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Athenian Taxation from the Pisistratids to Lycurgus 550 325 ВС

Fawcett, Peter William (2006) Athenian Taxation from the Pisistratids to Lycurgus 550 325 ВС. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.



In this thesis I respond to calls by historians for a study of ancient Athenian taxation. The thesis is in four parts. In Part One I identify sixteen or so taxes. The most important are an import/export tax and a wealth tax, but I argue that recent evidence suggests that there may have been a sales tax. I believe that I may have identified four new fragments of inscriptions relating to one of the sixteen or so taxes. I discuss in some detail two of the most important inscriptions discovered in recent years, the Grain-Tax Law and the Law on the Little Panathenaea. In Part Two I look at the administration of Athenian taxes and at the extent of the black economy (I believe that some coin hoards could be evidence of tax evasion). In Part Three, I identify, for comparative purposes, taxes in some other states and also examine tax agreements Athens and other states made with each other. Part Four looks at a number of central themes. First, the nature of Athenian taxes, where I argue that there is no real evidence that at least direct taxes were regarded by the Greeks as a form of tyranny or that this was the reason that there was no income tax. Second, Athenian taxation in a wider context, where I argue that it is not impossible that there were some taxes in the earlier part of the fifth century, and track the development of taxes during the fifth and fourth centuries. Third, coinage and the payment of taxes, where I argue that recent research on fractional coinage suggests that the payment of taxes was one of the reasons for the development of coinage in Athens. Fourth, the relationship of taxes with income from Empire/Confederacy where I argue that the two varied inversely with each other. Fifth, the contribution of taxes to the Athenian economy, where I argue that this could have amounted to between a quarter and a third of Athenian state income by the time of Lycurgus.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Date:2006
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:09 Sep 2011 09:51

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