The catalogue includes both Roman citizens and peregrini who employed Roman names, which they did either because of kinship ties through marriage or simply because it was the current fashion to use Roman names. The catalogue, therefore, does not contain the purely Greek names of peregrini that remained untouched by Roman onomastic practices. Such persons are, however, discussed in the comments on particular names, when it has seemed helpful to elucidate extended relationships, either of blood or by marriage. Likewise, individuals who are referred to in literary sources or in inscriptions from other regions are excluded from the catalogue, although reference to them may sometimes be made in the comments. Thus the present work is not to be viewed so much as a lexicon or even a complete prosopography, but rather as one whose main aim is to present a particular social class active at a particular time and place, namely the southern Peloponnese from the beginning of the Roman domination until Late Antiquity (Roman Peloponnese I, 40 n. 23).
Laconia: The inscriptions employed for the Onomasticon of Laconia come, with a very few exceptions, from today's prefecture of the same name, since the area covered by the prefecture is very much the same as that comprehended by the Laconia of antiquity, with the exception of the ager Denthaliatis, which was for centuries a source of friction between Messene and Sparta (MES 227). This region has been included in Messenia because today it belongs to the modem prefecture of Messenia. Thuria also, is included in Messenia, although an inscription dating to the imperial period shows that Sparta was then her metropolis (MES 265). The same holds true for the region of Kynouria, which, likewise, was a source of friction between Sparta and Argos. During the Imperial period Kynouria belonged to the Argolid, with which it has accordingly been placed (ARG 63). Only the city of Prasiai belonged, during this period, to the Eleutherolakones (Paus. III. 21, 7; 24, 4; cf. ARG 64). By contrast, the island of Kythera, given by Augustus to Eurycles (Strabo VIII. 5, 3), which today is part of the prefecture of the Peiraeus, has been grouped with Laconia, to which it belonged in antiquity. The same is the case for the cities of the Eleutherolakones. These include, among other cities and areas, the important harbour of Gytheion, the habour of Boiai, Tainaron, which was refounded as Caenopolis, Thalamai, Oitylos and, of course, Asopos, located between Gytheion and Boiai '.
The majority of the inscriptions from Sparta dating to the Imperial period were found in the various systematic excavations carried out from the beginning of the twentieth century by the British School at Athens in the sanctuary of Artemis Orthia and in the area of the ancient theatre.
View or download the table of contents