|i.||Geographical area||Peloponnese with Adjacent Islands|
Stable URL: http://ancientassociations.ku.dk/assoc/771Download as
Last Updated on 01 Mar 2017
CAPInv. 771: toi Aiiatai
|i.||Full name (original language)||τοὶ Αἰἱᾶται (Kourinou 2000: 224-7, pl. 51)|
|ii.||Full name (transliterated)||toi Aiiatai|
IV. NAME AND TERMINOLOGY
|i.||Source(s)||Kourinou 2000: 224-7, pl. 51. (iii BC)|
|i.a.||Source type(s)||Epigraphic source(s)|
|i.b.||Document(s) typology & language/script||A Greek honorary dedication in Laconian dialect erected by the Aiiatai for the hydragos Timon (ll. 2-3) and the hyphydragoi Androsthenes and Kallikrates (ll. 3-4).|
|i.c.||Physical format(s)||A fragment of a stele bearing two reliefs and between them a band where the inscription is almost totally preserved. On the upper relief two legs walking to the left are depicted whilst the lower relief depicts two heads facing to the left.|
|ii.||Source(s) provenance||Found in 1980 at the excavation in a private property at the Western part of modern Sparta, in the area of ancient Pitane.|
|iii.||Worship||The stele is dedicated to Tyndarids, another name for the Dioscuri.|
|i.||Local interaction||There is no indication that the hydragos and the hyphydragoi (ll. 2-4) were members of the Aiiatai. This shows that there was an interaction of the group on a local level.|
Kourinou 2000: 226, connects the inscription which mentions the Aiiatai as well as the inscriptions in Peek 1974: 295-302 and Le Roy 1974: 219-38 (cf. BE 1976: nos. 266 and 267) with canalization works in Sparta in the second half of the 3rd c. BC simultaneously with the fortification of the polis by Kleomenes III.
Since Peek 1974: 295-302 and Le Roy 1974: 219-38 are dedications to the same functionaries by Kynosoureis, one of the obai (subdivisions of the tribes), and to koinon ton hypochetion (see CAPInv. 772), namely in both cases parts of the population of the town, we can assume that Aiiatai could also be regarded as a topographical definition or a definition of a part of the inhabitants. Cf. CAPInv. 1488 (for the mention of Aitai in an inscription from Aigiai).
The attestation of the inhabitants of a part of a town as a group is a frequent phaenomenon, especially in Asia Minor. Van Nijf 1997: 181-3, refers to the common identity that was developed by traders or artisans working at the same place, so that they often operated as a "neighbourhood association". The attestations of groups of neigbourhoods, which act as a collectivity, either organized as associations or not, are gathered and commented by Pont 2013: 129-56.
del Barrio Vega, M. (2002), ‘Remarques sur une inscription de Sparte (ΜΣ 6747)’, ZPE 141: 134-6.
Kourinou, E. (2000), Σπάρτη. Συμβολή στη μνημειακή τοπογραφία της. Athens: 224-7.
Moreno Conde, M. (2008), Regards sur la religion laconienne : les Hyacinthia à la lumière des textes et de l'archéologie. Madrid: 37, n. 131.
van Nijf, O. (1997), The civic world of professional associations in the Roman East. Amsterdam: esp. 181-3.
Peek, W. (1974), ‘Artemis Eulakia’, in Mélanges Hélleniques offerts à Georges Daux, Paris: 295-302.
Pont, A.-V. (2013), ‘Les groupes de voisinage dans les villes d’Asie Mineure occidentale à l’époque impériale’, in P. Fröhlich and P. Hamon (eds.), Groupes et associations dans les cités grecques (IIIe siècle av. J.-C. – IIe siècle apr. J.-C.), Genève: 129-56.
le Roy, Chr. (1974), ‘Inscriptions de Laconie inédits ou revues’, in Mélanges Hélleniques offerts à Georges Daux, Paris: 219-38.
The definition of the Aiitai as an association depends on the interpretation of their name. If they are to be understood as a group of inhabitants of Sparta, they can be perhaps interpreted as an official civic or topographical subdivision of the population; in this sense it is rather to be regarded as a collectivity which acted ad hoc for the honour of the hydragos and the two hyphydragoi.
If their name derives from an epithet of Poseidon, they could be regarded as a cultic group. The possibility that their name derives from ἀίτας, aitas (a beloved youth) should be examined in parallel with Jeffery's reading of an inscription on a bronze bowl from Aigiai as hυακίνθιο̅ι ἀνέ̄θεν Ἀΐται ἀπ’ ϝοίκο̅, huakinthioi anethen Aitai ap’ woiko (cf. Hyakinthioi, CAPInv. 1488).