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Christian Igelbrink: Die Kleruchien und Apoikien Athens im 6. und 5. Jahrhundert v. Chr. Rechtsformen und politische Funktionen der athenischen Gründungen (= KLIO. Beiträge zur Alten Geschichte. Beihefte. Neue Folge; Bd. 25), Berlin: De Gruyter 2015, IX + 527 S., ISBN 978-3-11-044217-5, EUR 99,95
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Rezension von:
Thomas J. Figueira
Department of Classics, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ
Redaktionelle Betreuung:
Matthias Haake
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Thomas J. Figueira: Rezension von: Christian Igelbrink: Die Kleruchien und Apoikien Athens im 6. und 5. Jahrhundert v. Chr. Rechtsformen und politische Funktionen der athenischen Gründungen, Berlin: De Gruyter 2015, in: sehepunkte 18 (2018), Nr. 9 [15.09.2018], URL:

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Christian Igelbrink: Die Kleruchien und Apoikien Athens im 6. und 5. Jahrhundert v. Chr.

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This book's strength is comprehensive coverage and analytic density. I highlight controversies; my scholarship on colonization giving perspective (for which see An Einleitung covers issues like causation (e.g., over-population). A second chapter presents an institutional order for apoikiai and klērukhiai, a categorical division. Attention falls on whether Athenians retained citizenship after settlement; cleruchs: yes; apoikoi: not. Throughout I regretted the absence of detailed treatment of the status of the descendants of archaic colonists and of repatriated 5th-century colonists eventually uprooted by Sparta.

Late 6th-century settlement at Salamis begins the cleruchic paradigm (contrasting with dating the cleruchy in the 450s). This means many cleruchies (not my few); so distinguishing categories dominates the work. A study of terminology includes misguided refutation of my work. Arguing for the same two settlement forms, I noted that apoikiai sometimes contained epoikoi, reinforcing earlier inhabitants, but not colonies called epoikiai. Epoikoi reflect an Attic intention to stress continuity, a usage with propagandistic nuances. To follow Igelbrink accepts indifferent use of apoikoi and epoikoi even in Thucydides, our best source.

Chapter 3, devoted to the 6th century, begins the chronological treatment. Elaious is treated for its sole disputed testimonium. Sigeion is well explored, though its later tributary character is scanted. The Thracian Chersonese was neither Peisistratid or anti-Peisistratid. The Khersonnesitai were created, a composite state of individual cities. Chapter 4 presents 5th -century colonies (after examining dating and transition from the Peisistratids). A review of Salamis (c. 510-7; not a patronal colony for me, pace Igelbrink) begins, highlighting IG I3 1 and the genos Salaminioi (where I am skeptical, e.g., on Hdt. 8.95). Next Khalkis receives conscientious review, though I believe the 400 Khalkidians at Plataia vis-à-vis 4,000 settlers c. 506 is overplayed. Khalkis is not only a cleruchy, but model for a new institution (against those seeing structural fluidity in a transitional period). On Lemnos and Imbros (c. 500), I retain my earlier view against Igelbrink: Lemnos may not be an effort of Miltiades on behalf of the Athenians (cf. Hdt. 6.136.2), despite the persistent Attic identity for the settlers. Next is the era after 478, starting from Eion. Skyros is a problematic cleruchy: Diodorus notes a ktistēs (as for an apoikia [11.60.1]). The strategic meaning of these colonies comes out well. The abortive settling of Ennea Hodoi follows. Naupaktos is recognized as anomalous. The author missed my argument juxtaposing Attic ambiguity here with Messenian ethnogenesis.

A review of Attic foreign policy after the Egyptian disaster introduces colonies linked with Tolmides and Perikles: Naxos and Andros, where dating is through tribute reductions. Karystos belongs here, but Igelbrink must grapple (not entirely successfully) with complications of a double reduction in tribute, cleruchic location, and the vast property of Oionias (listed on the Attic stelae). The security goals, against non-Greeks or allies as well, is notable for the Thracian Chersonese. Lemnos and Imbros, sites of earlier colonization, create difficulties in interpreting mid-century tributary status. Igelbrink solves this by positing Periklean cleruchs sent c. 450. I argued for a recognition of citizenship of descendants of earlier settlers. At Kolophon, the existence of Athenian colonization is questioned. The situation of Euboia after the Thirty Years Peace is treated competently: cleruchy at Hestiaia; at Khalkis seizure from elites; no colony at Eretria.

