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Ancient Egypt: Legal records concerning land - Grants, conveyances, acquisition, surveying, leases and rents
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Part of Uppsala demotic ostrakon 825
Part of the demotic ostrakon DO Uppsala 825 containing a lease contract for grassland
Source: [7]
-

Legal records concerning land
Grants, conveyances, acquisitions, surveying, leases and rents

Old Kingdom

Tomb inscription concerning the conveyance of land by Idu, also called Seneni

    Seneni he saith:
"As for this field, which I have conveyed ///// which I have given to my beloved wife, Disnek [it is her] true [possession. As for any person] who shall take it from this Disnek, they shall be /// for it by the great god, lord of heaven, and I will seize them [like] wild fowl. I am (now) an /// and excellent spirit. I know ///// ...... [I have done] this for this Disnek, because she was so greatly honored in my heart; she said nothing to oppose my heart ......"
    Disnek, she saith:
"I was one amiable /// ///, beloved of her entire city. As for any persons who shall take this land from me, I will enter into judgment with them, by (i.e. before) the great god."

J. H. Breasted, Ancient Records of Egypt, Part One , § 338

-

 

 

  Idu was a priest during the 6th dynasty. According to Breasted this land was a mortuary endowment for his wife.
  Despite the relatively large measure of legal equality they enjoyed, Egyptian women were disadvantaged as far as possession of land was concerned. Disnek herself seemingly did not have any land of her own to ensure her funerary services.
-I will seize them [like] wild fowl: Egyptian men seemingly felt the need to protect their women personally.
-spirit: Dead Egyptians kept rather busy. Among other things, they haunted the living, avenging misdeeds.
-I will enter into judgment with them: Egyptian women apparently thought that, with the help of the appropriate authorities, they could protect themselves, even after death.
 

Tomb Inscription of Metjen

A salary consisting of (the rent from) 200 arouras of land provided with numerous royal farmers was brought to him. Fifty arouras of (farm)land belonging to his mother Nebsenet were given to him, she making a transfer document thereof for my (i.e. Metjen's) children, (the fields) being put in their possession in a royal document [valid in] all places.
From the biography of Metjen

 

 

-aroura: about 2700 square metres
 

Late Period

Lease of land and cattle
Demotic, Louvre E 7833 [9]

Year 36 of King Ahmose, first month of the summer season.
The god's father Wedjahor, son of Diimenawenkhonsu, has spoken to the peasant of the temple of Montu-Master-of-Thebes Padimontu, son of Pawahimen and of Ruru, his mother: "I have entrusted you with this yoke of ploughing cows, in the name of the priest Reri, son of Diimenawenkhonsu, whose peasant you are, to work in every field you have to cultivate on my lands belonging to the domain of Amen of the district of Coptos, west of the high land of the 'farm of the milk of Amen', (during the time) of year 36 to year 37.
When the (season) of harvesting arrives in the year 37, I shall take one third of all the corn, of all the plants growing in the fields which you have cultivated with this yoke of cows mentioned above; (it is this third) concerning which you have made a document written in the name of Reri, son of Diimenawenkhonsu, my brother, about the price of rent for the fields.
I will cause the scribes of the temple to leave you alone as to what concerns their dues of the temple of Amen; and I will not be able to cause the scribes keeping the books of the grain to appear before you as to what concerns the dues to the temple of Amen.
We will divide the remainder (of the harvest) into four parts amongst ourselves, to wit: three parts for me because of that yoke of cows and the grain (due) in the name of the priest Reri, son of Diimenawenkhonsu, and one part for you because of the ploughing, of all the labour, and of all you will have done as a grower from year 36 to year 37.
(///) Any damage (caused by) the cultivation (which may occur) to this yoke of cows will be at your expense. The gain and the loss will fall on both (/////)."
After a French translation by Malinine

 

 

 
 

534 BCE
 
Rent contract
Source: © Musée du Louvre/C. Décamps
 
 

Lease of land and cattle
Demotic, Louvre E 7837 [10]

