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EPI´STATES (ἐπιστάτης), which means a person placed over anything, was the name of two distinct classes of functionaries in the Athenian state ; namely, of the chairmen of the Prytanes and Proedri (for whom see BOULÉ, pp. 310 b, 311 a); and also of the directors of public works (ἐπιστάται τῶν δημοσίων ἔργων) These directors had different names, as τειχοποιοί, the repairers of the walls; τριμροποιοί, the builders of the triremes; ταφροποιοί, the repairers of the trenches, &c.; all of whom were elected by the tribes, one from each; but the most distinguished of these were the τειχοποιοί (Aeschin. c. Ctes. § § 14, 27, 29, 31). Other public buildings, such as temples, belonged to the department of the chief finance minister ( ἐπὶ τῇ διοικήσει); and it was in this capacity that Pericles, and subsequently Lycurgus, undertook so many works of architecture. Sometimes two, three, or five ἐπιοτάται were specially commissioned to superintend a particular work. Thus the inscription relating to the building of the Erechtheium (temple of Athena Polias), dating from B.C. 409-8 and now in the British Museum, mentions two ἐπιοτάται, an architect named Philocles and a γραμματεὺς or secretary (C. I. G. 160 = C. I. A. 1.322; cf. Dict. Geogr. 1.276 a; Boeckh, P. E. p. 203 = Sthh.3 1.257). Other inscriptions discussed by Boeckh contain portions of the accounts of similar ἐπιστάαι of public buildings, one of them the Propylaea; in each case a γραμματεὺς is mentioned, and there appears to have been always an expert, like Philocles, to advise professionally (C. L. A. 1.314, 315 b; 300 to 302 a; 299; Boeckh, Sthh.3 2.300-310).

Among the ἐπιστάται τῶν δημοσίων ἔργων were reckoned also the road-surveyors (ὁδοποιοί, Aeschin. c. Ctes. § 25), and those charged with the water supply (ἐπιστάται τῶν ὑδάτων, Plut. Themist. 31). The directors received the money which was necessary for all these works from the public treasury (ἐκ τῆς διοικήσεως, Aeschin. c. Ctes. § 31). (Schömann, Antiq. Jur. Publ. p. 247, and Antiq. pp. 415, 427, E. T.; Gilbert, Staatsalterth. 1.249 f.)

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