By Michæl Gagarin

Drawing at the facts of anthropology in addition to historic literature and inscriptions, Gagarin examines the emergence of legislations in Greece from the eighth during the sixth centuries B.C., that's, from the oral tradition of Homer and Hesiod to the written enactment of codes of legislation in so much significant towns.

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Early Greek Law

Drawing at the facts of anthropology in addition to old literature and inscriptions, Gagarin examines the emergence of legislations in Greece from the eighth during the sixth centuries B. C. , that's, from the oral tradition of Homer and Hesiod to the written enactment of codes of legislations in so much significant towns.

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We are told of laws requiring people to dig their own wells if they live a certain distance from a public well (F 63), forbidding the export of all agricultural products except olive oil (F 65), restricting the amount of land one could possess (F 66), allowing whatever interest rate the lender wished (F 68), and forbidding any dealing in perfume (F 73), and there may well have been others. Clearly Solon's laws regulated a good many aspects of the commercial life of Athens, and in this he seems to have gone beyond the other lawgivers of his time.

46] See n. 63 below. [47] Driver and Miles, rejecting the view that Hebrew law borrowed the lex talionis from earlier Babylonian law, observe, "Indeed, when once it is realized that the natural remedy for an assault is retaliation, and that talion was a fundamental principle of early law and was only gradually replaced by a system of fixed composition, a similar treatment of similar offences may be expected amongst different peoples in similar stages of civilization" (1952, 408). [48] See Dunbabin 1948, 68-75, who has the best discussion of these two lawgivers; see also Adcock 1927, Van Compernolle 1981, and the brief survey in Graham 1982, 190-91.

And it is only as a kind of afterthought that he adds a brief mention of some early lawgivers who did not establish politeiai . In what follows I shall be concerned with those who wrote laws and shall mention constitutional reforms only if these- probably took the form of written laws. Fourth, we should perhaps distinguish at Athens between the laws of Draco, which were the first to be written down[14] and were [13] In the late fifth and fourth centuries Athenians could make roughly these same distinctions between general norms (nomima ), written laws (nomoi ), and decrees (psephismata ); see nn.

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