A history of trust in ancient Greece by Steven Johnstone

By Steven Johnstone

Content material: Haggling -- Measuring -- protecting tune -- Valuing -- participating -- Apportioning legal responsibility -- identifying -- universal greek weights and measures

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51 Buyers often experienced this asymmetry of information as a problem of trust, linking doubt about the goods to suspicion of the seller. 52 Professional educators, the sophists appeared during the second half of the fifth century and offered to teach many skills: rhetoric, military tactics, even virtue itself. Although these goods were more intangible than most, they presented similar problems to buyers. From the perspective of the buyer (and the discourse assumes the perspective of the buyer) the fundamental problem was knowing the quality of the commodity, in this case the sophist’s instruction.

Haggling 27 Because of the mutilation of the papyrus, Kerdon’s next words are uncertain, but he seems to offer two pairs for seven Darics. Kerdon then proceeds to flirt with Metro, to put the shoes on the women’s feet and to remark how well they fit, to affront a woman “cackling at the door more loudly than a horse,” and finally to offer Metro a veiled invitation. Metro exercises a sadistic dominance over the impotent Kerdon. The bulk of mime 7 reverses Kerdon’s situation as recounted briefly in mime 6.

Kerdon: Whether Hecate comes, or Artacene, she will not get them for less than a mina; consider this, if you please. —and calls him “an irritation and a wicked disgrace,”114 and then she asks him how much he’ll charge her friend for a different pair. Metro: Again blast out a word worthy of yourself. Kerdon: Five staters, by the gods, is what the harpists [Eu]eteris comes each day asking me to take, but I hate her, even if she promises me four Darics. . Haggling 27 Because of the mutilation of the papyrus, Kerdon’s next words are uncertain, but he seems to offer two pairs for seven Darics.

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