• Theorika in Fifth-Century Athens

    Author(s):
    David Roselli (see profile)
    Date:
    2009
    Subject(s):
    Ancient Greek history, Economic history, Theatre and history
    Item Type:
    Article
    Tag(s):
    Ancient economy, Ancient theatre, Greek economy, greek history
    Permanent URL:
    http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/M62H5T
    Abstract:
    A re-assessment of the state funding for attending dramatic festivals in fifth-century Athens. The introduction of the "Theoric Fund" is correctly dated to the middle of the fourth century, but this fact has obscured the existence of earlier theoric distributions. A careful reconsideration of the evidence of Plutarch and Philochorus in light of Athenian public finance suggests that distributions of public funds approved by the demos for attendance at festivals (θεωρικά) existed as ad hoc payments in the fifth century, but these were not part of the Theoric Fund that came into existence later in the fourth century. While Old Comedy does not explicitly refer to theoric payments, its references to the economics of the theater (e.g. entrance costs, theater-leasing) can nonetheless contribute to our understanding of the distributions of state funds for attending festivals in the fifth century and help to sort out some of the confusing and contradictory information on other distributions of state funds preserved in ancient sources. While theoric payments were available to all citizens, they did facilitate theater attendance for poor citizens.
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Journal article    
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    6 months ago
    License:
    All Rights Reserved

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