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    There is a long list of the people paying taxes in the sixth century Aphrodito known as the Cadastre of Aphrodito. Originally published in 1987 by Jean Gascou and Leslie McCoull,[1] it represents probably the most important document from sixth century Egypt coming to us in the last twenty years.

    The Cadastre of Aphrodito (about AD 524/5), at a first glimpse simply a long list enumerating the titles of the taxpayers for land in Aphrodito, represents a good starting point for considering not only the very complex question of taxation but also of the conveyance of land and taxes in Egypt in Later Roman times. A curious thing in this document is that there existed in sixth century Egypt people whose taxes were paid by someone else. The text of the Cadastre is not the only document attesting to the indirect payment of taxes. This also occurs in P.Sorb. II 69 and many other documents from sixth century Aphrodito, recently discussed by J.-L. Fournet.[2] I shall focus my discussion on some of the cases attested in the Cadastre and try to discover why some rich landlords like Ammonios Theodosiou were registered as paying taxes in the name of somebody else.[3]

    Of the 18 people and the churches that paid taxes to the account (ὀνόματος) of someone else, Ammonios son of Theodosios is recorded eight times. The other ten people who paid taxes in the name of another person were individuals, as well as monasteries and churches.

    The following list of entries concerning those paying taxes in the name of somebody else were extracted from the Cadastre:

