CLS 150-01

Lawcourts

  • large juries of 201 to 2500; no judges, no lawyers (speechwriters)
  • we know of a number of different courts but not sure where they met or if they had specific structures/places
  • references to courts meeting in stoas
  • some cases required open-air location (to avoid ritual pollution)
  • juries selected by lot; once selected kept apart to avoid bribery
  • ID tags for jurymen, ballots, selection machines, water clocks, sealable containers for documents all found in Agora
  • courts held outside Agora: Areopagus, near Peiraeus, S. of Acropolis bu the Illissos
  • Athens: status, role and rights of women

  • Athens male-oriented, dominated
  • sources:literary all by males; legal speeches, drama, vase-paintings, sculpture
  • Range of classes: rich, poor, citizen, slave, metic (resident alien)
  • chief duty for citizen woman: produce legitimate male heir)s_) for oikos = family/household; plural = oikoi = citizenry of state; interests of family and state coincide – had to be legitimately born to be citizen, so keep oikoi going
  • citizen women ideally kept in seclusion to avoid adultery: legitimate descent key
  • non-citizen: prostitution legal, from harbor brothel to high-class geisha-like courtesans
  • we have courtesans for pleasure, concubines to perform domestic chores, wives to bear legitimate children and be faithful guardians of our homes.” 4th century court speech

  • (various vase paintings)
  • Peisistratus – fountain houses
  • Marriage: dowries

  • citizen woman always legal ward of male relative, never had independent status
  • father had to provide dowry for every (decent looking) daughter which had to stay intact (wife supported on interest, 18% per annum) and be returned if divorced; no dowry, no legal marriage
  • family w/o male heir: daughter attached to property (epikleros) and would go to her husband, then to her sons — keeping property in family; or nearest male relative had to marry her, first to brothers of deceased, then to sons of brothers: goal always was keep property in family
  • competition for wealthy heiresses: some men ditched wives (providing dowries) to remarry heiress. widow w/o son returned to original guardian
  • Marriage ceremony; divorce

  • ideal age for girl: c. 14 and c. 30 for man (life expectancy short: 36w/45m)
  • most serious vow was between male guardian & groom
  • ceremony NOT focused on couple
  • illegal for full siblings to marry; those w/same father but different mother could marry; epikleros rules encouraged inbreeding
  • female seen as less important in producint children: merely field which received the all-important seed of the male
  • 451BC law: to be citizen both parents must be citizens; aristocratic v. democratic
  • divorce simple: by mutual consent or by either spouse; husband sent wife back to her family or wife got male relative to bring case before archon. No stigma attached. Kids stayed with father.
Advertisements
Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.