The present study is devoted to the Solonian reform called Seisachtheia. After providing a catalogue of the ancient testimonies related to this measure – which indicate unanimously that it was linked to the indebtedness of the Athenians –, the main challenge will be to define the nature of those debts by analysing the account of the Aristotelian Constitution of Athens, focusing on the “public debts” (χρέα δημόσια) mentioned in chapter VI. According to the view here advanced, they would be equivalent to the public debts in Athens during the classical period, namely those contracted automatically when one failed to pay to the city a rent or a fee, a conclusion which implies considering the ἕκτη a payment resulting from an obligation that has also to be regarded as “public”, or at least inscribed in the πολιτεία. The last part of this study attempts to establish to what was referring the word “ἄχθος” from which was coined the term Seisachtheia, by drawing a parallel with a fragment from the poem entitled Eunomy attributed to Tyrtaeus.
|Number of pages||28|
|Journal||Les Études Classiques|
|Publication status||Published - 2020|