Year 36 of King Ahmose, first month of the season of summer.
The priest Wedjahor, son of Diimenawenkhonsu, has spoken to the peasant of the domain of Montu-Master-of-Thebes Padimontu, son of Pawahimen and of Ruru, his mother: "I have leased to you my fields which are in the domain of Amen in the district of Coptos, west of the high land of the 'stable of the farm of the milk of Amen', to cultivate them from year 36 to year 37 with these three yokes of cows, total 6 cows, to wit: 5 cows of yours and your companions' and 1 cow of mine; it is you who will work my above mentioned cow.
When the season of harvesting arrives in the year 37, I shall take one third of all the corn and of all the plants growing there, one third representing my part as owner of the fields.
We shall divide the remainder into 6 parts, to wit: 5 parts for you and your companions and 1 part for me ///// for the loan of my cow. Any change or damage (which will occur because) of the grower are at your expense. I shall pay the dues of the temple of Amen on the above mentioned third which represents the part of the harvest due to me as owner of the fields. I shall make sure that the scribes of the temple of Amen will leave you alone where this tax is concerned.
The scribes of the temple of Amen will measure my fields in my name. Should I refuse to let you cultivate the above mentioned fields (during the time) from year 36 to year 37 despite the above mentioned rights, I shall give you a (deben of) silver from the treasury of Thebes in melted metal; without relying on any document."
 
Verso: the names of ten witnesses
After a French translation by Malinine

 

 
 

534 BCE
 
Reri, formerly the owner of the fields, is not mentioned, probably having passed away.
This contract is much more favourable to the peasant then the first one. Parnerships between peasants were not uncommon and improved the peasants' bargaining power. Interesting is also the indemnification in case of breach of contract on behalf of Wedjahor.
-deben: about 90 grammes
 

Ptolemaic Period

Lease
Greek: Michigan Papyri (P.Mich. III) Inv. 3233

    The 23rd year, Panemos 28, Tubi 28, in Krokodilopolis of the Arsinoite nome.
    Leontiskos, son of Leontiskos, Persian of the epigone, and Thymos, son of Megakles, Macedonian of the epigone, and Tesenouphis, son of Petous, a resident of Arsinoe, agree with Nikandros, Syracusan, of the command of Theodoros in the second hipparchy, holder of an eighty-aroura allotment, to pay to him on behalf of Eirene, daughter of Orphis, a Macedonian woman, to be credited against the loan of 44 talents and 4800 drachmas granted in accordance with the deed of mortgage executed in the 23rd year, month of Daisios, on the vineyard and garden that belong to her and are located in Philadelphia in the division of Herakleides, and the interest thereon, 48 talents of copper money, the rent on the olive, fig, and pomegranate crops in the aforesaid garden (located) on domain land and land in gift within one boundary, which Leontiskos, Thymos, and Tesenouphis have leased from Eirene for the 24th year in accordance with contracts of lease; and (they agree) that they will make payments to Nikandros or to whomsoever he orders in Philadelphia according to the clauses therein, from Pauni of the 23rd year to Thoth of the 24th year 2 copper talents monthly, and in the month of Paophi 8 copper talents, and in Hathur of the same year 15 talents, and in Choiak of the same year the remaining 17, Nikandros or his agents providing them with receipts at each payment.
    And if they do not make payments in accordance with the prescribed terms, let Leontiskos, Thymos, and Tesenouphis pay as penalty to Nikandros straightway whatever they owe one and a half times. But if they in no wise break the contract, let Nikandros receive for Eirene the above-mentioned 48 talents of copper toward the loan granted in accordance with the deed of mortgage and the interest as written above and whatever remainder they owe to him relative to the mortgage. Whatever is lacking of the 48 talents of copper either through ruin, danger, or failure of the crops concerned in the aforesaid leases which Eirene made with the aforesaid men, having received this from Eirene let him cancel the mortgage in the time specified therein.
    And if Nikandros, having received from the aforesaid men the above-mentioned 48 talents of copper, either does not credit them to Eirene or furthermore after receiving the remainder does not cancel the mortgage, let Nikandros pay to Eirene straightway a fine of a thousand silver drachmas of the old Ptolemaic coinage and let it none the less be obligatory for Nikandros to cancel the mortgage. The agreement shall be binding everywhere.

