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PHOROS (φόρος), the tribute paid to Athens by her allies in the 5th century B.C. Upon the formation of the Confederacy of Delos in B.C. 476, the Asiatic and insular allies undertook, with a view to carrying on the war with Persia, to pay to the Confederacy a fixed amount of ships, money, or men, as settled by Aristeides. It is not clear whether states which sent ships and men were also to send money. [Thuc. 1.96 speaks as if some were to supply the one, and some the other; so in 6.85, 7.57. But in 7.57 we find states which supplied money also sending contingents (compare the inscription in C. I. A. suppl. to vol. i. p. 10, given in Mr. Hicks' Manual of Greek Historical Inscriptions, No. 28): and if the important states which at first certainly supplied ships be deducted, how could the remaining states have made up so large a sum of money as Aristeides imposed?) Be that as it may, the total annual φόρος was fixed at starting at no less than 460 talents (Thuc. 1.96); and this amount, as apportioned between the allies. seems to have been thought a fair one (Thuc. 5.18. Plut. Arist. 24 says that the allies called the φόρος so arranged εὐποτμία τις τῆς Ἑλλάδος). The treasury was to be at Delos (an old religious centre, Thuc. 1.104), where also the delegates of the Confederation were to meet. But the delegates soon ceased to meet anywhere; the League was kept together by the firmness of Athens, the strongest state in it; and the treasury was removed to Athens on the suggestion of the Samians, probably the next strongest state (Plut. Arist. 25; Diod. 12.38). Delos was probably not thought a safe place for the accumulation of bullion. The date of the removal is said to have been 461 (Just. 3.6); but it seems more likely to have been about 454, when the stone tables of accounts, to be mentioned below, begin. The Hellenotamiae and Logistae took charge of the funds at Athens [HELLENOTAMIAE].

Athens now of course, if not earlier, charged herself with collecting the tribute. Many states were now sending money instead of their original contingents (Thuc. 1.99; Plut. Cim. 11). The League was complete in numbers and in organisation by 454; and the only states which were then still sending contingents of ships and men on the original footing were probably Samos, Chios, and Lesbos. We may fairly say that by that time the Confederacy of Delos under the hegemony of Athens had been changed into an empire of Athens (τυραννίδα γὰρ ἔχετε τὴν ἀρχήν, Thuc. 2.63). Aristophanes (Aristoph. Wasps 707) speaks of 1000 allies; the names of states actually learnt from inscriptions or other sources only amount to about 300; but many little states may have been grouped into συντέλειαι. The empire pretty well enclosed the Aegean. It included more or less completely the coasts of Asia Minor (from the Propontis to Lycia), Macedon, and Thrace, and most of the Aegean islands. Loosely connected with it were the Western islands of Cephallenia, Corcyra, and Zacynthos (Thuc. 6.85), and the Peloponnesian states of Troezen and Achaia (Thuc. 1.111, 115): to these, however, the organisation of the League or empire hardly applies, nor does it seem that they paid φόρος.

More states joined the League, as more states were set free from Persia, and states were presently allowed to send money instead of ships, or even (as Thasos) compelled to do so after the failure of attempts to secede. In these ways, as the gross amount of the φόρος remained the same, the quotas of single states fell, till a re-assessment in 442 cancelled most of such abatements and so raised the total. That this was the policy of Pericles may perhaps be inferred from Plut. Arist. 24.

At the time of the outbreak of the Peloponnesian War (B.C. 431) the φόρος amounted to an average of 600 talents (Thuc. 2.13). With this fund Athens had triumphantly brought the [p. 2.388]Persian wars to an end, and had since expended a great deal of money in embellishing the city. The money was at first brought by the allies; later, probably collected by ἀργυρολόγοι νῆες. The tribute, for such it had now become, was no doubt thought a grievance (Aristoph. Peace 621): but (except in accidental cases) it cannot really have been oppressive, if a 5 per cent. tax on exports and imports was thought likely to produce more than even a double φόρος (Thuc. 7.28). In 425 the sum was doubled, and the φόρος raised to 1200 talents or more (Andoc. de Pace, § 9; Aeschin. F. L. § 175, confirmed by inscriptions; 1300 talents, Plut. Arist. 24). The assessments, however, of each state do not seem to have been uniformly doubled; some were raised more, some less.

Certain stone tables of accounts, found in pieces at Athens and since put together, give us a great deal of information on the constitution of the empire, and especially on the φόρος. They have been printed in the C. I. A., and edited with explanation by U. Köhler, Urkunden und Untersuchungen zur Geschichte des deliseh-attischen Bundes, 1870: see, too, Mr. Hicks' Manual. The accounts only register a percentage of the whole amount received, which percentage was handed over to Athene Parthenos, at the rate of I mina per talent: but we can reconstruct from them a tolerably complete table of what each ally or subject paid. The League or Empire was divided into five financial provinces, and we hear of the Ionic φόρος, the Hellespontine, the insular, Carian, and Thracian. (See the language of Thuc. 2.9, and of Plut. Perikles, 17, for traces of this arrangement.) Thuc. 3.31 speaks as if the Ionic were the most productive. The tribute was re-assessed every four years (cf. Xen. de Rep. Ath. 3.5), with elaborate forms apparently borrowed from the process of legislation, and the allies affected by proposed changes were heard in defence of their interests (see Hicks' Manual, p. 79).

In B.C. 413 the direct tribute was turned into an indirect one, and an εἰκοστὴ or tax of 5 per cent. was imposed on all exports and imports, to be collected by Athenian agents in the harbours of the allies. By this the Athenians, then pressed for money, expected to make more (Thuc. 7.28); but the arrangement, if ever properly carried out, did not last long. [EICOSTE]

When an Athenian league or empire was revived about B.C. 378, the term σύνταξις was used instead of φόρος for the contributions of the allies (Harpocrat. Σύνταξις). The necessity of enforcing these again made the empire unpopular.

Ἐπιφορὰ was an extra charge which could be imposed under the first empire.

(On the φόρος generally, see Boeckh's Staatshaushaltung der Athener, edit. 3.)


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