    • l. 21: [ ̕Αμμ]ώνιος Θεο̣[δοσί]ου κόμ̣(ης) ὀ̣ν̣ό(ματος) Ψα̣[ΐο]υ [Φὴ]ρ̣ ἀπὸ ἐκβ(ολῆς) τῶν (αὐτῶν).
    • ll. 28–29: / Κ̣ῦ̣ρις ᾿Αρῶνος πρε[σβ](ύτερος) (καὶ) λοι(ποὶ) ὀνό(ματος) ̣ ̣ ̣ο̣δώρου ῞ρου ἀπὸ ἐκβ(ολῆς) τῶν αὐτῶ[ν ὑ]π̣ὸ τὸν α̣ὐτὸν [γεωρ(γόν) ?].
    • ll. 58–59: ᾿Α̣μ̣μώνιος Θεοδωσίου [ὀνό(ματος) Κύρα]ς̣ Πρωμαῶτος ὑπὸ ῞ρον Π[αρᾶ]ς γεωρ(γόν).
    • ll. 74–75: ᾿Αμμώνι[ος] Θε̣ο̣δοσίου ὀνό(ματος) Βησαρίω[νο]ς προτοκ(ωμήτου) ὑπὸ ᾿Ιακ[ῦ]βιν [Μα]ξ̣ί̣μου γεωρ(γόν).
    • l. 77: κωμητικ(ὸν) ᾿Ανάστάσι[ος ᾿Ον]νοφρίου ὀνό(ματος) ᾿Ι̣σ̣ακίο̣υ ἀ̣πὸ Πούχ(εως) ὑπ(ὸ) τὸν (αὐτόν).
    • ll. 86–87: κωμητικ(ὸν) ξενεὼν ῎Απα̣ Δίου ἐν Συνορίας ὀνό(ματος) Κυριακοῦ ῾Ερμαυῶτ[ο]ς̣ τόπ(ου) Πιαϩ Μελε ὑπὸ Φοιβαμμωνα Μαρτυρί[ο]υ.
    • l. 92: [κλ(ηρονόμοι) ̣ ]ιλ̣ήμω̣ν̣ος Πεκυσίου ὀνό(ματος) κλ(ηρονόμων) Κύρας Σαραποδώρου.
    • ll. 105–106: / μοναστ(ήριον) Τα[ρ]ούθεως κατὰ κο(ινωνίαν) ᾿Απολλῶτος Διοσ̣κόρου ὀνό̣(ματος) ᾿Αθανασίας ὑπ(ὸ) τὸ (αὐτὸ) μοναστ(ήριον).
    • ll. 114–115: κλ(ηρονόμοι) Θηρακλείας δ(ιὰ) ῾Υπατείας καὶ λοι(πῶν) ὀν̣ό(ματος) Τισίας Κωμασίου ἀπὸ ἐκβ(ολῆς) τῶν (αὐτῶν) ὑπὸ τὸν αὐ̣τὸν γεωρ(γόν).
    • ll. 126–127: / Μ̣α̣ρκ̣ε̣λ̣λῖ̣ν̣ος κόμ(ης) [ἀπὸ] ᾿Αντ[αίου ὀ]νό(ματος) κλ(ηρονόμων) Εὐστοχίου ἀ̣πὸ̣ ἐκβ(ολῆς) κλ(ηρονόμων) Δίου Τρυφιοδώρο̣[υ ὑπ(ὸ)] Παλῶν Πατάϊτος. ll. 133–134: ] ᾿Αμμώνιος Θεοδωσίου ὀνό(ματος) ῾Ερμ[αυῶτο]ς Ψενθαησίου ἀπὸ ἐκβ(ολῆς) Βησσουροῦν Προ[μαῶ]τος τοῦ (καὶ) γεωρ(γοῦ).
    • ll. 136–138: ] μοναστ(ήριον) ῎Απα Σουροῦτος ὀνό(ματος) Ταχ̣[υμί]α̣ς κατὰ κο(ινωνίαν) κλ(ηρονόμων) ῾Ερμίου Βίκτορος καὶ λοιπ[(ῶν)] ὑ̣π̣(ὸ) Παλῶν Πατάϊτος γεωρ(γὸν) ἀ̣π̣ὸ̣ (ἀρ.) ς η´ ις´ (ὑπὲρ) μέ̣[ρ](ους) θ̣´.
    • ll. 152–153: / μοναστ(ήριον) Σμῖνος ὀνό(ματος) Σ̣ο̣φία Χαιρήμωνος ὑπὸ Παλῶν Πατάϊτος γεωρ(γόν).
    • ll. 178–180: κωμητικ(ὸν) ἐκκλ(ησία) κώμης Εὐφροσύνου δ(ιὰ) ᾿Ιωάννου πρεσβ(υτέρου) ε̣ο ̣ χ̣ σὺν ὀνό(ματι) κλ(ηρονόμων) Ταδώρας ὑπ(ὸ) Χαρίσιον Ψιμανωβὲτ γεωρ(γόν).
    • ll. 181–182: / ᾿Αμμώ[νι]ο̣ς Θεοδοσίου ὀνό(ματος) Βίκτωρος Μακαρίου τ̣ό̣π̣(ου) [Ἄ]πα Ψοΐου ὑπ(ὸ) Ἴσακον Βίκτορος μονάζ(οντα).
    • ll. 230–231: / ᾿Αμμώνιος Θεοδωσίου ὀνό(μα)τ(ος) Κύρας Προμαῶτος ὑπὸ ᾿Ιωάννην Μουσαίου γεωρ(γόν).
    • l. 232: / ὁ (αὐτὸς) τόπ(ου) Πια Μελε ὀνό(ματος) Λουκανὸς Χαιρήμωνος.
    • ll. 286–288: / ᾿Αμμώνιος Θεοδοσίου ὀνό(ματος) ᾿Ιωάννου Μουσαίου Συρίωνος κατὰ κο(ινωνίαν) Εἰρήνης ἀδε(λ)φ(ῆς) τόπ(ου) Πια Κὰμ τῶν καὶ γεωρ(γῶν) ἀπὸ (ἀρ.) θ παρ(αδ.) (ἀρ.) θ (ὑπὲρ) μέρ(ους) L.

    Among the people who paid taxes as onomatos tou deinos, besides the large landowner Ammonios Theodosiou,[4] is Apollos son of Dioskoros,[5] the syntelestes and protokometes in Aphrodito. The rest of the names of those paying taxes in the name of somebody else are otherwise unknown.

    Ammonios son of Theodosios, known as a komes and a wealthy landlord in sixth century Egypt, played a prominent role in tax paying in the village of Aphrodito. He is attested twice as paying taxes in his own name. When paying his own taxes he operated through his agents (P.Cair.Masp. II 67138, 67139), per actores proprios, as the law prescribed for the great landlords. More often his name is connected with the indirect payment of taxes, in the name of someone else, onomatos tou deinos, as it is formulated in the Cadastre of Aphrodito. He is mentioned eight times in the records among the people who paid taxes into the account of someone else. His tax obligations are summarized again in SB XX 14670 = P.Cair.Masp. II 67140. What follows is an abridged version of the text listing only names of the contributors.

