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Lecture 3

HISTORY 36B Lecture Notes - Lecture 3: Debt Bondage, Hippeis, Hoplite

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Professor Brusuelas
History Department
History 36 B
History of Ancient Greece
Course Code: 26580
Course Code: 26581
4 units
No Pre-Reqs
Location: HG 1800
i. Solon of Athens
1. 7th/6th century bce
2. Known as a wise man
3. Fragments of his poetry are preserved
a. Defends his reforms
b. Decries the greed of the rich
c. Virtue is more important than wealth
d. Notes that many good people are poor
e. Defended the rights of the elite and their
large control of public affairs
ii. Debt Reforms
1. Hektemoroi
a. Sixth partners, perhaps they owed a sixth of
their produce to the wealthy landowners to
pay debts, or pay this portion for protection
i. Debt was so bad that some had even
sold members of their family or even
themselves to creditors
2. Seisachtheia
a. Debt slavery abolished
i. Solon freed anyone who was a slave
as a result of debt
ii. Tried to repatriate those sold into
slavery outside of athens
iii. Canceled debts of al hektemoroi
iv. Illegal for loans to be secured by
anyone’s property or person
iii. Economic Reforms
1. Adopted the more common Euboeic system of
weights and measures to facilitate more trade/trade
2. Promoted olive cultivation for export of oil
3. Illegal to export grain (to be kept at home for
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