V.B.S. [2]

 

 
 

182 BCE (?)
Probably dating from the reigns of Epiphanes and Philometor.
-Pamenos: also Pamenoth, 15th January - 13th February
-Tubi: also Tybi, 16th November - 15th December
-Arsinoite nome: the Fayum, a region much favoured by Greek settlers.
-Eirene: a businesswoman of some means.
-to pay to him on behalf of Eirene: tenants paid the interest on the mortgage on behalf of their landlord [4].
-talents: 1 talent = 6000 drachmas

Approval of the terms of the contract above
Greek: Michigan Papyri (P.Mich. III) Inv. 3234

    Eirene, daughter of Orphis, a Macedonian woman, acting with her guardian, her husband, Agamemnon, son of Chrysermos, a native of Lalassis, to Leontiskos, Thymos, and Tesenouphis, greeting.
    I agree with you that you are to pay to Nikandros, Syracusan, the rent for the entire garden, 48 talents of copper, in the periods specified in the lease and that I am not to bring suit against you regarding these matters provided you fulfil the terms of the agreements.
Farewell.
The 23rd year, Tubi 29.
(2nd hand) I agree according to the above statements.

V.B.S. [2]

 
 

  182 BCE (?)
-acting with her guardian: Eirene as a Greek woman, was not autonomous as an indigenous Egyptian woman would have been. Greek women were under the tutelage of some male relative: father, husband or brother.
-talent: weight, about 26 kg

Exchange
P BM 10589

"Year 6, 3rd month of Winter, day 12 of Pharaoh Ptolemy (VI) ....
The bird-snarer and servant of Wepwawet, Tef-Hapy, son of Pati-Isis, and Wepwawet-iu, son of Pati-Isis, two persons, their mother being Taba, said together to the woman Tawa, daughter of Wepwawet-iu, her mother being Ta-Isis:
'It is our responsibility and we promise you not to hinder you or to cause you to be hindered, not to stand in your way or to let any man of ours stand in your way, on the day on which you wish to build or demolish your house, the foundations of which are laid, together with its court which is to the south of it and its empty lands which are around it and everything which belongs to it, which is in the southwestern district of the village of Pakhyr in Siut (the boundaries of your aforesaid house and everything which belongs to it: south ..., north ..., east ..., west ..., completing the boundaries of your aforesaid house and everything belonging to it), we having given you the aforesaid house and everything belonging to it in exchange for the empty lands, the foundations of which are laid, which are in the northern district of Pakhyr in Siut, the boundaries of which are written in the Deed of Not Hindering which you made for us concerning them, which you have already given to us for the aforesaid house and everything belonging to it, we being agreed, the two of us, to give you the aforesaid house together with everything which belongs to it in exchange for your empty lands, the foundations of which are already laid, which you have given to us.
If we hinder you or cause you to be hindered with respect to your aforesaid house, which we have given to you already in exchange for your house(sic!), from today henceforward forever, we will give you money, 300 (deben) ..., within ten days in the month in question, you still having a claim on us to make us withdraw compulsorily, without delay, we making the above deed not to hinder you with respect to your house and its courts and everything which belongs to it while we have a claim on you with respect to the rights (conferred by) the Deed of Not Hindering which you have already made for us concerning the empty lands which you gave to us in exchange for that which we have given to you above, on day 12 of the 3rd month of Winter, year 6 of Pharaoh Ptolemy (VI) who lives forever, so as to make you carry out for us the rights (conferred by) it at any time.
Written by Iyemhotep, son of Pasa(?), who writes in Siut and its suburbs in the name of the priests of Wepwawet and the gods Philadelphoi and the gods Euergetai and the gods Philopatores and the gods Epiphaneis."
A. F. Shore, H. S. Smith, Two Unpublished Demotic Documents from the Asyut Archive JEA 45 (1959) 52-60

 
 

Ptolemy VI Philometor (180-164 BCE)
Family tree
-servant of Wepwawet: priest of Wepwawet.

