Public Records and Archives in Classical Athens (Studies in the History of Greece and Rome)

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9780807824696: Public Records and Archives in Classical Athens (Studies in the History of Greece and Rome)
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In this book, James Sickinger explores the use and preservation of public records in the ancient Athenian democracy of the archaic and classical periods.
Athenian public records are most familiar from the survival of inscribed stelai, slabs of marble on which were published decrees, treaties, financial accounts, and other state documents. Working largely from evidence supplied by such inscriptions, Sickinger demonstrates that their texts actually represented only a small part of Athenian record keeping. More numerous and more widely used, he says, were archival texts written on wooden tablets or papyri that were made, and often kept for extended periods of time, by Athenian officials.
Beginning with the legislation of Drakon in the seventh century B.C., Sickinger traces the growing use of written records by the Athenian state over the next three centuries, concluding with an examination of the Metroon, the state archive of Athens, during the fourth century. Challenging assumptions about ancient Athenian literacy, democracy, and society, Sickinger argues that the practical use and preservation of laws, decrees, and other state documents were hallmarks of Athenian public life from the earliest times.

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"This important study offers a major challenge to prevailing assumptions about ancient bureaucracy and literacy. . . . An illuminating and much needed analysis. . . . The insights it offers contribute to many current discussions of Athenian society and politics. Although primarily for scholars, the study is accessible to serious students."-- Religious Studies Review

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Explores the use of public records in the ancient Athenian democracy of the archaic and classical periods, from 700-300 BCE.

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9780807858516: Public Records and Archives in Classical Athens (Studies in the History of Greece and Rome)

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ISBN 10:  080785851X ISBN 13:  9780807858516
Publisher: The University of North Carolina..., 2007
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