The way in which the demes and trittyes of Attika were grouped for the formation of the Kleisthenic tribes is an important historical problem. The ten coastal demes lying between Athens and Sounion constituted the three coastal trittyes for three of the Athenian tribes, and in concentrating his study on these coastal demes Professor Eliot has not only made a substantial contribution to our knowledge of ancient Athens but has come to important conclusions about Kleisthenes' constitution of the tribes.The research for this book was done in Athens. Professor Eliot was therefore able to make repeated visits to each area in order to study the terrain and the ancient remains. He could examine the finds for each deme, and he had access to all the excavation reports, including the accounts of the early travellers, collectors, and excavators.
Professor Eliot handles this variety of evidence with a sure hand. He examines each item of evidence in its own context and refrains from a general assessment until all of the items can be viewed in relation to each other. To join Professor Eliot in the search for clues in the ancient literature, read the travellers' notes, watch the piecing together of the epigraphical remains, and walk the actual ground in his company is to share in intellectual pursuits of a very high order.