The oath used to be an establishment of primary significance throughout a variety of social interactions during the historic Greek global, creating a an important contribution to social balance and concord; but there was no entire, committed scholarly research of the topic for over a century. This quantity of a two-volume learn explores the character of oaths as Greeks perceived it, the ways that they have been used (and occasionally abused) in Greek lifestyles and literature, and their inherent binding power.
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Extra info for Oaths and Swearing in Ancient Greece (Beitr GE Zur Altertumskunde)
This can be exactly the related notice that Medea makes use of whilst she supplicates Aegeus (Eur. Med. 731), however the oath that Medea tenders is a strong, formal horkos assured by way of the solar, different divinities, and a curse. Like Medea, Euphiletus’ maid supplicates a strong guy and extracts a promise; the supplication offers a ritual backdrop to the pistis, even if we haven't any additional information of the promise-making. through giving his observe that the slave could come to no damage, Euphiletus misplaced his chance to end up that Eratosthenes had on a regular basis visited his spouse. however, had the slave been tortured she may have published information that will slash Euphiletus’ case. there has been, as Euphiletus’ jury knew, a sad precedent for a naïve younger guy swearing an oath to a slave girl. actually so popular used to be this precedent citizen named Hygiaenon noted it in an antidosis case opposed to Euripides. 19 In Hippolytus Phaedra’s nurse extracts an oath of silence from the younger guy who then unearths that he's avoided from attesting opposed to fees of rape. As Mirhady observes, it was once irrelevant for Hippolytus to swear an oath to a low-status girl, and lets say a similar approximately Euphiletus. 20 Lysias has selected his client’s phrases conscientiously to prevent the culturally loaded time period horkos; he 17 Carawan (1998, 294‒6) reconstructs the argument for entrapment: the slave-girl’s position may were to entice Eratosthenes to the home via pretending to endure a message from her mistress. 18 See Porter’s discussions (1997 and 2007) of the way the speech displays components of recent Comedy. Gagarin 2003 responds: “The proven fact that we will be able to locate legendary or literary parts in those tales doesn't suggest both that they're literary workouts, or that as court docket speeches they're fictitious stories. It easily implies that their authors (like any reliable litigating legal professional this day) knew whatever of the artwork of storytelling and feature performed their task good. ” 19 According to Aristotle (Rhet. 1416a28‒35) Hygiaenon intimated that Euripides was once impious simply because Hippolytus (612) claimed “My tongue swore, now not my brain. ” See additional §11. three. 20 Mirhady 2003, 21. 7. 1 Women and oaths 167 avoids making Euphiletus glance as if he's abusing a sacred promise-giving ritual through swearing an oath to a slave. even as Euphiletus has anything to achieve through implying he's maintaining his pistis. evaluate his obvious gullibility with that of his tragic counterpart, Hippolytus. within the ultimate moments of the drama, Artemis praises Hippolytus for maintaining his oath, even supposing this the Aristocracy resulted in his personal disaster. this can be an aspect impression of Euphiletus’ narration of his promise to his wife’s maid. He runs a probability of seeming gullible while he swears to a slave lady, yet showing to be a gullible cuckold who retains his observe is healthier than taking a look like a calculating killer. because it is Euphiletus doesn't need to produce the slave for torture, yet can insert her putative proof into his speech and prove seeming to be, like Aegeus and Hippolytus, a good guy who honours his oath.