ï~~Bulletin of the American Society of Papyrologists 45 (2008) 31-40 Oxyrhynchus in the Early Fourth Century: "Municipalization" and Prosperity Alan Bowman University of Oxford Abstract This article collects recent evidence for the role and activities of the logistes (curator civitatis) at Oxyrhynchus in the early fourth century AD. It illustrates the ways in which the administration of the metropolis was subjected to more systematic and perhaps more efficient corporate control through the civic officers and considers whether the evidence for civic pride and public expenditure in the later third and the early fourth century is consistent with a scenario of "crisis and recovery" Our knowledge of the detail of civic administration in early fourth-century Oxyrhynchus has increased dramatically in the past twenty years, in large part thanks to the painstaking and meticulous editions of several long and difficult papyri from the Oxyrhynchus collection by Revel Coles. These not only provide much new prosopographical information about the individuals who held the post oflogistes (the finance officer, curator civitatis), the earliest of whom is attested in AD 303,' but also a great deal of evidence for the functions of the office that was clearly the most important innovation in civic administration in the Diocletianic period. This new evidence has hardly gone unnoticed, but it remains true that the only detailed examination of the character and functions of the office is that by B.R. Rees, written more than half a century ago and therefore long out of date.2 Although full analysis of this material remains (and will still remain) to be undertaken, it offers a useful opportunity For a comprehensive list see P.Oxy. 54, p. 223, and add POxy. 60.4083-4085. An early contribution to the prosopography of the officials was made by the honorand of this collection: J.G. Keenan, "The Names Flavius and Aurelius as Status Designations in Later Roman Egypt," ZPE 11 (1973) 33-63 at 44-45. 2 B.R. Rees, "The Curator Civitatis in Egypt," JJP 7-8 (1953-1954) 83-105. See also A.K. Bowman, "Some Aspects of the Reform of Diocletian in Egypt," PapCongr. XIII,
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