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Document Details :

Title: Hemippos of Smyrna on Lawgivers
Subtitle: Demonax of Mantineia
Author(s): BOLLANSÉE, J.
Journal: Ancient Society
Volume: 26    Date: 1995   
Pages: 289-300
DOI: 10.2143/AS.26.0.632418

Abstract :
Of the scant remains that have come down to us of the work &Pi&epsilon&rhoὶ &Nu&omicron&mu&omicron&theta&epsilon&tau&omega&nu, written probably in the second half of the third century B.C. by the Alexandrian biographer Hermippos of Smyrna and originally comprising at least six books, two passages deal with the famous lawgiver Demonax, a citizen of Mantineia who secured his place in history as the &kappa&alpha&tau&alpha&rho&tau&iota&sigma&tauή&rho or &delta&iota&alpha&iota&tau&etaή&sigmaf who, early in the reign of Battos III (about 550 B.C.), put an end to civil strife in Kyrene. Apart from the Hermippos-fragments (F) and a cursory mention in a list of the great Greek legislators given by Theodoretos, Demonax was treated of in his capacity of lawgiver by Herodotos and Diodoros. The former’s account provides the best information on the contents of the reformatory activity undertaken in Kyrene. It can be gleaned that Demonax mainly took two measures: he recast the existing tribal structure of the population, dividing the people into three new &phi&upsilon&lambda&alphaί and further, he reduced the prerogatives of the king, transferring his secular power to the citizens and leaving him only his priesthoods and royal estates. Limited though the available material is, the two F of Hermippos have brought a few additional interesting points to light, about the legislator as well as his biographer.

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