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Headword: *pene/stai
Adler number: pi,962
Translated headword: penestai, penestae
Vetting Status: high
[Meaning] the slaves in Thessaly,[1] but not born as such. When the Boiotians had been defeated by Haimon at Arne they did not flee from enslavement to their conquerors but remained until the third generation, taking delight in their land. They surrendered themselves on the basis of an oath that they would suffer nothing as they worked and would not be expelled from their land. And being called Menestai, from remaining, their name later became Penestai, by the corruption of the [initial] letter.[2]
Those whom in Sparta they call Helots, these [the] Thessalians call Penestai. Thessalians and Spartans alike use the word of those who have been conquered in war and are the slaves of their conquerors.[3]
Demosthenes in the [speech] Against Aristokrates [mentions them].[4] Amongst Thessalians "penestai" is the name for what the Spartans call Helots. He[5] says that they are called not only penestai but also Thessalics.
Aristophanes [writes]: "associating with the penestai".[6]
Greek Original:
*pene/stai: oi( para\ *qessalw=n mh\ go/nw| dou=loi, u(po\ tw=n u(po\ *ai(/monos e)n *)/arnh| nikhqe/ntwn *boiwtw=n, ou) fugo/ntwn th\n par' au)tw=n doulei/an, a)lla\ meina/ntwn me/xri th=s tri/ths genea=s, filhdou/ntwn e)pi\ th=| xw/ra|. pare/dosan de\ au(tou\s e)f' o(/rkw|, e)pi\ tw=| mh/te paqei=n ti e)rgazo/menoi, mh/te e)kbh=nai a)po\ th=s xw/ras. kai\ a)po\ tou= mei=nai *mene/stai kalou/menoi u(/steron *pene/stai metwnoma/sqhsan, parafqare/ntos tou= xarakth=ros. ou(\s e)n *lakedai/moni kalou=sin *ei(/lwtas, tou/tous *qettaloi\ *pene/stas le/gousi. xrw=ntai de\ tw=| o)no/mati kai\ *qettaloi\ kai\ *lakedaimo/nioi e)pi\ tw=n krathqe/ntwn e)n tw=| pole/mw| kai\ douleuo/ntwn toi=s kekrathko/si. *dhmosqe/nhs e)n tw=| kat' *)aristokra/tous. *pene/stai de\ para\ *qettaloi=s kalou=ntai oi( para\ *lakedaimoni/ois *ei(/lwtes. ou) mo/non de\ au)tou\s *pene/stas kalei=sqai/ fhsin, a)lla\ kai\ *qettalika/s. *)aristofa/nhs: toi=s *pene/staisi cunw/n.
[1] In northern Greece; cf. theta 289, theta 290, theta 291.
[2] For this material see Photius pi572 Theodoridis, and cf. e.g. Athenaeus, Deipnosophists 6.264A-B (6.85 Kaibel), quoting Archemachos of Euboia FGrH 424 F1. 'Arne' (rather than 'Aigina [Myth, Place]') is the reading of Suda mss AFG; cf. epsilon 3154. More likely, pene/sths is related to pe/nomai "I toil" and the noun po/nos.
[3] Similar material in other lexica and grammars.
[4] Demosthenes 23.199 (web address 1). From now on the entry follows, in abridged form, Harpokration s.v.
[5] Not Demosthenes but -- intervening matter from Harpok. having been here omitted -- Staphylos (FGrH 269 F6).
[6] Aristophanes, Wasps 1273 (web address 2). See already alpha 1677.
Associated internet addresses:
Web address 1,
Web address 2
Keywords: comedy; definition; dialects, grammar, and etymology; geography; historiography; history; military affairs; rhetoric
Translated by: David Whitehead on 14 December 2000@05:48:17.
Vetted by:
Catharine Roth (added links, set status) on 26 May 2004@01:46:58.
David Whitehead (augmented notes and keywords) on 26 May 2004@03:46:46.
David Whitehead (augmented notes; tweaks and cosmetics) on 15 July 2011@05:27:28.
Catharine Roth (upgraded links) on 17 July 2011@08:15:35.
David Whitehead on 19 September 2013@06:42:38.
David Whitehead (expanded n.2) on 24 June 2014@04:35:58.
Catharine Roth (coding) on 15 January 2015@21:44:35.
Catharine Roth (expanded note 2) on 10 July 2021@22:48:05.


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