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On this page: Demens – Demensum – Dementia – Demetria – Deminutio Capitis – Demioprata – Demiurgi – Demius – Democratia



been first appointed by Cleisthenes. Their duties were various and important. Thus, they convened meetings of the demus, and took the votes upon all questions under consideration ; they had the custody of the \f]^LOLp%iK^v ypa^fjiareioy, or book in which the members of the demus were enrolled ; and they made and kept a register of the landed estates (x«pia) in their districts, whether belong­ing to individuals or the body corporate ; so that whenever an €i<r<popd, or extraordinary property-tax was imposed, they must have been of great service in assessing and collecting the quota of .each estate. Moneys due to the demus for rent, &c. were collected by them (Dem. c. Eub. p. 1318), and it may safely be allowed that they were em­ployed to enforce payment of various debts and dues claimed by the state. For this purpose they seem to have had the power of distraining, to which allusion is made by Aristophanes (Nub. 37). In the duties which have been enumerated, they sup­planted the naucrari (vavKpapoi) of the old con­stitution ; their functions, however, were not con­fined to duties of this class, for they also acted as police magistrates : thus, in conjunction with the dicasts of the towns (St/cacrrat Kara S^uous), they assisted in preserving peace and order, and were required to bury, or cause to be buried, any dead

-bodies found in their district : for neglect of this duty they were liable to a fine of 1000 drachmae. (Dem. c. Macar. 1069. 22.) Lastly, they seem to have furnished to the proper authorities a list of the members of the township who were fit to serve in war (Kara\6yovs ^iroi^cravro, Demosth. c. Polyc. p. 1208 ; Harpocr. s. v. ; Poll. viii. 3.18 ; K. F. Hermann, Griech. Staatsalterih. § 111 ; Bockh, Pullio Econ. of Athens, pp. 157, 512 ; Schomann, De Comitiis, p. 376, &c.). DemarcM was the name given by Greek writers to the

-Roman tribunes of the plebs. [R. W.j

DEMENS. [curator.]

DEMENSUM. [sbrvus.]

DEMENTIA. [curator.]

DEMETRIA (Sr;^Tpta), an annual festival which the Athenians, in 307 b. c., instituted in ho­ nour of Demetrius Poliorcetes, who, together with his father Antigonus, were consecrated under the title of saviour gods. It was celebrated every year in the month of Munychion, the name of which, as well as that of the day on which the festival was held, was changed into Demetrion and Demetrias. A priest ministered at their altars, and conducted the solemn procession, and the sacrifices and games with which the festival was celebrated. (Diodor. Sic. xx. 46; Pint. Demetr. 10, 46.) To honour the new god still more, the Athenians at the same time changed the name of the festival of the Dio- nysia into that of Demetria, as the young prince \vas fond of hearing himself compared to Dionysus. The demetria mentioned by Athenaeus (xii. p. 536) are probably the Dionysia. Respecting the other extravagant flatteries which the Athenians heaped upon Demetrius and Antigonus, see Athen. vi. p. 252; Herm. Polit. Ant. of Greece., § 175. n. 6, 7, and 8 ; and Thirl wall, Hist, of Greece, vol. vii. p. 331. [L. S.]



and sold by public auction. The confiscation of property was one of the most common sources of revenue in many of the Grecian states ; and Aris-

DEMIOPRATA (owdirpara, sc. irpdyjiiara , was property confiscated at Athens


tophanes (Vesp. 559, with Schol.) mentions the Srj/LLioTrpara as a separate branch of the public re­venue at Athens. An account of such property was presented to the people in the first assembly of every prytaneia (Pollux, viii. 95) ; and lists of it were posted upon tablets of stone in different places, as was the case at Eleusis, with the cata­logue of the articles which accrued to the temple of Demeter and Persephone, from persons who had committed any oifence against these deities. (Pollux, x. 97.) Many monuments of this kind were collected by Greek antiquarians, of which an account is given by Bockh (Publ. Econ. of Athens, pp. 197, 392, 2d edit.) and Meier (De Bonis Dam-natorum, p. 160, &c.).

DEMIURGI (Sy/Jiiovpyoi'). These magistrates, whose title is expressive of their doing the service of the people, are by some grammarians stated to have been peculiar to Dorian states ; but, perhaps, on no authority, except the form Sajjuovpyoi. Miiller (Dorians, vol. ii. p. 145) observes, on the contrary, that " they were not uncommon in the Peloponnesus, but they do not occur often in the Dorian states." They existed among the Eleians and Mantineians, with whom they seem to have been the chief executive magistracy (of dvifjLiovpyoi Kctl 7} fiov\-f], k. r. A., Thuc. v. 47). We also read of demiurgi in the Achaean league, who probably ranked next to the strategi. [achaicum foedus, p. 5, b.] Officers named Epidemiurgi, or upper demiurgi, were sent by the Corinthians to manage the government of their colony at Potidaea. (Thuc. i. 56.) [R.W.]


DEMOCRATIA (%io/cpcm'a), that form of constitution in which the sovereign political power is in the hands of the demus, or commonalty. In the article aristocrat:a the reader will find noticed the rise and nature of the distinction be­tween the politically privileged class of nobles and the commonalty, a class personally free, though without any constitutionally recognized political power. It was this commonalty which was pro­perly termed the demus (S^uos). The natural and inevitable 'effect of the progress of society being to diminish, and finally do away with, those distinctions between the two classes, on which the original difference in point of political power was founded, when the demus, by their increasing numbers, wealth, and intelligence, had raised themselves to a level, or nearly so, in real power and importance with the originally privileged class, now degenerated into an oligarchy, a struggle was sure to ensue, in which the demus, unless over­borne by extraneous influences, was certain to gain the mastery. The sovereign power of the demus being thus established, the government was termed a democracy. There might, however, be two modifications of the victory of the commonalty. If the struggle between the classes had been pro­tracted and fierce, the oligarchs were commonly expelled. This was frequently the case in the smaller states. If the victory of the commonalty was achieved more by the force of moral power than by intestine warfare and force of arms, through the gradual concessions of " the few," the result (as at Athens) was simply the entire ob­literation of the original distinctions. This form of the constitution was still, in the most literal sense of the term, a democracy ; for as wealth and birth no longer formed the title to political power, though

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