The Ancient Library

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On this page: Lemures – Lenaea – Leochares – Lernaean Hydra – Lesbonax – Lethe – Leto – Letters



dence of the burden was regulated by a law introduced by Demosthenes, whereby all citizens, with the exception of the poorer classes, bore the expense in proportion to their property. Thus property [or rather, taxable capital] amounting to ten talents imposed the obligation of equipping one vessel, twenty talents two vessels, and so on. Those who had less than ten talents were to club together and to make up that amount among them.

The time of service lasted, as has been already stated, for one year. On its expiration, the trierarch, who had looked after the vessel, was responsible to the LSgistai (q.v.) for the condition of the vessel, and had to hand in his account of the expenditure of the sums paid by the State.

*GANVMEDE AND THE EAGLE. (Rome, Vatican Muaetim.)

Another board, the gpimlletai of the nlorid

(the inspectors of the dockyards), super­intended the regular fulfilment of the duties of the trierarchs, and were armed for this purpose with compulsory powers.

No one was compelled to undertake more than one leitourgia at the same time, or two in two immediately successive years. The only persons exempt from the trierarohy were the archons, unmarried " heiresses," and orphans up to the end of the first year after they had come of age. The obligation to see that the leitourgia was discharged in each particular case fell on the tribe

concerned. If any one considered that he had been unfairly chosen for this duty, and a wealthier person passed over, he could resort to the form of challenge to exchange properties known as the antidosis (q.v.). [Cp. Introduction to Demosthenes, Adv. Leptinem, ed. Sandys, pp. ii-xviii.]

LSmures. Ghosts. (See larvae.)

Lensea. A festival in honour of Dionysus. (See dionysia, 3).

Leochares. A Greek sculptor, of Athens, who (about 350 b.c.) was engaged with Sc6pas in the adornment of the Mausoleum (q.v.) of Halicarnassus. One of his most famous works was the bronze group of Ganymede and the Eagle, a work remark­able for its ingenious composition, which boldly ventures to the verge of what is allowed by the laws of sculpture, and also for its charming treatment of the youthful form as it soars into the air. It is ap­parently imitated in the well-known marble group in the Vatican (see cut).

Lernaean Hydra. See heracles.

Lesbonax. A Greek rhetorician who lived early in the 1st century of our era. He composed political declamations on imaginary topics. Two of these have come down to us, exhorting the Athenians in the Peloponnesian War to be bold in battle against the Thebans and the Spartans.

Lethe (" the river of oblivion "). A river of Hades (q.v.), out of which the souls of the departed drink oblivion of all their early existence.

Leto (Lat. Latnna). Daughter of the Titan Coaus and Phosbe. According to Hesiod [Theog. 406], she was the "dark-robed and ever mild and gentle " wife of Zeus, before he was wedded to Hera, and the mother of Apollo and Artemis. According to a latfir legend she is only the mistress of Zeus after he is wedded to Hera; when about to give birth to her children, she is pursued from land to land till at last she finds rest on the desolate island of Ortygia (Del6s), which, up to that time, had floated on the sea, but was thereafter fixed firmly on four pillars of adamant. As mother of Apollo and Artemis, she dwells in Olympus. Her devoted children exact vengeance for her on NiSbe (q.v.). The giant Tityus, for attempting to offer violence to her, is punished for evermore in the world below. She is for the most part worshipped in conjunction with Apollo and Artemis.

Letters. Letters were written on tablets (see diptychon) or small rolls of papyrus, the address being put on the outside. They

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