    [+ Γ]νῶ[σ(ις) ἀ]ρο[υρῶν τοῦ] μεγαλοπρ[επε(στάτου κόμε]τος Ἀμμω̣ν̣ί[ου]
    πρὸς κώ̣[δικ(α)] ᾿Ι̣ωάννου ἐ̣λ̣λ̣ο̣γι(μωτάτου) σχολ[(αστικοῦ) κ(αὶ) κ]η̣νσίτορος
    ὀνό(ματος) Ψαΐ[ου] Φὴρ ἀπ̣[ὸ ἐ]κβολ(ῆς) κλ̣(ηρονόμων) Πα[πνοῦ]τ̣ε̣ ἰ̣α̣τ̣ρ̣ο[ῦ ὑπ(ὸ) Ἀπολλῶν γεωρ(γόν)
    4ὀ̣ν̣ό̣(ματος) Κ̣[ύρα]ς̣ Πρωμ[α]ῶ̣τος ὑπ(ὸ) Ὧρο[ν] Παρᾶς γε[ωρ(γόν)]
    ὀνό(ματος) Βησαρίωνος πρ[ω]τ̣ο̣κ̣ω̣μή̣το[υ ὑπ(ὸ)] Ἰ̣̣α̣κ̣ῦ̣βιν̣ Μα̣ξ̣ίμου γ̣ε̣ω̣ρ(γόν)
    ὀνό(ματος) Ἑρ̣μ̣αυῶτος Ψενθαησίου ἀπὸ ἐκ[β]ο̣λ̣(ῆς) Βησσο[υροῦ]τος Π[ρομ]α̣ῶτος γεωρ(γοῦ)
    ὀνό(ματος) Βίκτορος Μακαρίου ὑπ(ὸ) Ἴσακον Βί̣[κ]τορος μον̣ά̣[ζ](οντα) (κ̣α̣ὶ̣) γεωρ(γόν)
    8[ἀ]πὸ μεταπτ(ώσεως) ἀδεσπότ(ου) Μον̣εχ̣θὴ ὑπ(ὸ) Ἀνοῦφ̣[ι]ν Μουσα̣ί̣ο̣υ̣ γεωρ(γόν)
    ὑ̣π(ὸ) Πρωμ̣αῶν ᾿Ισακί[ου]
    τόπ(ου) Νεμηφέως ὑπ(ὸ) Ἰωάννη[ν] Μουσαίου γεωρ(γόν)
    ὀνό[(ματος)] Κύρας Πρωμαῶτος ὑπ(ὸ) ᾿Ιω̣[άνν]ην Μο̣υ̣σαίο̣υ γ̣ε̣ωρ(γόν)
    12ὀνό(ματος) Λ[ο]υκανοῦ Χ[αι]ρ̣ήμ̣ωνος τόπ(ου) Πι̣α Μυλ᾿
    ὀνό(ματος) Ἰω[άν]νου Μ[ουσαίου] κα̣τὰ̣ κο(ινωνίαν) Εἰρήν[ης] ἀδελφ(ῆς)

    Ammonius son of Theodosios paid taxes in the name of (1) Psaios son of Fer (2) Kyra daughter of Promaos, (3) Besarion protokometes, (4) Ermauos son of Psenthaesios, (5) Victor son of Makarios, (6) Lucanus son of Chairemon and (7) Ioannes son of Mousaios for his share and that of his sister Eirene.

