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Papyrology and Ptolemaic History: 1956-1980

Author(s): Roger S. Bagnall


Source: The Classical World, Vol. 76, No. 1 (Sep. - Oct., 1982), pp. 13-21
Published by: The Johns Hopkins University Press on behalf of the Classical Association of the Atlantic
States
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PAPYROLOGY AND PTOLEMAIC HISTORY: 1956-1980


To discussin briefcompass thecontributions
to historicalknowledge
providedby papyrusdocumentsof the Ptolemaicperiodover thelast 25
years is possible only under two conditionsand limitations.First,one
mustnot offera systematicbibliographyof the subject, forthatwould
be unreadable.Secondly,one cannotattempta truesynthesis
of whathas
been done, for thatwould draw in too muchof the older materialand
surpass any limit.These remarks,therefore,are designedas a concise
presentationof two principalsubjects: first,the growthof our documentationforPtolemaicEgypt,principallyfromthepublicationof new
textsbutalso fromthere-publication
and reorganization
of theoldereditions;and second, themainlinesof whathas been gainedin recentyears
fromtheexploitationof thenewand existingdocumentationforhistorical questions.
Of the threeconventionaldivisionsof the millenniumduringwhich
Greekpapyriwereproducedin Egypt,thePtolemaicperiodis theone the
studyof whichwas alreadythe most maturea quarter-century
ago, by
whichtimemostmajor existingcollectionsof Ptolemaicpapyrihad been
published. The last 25 years have seen only a modest increase in our
Greek documentation.'Two volumes have enlarged known archives:
P.Lond. VIl givestheBritishLibrary'sshareof theZenon archiveof the
thirdcenturyB.C., well-editedbyT. C. Skeat. Much of thismaterialhad
been known to scholars active in this field already 50 years before
throughtranscripts
privatelycirculated,2
but itspublicationmakesavailable to all the last large segmentof the archive.P. Tebt. IV, edited by
JamesKeenan and JohnShelton,includesa numberof papyrinot included in P. Tebt. I but partof thesame archive,thatof thelate secondcenturyvillagescribeMenches.
The Berlincollectionhas yieldedtwovolumes,one (BGU X, editedby
WolfgangMuller) containingdocumentsrelatedto cleruchsin theOxyrhynchite
Nome, probablythe mostimportantbody of new materialto
come to lightbecause of the scarcityof Ptolemaicdocumentationfrom
that nome, the only substantialpreviousarchivehavingbeen the bank
documentsof P.Hamb. II. The other Berlin volume, BGU XIV, is a
heterogeneous
collectiondominatedbyfirst-century
Herakleopolitetexts
editedby WilliamBrashear;thevolumehas notyetappeared,butproofs
wereon displayat thepapyrologicalcongressin July,1980.
Finally,thereis a volumeof Sorbonnepapyrieditedby Helene Cadell,
includingmainlydocumentsconcernedwithadministration
and cleruchs
in theFayumin themiddleand late thirdcentury.
I A conspectusbyyearof publicationof editionsof
Greekpapyriappears in J. F. Oates,
W. H. Willis,and R. S. Bagnall, A Checklistof Editionsof Greek Papyriand Ostraca 2
(BASP Suppl. 1, Missoula, MT 1978) 58-61. Abbreviationsused in thispaper are thoserecommendedin the Checklist,and fullbibliographicaldetails for editionsmay be found
there.
2 Theyare cited,forexample,in M. 1. Rostovtzeff's
A Large Estate in Egypt(Madison,
WI 1923).

