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ON THE POPULATION OF ATTICA AND ATHENS.
All Athenians more than twenty years of age, and born of parents who were Attic citizens, enjoyed the right of voting in the general assembly, and the other honours of citizenship’. Such being the only requisites, the number of citizens was likely to iucrease during the flourishing ages of the republic: and this we find to have been the case. Some intimation of the number of citizens in the sixth century, B.C. may be found in the fact that there were 360 families in the four tribes, into which the people was divided prior to the time of Cleisthenes, and that a family was called a tplaràs', as containing thirty citizens. When this name therefore first prevailed, there were 10,800 citizens. In the middle of the fifth eentury B.c. (445—4) a scrutiny of citizens took place on the occasion of a present of corn from a king of Egypt, when the number of vó ol was found to be 4750, and that of the yvuorot born
| See S. Petit. Comm. in leg. Attic. 1. 2. tit. 4. 2 J. Poll. 8, 111.
of two Athenians 14,240', (according to Plutarch, 14,040 were acknowledged, and 5000 rejected ?.) Soon afterwards they appear to have increased to 20,000 3, and this was precisely the number at which they were estimated a century later by Demosthenes, in an oration pronounced in the year B. c. 330*. Although obviously a rough estimate, it was probably not far from the truth ; for although the division of the property of Diphilus, made about the same time by Lycurgus, gave a result of not more that 19,200 , the census of Demetrius Phalereus, taken about the year 317 B. C., produced an amount of 21,000 citizens 6.
It is from this census alone, that we derive the means of estimating correctly the Attic population. We are informed, that according to the same statistical enquiry there were in Attica, besides citizens, 10,000 metoci, and 400,000 slaves. According to the population returns of England, the proportion of males above the age of twenty is 2430 in 10,000. The families therefore of the 21,000 citizens amounted to 86,420 souls, and the totality of the metaci
1 Philochorus ap. Schol. Aristoph. Vesp. 718. 2 Plutarch. Pericl. 37.
3 dúo pvpdoes tūv Onuoriwr. Aristoph. Vesp. 709. It appears nevertheless, that 30,000 was for many years the vulgar estimate of the number of Attic citizens. Aristophanes himself (Eccles. 1124) says molitūv altiov Tplouupiwv ÖVTWI TÒ añook. The words of Plato in the Symposium have already been adverted to (see above, p. 520). In like manner in the Axiochus (12) the assembly in which the generals were condemned after the battle of Arginusæ, is said to have been attended by more than 30,000. Very possibly that number really exercised the rights of citizenship until the census of Pericles : and Aristogoras of Miletus may not have exceeded the truth, when he asserted that 30,000 Athenians voted in the public assembly. (Herodot. 5, 97.)
4 C. Aristog. 1. p. 785, Reiske.
may be computed nearly in the same proportion; for although the exclusion of all males below twenty is not applicable to a computation of the metoci, a deduction of the aged would be necessary, if the 10,000 metæci were those capable of bearing arms. It is evident, however, that such a round number could not have been a precise calculation. Taking, therefore, the total of the metæci at 40,000, the aggregate of the free population of Attica was about 127,000.
The number of slaves (400,000) has been thought excessive; but it does not appear disproportioned to that of the Athenian freemen, when we consider that the greater part of the agricultural, mining, and menial labour of Attica was performed by slaves, as well as that of the public works, and that slaves were employed in great numbers in the military and commercial shipping, as well as in trades and manufactures. Although we may be allowed to doubt that the little republic of Ægina ever had 470,000 slaves, or the Corinthians 460,000, some myriads were probably employed in the silver mines of Attica, for they once seized the castle of Sunium, in imitation of a general insurrection in Sicily, in which the slaves destroyed were innumerable. Nicias let 1000 slaves to a person who undertook the working of a mine in Laurium“, and it appears from Plato that there were many Athenians who possessed fifty slaves each'. There is no good reason therefore to suppose, that the slaves of Attica are much overrated at 400,000, which number bears nearly the same proportion to the free inhabitants of Attica, as the slaves bore to the free people in the British colonies of the West Indies.
1 Aristot. ap. Athen. I. 1. Schol. Pindar. Ol. 8, 30.
5 Polit. 9.5.
Demosthenes observes that 400,000 medimni of breadcorn were brought from Pontus, and about as much more from other čutrópua'. The total was equal to about 1,150,000 bushels, the mediinus being to the bushel as eighty-six to sixty? Adding this to the produce of Attica, which we may reckon at about twenty-five bushels per acre, upon one-fourth of 700 square miles, or about 112,000 acres, the total will be 3,950,000 bushels, or about 2,750,000 medimni. This would give per caput to a population of half a million, near eight bushels per annum, or five medimni and a half, equal to a daily rate of twenty ounces and is avoirdupois, to both sexes and to every age and condition. The ordinary full ration of corn was a chenix, or the forty-eighth part of a medimnus, or about twenty-eight ounces and a half 4.
There is great difficulty in forming any precise opinion as to the proportion between the urban and the rustic population. The partiality of the Athenians for a country life is expressly noticed by Thucydides. And it might be inferred from the importance of many of the country towns o; from the arrangement of all the citizens in demi, of which not a third were in the city or its immediate vicinity; and from the laws of Solon, which classed the Attic citizens by the number of medimni of corn produced upon their estates', showing that a large proportion of them were landed proprietors. These considerations tend to augment the estimate of the rural population beyond its ordinary proportion to the urban. The only facts imme
1 Adv. Leptin. p. 467, Reiske.
* See above, p. 473. n. 7. 3 On this question, see the Museum Criticum, II. p. 215, and Clinton Fasti Hellen. I. p. 392.
• Herodot. 7, 187. Diogen. Laert. 8, 17. Alexarchus ap. Athen. 3. 20 (54). Plutarch. Sympos. 1, 10. Hesych. in Xolvikes. 5 Thucyd. 2, 14.
6 Liv. 31, 26. Pausan. Attic. 31. 7 Plutarch. Solon. 18. See Boeckh's Economy of Athens, II. p. 259.
diately bearing upon this question, are the number of houses in Athens, which, according to Xenophon, were more than 10,000', and the law which required twothirds of the corn imported into Attica by sea, to be carried into the city. This seems to imply that two-thirds of the free inhabitants of Attica dwelt in the Asty and that suburban demi ; for it is probable that the imported grain was chiefly consumed by that part of the population, and that the grain of Attica, which was barley, or wheat inferior to the imported, was chiefly consumed by the slaves. This would give a free population to the city and suburbs of about 85,000.
Allowing 12,000 houses for the Asty and suburban demi, a rate of sixteen inhabitants for each house, taken from a medium between London (seven and a half) and Paris (twenty-four and a half), the former being one of the lowest, the latter one of the highest known, would give a population of 192,000, and consequently require the supposition of more than 100,000 slaves in the city and suburbs. But this seems not improbable on considering the great number of this class employed in manufactures, together with those belonging to every free family ; and still more perhaps on referring to a remark found in the fragment of an oration pronounced by Hypereides about twenty years before the census of Demetrius, from which it would seem that the
Dion Chrysostom, referring to Athens in the time of Alexander, says that the whole space included within the Astic, Peiraic, and Long Walls, was inhabited (oireiolai taūta Kuumavta) Or. 6. I. p. 199, Reiske. Xenophon however (de Vectig. 2) says there were many empty spaces within the walls, which he proposed to bestow upon the most deserving strangers, to encourage building.
2 Harpocr. in 'ETINEANTIS 'Eutropiov. Suid. in 'E TIMETÍC.