    The link between the taxpayer and a landowner who paid their taxes merits explanation. The relationship between Ammonios and these people mentioned in the Cadastre as those in whose name he collected tax dues is not always easy to define. In some cases, his relationship with them, the nature of which we have been unable to establish, was double or multiple:

    1. The land for which Ammonios paid taxes to the account of Psaios son of Fer was designated as the contribution[6] of the Papnoute heirs, under Apollos as a colonus. It is possible to reconstruct the chain as follows: the heirs of Papnoute were apparently under some kind of (unknown to us) obligation to Psaios, who for his part was obliged to Ammonios, who agreed to pay taxes in his name. We can assume that Ammonios was his creditor. Apollos georgos was responsible for the cultivation of land and the contribution of rent and dues (phoros). The latter was probably engaged by Psaios. That does not mean that he cultivated the land himself; he could sub-lease it.

    2. Kyra daughter of Promaos appears twice in P.Cair.Masp. II 67140 (republ. Gascou and MacCoull, op.cit. [above, n. 1] App. I): ὀ̣ν̣ό̣(ματος) Κ̣[ύρα]ς̣ Πρωμ[α]ῶ̣τος ὑπ(ὸ) Ὧρο[ν] Παρᾶς γε[ωρ(γόν)] (l. 4) σπο(ρ.) (ἀρ.) η παραδ(είσου) (ἀρ.) L η᾿ and ὀνό[(ματος)] Κύρας Πρωμαῶτος ὑπ(ὸ) ᾿Ιω̣[άνν]ην Μο̣υ̣σαίο̣υ γ̣ε̣ωρ(γόν) (l. 11). Promaos appears again as the patronymic of the georgos Bessourous: ὀνό(ματος) Ἑρ̣μ̣αυῶτος Ψενθαησίου ἀπὸ ἐκ[β]ο̣λ̣(ῆς) Βησσο[υροῦ]τος Π[ρομ]α̣ῶτος γεωρ(γοῦ) (l. 6) and as the georgos responsible together with Anouphis son of Mousaios for the cultivation of ownerless land on which Ammonios had to pay taxes: [ἀ]πὸ μεταπτ(ώσεως) ἀδεσπότ(ου) Μον̣εχ̣θὴ ὑπ(ὸ) Ἀνοῦφ̣[ι]ν Μουσα̣ί̣ο̣υ̣ γεωρ(γόν) (l. 9). The latter may have been the father of both Kyra and Bessourous.

    3. The most interesting example is the case of Ioannes son of Mousaios. He played apparently a double role in the system in which Ammonios was responsible for taxes: he was the lessee of the land belonging to Ammonios (l. 10: τόπ(ου) Νεμηφέως ὑπ(ὸ) Ἰωάννη[ν] Μουσαίου γεωρ(γόν)), but in line 13, he appears again as the person in whose name the taxes were paid by Ammonios, which means as the landowner who shared the landownership with his sister Eirene (l. 12: ὀνό(ματος) Ἰω[άν]νου Μ[ουσαίου] κα̣τὰ̣ κο(ινωνίαν) Εἰρήν[ης] ἀδελφ(ῆς)). Iohannes son of Mousaios is known also from two other documents: P.Flor. III 297 and P.Cair.Masp. II 67138, a document concerning the expenses of the komes Ammonios. Fol. II Verso of the latter, entitled λόγ(ος) δημ(οσίου) τοῦ κόμ[(ετος Ἀμμω]νίου (ὑπὲρ) η´ ἰνδ(ικτίωνος) (l. 1), cites in line 27: ὀν(όματος?) Ἰωάννου [Μ]ουσαίου δ(ιὰ ?) Ἀγνατῶνος followed by an amount.[7]

    The land on which Ammonios paid taxes in his own name was not very large. It was leased to Promaos son of Isakios, as attested in both documents, SB XX 14670 = P.Cair.Masp. II 140 and the Cadastre l. 224. It encompassed five arourae of arable land and one of vineyard, managed by Promaos son of Isakios (ὑπό), and eight arourae of arable land and half an aroura of a vineyard leased to Ioannes son of Mousaios; Cadastre, l. 228: Ἀμμώνιος Θεοδοσίου τό̣π(ου) Νεμύφεως ὑπ(ὸ) Ἰωάννην Μουσαίου. In SB XX 14670 Promaos son of Isakios is attested again as the lessee of ownerless (ἀδέσποτος) land, but managed by Ammonios, as mentioned above. That could mean that Ammonios paid taxes on ownerless land but he leased it to Promaos son of Isakios.[8]

