previous next


HORISTAE (ὁρισταί) were officials chosen to settle boundaries mostly of sacred places (ἀρχή τις ἐστὶν ἥτις ἀφώριζε τὰ ἴδια καὶ τὰ δημόσια οἰκοδομήματα πρὸς τὰ οἰκεῖα ἑκάστου μέτρα, Bekk. Anecd. p. 287, 18; Etym. M. p. 632, 30; Pollux, 9.9). Thus we learn from Hyper. pro Eux. col. 29, 18 ff., that when Philip restored Oropus to the Athenians after the battle of Chaeroneia, and the ten tribes obtained shares of land by lot and a particular mountain fell to the share of the tribes Acamantis and Hippothoontis, doubts were expressed as to the lawfulness of their occupation of it, since the ὁρισταὶ had, it was said, assigned it to Amphiaraus (ἐξελόντες αὐτό, i.e. τὸ ὄρος, τῷ θεῷ καὶ ἀφορίσαντες), as Blass (Gesch. d. att. Bereds. 3.2, p. 54 n.) suggests, a long time ago. These ὁρισταὶ were not magistrates of the demes, as Gilbert (Staatsalterth. i. p. 195) and O. Müller (de demis Att. p. 58) suppose, but a state commission appointed ad hoc: thus Schneidewin (ad l.c.) explains their number in Hyp. l.c. “quinquaginta, opinor, ut binis tribubus deni prospicerent.” They are also mentioned in a psephisma of B.C. 418, directing the fixing of the boundaries of τὸ ἱερὸν τοῦ Κόδρου καὶ τοῦ Νηλέως καὶ τῆς Βασιλῆς (τοὺς ὁριστὰς ἐπιπέμψαι ὁρίσαι τὰ ἱερὰ ταῦτα, ὅπως ἄν ἔχῃ ὡς βέλτιστα καὶ εὐσεβέστατα, C. I. A. iv. No. 53 a; cf. Curtius, Sitzungsber. d. kgl. pr. Akad. Berl. 1885, p. 437 ff.), and in connexion with the Thesmophorion at Peiraeus (ἀναγράψαι δὲ τόδε τὸ ψήφισμα τοὺς ὁριστὰς μετὰ τοῦ δημάρχου καὶ στῆσαι πρὸς τῇ ἀναβάσει τοῦ θεσμοφορίου, C. I. A. ii. No. 573 b). In C. I. A. iv. No. 27 b, 50.54 f., the Basileus is commissioned ὁρίσαι τὰ ἱερὰ τὰ ἐν τῷ Ρελαργικῷ.

Ὁρισταὶ are also mentioned for Chios (Bull. de Corresp. hellén. 3.244: ( οἰκίη) ἐν Ἀνδίνηι ἣν οἱ ὁρισταὶ ὥρισαν Κλυτιδῶν εἶναι; Gilbert, Staatsalterth. ii. p. 155), for Heracleia (C. I. G. No. 5774, 1.1. 3 ff. and 50.96 ff. ἀνεγράψαν τοὶ ὀρισταὶ τοὶ αἱρεθέντες ἐπὶ τὼς χώρως τὼς ἱαρὼς τὼς τῶ Διονύσω (five in number), καθὰ [ὠ]ρ[ί]ξαν καὶ ἐτερμ[άξ]αν καὶ [συνεμετρήσαν] καὶ ἐμερί[ξαν] and 2.50.2 f. τᾶς Ἀθάνας (three in number), cf. Cauer,2 No. 40, 41); see also the Rhodian award concerning disputed lands in favour of Priene in Gk. Inscr. Brit. Mus. 3.1, No. 403, 1. 12 f., ἄνδρας ὰποδεῖξαι οἵ τινες κρινοῦντι καὶ ὁρίξουντι καὶ ἀποφανοῦνται, and No, 405, 50.12, ὁρισμόν; in No. 412, 50.9, Hicks supplies ὁρισταί. In the Ephesian law (Dittenberger, Syll. No. 344) the διαιρεταὶ seem to have had similar duties, ἀφοριζέτωσαν δὲ ἐν ρῆι διαιρέσει τῆς χώρας ὁδοὺς πρός τε τὰ ἱερά, etc.

Demosthenes uses the word metaphorically in de Rhod. libert. p. 199.29; the civil law of every country prescribes a uniform rule of right for all, the same for the weak as for the strong, but in national affairs right follows might, οἱ κρατοῦντες ὁρισταὶ τοῖς ἥττοσι γίγνονται.


hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: