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silver mina contained but seventy-three parts in a hundred of its former

value. It was found that Solon himself was a loser by this measure; for

he had loaned five talents, which were paid back in units of the lower


In the property division of the citizens the first class was made to

consist of those whose annual incomes were in excess of five hundred

measures of corn. These were called the Pentacosiomedimni. The second

class embraced all whose incomes ranged between three hundred and five

hundred measures. They were called the Knights, from the fact that each

in this rank was considered able to furnish a war-horse to the state. The

third class was made of those whose annual revenues were between two

hundred and three hundred measures of corn. Those belonging to this class

were called Zeugitae, from the fact that each was reckoned able to own a

yoke of oxen. The fourth rank embraced all whose incomes amounted to less

than two hundred measures. The members of this class were designated as

Thetes, and were in excess of the other classes in numbers, being the

common people of Attica.

As to public honors, all the higher offices, including the Archon, were

reserved for citizens of the first class. The inferior offices, however,

might be held by persons of the second and third classes. Citizens of

the fourth rank might hold no public trust whatever. But these

discriminations were counter- balanced by a just distribution of burdens.

An income tax was levied on the first three classes, but the fourth class

was exempt. Citizens of the second and third ranks, were subject, as well

as the first, to military service, the second furnishing the cavalry and

the third the heavy armed foot. The light armed troops were furnished by

the fourth rank. The disqualification of the common people for holding

office was compensated by the right of suffrage. The right to vote in the

public assembly was conceded to the Thetes, who being in the majority,

might control the election of the Archons and other officers; and since

the Archon, at the end of his year of office, was subject to prosecution

before the