Sale agreement
Demotic papyrus B.2 found at Rifeh

Year 28, Epiphi 10 of King .......... beauty, there being the priest of Alexander, the gods Adelphoi, the gods Euergetai, the gods Philopatores, the gods [Epiphaneis], the gods [Philometores and the bearer of the trophy] of victory before Berenice [Euergetis] the bearer of the golden basket before Arsinoe ......... of P-sy which is in the district of Thebes, the priest of Ptolemy the [Soter], the priest of King Ptolemy Philometor, the priest of Ptolemy Philopator, the priest of Ptolemy Euergetes, the priest of Ptolemy (sic), the priest of Ptolemy Philadelphus, the priest of Ptolemy ............... [Arsinoe] Philadelphus, the priestess of [Cleopatra the] goddess Epipahnes Eucharistos, the bearer of the golden basket before Arsinoe Philadelphus, Say the ....... of the gods Epiphaneis, the gods Philometores ......... two together, their mother being Shmety, ....... -Khnum, son of Menapis ....... son of Menapis, Pete-Khnum, son of Khnum, son of Psen-p-Khroou, his mother being Tabekis, Thoth (son of?) Setyrbon, his mother being Shmety, Khnum .......
......... thou hast given, our heart is satisfied with, the silver, price of the hired (?) waste-land ......... waste-lands again which are opposite the treasury built (of stone) in ....... [the necropo]lis of Shas-[hotep] .......... which is in the possession of his children, on the West the remainder of thy waste-land ...... 2, on the North-west .......... we give thee the aforesaid hired (?) waste-land .......... [by this writing] for silver, [we have] received [its price in silver without remainder] our heart is satisfied with ................ [no man] on earth [shall be able to] possess it except thee at any [time ?]; the man who shall come [against thee?] to take it ............ in our name, the name of father, mother, brother, sister, (or) any man on earth - myself likewise - we will remove him [from thee] ............. thou hast control of it in our name; the oath, the causing to stand that shall be made against thee [in the court of] justice on account of the legal right and writing aforesaid thou art (entitled) against us to cause us to do it, we will do it for thee. Wrote .............
Translated by Sir Herbert Thompson

 
 

-Epiphi: Epep, third month of Shemu, mostly July
-King ..........: Ptolemy VI Philometor 180-164
-basket: containing offerings to the goddess. Being allowed to carry it was a great honour. Aristophanes in his Ecclesiazusae had his fun with such processions describing Chremes getting ready to go to market:
Chremes: Come hither, my beautiful sieve, I have nothing more precious than you, come, all clotted with the flour of which I have poured so many sacks through you; you shall act the part of Canephorus in the procession of my chattels. Where is the sunshade carrier? Ah! this stew-pot shall take his place. Great gods, how black it is! it could not be more so if Lysicrates had boiled the drugs in it with which he dyes his hair. Hither, my beautiful mirror. And you, my tripod, bear this urn for me; you shall be the water-bearer; and you, cock, whose morning song has so often roused me in the middle of the night to send me hurrying to the Assembly, you shall be my flute-girl. Scaphephorus, do you take the large basin, place in it the honeycombs and twine the olive-branches over them, bring the tripods and the phial of perfume; as for the humble crowd of little pots, I will just leave them behind.
-P-sy: Ptolemais
-the priest of Ptolemy the [Soter], the priest of King Ptolemy Philometor: In these documents the priests of Ptolemy Soter are always mentioned first, immediately followed by the priests of the ruling king.
-Shas-[hotep]: Town in Middle Egypt
-[the necropo]lis of Shas-[hotep]: Rifeh

Cession
Demotic papyrus B.2 found at Rifeh

Year 28 Epiphi 10 [of King] Ptolemy son of Ptolemy ........... the bearer of the trophy of victory before Berenice Euergetis, the bearer of the golden basket before Arsinoe Philadelphus, the priestess .............. Ptolemy Euergetes, the priest of Ptolemy Philadelphus, the priest of Ptolemy Epiphanes, the priest of Ptolemy .............. the gods Euergetai, the gods Philopatores, the gods Epiphaneis, the gods Philometores, Setyrbon son of Harmonthes ............... son of Setyrbon his mother being Shmety, Khnum son of Psen-p-Khroou his mother being Harpaesis son of Pete-Khnum his mother being T................. hired (?) waste-land which is among our waste-lands towards the necropolis of Shas-hotep which .............. writing for silver .............. writing of divestment against (?) them, year 28, Epiphi 10 of King Ptolemy living forever ............... aforesaid, thou makest (?) against us the legal right (and) the writing for silver ..............
Translated by Sir Herbert Thompson

