The scraps of pottery on which were written the names of candidates for ostracism are one of the most intriguing pieces of evidence for ancient democracy found in the Athenian Agora. This book is a complete catalogue and discussion of these sherds. Chapter One discusses the history of ostracism in Athens with brief remarks about the candidates for this procedure. Chapter Two concentrates on the physical evidence of the ostraka, their identification, appearance, and content. Chapter Three presents the groups in which most of them were found; their distribution is indicated on a plan of the excavation area. Chapter Four is the catalogue of 1,145 ostraka, arranged by candidates. To these pieces are appended the 191 ostraka, almost all nominating Themistokles, found by Oscar Broneer in a well on the North Slope of the Acropolis. A large number of the Agora ostraka are illustrated with line drawings, a representative selection with photographs.
About the Author: Mabel L. Lang (1917-2010) was the Katharine E. McBride Professor Emeritus and Paul Shorey Professor Emeritus of Greek at Bryn Mawr College. She authored or coauthored nine books published by the ASCSA.