J. Op. cit.; Lefkowitz M.R. Op. cit. P. 110f.; Wallace R.W. Private Lives… P. 131f.; cf. a remark by Plutarch, quite peculiar in this context: Per. 13. 9f.
37 Hansen M.H. Eisangelia... P. 69ff.
38 O’Sullivan L. -L. Athenian Impiety Trials in the Late Fourth Century B.C. // CQ. 1997. Vol. 47. P. 136-152; Ibid. The Regime of Demetrius of Phalerum in Athens, 317-307 B.C. Leiden, 2009. P. 149ff.
39 Cf. [Arist.] Ath. Pol. 60. 2, Lys. VII. 3, 32; cf. Xen. Hell. I. 7. 20-22.
40 Cf. Todd S.C. A Commentary on Lysias, Speeches 1-11. Oxford, 2007. P. 513. S.C. Todd summarises the long-running discussion on ἀπεγράφην in Lys. VII. 2 (if it was to mean the procedure of ἀπογραϕή, we would have a very untypical example of its use before the Areopagus. It is thus now widely accepted that ἀπογράφομαι here is a synonym of γράφομαι, and could refer to any type of γραϕή; cf. Lysias. Selected Speeches. Transl. and comment. C. Carey. Cambridge, 1989. P. 119).
41 Parker R. Law and Religion // The Cambridge Companion to Ancient Greek Law. Ed. M. Gagarin, D. Cohen. Cambridge, 2005. P. 65-68, 214f.; cf. Wallace R.W. Law, Freedom, And The Concept of Citizens’ Rights in Democratic Athens // Dēmokratia: A Conversation on Democracies, Ancient and Modern. Ed. J. Ober, C. Hedrick. Princeton, 1996. P. 105-119.
42 Cf. Jones N.F. The Associations of Classical Athens: The Response to Democracy. Oxford, 1999. P. 13, 30, 216-220, 249-267 et al.; Calhoun G.M. Athenian Clubs in Politics and Litigation. Austin, 1913.
43 Ismard P. La Construction du Fait Associatif en Droit Athénien et les Limites de la Notion de Personnalité Juridique // DIKE: rivista di storia del diritto greco ed ellenistico. 2007. Vol. 10. P. 57-83.
44 Cf. Jones N.F. Op. cit. P. 33-45, 311-320; cf. Arnaoutoglou I. Ancient Greek Laws: A Sourcebook. London, New York, 1998. P. 37.
45 See: Andokides. On the Mysteries… P. 202; Ostwald M. Was There a Concept ἄγραφος νόμος in Classical Greece? // Exegesis and Argument. Studies in Greek Philosophy presented to G. Vlastos. Ed. E.N. Lee, A.P.D. Mourelatos, R.M. Rorty. Assen, 1973. P. 89-92; cf. Carey C. Legal Space in Classical Athens // G&R. 1994. Vol. 41. № 2. P. 185; idem. Nomos in Attic Rhetoric and Oratory // JHS. 1996. Vol. 116. P. 34f.
46 Momigliano A. Impiety in the Classical World // Dictionary of the History of Ideas. Vol. II. New York, 1973. P. 566.
Andokides. On the Mysteries. Ed. D. MacDowell. Oxford, 1962.
LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS. СПИСОК СОКРАЩЕНИЙ
CQ – Classical Quarterly
ATHENIAN LAWS ON IMPIETY – SOME NOTES ON THE PROCEDURES
In the sources from various periods of antiquity we see numerous remarks about the trials for ἀσέβεια, “impiety”, which were said to have taken place in 5th— and 4th-century B.C. democratic Athens. They have attracted considerable attention and the historicity of most of them has been put in doubt by part of the scholars. Thus we have to be very wary of using the late sources which describe Athenian impiety trials and peculiar events, for example when dealing with the so-called Diopeithes decree cited in Plutarch’s Life of Pericles. However, there are some legal procedures and regulations already mentioned in Classical literary and epigraphic sources, which are not discussed fully in handbooks on ancient Greek law. This paper will discuss these remarks, focusing on the cases where the procedure involved has been stated.
The first procedure which appears in our sources is an εἰσαγγελία, “impeachment”, brought against the Hermocopidae in 415 B.C. However, the most popular Athenian procedure in prosecuting impiety in the 4th century was certainly a γραφή, and so the cases involving it are our main point of reference. Despite these two, this paper aims at briefly discussing some procedures less frequently employed in prosecuting impiety, mentioned in the surviving ancient sources, such as ἔνδειξις, ἀπαγωγή, δίκη before an ἄρχων βασιλεύς, γραφή before the Areopagus, φάσις, and turning the case to the Eumolpidae. Further, it discusses some general rules concerning the Athenian laws on associations and common legal attitudes which we find in the sources from Classical Athens.
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