• The structure of fifth-century Athenian society remains largely unknown, as is the distribution of its citizens into different socio-political categories. Ancient literary sources mostly describe a society divided into élite and poor. However, the model of a society alternately dominated by
    the élite and the ‘lower-class’ is to be reconsidered. A third group of citizens emerged between those two extremes during the second half of the century. As ancient texts provide only limited and often contradictory information, it is necessary to examine the archaeological evidence to get a better understanding of this phenomenon. Certain types of private funerary monuments, originally reserved to a restricted élite, became accessible to citizens belonging to an increasingly large socio-economical range that corresponds to this ‘middling’ group.