13

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14

ROGER S. BAGNALL

This is nota richharvestfora quarter-century,


and evenaddingin the
documentsscatteredin miscellaneousvolumesand injournals I does not
alterthe fundamentalfactthatgood unpublishedPtolemaicpapyrihave
been in shortsupply.Somethinga bit bettermay be expectedfromthe
nextdecade, mainlyas a resultof theappearance of a wave of mummy
heads on the antiquitiesmarket.The Catholic University
of Milan,4the
of RotterdamI and theUniversity
University
of Helsinki,6Duke University,7and a Dutch privatecollection8 all have valuable raw material,the
publicationof whichis in itsearlieststages.More is currently
on themarket. And WillyClarysseis preparinga volumeof papyrifromthelittleknown Lykopolite Nome which are scatteredin various collections,
manyunpublished.9
If the contributionof newlypublishedGreek papyrihas been rather
limited,thatof DemoticEgyptianpapyriand ostrakahas beenmoresubstantial.The mostspectacularnew materialis, ironically,derivedfrom
that often-despisedsource, ostraka. The archive of the scribe and
dreamerHor, foundat Sakkara, has extendedour knowledgeof theperiod of AntiochusIV's invasionof Egypt.'0Hor, a nativeof Sebennytos
in the Delta, was a sometimeresidentof an Ibis-sanctuaryat Sakkara
around 170 and in thefollowingdecade. His dreamsled himto compose
petitionsand propheciesabout the course of eventsduringAntiochus'
occupation,manyof which,brilliantly
reconstructed
by JohnRay, give
valuable information:thebirthdayof Philometor,perhapsthatof Eupator,theexistenceof a Seleucidgovernorof Egypt,evidencethata permanent conquest was intended-obviouslysomethingthat would trouble
theRomansmorethana temporary
intervention.
The Demoticpapyrihave come to us mostlyin archives;manyof these
have been knownbut uneditedfordecades, because of a lamentablelack
of Demotists.The stronggrowthof Demoticstudiesin the last twodecades has been enormouslyproductive,and not only in new texts.Many
of thesearchivesconcernpersonsinvolvedin thereligiousestablishments
of the country,an area into which the Greeks hardlypenetratedand
3 E.g. F. Uebel, "Monop6liaphakes," Actes X Congr. de Pap. (Warsaw 1964) 165-81;
R. S. Bagnall and R. Bogaert,"Orders forPaymentfroma Banker's Archive:Papyriin
theCollectionof FloridaStateUniversity,"AncSoc6 (1975) 79-108with6 plates.
4 Cf. 0. Montevecchi,in XVI InternationalCongressof Papyrology(New York 24-31
July1980) Proceedings(Chico, CA 1981) 251-58; G. Geraci, ibid., 267-76; L. Criscuolo,
ibid., 259-65.
s Cf. Cd'E 53 (1978) 108 n.2, whereP. J. SijpesteijnremarksthatP. A. Verdultand A.
Schellekensare preparingthem.For anothertextof thisgroupsee A.J.M. Meyer-Termeer,
Die Haftungder Schifferim griechischenund romischenRecht(Stud.Amst. 13, Zutphen
1978)241-44.
6 Cf. M. Kaimio and J. Frosen,XVI Congr. Proceedings,277-87.
7 J. F. Oates, Actes du XVe Congr0sInternationalde PapyrologieIl: Papyrus inedits
(Pap. Brux. 17, Bruxelles1979)49-51.
8 Cf. P. J. Sijpesteijn, Cd'E 53 (1978) 107-16,307-12; 54 (1979) 95-105; AncSoc 10
(1979) 151-58;BES 1 (1979) 41-46.
9 Actes du XVe Congrcs Internationalde Papyrologie IV: Papyrologiedocumentaire
(Pap.Brux. 19, Bruxelles1979) 101-06.
10 J. D. Ray, The Arthiveof Hor (EgyptExplorationSociety,Texts fromExcavations
2, London 1976).

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PAPYROLOGYAND PTOLEMAICHISTORY: 1956-1980