    Three parties which are attested in the above quoted list of tax payments in the name of someone else fit into the scheme: 1. A person paying his own taxes and the taxes due in the name of someone else. He need not have been the landowner, but the syntelestes, as line 105 shows; 2. The landowner in whose name taxes were paid, probably a middle level possessor who was connected to the former by different kinds of obligations; 3. The georgos, a lessee, who was not necessarily a colonus, working on the land belonging to somebody else. The quoted cases from the Cadastre do not exhaust all the possibilities of managing indirect tax paying. There are other documents which could better illustrate this widespread practice.

    The direct fiscal responsibility of the landlord encountered in the Later Roman period existed earlier. The tax obligation of the landowner in the Roman Empire was defined by the law of 366, CJ XI 48, 4: Anyone who possessed land was obliged to pay taxes due in his own name; landlords also had to pay for the coloni who were registered on their land (coloni originales). The law was promulgated in order to protect the interests of the state revenue. However, this simple legal regulation had different solutions in reality. The conveyance of taxes in Roman and Byzantine Egypt was not restricted only to direct sales and wills. The transfer of tax liability by the landowner to another party was widespread and there could have been different reasons for it. As papyri show, land ownership and tax conveyance could be treated as separate instances in Late Antiquity, just as the case had been before, during the Early Empire. The transfer of taxes in the case of selling land by delivery or gifts was regulated by many laws. For instance Constantine issued one such rescript, among others, and later, again, Justinian.[9] Those who assumed the obligation to pay taxes on land not belonging to them may have had different business connections with the landlord. Taxes could be conveyed to another person by means of a contract or in exchange for different transactions. Among different cases we may quote here a few illustrative examples:[10]

    1. The conveyance of tax liability was the consequence of different business transactions and agreements within the family: dowry, lease of land etc. The responsibility for paying taxes on inherited land was apparently shared among the heirs.[11] There are some difficulties in explaining all cases, for instance the tax payment by heirs, if this occurred during the lifetime of the father; further, it is not always possible to distinguish between real and fictitious ownership. It was not always a simple transfer of responsibility, but the consequence of various intermediary business transactions. Taxes could be paid instead of paying rent. The lessee in SB XXVI 16529 = P.Lond. V 1696, in lieu of rent had to pay taxes both in corn and money, to which the ktema was liable, presumably for each of the five years during which the lease lasted. A similar transaction is attested in one family, as recorded in W.Chr. 180 = P.Oxy. I 126: The woman Stephanous received as dowry from her father parcels of land along with the obligation to pay the demosion to which the arourae were liable.

    Good examples of business transactions within the family can be seen in P.Michael. 42 A and B. In the first document Aurelius Jakob son of Phoibammon, his wife Eirene and their son Besarion acknowledge a debt of 30 nomismata to Aurelia Rachel daughter of the said Phoibammon, who is betrothed to Besarion, and mortgage 10 arourae of land to her as security. In the second document, the same 10 arourae are leased by Jakob and his family from Rachel without rent but on condition that Jakob and his family pay the taxes thereon.

