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Civic Obligation and Individual Liberty in Ancient Athens$
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Peter Liddel

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199226580

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199226580.001.0001

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Ancient Texts and Ancient Contexts

Ancient Texts and Ancient Contexts

(p.72) 3 Ancient Texts and Ancient Contexts
Civic Obligation and Individual Liberty in Ancient Athens

Peter Liddel (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter introduces the city‐state (polis) as the chief unit of analysis, and the chronological focus on Athens from the time of the outbreak of the Social War 357 to the establishment of the tyranny of Demetrius of Phaleron in 317. During this period (and in particular in the period popularly known as ‘Lycurgan’ Athens) it is possible to observe a growing concern for the performance by citizens of obligations and the development of the notion of social euergetism as part of good citizenship. This is most visible in both the evidence of forensic and symbouleutic oratory, and the evidence of inscriptions, in particular decrees and accounts of the Athenian polis, and dedications made by private individuals. This chapter introduces Lycurgus' prosecution of the runaway Leocrates as a key example of the encouragement of good citizenship.

Keywords:   social war, Demetrius of Phaleron, ‘Lycurgan’ Athens, Euergetism, citizenship, forensic oratory, symbouleutic oratory, inscriptions, Lycurgus, Leocrates

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