15

whichwerethusuntilrecently
notknownat all wellin proportionto their
importancein Egyptianlife.
A primeexample is the archiveof Deir el-Medina,of whichthe lessimportantGreek portionwas publishedin 1929.11 The Demotic texts,
publishedby Botti in 1967, are the core of the archive;the documents
concernthe templeof Hathor at Deir el-Medina and span a period of
188-101.Theyare richin information
about templepersonnel,about the
sale of therightsto priestlyincomeforlimitedperiods,as wellas in normal business transactions.'2A comparable body of material for the
Fayumcomes fromtheembalmers'papersof Hawara in theperiodfrom
the last quarter of the second centuryto the middle of the first.
Numerousfamiliesare represented,
all partof thenecropolispersonnel.'3
Once again, the sale of usufructuary
rightsto priestlyrevenuesand endowmentsis prominent.The fascicleof BerlinpapyrifromElephantine
recentlypublishedbyZauzich is lessclearlyarchival(and onlya selection
froma large collection),but priestlymattersare common-one letter
asks a highroyalbureaucratforsupportin becominga priestof Chnum,
and thereare requestsfororacles to be obtainedon vitalquestionslike
whichof twowomenthequestionershouldmarry.'4
By this point the reader may thinkthat Demotic papyriall concern
Egyptianpriesthoodsand are thereforeof limitedinterest.'5The situationis notso simple.The commonelementin all thesearchivesis property,be it land, houses,rightsto endowments,or tangiblepersonalproperty. Not all of thepartiesare priestly;16 some are militaryor officialpersonnel.But thefactthatthebulkof themdo hold priesthoodshas importantimplicationsforthecharacterof Egyptiansocietyin the Ptolemaic
period,and especiallyforthatelusivequestion:whatwas the social and
economicstatusof thoseEgyptianswho werenotpeasantfarmers?
For many decades, Demotic studiesexistedin a privateworld, with
Demotistslargelyignorantof Greekpapyriand papyrologistsstillmore
ignorantof Demotic documents.The major developmentin Ptolemaic
studieshas been not thepublicationof new texts,importantthoughthat
remains,but thedevelopmentof a groupof scholarswho deliberately
set
out to heed Claire Preaux's advice to bringGreekand Demoticevidence
togetherto find a betterunderstandingof how Greeks and Egyptians
11 ByG. Vitelliand M. Norsa in PSI IX (1929) 1014-1025.
12 G. Botti, L'archivio demotico da Deir el-Medineh(Catalogo del Museo Egizio di

Torino,Ser. 1: Monumentie Testi I, Firenze1967).


13 E.A.E. Reymond,Embalmers'ArchivesfromHawara: Catalogue of DemoticPapyri
in theAshmoleanMuseum I (Oxford1973).
14 K.-Th. Zauzich, DemotischePapyriaus dem StaatlichenMuseen zu Berlin1: Papyri
vonden Insel Elephantine(Berlin1978).
15 One could add still more, like E. Bresciani, L'archivio demotico del tempio di
Soknopaiu Nesos nel Griffith
Institutedi OxfordI (Testie documentiperlo studiodell'antichitA49, Milano 1975). In general see J. Quaegebeur, "Documents egyptienset role
&onomique du clergeen tgyptehell&nistique,"in State and TempleEconomy in theAncientNear East II (OrientaliaLovaniensiaAnalecta6, Louvain 1979)707-29.
16 Cf. forexampleM. el-Amir,A FamilyArchivefromThebes(Cairo 1959); J. Quaegebeur,"De nouvellesarchivesde famillethebainsA I'aube de l'epoque ptol&maique,"Actes
XV Congr. IV, 40-48.