    2. The obligation of paying taxes could be inherited even in the case of land which was not owned but had been in possession for a long period of time. The long "story" preserved in SB XVI 12692 = P.Col. VII 175 (AD 339) carries a colorful description of such a case: Heroϊs and Taësis inherited from their father Atisios an estate consisting of a house in the city of Arsinoe and farm land in the vicinity of Karanis. The farmland had been in Atisios' undisputed possession for forty-five years at the time of his death and was therefore inalienably his by virtue of Constantine's law on longi temporis praescriptio[12] despite the fact that the origin of his possession could not be ascertained. What is significant in this document is the fact that the daughters had to pay taxes in the name (ὀνόματος) of their father Atisios even after his death. The father owned fields in the vicinity of the village of Karanis, which had been made over or ceded to him. He had cultivated these fields, appropriated their produce to his private purse and likewise paid the imperial treasury the public taxes levied upon them. In accordance with the law of the longi temporis possessio, which provides that if anyone is in possession of a property for a period of forty years, his possession is in no way to be removed from him; he left it to his daughters, together with the obligation to pay taxes assessed upon it. After his death the heirs, finding themselves unable to pay the taxes assessed on this land, had recourse to the remedy usual in such situations: they took flight. Since they had been in flight for five years and since the taxes on the fields devolved upon the villagers, the latter cultivated the land. Then, when the daughters returned to their native village, the villagers handed over to them the fields. But they handed over also the property from the estate of Atisios (l. 53: ἀπὸ ὀνόματος ᾿Ατισίου) when the actual owners of that property appeared. The field was registered under the name of the father and the heirs had to pay taxes in his name. The defensor renders his decision, confirming that Herois and Taesis are to be held to be the owners of the said plots (ll. 69–70: κατέθετ̣ο ὡς τῶν περὶ ῾Ηρωεῖδα κ̣α̣ὶ̣ Ταῆσιν ἐν νομ̣ῇ οὐσῶν τοῦ ὀνόματος ᾿Ατισίου) and are to pay the imperial taxes on them as in the past since they possess also the house and the entire estate registered in the same name. It is to be noted that the tax payment on the father's land by his sons was designated by the words ὀνόματος because it was registered under his name in the fiscal list. Heirs were obliged to pay imperial taxes under the registered name. That was the usual practice in Later Roman Egypt.[13]

    3. Taxes for one ktema could be paid instead of the price for sold land, as is well illustrated in P.Lond. V 1686. This is a document about the sale by Dioskoros of three arourae of waterless land to the monastery of Zminos in the Panopolite nome. They were sold not for the price paid directly to Dioskoros but in consideration of the payment by the monastery on his behalf of the astike and the synteleia on fourteen arourae of arable land in the village of Phthla. The synteleia is ὀνόματος ᾿Απολλῶτος Διοσκόρου τοῦ ἐμοῦ πατρός, i.e. the land was inherited from Apollos and it was still in his name, probably under the heading κληρονόμοι ᾿Απολλῶτος.[14]

    4. The conveyance of taxes could be performed on syntelestai before the δημόσιος λόγος. The cases quoted may contribute to the better understanding of the function of the syntelestai. From the above list quoted from the Cadastre from Aphrodito of those paying taxes on one another's behalf, on line 105 Apollos son of Dioskoros is otherwise known as the syntelestes. Together with the monastery of Tarouthis he paid taxes on behalf of Athanasia for the land which was managed (ὑπό) by the monastery. That could mean that the land was owned by Athanasia who leased it to the monastery and to Apollos, but it was he who paid taxes on the leased land (see P.Cair.Masp. I 67118). Apollos is never attested as the κτήτωρ, but only as syntelestes and protokometes. He leased land situated in Phthla and paid the "village dues" (κωμητικά). Seven different landlords or their heirs appear in the receipts filled out for Apollos in the names of different Phthla landowners.[15]

    Two documents seem to be significant for the role of syntelestai in paying taxes: P.Cair.Masp. I 67117 and 67118. They do not relate to the change of ownership (Maspero, ad 67117), but only to the tax conveyance. The first concerns the change of syntelestes:

    P.Cair.Masp. 67117: Three parties, Aurelius Paulus son of Psaios, syntelestes of the village, Aurelius Theodoros, presbyteros of the holy place Apa Dios, and Aurelius Charisios son of Hermaos, syntelestes in the same village in the nome of Antaiopolis, all petition the demosios logos and the protokometai of Aphrodito through the intermediary Phoibammon, the boethos of the same village. The document demonstrates the conveyance of the tax obligation from one syntelestes to another: (ll. 9–12) Σω̣[ματίσατε] καὶ μετενέγκατε εἰ̣[ς] ἐμὸν ὄν̣[ομα, ἀπὸ ὀνόματος] τοῦ ἁγίου εὐκτηρ(ίου) τόπου Ἄπα Διο[υ (?) τοῦ ἐν τῇ κώμῃ (?)] κεκτημ̣(ένου), σπο̣ρ(ίμην) ἄρουραν μίαν [τέτ]αρ[τον (?) ...

