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University of Nebraska - Lincoln

Eleusis

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Euergetism And Gift-Giving At Eleusis: A Case Study Of Ancient Patronage Structures, Bailey E. Barnard Apr 2011

Euergetism And Gift-Giving At Eleusis: A Case Study Of Ancient Patronage Structures, Bailey E. Barnard

Theses, Dissertations, and Student Creative Activity, School of Art, Art History and Design

The giving and interchange of gifts, otherwise known as reciprocity or gift-giving, was a pervasive principle and practice in ancient Greek society, manifested in nearly all aspects of life. In particular, reciprocity was at the heart of patronage systems influencing religious gift-giving and civic works. This study focuses on one such system of patronage known as euergetism, in which wealthy individuals voluntarily donated funds for public facilities as munificent gifts to the city public. The traditional belief is that euergetism, emerging in the early Hellenistic period, was a sudden departure from previous patronage traditions, born out of economic necessity when ...