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16

ROGER S. BAGNALL

of theGreekevilived together;along withthishas gone a reassessment


dence based on the new perceptionof two cultures.These tendencies
have come to theforein thelast fiveyears,but theywerefirstvisible(in
morethanisolatedremarks)at theXII InternationalCongressof Papyof Michiganin 1968. C. BradfordWelles
rology,held at the University
Egyptiansactive underPtolemy
pointedout a numberof high-ranking
I.'7 P. W. Pestman offered documentation for the continuityof
Egyptiansin high positionsof the scribal bureaucracyat the startof
Ptolemaic rule.'8 Alan Samuel went still further,on the basis of the
Hibeh papyri,in arguingthat the Ptolemiesused Egyptiansfreelyas
bureaucratsprovidedthattheylearnedGreek; '9 theywere,in fact,the
administration
and an Egyptian
essentiallinkbetweena Greek-speaking
populace.
A second major line of inquirywas opened up at that Congressby
JeanBingen,who pointedto peasantresistanceto Greekmethodsof orBingen's view of an 'archaic
ganization and economic exploitation.20
peasantrywithoutpoliticalstructure'providesan explanationin particular forthe popularityof anachoresis,simpleflight,as a mode of resistance to newwaysand newtechniques.He contraststhisgroup-the bulk
and scribalclasseswhoserelationsto
of thepopulation-with thepriestly
theconquerorswereso different.
developedsince1968.
Both linesof inquiryhave beenmoreextensively
In particular,Bingenhas pursuedthestudyof relationsbetweenGreeks
and Egyptians(or thatpartof theEgyptianpopulationwhichwe generally call the laos 21) in a series of papers.22Bingen has proposed to see
Greeksas muchless presentand permanentin the countrysidethanhas
been thought;rather,theGreekstendedto forman urbanenvironment
in thenomemetropoleis.On theotherhand,thevillagesgraduallydeveloped theirown class of littlenotables,largelyfromEgyptians.Bingen's
workin the latterregarddependsgreatlyon DorothyCrawford'sanalysis of Kerkeosiris,23
thePtolemaicvillagebestknownto us. This class of
nativesrisenabove thelot of a peasantwas createdgradually,especially
in the second century,from those Egyptians who entered into the
17 Proceedings of the XII InternationalCongress of Papyrology(Am.Stud.Pap. 7,
Toronto 1970)505-10.
18 SummaryinBASP5(1968)61.
19 ProceedingsXII Congr.,443-53.
20 ProceedingsXII Congr.,35-40: "Grecs et ltgyptiens
d'apris PSI 502".
21 This is theusuallyacceptedmeaningof laos, althoughchallengedbyC. Vandersleyen
in Cd'E 48 (1973) 339-49. See W. Clarysse,AncSoc 7 (1976) 195, and 0. Montevecchi,
ActesXV Congr. IV, 51-67fora defenseof theviewtakenhere.
22 "Presence grecqueet milieururaleptolemaique,"Problemesde la terreen Gr&ceancienne,ed. M. 1. Finley(Paris-The Hague 1973) 215-22; "Le milieuurbaindans la chora
6gyptienneA 1'epoque ptolemaique," Proceedingsof the XIV InternationalCongressof
Papyrologists(EgyptExplorationSociety,Graeco-RomanMemoirs61, London 1975)36773; "Kerkeosiriset ses Grecs au 11e siecle avant notreere," Actes XV Congr. IV, 87-94;
"Land Leases from Tholthis," ICS 3 (1978) 74-80; "tconomie grecque et societe
6gyptienne
au 111'siecle," Dasptolemaische Aegypten,ed. H. Maehlerand V. M. Strocka
(Mainz 1978)211-20.
23 D. J. Crawford,Kerkeosiris
(Cambridge1971).

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PAPYROLOGYAND PTOLEMAICHISTORY: 1956-1980