    P.Cairo Masp. 67118 concerns the transfer of tax payment from the name of the priest Ieremias son of Iakobios to the syntelestes Flavius Dioskoros son of Apollos for one half of the land located in the place Pisraelios: (ll. 11–16) Σ̣ωμ̣α[τί]σατε καὶ μετενέγκατε ε̣ἰ̣ς̣ ἐμὸ̣ν ὄνομα, ἀπὸ ὀνόματος ᾿Ιερεμίου ᾿Ιακυ̣βίου πρεσβ(υτέρου) ... τὴν συντέλειαν τοῦ ἡμίσους μ[έρ]ους κτήματ[ος] τόπου Πισραηλιου. He states his readiness to pay the yearly contribution to the tax office through the boethos.

    The transfer of tax liability to the syntelestes could presumably have been a part of the rent contract. Syntelestai could have been those who made tax contributions on land they did not own. Usually, they leased land under the obligation to organize production and pay the ekphorion to the owner and the taxes to the state. Syntelestes Aurelius Phoibammon son of Triadelphos appears as a lessee in the misthosis document P.Michael. 43. The farm in Aphrodito was leased to him under the customary conditions by Flavius Samuel son of Kollouthos. The crucial question of tax payment was regulated simply at the end: (ll. 18–19) "if any public requisition is made from you on my account, I shall allow you out of the rent in the same manner as do the other landlords (or "as to the other tenants") of the same village" (εἰ δὲ ἀπα̣ι̣τήθ̣η̣ν̣ σε ὑπὲρ ἐμοῦ λόγῳ δημοσίου, ἀποκουφίσω σοι αὐτὰ ἐκ τοῦ φόρου καθ᾽ ὁμοιότητα τῶν ἄλλων μισθωτῶν [τῆς αὐτῆς κώ]μ̣ης).

    5. Indirect tax payment could be also a consequence of the system of autopragia, patronage, and other forms of dependency. One could explain autopragia as the right of the rich and powerful to pay taxes directly and in advance to the state, probably not only in their own name, but also in the name of somebody else, such as small and middle level landowners who were not able to pay it on time. For these smaller landowners, this could lead to dependency on the large landowner.[16] There are documents proving the existence of autopragia in the sixth century village of Aphrodito; however it seems that it was never generally applied to all the inhabitants of Aphrodito, but to those who were able to pay the due sum directly and in advance.[17] Ammonios may have fallen into this category as a big landowner and komes. This position gave him the ability and the authority to possibly be a patron and to pay taxes in the name of other people.

    Whatever reason lay behind the transfer of tax payment to someone, it opened the path that led the middle-level landowner to dependency. In the process of the decline of agrarian production, the middle level possessor, unable to pay tax dues, disappears from this social structure. If he was in debt, he would sell his land to a big landowner and become a colonus. The relationship between count Ammonios and Ioannes son of Mousaios is significant and may illustrate the process described by Salvian, De gubernatione dei, in which the poor tributarii and egestuli put themselves under the protection of powerful persons, making themselves dediticii and passing under their control as if they would be their slaves.[18]

    Notes

      1. J. Gascou and L. MacCoull, "Le cadastre d' Aphrodito," T&MBYZ 10 (1987) 103–158 = SB XX 14669. The most recent edition of this text appears in J. Gascou, Fiscalité et société en Égypte byzantine. Bilans de recherche. 4 (Paris 2008) ch. XIII (pp. 247–305).return to text

      2. J.-L.Fournet, "Le système des intermédiaires dans les reçus fiscaux byzantins et ses implications chronologiques sur le dossier de Dioscore d'Aphrodité," APF 46.2 (2000) 233–247.return to text

      3. Concerning the schema ho deina onomatos tou deinos, cf. Gascou and MacCoull, op.cit. (above, n. 1) 109 sq., 108 n. 108, with examples P.Cairo Masp. III 67329 and II 62150.return to text

      4. About him: PLRE III, pp. 56–57; E.R. Hardy, Large Estates of Byzantine Egypt (New York 1931), passim; cf. J.G. Keenan, "Notes on Absentee Landlordism in Aphrodito," BASP 22 (1985) 137–169, which represents a new approach to the social history of sixth century Aphrodito.return to text