 
 

-King] Ptolemy son of Ptolemy ...........: Ptolemy VI Philometor 180-164
-Arsinoe Philadelphus: sister and wife of Ptolemy II Philadelphus

Land sale

    In the 11th which is also the 8th year of the reign of Cleopatra and her son Ptolemy surnamed Alexander, gods Philometores, the priests and priestesses and canephorus being those now in office, on the 28th of the month Paophi, in Crocodilopolis, before Paniscus, agoranomus of the upper toparchy of the Pathyrite nome.
    Taous daughter of Harpos, aged about 48 years, of medium height, fair-skinned, round-faced, straight-nosed, with a scar on her forehead, and her sisters Sennesis also called Tatous, daughter of Harpos, aged about 42 years, of medium height, fair-skinned, round-faced, straight-nosed, with a scar on her forehead, and Siephmous daughter of Pachnoumis, aged about 20 years, fair-skinned, round-faced, straight-nosed, without distinctive mark, all three being Persians, with their guardian, the husband of the aforesaid Taous, Psennesis also called Krouris son of Florus, Persian of the Epigone, of the village of Gotnit in the lower toparchy of the Latopolite nome, aged about 45 years, of medium height or under, dark-skinned, rather curly-haired, long-faced, straight nosed, with a scar on the under lip, have sold the land, lying inland, corn-bearing, and undivided, which belongs to them in the northern plain of Pathyris and contains three and a half arurae in two plots with the attached surplus out of the 7 in the 40 arurae.
    The boundaries of the one plot are, on the south the land of Patous son of Horus and his brothers, on the north the land of Chesthotes son of Melipais, on the east the land of Aes and his brothers, on the west an embankment, and of the other plot, on the south the land of the above-mentioned Chesthotes, on the north the land of Chesthotes son of Panemgeus, on the east the land of Thrason and his brothers, on the west the embankment, or what-ever the boundaries may be all round. Peteharsem-theus son of Panebehounis, aged about 36 years, of medium height, fair-skinned, rather curly-haired, long-faced, straight-nosed, and his brothers Petesouchus, Phagonis, and Psennesis, all four Persians of the Epigone, inhabitants of Pathyris, have bought the land for nine talents of copper, each paying an equal share.
    Negotiators and guarantors of all the terms of this deed of sale: Taous and Sennesis also called Tatous and Siephmous, the vendors, who have been accepted by Peteharseintheus, Petesouchus,Phagonis, and Psennesis, the purchasers.
    Registered by me, Paniscus.
Source: http://www.lamp.ac.uk/~noy/greek20.htm [8],
accessed 29 March 2003

 

  Crocodilopolis (in the Fayum), 107 BCE
 
-canephorus: bearer of the basket
-agoranomus: overseer of the agora, the market
-their guardian: women of foreign extraction, subject to Greek law, needed the presence of a male guardian

Land survey
Ptolemaic ostrakon inv.no. 838

The transcription is on the left, the explanations in grey are on the right. The meaning of the last two lines is unclear.
One should be wary of the calculating prowess of the ancient scribes. They quite often made mistakes.
The denominator in Egyptian fractions was generally 1, ¾ for instance was written ¼ ½. A few fractions with a denominator not equal to 1 had demotic signs: 2/3, 5/6, 2/16.

 
Land survey

Rent receipt
Demotic ostrakon, inv. no. 608

    Pamonth, son of Amenhotep, and Pamonth, son of Pemsah, total two persons, have paid of the harvest dues (and) the surplus of the cultivator of the Isle of Amen, which is called "the southern region" and which is ceded before Amenrasonther (and) which they have made to be planted, for year 3 ... 4, 104 pieces of silver, its half making ... 2, 52 pieces of silver - ... 4, 104 pieces of silver again. They have been put to their credit.
    Djekhensefonekh, son of Espemet, has written (this) in the year 3, on the 22nd of Paophi.
[3]

 
 