17

Ptolemaicsystemin some way,as lower-ranking


bureaucrats,as soldiers
and cleruchs,or as entrepreneurs-inany case able to operate in Greek
and cope directlywiththeGreekadministration.
The otherpartof theEgyptianpopulationis theurbanone, thepriests
and long-establishedbureaucratsclusteredaround Thebes, Memphis,
Hawara, and other older centers;theyare the source of most of the
Demotic documentationdescribedabove. Here too our knowledgehas
grown. Zauzich has elucidatedthe existenceof local scribal traditions
and familiesin various centersover long periods,each withparticular
The schools of Leuven,Brussels,and Leiden have in recharacteristics.24
centyearsdevotedmuchworkto theseclasses.25A recentbook is illustrativeof whatis happening:it is a collectionof fouressayson Memphis.26
of
Quaegebeur manages to constructa continuouslist of high-priests
Ptah for the entiretime from Ptolemy I to Augustus,27and he and
DorothyCrawfordcommenton the connectionsof these priests-the
head of all nativeEgyptianclergy,at least in theirown viewand thatof
the foreignrulers-to the Sarapis cult of Alexandriaand to the Ptolemaic royalfamily(thoughtheclaimof Reymondthatthewifeof one late
high priestwas the sisterof PtolemyAlexander 1I is rejectedas unfounded).28Clarysse'smajor contributiondocumentsthe veryclose ties
betweenthe Fayum village of Philadelphia(the source of the famous
Zenon archive)and Memphis; he shows thatPhiladelphia's population
and economywereorientedacrosstheneckof desertto Memphis,notinwardto theFayum.29
The bureaucracyhas also receivedsome attention.30
Pestmanhas devoted an article'1 to theofficeof agoranomos.
He suggeststhattheoffice was created to provide a Greek counterweightto the Egyptian
notariat,buteventuallywas exercisednonethelessbyEgyptians-an outpost of thebureaucracytakenby Egyptians,he calls it-though whether
thesehad any connectionwiththe traditionalnotarialfamiliesis much
harderto say. More generally,W. Peremanshas publishedan extensive
seriesof articlesin AncientSocietystudyingthe extentto whichEgyptiansare represented
in variousoccupationsand positions.
The workof the last two decades has in thisway led to a clearerconception of the Egyptianpopulation,its social evolutionand economic
role, both urban and rural. But in thestudyof social relations,we have
inevitablycome to understandbetternotonlytheEgyptians,butalso the
Das agyptischeSchreibertradition
(AegyptischeAbhandlungen19, Wiesbaden1968).
Onlya smallamountcan be discussedhere.The preparationof thePros.Ptol. supplements(especially IX on the clergy)has stimulatedmuch study; cf. W. Clarysse, "The
ProsopographiaPtolemaicaand DemoticStudies," Enchoria8 Sonderband(1978) 7-9.
26 Studieson PtolemaicMemphis(Stud.Hell. 24, Leuven 1980).
27 Ibid., 43-81: "The Genealogyof the MemphiteHigh Priest
Familyin the Hellenistic
Period."
28 Ibid., 1-42:"Ptolemy,Ptah and Apis in HellenisticMemphis."
29 Ibid., 91-122: "Philadelphia and theMemphitesin theZenon
Archive."
30 See generallyD. J. Crawford, "The Good Official of Ptolemaic Egypt," Das
ptolemdischeAegypten,
195-202.
31 DasptolemaischeAegypten,203-10.
24
25

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18

ROGER S. BAGNALL

Greeks.The inquiryintothecharacterof Hellenismin Egypthas in additionbeen advanced by two greatprojectsaimed at makingour thirdcenturyarchivesmoreaccessible.The University
of Louvain has undertaken
there-editionof thePetriepapyri,published80-90yearsago in a fashion
veryinadequatebypresentstandards.The firstpartof thisneweditionis
Clarysse'scollectionof soldiers'wills,presentedas a thesissix yearsago
and soon to appear in publishedform.Secondly,Pestmanand a teamof
collaboratorsdrawnfromfivecountrieshave carriedout a thoroughreworkingof the massive Zenon archive: theirfirstvolume collects the
scattereditemsin thatarchive;32
second and moreimportantis a general
guide and index to the whole archive,whichhas just appeared.33With
thisguidea newera of researchon these2,000 papyriopens.
From thiswork and fromthe confrontation
withthe Egyptiansituation,a clearerappreciationof theGreekexperiencein Egyptis emerging.
First,the economy. Bingen's articlescited above have been important
here,too: we see Greeksin various roles, notablyas absenteelandlords
of theirallotments,livingin nome capitals,rentingout theirestatesand
livingon the proceedsin an environment
witha more urban character.
We see anotherclass of entrepreneurs
makinga livingas middlemenin
theleasingof land. We findstillothersas tax farmers,guaranteeingthe
king'srevenuesand makingmoneyor losingit on themarginbetweenthe
promiseand the results.Bingen underlineselsewherethe fact that the
Ptolemies' need forGreekmanpowerto exploittheirterritory
led to the
adoption, willy-nilly,
of certainGreek patternsof financialoperations;
fromthispoint of view the Revenue Laws papyrusseems to be less the
revelationof royal economic centralistpower than that of persistent
Greekwaysof doingbusiness.34
Secondly,the law. Importantprogresshas been made in definingthe
legal institutions
of PtolemaicEgypt.3"More interestingly,
perhaps,several articleshave made advances in understanding
the basic characterof
legal systemsunderthe Ptolemies.Wolffhas maintainedthe view that
therewas no mergingof Greek and Egyptianlegal institutions;
36 this
viewcomplements,but was formedindependently
of, thegrowingschool
of thoughtwhichsees Hellenisticculturegenerallyin termsof juxtaposi32 Pap.Lugd.Bat. XX = Greek and Demotic Textsfrom the Zenon Archive(Leiden
1980).
33 Pap.Lugd.Bat. XXI = A Guide to theZenon Archive(Leiden 1981).
34 Le PapyrusRevenueLaws- Traditiongrecqueetadaptationhellenistique,
RheinischWestfalischeAkademiederWissenschaften,
Vortr.Geisteswiss.G. Nr. 0 a /G231 (Opladen
1978). For Greek influenceson agriculturesee the two studiesby D. J. Crawford:"The
Opium Poppy," Problemesde la terre,ed. M. 1. Finley(Paris 1973) 223-51; and "Garlic
Growingand Agricultural
Specializationin Graeco-RomanEgypt," Cd'E48 (1973) 350-63.
35 H. J. Wolff,Das Justizwesender Ptolemaer (Munch.Beitr.44, Munich 1962); E.
Seidl, Ptolemaische Rechtsgeschichte2(Gluckstadt 1962); M.-Th. Lenger, Corpus des
Ordonnancesdes Ptolemees(Acad. Royale de Belgique, Memoires57.1 [Bruxelles1964];
re-ed.Memoires64.2 [1980] withsupplement).
36 "Law in Ptolemaic Egypt," Essays in Honor of C. Bradford Welles(New Haven
1966)67-77.

