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DATE´TAE (δατηταί), distributors or liquidators, dators, were employed in the winding up of a partnership concern. If the period for which the partnership was to last had not been settled by the articles of association, and any one or more of the partners wished to retire, a division of the capital, fixed and floating, became necessary. This might be effected amicably, without the intervention of the law, even if any of those interested were minors. The guardian might act as he deemed best for his ward, subject of course to a δίκηἐπιτροπῆς on the latter's attaining his majority. But if the parties could not agree, those who insisted on the winding--up might bring an action by πρόσκλησις or summons for the appointment of liquidators (ἐδικάζοντο οἱ βουλόμενοι τοῖς μὴ βουλομένοις προσκαλούμενοι εἰς δατητῶν αἵρεσιν, Harpocrat. s. v. δατεῖσθαι). The award of these Datetae seems to have been binding on all parties: and Meier conjectures that, unless special circumstances required the appointment of “experts” possessed of technical knowledge, the Datetae were chosen by lot from the public Diaetetae. The similarity of the two names has led, it appears, to their being confounded in some passages of the grammarians. There is also, reason to think that Datetae might be appointed in other cases not involving partnership: for instance, in disputes about the division of an inheritance. (Meier, Att. Process, p. 377 ff.; Caillemer, 10me Étude, le Contrat de Société à Athènes, p. 5.)


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