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date: 31 October 2020


  • D. W. R. Ridgway


Apoikia, ‘a settlement far from home, a colony’ (LSJ), and hence a Greek community regarded as distinct from the kind of trading-post conventionally known as an *emporion. In effect, an apoikia may be defined as a *polis established abroad by a polis (or *mētropolis: ‘mother city’) at home: the official processes required the appointment of a leader/founder, and are well described (for Sicily) in the early chapters of Thuc. 6. The development of the polis at home in Greece coincided chronologically, and clearly interacted conceptually, with the colonizing movement that was in progress between c.734 and 580 bce. Given the continuing importance of trade to the main colonizing cities, it follows that the distinction between apoikia and emporion is in some cases more apparent than real. Certain apoikiai could well have been considered in effect as emporia first and poleis second; and the sheer size and population-density of at least one early emporion, *Pithecusae, seemingly established on a purely ad hoc basis, soon brought about a degree of social organization that might reasonably be expected of a ‘true’ apoikia.


  • Greek and Roman Archaeology

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