  Thebes, late Ptolemaic Period
 

Rent receipt
Demotic ostrakon, inv. no. 980

    Hor, son of Hermes, and Kephalos, his brother, have paid for the field lot(?) of their unplanted place(?), which is without fruit trees and which they have cultivated in the year 10 and has been ceded before Amenrasonther: 1 (rdb - artab) of wheat, the half of which makes ½ - 1 (artab) of wheat again. It has been put to (their) credit.
    Written in the year 10, on the 20th of Epiphe. Eiuer, son of Panofre(?) has written (this) ..........
[3]

 
 

  Found at Karnak, late Ptolemaic period
 
-artab: measure of wheat, worth about 20 drachmas during the Ptolemaic Period [1]

Lease contract
Demotic ostrakon, DO Uppsala no. 825

    [It is] Menokles, the peasant of the king [who says to ....]: "I have leased you the grassland [...] the harvest delivery to the granary of the king [...]
    Written in the year 8, on ... Phamenoth (?) [...]
and the part of the land of Takhrat, each (?) [...] ... to the granary of the king [...]
Source: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis - Boreas Vol.6, 1974

 
 

  Found at Karnak, probably late Ptolemaic period
 
-peasant of the king: leaseholder of royal land

Land grant to Pueriebt
Demotic papyrus, Staatliche Papyrussammlung, Berlin, inv. no. P 788

    Pueriebt, son of Herieu, has been granted (in) Hermonthis of 8 arouras 3 3/8 arouras; of 22 3/4 arouras 2 arouras; of 21 3/16 arouras 2 13/16 arouras. Total 8 3/16 arouras ....
    Senuosre has written (this) (in) the year 6.
    Harpekhrat, son of Peteusire has written concerning 8 3/16 arouras .... ... in the year 6.
    Pshenkhons, son of Ilus, has written; high-land(?) ... 3, 8 arouras ... ... ½ aroura, half of which is ¼ aroura - ½ aroura again ... (in) the year 6 ....

 
 

  Hermonthis, late Ptolemaic, possibly the 6th year of the reign of Augustus
 
-high-land (qAj.t): land on high ground above the flood plain, and which had to be irrigated

Further land grant to Pueriebt
Demotic papyrus, Staatliche Papyrussammlung, Berlin, inv. no. P 771

    Pueriebt, son of Herieu, has been granted (in) Hermonthis of 22 ¾ arouras 2 arouras, half of which is 1 aroura - 2 arouras again ...
Senuosre has written (this) (in) the year 9.
    Pamonth has written concerning 2 arouras, half of which is 1 [aroura] (-) 2 arouras again, (in the) year 9.

 
 

  Hermonthis, late Ptolemaic, possibly the 6th year of the reign of Augustus

Land grant
Demotic papyrus, Staatliche Papyrussammlung, Berlin, inv. no. P 6156

    In the year 11 Herieu, son of Petekhons, (and) Hermias, his brother, have been granted of 9 11/16 arouras, 6 11/16 (artabas) of wheat, high-land 1½ arouras; of 14 arouras, 8 7/8 (artabas) of wheat, high-land 1½ arouras; of 10 arouras, 5 (artabas) of wheat; total 4 7/8.
Total 7 7/8 arouras, half of which are 3 5/16 arouras - 7 7/8 arouras again.
    Pana, son of Pamonth, has written (this).

 
 

  Thebes, late Ptolemaic Period, possibly the reign of Augustus
 
-his brother: associates in such ventures were often members of the same family.
  They were granted two high-ground lots of 1½ arouras and 4 7/8 arouras of low-lying ground in the flood-plain, a total of 7 7/8 arouras.

Roman Period

 

Rent receipt
Demotic ostrakon, inv. no. 1176

    Piko, son of Shepusp[..], has paid for the lease contract which he has concluded with the directorate(?) of Naperu for the year 23 (and) which has been ceded before Amenrasonther for our part, (to wit) for each (of us) 7 2/3 artabas of wheat, half of which is 3 5/6 (artabas of) wheat - 7 2/3 (artabas of) wheat repeated. They have been credited.
    Written in the year 23, on the 2nd of Payne.
Esmin, son of Imhotep, has written (this) concerning the eighth part.
Esputou, son of Pebek, has written (this) concerning the eighth part.

