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AGATHOERGI

AGATHOERGI (ἀγαθοεργοί). In time of war the kings of Sparta had a body-guard of 300 knights (ἱππεῖς), of whom the five eldest retired every year, and were employed for one year, under the name of agathoergi, in missions to foreign states. (Hdt. 1.67.) It has been maintained by some writers that the agathoergi did not attain that rank merely by seniority, but were selected from the ἱππεῖς by the ephors without reference to age. (Ruhnken, Ad Timaei Lexic. Plat. s. v.; Hesych. sub voce Bekker, Anecd. vol. i. p. 209.)

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