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ANDPTOLEMAICHISTORY:1956-1980
PAPYROLOGY

19

tion ratherthan of mixture-Preaux's Mondehellnistique,for example.37


J. Modrzejewskihas publisheda seriesof importantarticlesaimingto
definevarious points better.In particularhe has argued convincingly
thatthepolitikoinomoi of the documentsreferto a Greek legal koine
whichdevelopedto meettheneedsof a Greekpopulationof diverseorigins,38moreas legal customthananythingelse, forthekingwas thetrue
legislator.He and Wolffhave insistedalso thatthecoexistentGreekand
Egyptiansystemsweregovernednot by a principleof personality-that
is, theethnicidentityof thepersonsinvolved-but by thelanguageused
in theciviltransactionin question.39
Wherelaw concernsquestionsof status,studiesbased on papyrihave
been particularly
active: forexample,Oates' and Pestman'sapproaches
(fromGreekand Demoticdocuments,respectively)
to thequestionof the
Persai, tes epigones.40I. Bieiunska-Malowisthas produceda book on
slaveryin PtolemaicEgypt,now followedbya sequel on Roman Egypt.4'
Slaveryappears to her to be a relativelysuperficialphenomenonof the
wealthierclasses, withlittlerelationto theEgyptianeconomybut much
to do withGreekhabits;itsrolethroughout
theperiodwas minimal.
Modrzejewski'sactivityhas also led himto a studywithprofoundimplicationsforthesocial and economiccharacterof HellenisticEgyptand
foritsadministration.42
He rejectsthestandardconceptionof Egyptas in
itsentirety
royalpropertyexceptforwhateverthekingconcededto other
uses. The role of privatepropertywas, in his view,much largerthanis
ordinarilyadmitted: the kings owned as proprietors(as opposed to
sovereigns)only a limited-albeit sizeable-part of the country.If this
view is correct,considerablemodificationsof traditionalviews of the
'royal economy' are in order,even beyondthose already produced by
Bingen'svindicationof the role of privateentrepreneurs.
Modrzejewski
remarkson thedangersof assumingthatEgyptresembledotherpartsof
theNear East eitherin theso-calledAsiaticmode of productionor in the
importanceof slaveryin theGreekcitiesthere.
In otherareas of administration,
therehave been numerouscontribu37 Paris 1978: La NouvelleClio 6 et 6 bis. Cf. also twoseminalstudiesby R. Remondon:
"Les antisemitesde Memphis," Cd'E 35 (1960) 244-61; and "Problmes de bilinguisme
dans l'lgypte lagide," Cd'E 39 (1964) 126-46.
38 "La rEglede droitdans 1'tgypteptolemaique," Essays Welles,
125-73(followingup
ideas of Wolff;see supra, nn.35and 36); AEHE, IVeSection,1974/5,325-29.
39 Cf. supra, nn. 36, 38; Modrzejewski,"Chrematisteset laocrites," Le monde grec:
Hommagesd Claire Preaux (Bruxelles1975)699-708,wherehe clarifiesthedual courtsystem.Therewas, of course,no real self-identification
by a Greekas a citizenof a kingdom;
cf. R. S. Bagnall, "The PtolemaicTrierarchs,"Cd'E46 (1971) 356-62 foran exampleof
the consequences.Cf. also The Demotic Legal Code of Hermopolis West,ed. G. Mattha
and G. Hughes(Bibl. d'lttude45, Cairo 1975); P.Oxy. XLVI 3285.
40 J. F. Oates, "The Status Designation:perses tes epigones," YCS 18 (1963)
1-129;
P. W. Pestman,"A propositodei documentidi Pathyris,"Aegyptus43(1963) 23-29.
41 L 'esclavage dans l'Egypte gr&co-romaine1: Periode Ptolemaique (Archiwum
Filologiczne30, Wroclaw/Warszawa/Krakow
1974).
42 "Regime foncieret statut social dans I'lgypte ptol&maique," Terre et
paysans