 
 

  Thebes, the reign of Augustus year 23
 
-2/3 artabas of wheat: both partners seem to have to pay this quantity which seems to be the eight part (12½%) of the whole amount.

Rent receipt
Demotic ostrakon, inv. no. 605

    It is Pshenmin, son of Paab, who says to Padjeme, son of Pshenamenope: 'I have been (paid) in full with the surplus of the cultivator of the plot, which you have planted with hrntj, of my field, which I and my brother and my mother possess, for the year 15. I have no claim from you.
    Written in the year 15, on the 26th of Khoiakh.
[3]

 
 

  Thebes (?), early Roman Period
 
 
-hrntj: seemingly some kind of spelt

Application for a lease of grain land
Greek papyrus: Michigan Papyri (P.Mich. III) Inv. 107

    To Haruotes, son of Alexas.
    From Horos, son of Horos, the son of Horos, an inhabitant of the village of Bacchias, a Persian of the epigone.
    I wish to lease from you for four years, four sowings, from the present fifth year of Hadrian Caesar, our lord, the four and one-half arouras of an allotment, or however many there may be in one parcel, which you own in the neighborhood of the aforesaid village of Bacchias, at an annual rental for the whole of twenty artabs of wheat, including the four and one-half artabs of seed wheat which I shall receive from you, measured with the six-choinix measure of your brother Alexas, by which payments are measured, subject to no charges and guaranteed against risk.
    And I shall perform all the yearly farm labors which are proper, each at the necessary time at my own expense without damage to the property. And I shall deliver in the month Pauni in the village the annual rental in grain, new, clean, without blemish, and free from barley.
    And after the expiration of the lease I shall hand over the arouras free from rushes, reeds, coarse grass and all rubbish, with one half lying fallow in grass and the other half after the stubble harvest. The transport charges for moving grain shall rest upon me, Horos, if the lease is approved on the aforesaid terms.
    Haruotes, about fifty-nine years old with a scar on the ankle bone of his left foot.
The fifth year of Imperator Caesar Trajan Hadrian Augustus, Tubi 23.

A. E. R. B. [2]

 
 

  5th year of the reign of Hadrian, 121 CE
 
-I shall hand over the arouras free from rushes: Proper maintenance of the fields was of high importance. Once difficult to eradicate weeds had established themselves, cleaning the land was difficult.
-Haruotes, about fifty-nine years old with a scar: identifying qualities included age, hair colour, build, scars and the like.
Source: Sten V. Wangstedt, Ausgewählte demotische Ostraka aus der Sammlung des Victoria-Museums zu Uppsala und der Staatlichen Papyrussammlung zu Berlin, Uppsala 1954 [3]

 


- -Index of Texts
Landed propertyLanded property
The ancient Egyptian economyThe ancient Egyptian economy
 
Index of TopicsIndex of Topics
Main IndexMain Index
 
Links(Opening in a new window)
These are just suggestions for further reading. I do not assume any responsibility for the availability or content of these sites.
 
Account of payments in kind[1] Account of payments in kind (P.Duk.inv. 1333 V (a))
Contracts: arrangement regarding payments[2] Michigan Papyri - Contracts: arrangement regarding payments
demotische Ostraka[3] Ausgewählte demotische Ostraka aus der Sammlung des Victoria-Museums zu Uppsala und der Staatlichen Papyrussammlung zu Berlin
Register of rents and taxes[4] Register of rents and taxes in kind (P.Duk.inv. 1333 R)
Register of land[5] Register of land (P.Duk.inv. 276 R)
Sale of land[6] Sale of land (P.Duk.inv. 631)
Demotic Ostraka[7] Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis - Boreas Vol.6 1974: Demotic Ostraka
Women in the Greek World[8] Women in the Greek World - Department of Classics University of Wales Lampeter - Michaelmas Term 2000 20 credits 3CLA1220 Tutor: David Noy
image of the contract[9] Large size image of the contract (512 by 579 pixels)
image of the contract[10] Large size image of the contract (512 by 545 pixels)
 

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March 2003
 
Updated:
July 2005
November, March 2004
April 2003


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