They alone held the two offices, those of polemarch and archon, which were instituted during the 8th century B.C. to restrict the powers of the kings.
630 F), it became the custom for the soldiers to sing them round the camp fires at night, the polemarch rewarding the best singer with a piece of flesh.
Aristotle's Constitution of Athens speaks of five stages: (i) the institution of the polemarch who took over the military duties of the king; (2) the institution of the archon to relieve the king of his civil duties; (3) the tenure of office was reduced to ten years (?
The change was clearly effected by the devolution of the military and civil powers of the king to the polemarch and the archon, while the archon basileus (or king) retained control of state religion.
109) states that, in 490, before the battle of Marathon, the polemarch was chosen by lot.
If this be true, it follows that the office of polemarch must have lost its military importance, which was not the case, inasmuch as the polemarch at Marathon gave the casting vote in favour of immediate battle.
He was treated with equal friendliness by Antigonus's son Demetrius, who made him polemarch of Thespiae, and by Antigonus Gonatas, at whose court he died at the age of 104.
It is stated that he first ingratiated himself with the people by his liberal conduct when Polemarch, in which capacity he had to exact the fines imposed by the law.