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Journal des Savants : July-December 2016

142 p., 10 ill.
Release : December 2016
Annual subscription (two fascicles), for individuals : 80 € ; institutions : 100 €.


« Le décret d’Athènes sur la kréanomia des Petites Panathénées : un modèle politique pour la distribution des viandes entre les dèmes attiques », by Denis KNOEPFLER, Foreign associate of the Academy.

After a large number of editions and commentaries since its discovery in 1842, this most celebrated “sacred law” of the Lycurgan Era (ca. 330 BC) has now taken its place - with the fragment published in 1959 - in the 2nd fasc., provided by Stephen Lambert, of the new corpus of the Athenian Leges et decreta (IG II3 1, 447). Hovewer, the text may still be improved on two points of major importance for a better understanting of the clauses related to the twofold kreanomia. This paper aims to show first that the inscription does not mention, as usually admitted on the basis of a certainly mistaken restoration, two preliminary sacrifices (tas duo [thusias]), but the sacrifice of the two female sheeps or ewe (tas duo [arnas]), the one to be immolated at the entrance into Akropolis, the other most probably in the area of the “Old Temple” (= Erechtheion), and both to be divided thereafter in a regular number of collective portions between the authorities of the city and other officials sharing to the procession. The main object of the decree of the Demos was, however, more related to the current affairs : the reorganization of the great sacrifice for Athena Polias in buying a number of cows as high as possible with a specific amount of money provided by the leasing of a new piece of land called He Nea (identified today with some confidence to a portion at least of the Oropian territory). But, in this case too, the modern scholars have all been deceived by an unsound restoration of the sentence concerning the distribution of meat between the demes of the city-state. Instead of introducing here, indeed, the idea that the sharing of each deme to the meats was conditioned by the number of demesmen participating to the procession (kata [tous pempon]tas), the obvious supplement must be kata [tous bouleu]tas), as proposed long ago, with great caution, by one of the first editors, J. L. Ussing, but always ignored or neglected since : the distribution organized in Kerameikos is to be made to the demes according to the number of the councillors that each of them provides (to the boule of the Five Hundred). So, this inscription gives us a unique instance of transfer of a democratic rule from the political life into the religious sphere. Besides, the date of the decree having been more precisely fixed at the year 335/4, it is suggested that the last lines of the inscription may conserve the mention of a sacred embassy (theoria), which was sent by the Demos to the new king of Macedonia, in order to inform him on the reorganization of Panathenaia hekatomb, since Alexander was the donor of Oropos territory to Athens after Thebes’s destruction (autumn 335). Any way, it is known from Arrian’s narrative that the victor of a Persian army at River Granicus (spring 334) had consecrated 300 panopliai to Athena Polias on the Acropolis of Athens. In an appendix to the paper, it is shown that the undertanding of the contemporary dossier formed by three decrees in honour of Phyleus of Oinoe and his acolytes (now IG II3 1, 327) has beeen greatly improved by the restoration – due first to A. P. Matthaiou, accepted next by S. Lambert – of the title grammateus, instead of hieropoios, for the elective office held by this magistrate, who was thus the Secretary of the Council and the People (cf. Arist. A.P. LIV 4) in the year 336/5. Nevertheless, the opinion of the last editor concerning the number and the status of Phyleus’ demesmen jointly honoured with him cannot possibly be correct : they are decidedly not collaborators of him as associated secretaries (sun[grammateis]), but most probably colleagues of the same deme within the Council (sun[archontes dèmotai]: being three - and not just two as thought untill now - they constitued with him the normal delegation from Oinoe at the Boule (the number 4 is indeed the constant bouleutic quota from this deme in the IVth century). And the most eventfull year 335 might easily provide an plausible explanation to the exceptional honour granted to this quatuor of Oinoe.

« Fides et la triade précapitoline », by Robert TURCAN, member of the Academy.

In the antiquity, a treatise is concluded under the garantee of the gods. In the two first treatise with Carthago, the Romans invoke Jupiter Lapis, but in the third Jupiter, Mars and Quirinus, that correspond to the indo-european and precapitoline triad, who pledge the three functions of the community. Yearly (on 1 October) the three major flamines sacrified in common to Fides for the harmony of the social corps. The swear of the Romans involve the divine guarantors of the city. Otherwise every treatise (today) is a « scrap of paper » (Th. von Bettmann-Hollweg).

« Extispicine et palmomancie dans l’Antiquité entre Grèce et Proche-Orient », by Victor Gysembergh.

The corpus of Greek extispicy papyri allows us to compare how this divinatory art was theorized and practised in Greece and the Near East. This comparison reveals some universal constants and independent developments, but above all strong similarities that can only be explained by exchange between diviners from different cultural horizons. Comparative investigation of the Greek palmomantic corpus also shows important points of contact with the Near Eastern tradition. The history of cultural interaction between Greece and the Near East in Antiquity is complex, but a neglected fragment of Berossus on palmomancy indicates one of its most significant stages.

« Les maîtres parisiens et les Juifs (fin XIIIe s.) : perspectives nouvelles sur un dossier d’avis concernant le regimen judaeorum », by Rowan Dorin.

Toward 1270, a noblewoman wrote to Thomas Aquinas, John Peckham, and an anonymous jurist, seeking their counsel concerning the good government of her subjects and of Jews. Whether the correspondent was a duchess of Brabant or the countess of Flanders has long been a matter of contention, as has the dating of the three replies and the relationship between them. Comparing anew all three texts, this article argues that the correspondent was not seeking advice on how best to govern Jews already dwelling within her lands, but was instead grappling with the possibility of welcoming new Jewish settlement. This rereading firmly establishes the identity of the correspondent as Margaret of Constantinople, Countess of Flanders, and sheds new light on the politics surrounding the Jewish presence in northwestern Europe in the closing decades of the thirteenth century.

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