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PETITION TO THE PRAEFECT

Greek text:  PRyl 114
Date:   About A.D. 280.

To . . ., the most illustrious praefect, from Aurelia Artemis daughter of Paesius, of the village of Thraso in the Arsinoite nome. Conscious of your love of equity, my lord praefect, and your solicitude for all, especially women and widows, I approach you praying to obtain your aid. The matter is as follows. Syrion, who had become decemprimus of the aforesaid village of Thraso, persuaded my husband, Ganis by name, to pasture his sheep, this Syrion who has wrongfully appropriated my aforesaid husband's goats and sheep to the number of sixty ; and so long as my aforesaid husband lived each enjoyed the fruits of his own property, my husband of his private flock and the aforesaid individual of his. Now when my aforesaid husband went the way of men, Syrion rushed in, wishing by means of his local power to carry off the property of my young children from the very bed of my husband and his body lying there. When I endeavoured to rescue our property and prepare my husband for burial, he drove me away with threats, and until this day he remains in possession of our flocks. Wherefore I entreat you, my lord, to send me an assistant by your command, in order that I may recover the property of my young children and of myself the widow and be able to comply comfortably with what is required of me. For my aforesaid husband was not detected in any fraudulent action touching the interests of the Treasury ; but it is in the nature of the aforesaid Syrion to rob me the widow and my young children on every occasion, so that When he took the corn of my deceased husband for the corn-dues devolving upon me, as I was left without a helper, he gave no receipt. I appeal to you then, in order that by the appended direction of you the lord and kindly benefactor of all I may recover my property and be able to live with my young children in my own home and ever to vow my gratitude to your fortune. Farewell

{Subscribed}   The . . . year, ... 9. With a view to what is expedient for the revenues . . . his excellency the epistrategos shall sift the matter with the utmost equity. The 69th page of the 1st volume.

papyrus 294


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