The settlements of Brea, Thourioi, and Amphipolis require lengthy treatment. Brea is discussed rather conservatively. I would fault the anomaly of a cleruchic apoikia. Thourioi receives traditional treatment, exploiting numismatic and archaeological data well. Its function as a commercial center may be overplayed. Igelbrink correctly rejects a 5th-century Samian colony. In an otherwise nice discussion of strategic, economic rationales for Amphipolis, I object to Hagnon as a rival of Perikles rather than a collaborator. The Black Sea expedition of Perikles involved settlements at Astakos, Amisos, Sinope (epigraphy supports presence of Attic settlers), and Nymphaion (with complications). The refoundation of Naples closes this section.

For the exploration of Peloponnesian War foundations, the emphasis on commercial factors was too modernizing; I disagree with a major role for colonial policy in growing tension with Sparta. First is Aigina, where Igelbrink opts for a cleruchy amid confusion about my understanding of the role of epoikoi. The controversial horoi for Atticizing cults date after the founding (431). Poteidaia is discussed in strategic terms. Yet the character of the colony is problematic: epoikoi are present, suggesting an apoikia (attested epigraphically: IG I3 63), but colonists' citizenship forces Igelbrink toward a cleruchy. Mytilene is a test case for cleruchies as garrisons that I have challenged. Here I miss an important study of C. Fornara (Historia 2010) arguing for withdrawal of the cleruchy in 412, affecting Igelbrink's reconstruction. Next are Notion, a colony sponsored by Athens as metropolis of the Ionians; Adramyttion, Attic refounding of a Delian settlement on Persian territory, and possibly Torone. Skione is challenging as a cleruchy for Plataians and liberated slaves (I opted for an apoikia of new Athenian citizens). Last is a thorough examination of Melos. This section ends with a table synthesizing classifications of Attic colonies.

The final section systematically relates the Attic colonial system to power politics. The approach is conditioned by dominance of the cleruchic structure (with consistent valance from 5th to 4thcenturies). Political mechanisms unifying cleruchy and Athens are deme membership; Kleisthenic tribal order; democratic political organs; military obligations; and liability for Attic taxes. Colonial religious duties at Attic festivals were imposed on allies under a rationale based on Ionian colonization, though the classification of some settlements as cleruchies complicates analysis. The role of oikistai 'founders' is also treated. The integrative functions of archaic oikistai may be over-contrasted with the 5th-century. I differ over the extent to which Athens may be faulted for failure to implement integrative measures, e.g., at Amphipolis. Much Athenian colonization lacked time for success under military pressure. The author's assertion of a role for cleruchs as garrisons (Mytilene) focuses wrongly on rebutting A. Moreno (Interpreting the Athenian Empire [2009]). On hegemonic jurisdiction, Igelbrink not only explores Attic confiscation and resettlement as reprisal, but sensibly stresses how their threats were a hegemonic tool. Temenē in honor of Attic cults are addressed well. Yet the idea that they originated in pro-Athenian allied circles is not tackled. Even if one dates the Aiginetan horoi later (against J.P. Barron and myself), one must confront continuing cult activity on later liberated Aigina. Igelbrink is also forced to posit an unattested seizure from Samian aristocrats after their revolt's suppression (439). Troop numbers here regarding growing Attic armed power (431) are shaped by Igelbrink's theory of the cleruchy. They are disproportionately high and cannot be reconciled with the progress of combat operations.

The conclusions, presented in a succession of phases of colonization, are naturally sensitive to the interpretative paradigm. Igelbrink's schematization is well argued. Yet treating the grant of citizenship to the Samians in 405 as an aberration loses sight of a more inchoate, reactive policy, marked by integrative gestures. Our evidentiary basis for understanding Attic colonization will admit strikingly variant reconstructions. Thus, changing basic premises here (only limited retention of citizenship, cleruchs as garrisons, no epoikoi; pervasive commercial influence; systematic hegemonism) yield a different arkhē. One reverses premises for an arkhē more collaborative with allies (as colonists and colonizers or local partisans), less intrusive militarily, and more reactive and retaliatory.

Thomas J. Figueira