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SYNOI´KIA (συνοικία) differs from οἰκία in this: that the latter is a dwelling-house for a single family; the former is adapted to hold several families, a lodging-house, insula, as the Romans would say. The distinction is thus expressed by Aeschines (c. Tim. § 124): ὅπου μὲν γὰρ πολλοὶ μισθωσάμενοι μίαν οἴκησιν διελόμενοι ἔχουσι, συνοικίαν καλοῦμεν, ὅπου δ᾽ εἷς ἐνοικεῖ, οἰκίαν. The lodging-houses were let mostly to foreigners who came to Athens on business, and especially to the μέτοικοι, whom the law did not allow to acquire real property, and who therefore could not purchase houses of their own (Dem. pro Phorm. p. 946.6). As they, with their families, formed a population. of about 45,000, the number of συνοικίαι must have been considerable. Pasion, the banker, had a lodging-house valued at 100 minas ([Dem.] c. Steph. i. p. 1110.28). Xenophon recommended that the μέτοικοι should be encouraged to invest their money in houses, and that leave should be granted to the most respectable to build and become house-proprietors (οἰκοδομησαμένοις ἐγκεκτῆσθαι, de Vect. 2, 6). The ἰσοτελεῖς laboured under no such liability; for Lysias and his brother Polemarchus, who belonged to that class, were the owners of three houses (c. Eratosth. § 18). The value of houses must have varied according to the size, the build, the situation, and other circumstances. Those in the city were more valuable than those in the Peiraeus or the country, caeteris paribus. Two country-houses are mentioned by Isaeus (Hagn. § 42) as yielding a return of a little less than 8 1/2 per cent. interest on the purchase-money. But this probably was much below the average. The summer season was the most profitable for the letting of houses, when merchants and other visitors flocked to Athens. The rent was commonly paid by the month. Lodging-houses were frequently taken on speculation by persons called ναύκληροι or σταθμοῦχοι, who made a profit by underletting them, and sometimes for not very reputable purposes (Isae. Philoct. § 19). Hesychius explains the word ναύκληρος : συνοικίας προεστὼς σταθμοῦχος; and Harpocration (s. v.), and Lex. Rhet. Cantabr. p. 673, 20, remark that Hyperides used the word in a peculiar sense for μεμισθωμένος ἐπὶ τῷ τὰ ἐνοίκια ἐκλέγειν οἰκίας συνοίκιας. (Boeckh, Sthh. i.3 pp. 49, 84, 176 ff.)

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