dependants dans des socittts antiques, Colloque Besanton 1974 (Paris 1979) 163-88.

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20

ROGER S. BAGNALL

At thehigher
tionsbutstillno generalsynthesis.
levels,wehavea study
by L. Moorenof theaulic hierarchy-kinsmen,
and a prosopography
a volumeon the
DavidThomashaspublished
andthelike.43
friends,
first
in thePtolemaicperiod.44
StudiesbyAlan Samuelhaveilepistrategos
Lucia
and oikonomos.45
aspectsof theworkof thenomarch
luminated
indetail.46
setThe military
Criscuolohas studiedthekomogrammateus
thereignofPtolemyVI, wereinventoried
tlersofEgypt,downthrough
bythelateFritzUebelina volumeof lastinguseforeverysortof social
Paul Swarneystudiedthe Idios Logos,
and economicinvestigation.47
inwhichfromits startappearsa kindof accountfornon-recurring
studiedtheways
Zola Packman,in anotherYale dissertation,
come.48
the
elucidated
whilePierreVidal-Naquet
and meansofgraintaxation,49
of thescheduleforthe
if flexible,
character
authoritarian,
essentially
tobe sowneachyearofthevariouscrops.50
quantities
of Rostovtzeff's
SocialandEcoIt is forty
yearssincethepublication
comingonlythreeyearsafWorld,itself
nomicHistory
oftheHellenistic
terPreaux'sEconomieroyaledesLagides.Theseworksmarkedthehigh
studyfromthepointof viewof statisteconomyand
pointof synthetic
authorshadalreadybeand perceptive
buttheireminent
mixedsociety,
wereneeded.Thetwodecadeswhichfolgunto seethatnewapproaches
ones,withwarand reconand notveryproductive
lowedweredifficult
and
of coexistence
outphenomena
Preaux'sarticlesbringing
struction.
Egyptbeganto lead
classicalGreeceand Hellenistic
between
continuity
of Peremansand Van 't
and theLouvainfactory
to newperceptions,
workwiththe
Dack startedlayingthe foundationsfor systematic
Ptolemaica.The sixtiesand seventieshave seen the
Prosopographia
of
of new generations
fruitsof this labor in the accomplishments
as follows:
scholars.TheseI wouldsummarize
of a fewscholars
(1) A revivalof Demoticstudies,and thetraining
competent
tooperateinbothworlds;
(2) Growingawarenessof theneedto combineGreekand Demotic
picture;
toforman adequatehistorical
evidence
approachtosocialandeconomic
conceptual
(3) A moresophisticated
ofMosesFinleyandClairePreaux.
undertheinfluence
history,
43 The Aulic Titulaturein Ptolemaic Egypt: Introductionand Prosopography(Kon.
Acad. v. Wetenschappen,Verhandelingen
37, No. 78, Brussels1975);La hi&rarchie
du cour
ptolmaique (Stud. Hell. 23, Louvain 1977).
44 The Epistrategosin Ptolemaic and Roman Egypt 1: The Ptolemaic Epistrategos
(Pap.Colon. 6. 1, Opladen 1975).
45 "The InternalOrganizationof the Nomarch's Bureau in the Third CenturyB.C.,"
Essays Welles,213-29; "The JudicialCompetenceof theOikonomos in theThirdCentury
B.C., " A ttidell'XI CongressoInternazionaledi Papirologia(Milano 1966)444-50.
46 "Ricerchesul komogrammateus
nell'Egittotolemaico,"Aegyptus58 (1978) 3-101.
47 Die KieruchenAegyptensunterden erstensechsP:olemaern(Abh. Berlin1968,3).
48 ThePlolemaic and Roman Idios Logos (Am.Stud.Pap. 8,
Toronto 1970).
49 The Taxes in Grain in Ptolemaic Egypt. GranaryReceiptsfrom Diospolis Magna,
164-88B.C. (Am.Stud.Pap. 4, Toronto 1968).
50 Le Bordereaud'ensemencement
dans l'PgypteptolOmaique(Pap.Brux. 5, Bruxelles
1967).