      5. For Dioskoros see J.-L. Fournet, "Du nouveau dans les archives du Dioscore d' Aphrodite," in Atti del XXII Congresso Internazionale di Papirologia (Florence 2001) 475–485; M. Mirković, "Autopragia and the Village Aphrodito," ZRG 113 (1996) 346–357; and ead., "Dioskoros as Syntelestes," in Akten des 21. internationalen Papyrologenkongresses, Berlin 1995. APF Beiheft 3 (1997) 696–705; C. Zuckerman, "Les deux Dioscore d'Aphrodité ou les limites de la pétition," in D. Feissel and J. Gascou (eds.), La pétition à Byzance. Centre de recherche d'histoire et civilisation de Byzance, Monographies 14 (Paris 2004) 75–92; J.-L. Fournet (ed.), Les archives de Dioscore d'Aphrodité cent ans après leur découverte. Histoire et culture dans l'Égypte byzantine, Actes du colloque de Strasbourg, 8–10 décembre 2005 (Paris 2008).return to text

      6. Ἐκβολή could have a different meaning. The editor of P.Cairo Masp. II 67243 translates it as "contribution." Gascou and MacCoull, op.cit. (above, n. 1) 110 suggest the meaning of "expulsion" : "une entree comme ὁ δεῖνα ἀπὸ ἐκβολῆς τοῦ δεῖνος ἄρουραι n se traduira : « un tel (posède) par suite de l’expulsion de un tel, n aroures ». Nous pensons, à propos de P.Cairo Masp. I 67117 et II 67243. que le mot ekbolè a pu en venir à designer la piece de terre ainsi acquise." return to text

      7. He could be Mousaios named in P.Lond. V 1695.4–5 and P.Cair.Masp. III 67300 (Gascou).return to text

      8. Col. V, l. 183.return to text

      9. T. Honoré, "Conveyances of Land and Professional Standards in the Later Empire," in P. Birks (ed.), New Perspectives in the Roman Law of Property: Essays for Barry Nicholas (Oxford 1989) 137–152. return to text

      10. The activity of the monasteries and churches as landowners, lessors and lessees must be left out of our considerations because these institutions were involved in various transactions, and therefore merit special treatment. For the church as a landowner in sixth century Aphrodito see Keenan, op.cit. (above, n. 4) 159 ff.return to text

      11. Fournet, op.cit. (above, n. 2).return to text

      12. About this law see C.J. Kraemer Jr. and N. Lewis, "A Referee's Hearing on Ownership," TAPhA 68 (1937) 357–387 (P.Col. inv. no 181 = SB XVI 12692; reedited as P.Col. VII 175 [AD 339]). return to text

      13. In the case of Apollos son of Dioskoros, the property left by Apollos to his heirs remained undivided almost twenty years after his death, see Keenan, "Aurelius Apollos and the Aphrodite Village Élite," in Atti del XVII Congresso Internazionale di Papirologia (Naples 1984) 958.return to text

      14. For further explanation of the kind of taxes see the commentary of the editor of P.Lond. V 1686.return to text

      15. P.Cairo.Masp. 67327.return to text

      16. M. Gelzer proposed the reign of the Emperor Leo (457–474) as a date when the village Aphrodito received the right of autopragia, see Studien zur byzantinischen Verwaltung Ägyptens [Diss. Leipzig 1909] 92 ff.; and id., "Altes und Neues aus der byzantinisch-ägyptischen Verwaltungmisere, vornehmlich im Zeitalter Justinians," APF 5 (1913) 370–377. About transfer of the responsibility for the payment of the taxes in Aphrodito and its connection with the patronate see H.I. Bell, "The Byzantine Servile State in Egypt," JEA 4 (1917) 86–106, at 99 ff. return to text

      17. Mirković, op.cit. (above, n. 5) 346 ff.return to text

      18. De gub. dei V 38–39: ...tributarii pauperes et egestuli ... tradunt se ad tuendum protegendum maioribus, dediticios se divitum faciunt et quasi in ius eorum dicionemque transcendunt. return to text