Skip to main content

Full text of "Political Science Of The State"

See other formats

as torch races on foot or horseback, of the chief of a sacred
embassy (architheoria), with that of feasting the members of
a tribe and with some others.    These constantly recurred,
but the trierarchia or duty of commanding a galley was im-
posed only on special occasions.    Every man, with property
valued at three talents (about $3,200), was bound to discharge
these services at his own cost, but could not be called upon
twice during the same year.    The tribes had each its  turn
and selected each its wealthier members in regular order.    If
a less rich member was put forward for a liturgia before a
richer, he could have the decision made between him and the
other by a peculiar process  of law.    These shows  began
before the time of Solon, so that the completed democracy
was not answerable for them.    But with the increase of re-
finement they increased in expensiveness ; rivalry between
persons or tribes increased the cost, and it became a most
serious burden.    The trierachy was the successor of the times
before the democracy was   established,  when each of the
naucraria or taxable divisions, fifty in number, was obliged
to furnish a ship.    Afterwards it fell to the generals to select
the necessary number of men holding the greatest amount of
assessed property, who should be obliged to furnish each a
galley and keep it in repair during his time of service, the
state answering for the bare ship and the crew's pay.    This
was a grinding duty, as is shown by the several shapes it
took in process of time.   The complaints concerning these
duties are not infrequent.    Isocrates says that "it is more
grievous for owners of property to live at Athens than for
those who are continually poor." Xenophon, in his Convivium,
makes Charmides, the friend of Socrates, say : " When I was a
wealthy man here, I was afraid -in the first place that some
one would break through into my house, take my property
and do some evil to my person.    Then I courted the in-
formers and accusers, as knowing that I could receive more
harm from them than they could from  me.     For orders
would be given to me continually by the city to be spending
something, and I was never allowed to go abroad.    But now