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PAPYROLOGY AND PTOLEMAIC HISTORY: 1956-1980

21

These are trendswhichare stillin theirearlystages,and (aside from


Preaux's Monde hellOnistique)major synthesisis still to come. In the
comingyearswe can expectmorecombinedGreek-Demoticwork,especially fromPestman and his school; a new editionof both Greek and
Demotic Reinach papyri is already in press. We may also look for
Demotic studiesto mature;withthe Dictionaryprojectin Chicago, the
Namenbuch fromWtlrzburg,and Zauzich's plan for a Berichtigungsliste, Demotic will have the basic tools so long enjoyed by Greek papyrologists.
On the conceptualside, I believewe will see much greaterattention
of timeand space; as Alan Samuel put it in 1968, "The
paid to diversity
coalescing of all evidenceon a subject can produce deceptiveconclusions." In thiswaywe maycome to thepointwherea social and economic historyof HellenisticEgyptwillagain seempossible.5'
Columbia University

ROGER S. BAGNALL

51 This paper was preparedfora panel on "Papyrologyand AncientHistory"at theannual meetingof the Associationof AncientHistoriansat the University
of Michigan,8-9
May 1981. 1 am indebtedto JohnEadie and ChesterStarrof thatuniversity,
whoconceived
theidea of thispanel and invitedme to coverthePtolemaicperiodforit, forthestimulus;
and to LudwigKoenen,who chairedthesession,forhis habitualcombinationof erudition
and good sense. I shouldsay (1) thatthepaperis publishedhere(in responseto requestsat
themeeting)in essentiallythe formin whichit was delivered;(2) thatthisdisciplinecaused
the omissionof numerousinteresting
and importantstudieson the Ptolemaicperiod; and
(3) thatthe selectionis dictatedin part by myown idiosyncraticinterests.The emphasis
thusfallson social, economic,political,and administrative
historyand noton religious,intellectual,or culturalhistory.That does not mean, of course,thatone could not writean
different
butequallyinteresting
entirely
surveyof workin thoseareas.

ANDREW W. MELLON
FACULTY FELLOWSHIPS IN THE HUMANITIES
AT HARVARD UNIVERSITY

For non-tenured,
experiencedjunior scholarswho have completed,at thetimeof appointment,at leasttwo yearsof postdoctoralteachingas collegeor university
faculty
in the humanities-usuallyas assistantprofessors.Ph.D. requiredand receivedprior
to June30, 1981.
One-yearappointment,July 1983-June1984, with limitedteachingduties, departmentalaffiliation,
to developscholarlyresearch.Annualsalary$19,000.
opportunity
Applicationsdue November1, 1982.
AwardsannouncedJanuary28, 1983.
For particularsand applicationprocedures,write:
Dr. RichardM. Hunt,ProgramDirector
HarvardUniversity
Mellon FacultyFellowships
LamontLibrary202
Cambridge,Massachusetts02138
An Equal Opportunity/Affirmative
ActionEmployer

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