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AGAM´IOU, GRAPHE´ (ἀγαμίου γραφή). At Sparta, proceedings might be taken against those who married too late (γραφὴ ὀψιγαμίου) or unsuitably (γραφὴ κακογαμίου) as well as against those who did not marry at all (ἀγαμίου). The penalty was ἀτιμία. (Pollux, 8.40; Plut. Lyc. 15.) [MATRIMONIUM]

Whether there was any such interference with individual liberty at Athens during the democratic period is more than doubtful. The evidence of passages in Plutarch (de Am. Prolis, p. 493 e) and Pollux (3.48) is rejected by Meier (Att. Process, p. 287), Westermann (in Pauly, s. v. ἄγαμοι), and Caillemer (in Daremberg and Saglio). No mention of ἀγαμίου γραφή occurs in the orators, even when we might most expect it; as when proof is required that a man had died unmarried (Demosth. c. Leochar. p. 1086.18; 1089.30). On the other hand, certain disabilities attached, at Athens, to the state of celibacy; those who entered public life, as ῥήτορες or στρατηγοί, were required παιδοποιεῖσθαι κατὰ τοὺς νόμους (Deinarch. c. Demosth. p. 99.72). Plato characteristically proposes to enforce marriage on all citizens before their 35th year by fines and atimia (Leg. iv. p. 721 A, B), and lays down the rule that in choosing a wife every one ought to consult the interest of the state, and not his own pleasure (Leg. vi. p. 773).


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