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Article

Aulis  

John Buckler

Small Greek city near *Tanagra, on a rocky peninsula between two bays. Its most famous monument is the temple of Artemis and its neighbouring buildings. The best harbour in northern *Boeotia, Aulis is most famous as the point of assembly for the Achaean expedition against Troy. Here *Iphigenia was sent to be sacrificed for a safe voyage of the fleet, a theme developed by *Euripides. *Hesiod (Op. 651 ff.) sailed thence to *Euboea. Strabo (9. 2. 3) states that an Aeolian fleet sailed from it to Asia. *Agesilaus attempted to sacrifice there in 396 bce, before his expedition to Asia (Xen. Hell. 3. 4. 4), but the Boeotians interrupted the ceremony. It was the principal base for *Epaminondas' unsuccessful naval ambitions in 364 bce. In 312 bce*Antigonus (1)'s admiral Ptolemaeus docked 150 ships there in the conflict with *Cassander (Diod.

Article

Bassae  

Richard Allan Tomlinson

Bassae, in SW Arcadia, near Phigaleia, the site of one of the best-preserved Greek temples. This was dedicated to *Apollo the Helper (Epikourios). *Pausanias (3) says it was the work of *Ictinus, possible (with some local influence) but unprovable. It dates to the latter part of the 5th cent. bce with an interruption due to Spartan occupation of the area during the *Peloponnesian War. The greater part of the temple is in the local limestone, with carved decoration applied in marble. The *orientation, followed also by its predecessor, was towards the north instead of the east, and the early sunlight, instead of entering through the main doorway, was admitted to the adytum through an opening in the eastern side-wall. Ten engaged Ionic columns decorated the side walls of the cella internally, with a single central Corinthian column—one of the earliest of its kind, and one of the most beautiful (see orders)—between the cella and the adytum.

Article

Brauron  

Robin Osborne

Brauron, site of a sanctuary of *Artemis on the east coast of *Attica at the mouth of the river Erasinos. It is included in *Philochorus' list of twelve townships united by *Theseus (FGrH 328 F 94). Archaeological evidence indicates human presence in the area of the sanctuary and the acropolis above it from neolithic times onwards, and there is an important late Helladic cemetery nearby. In the sanctuary itself there is a continuous tradition from protogeometric on, with a temple built in the 6th cent. (Phot. Lexicon, entry under Βραυρώνια) and an architecturally innovative pi-shaped *stoa with dining-rooms built in the later part of the 5th cent. Flooding in the early 3rd cent. bce led to the abandonment of the site. Some traditions associate the Pisistratids (see pisistratus; hippias(1); *Hipparchus (1)) with Brauron (Phot., as above), or with the local residential centre called Philaidai which lay a short distance inland from the sanctuary (Pl. Hipparch.

Article

Ellen E. Rice

A Dodecanese island lying between *Cos and Leros to the west of the *Halicarnassus peninsula. Calymnos together with nearby islands whose identity is disputed are probably the ‘Kalydnai isles’ mentioned in Homer (Il. 2. 677). Caves and tombs reveal neolithic and Mycenaean occupation. The main Mycenaean citadel was probably at Perakastro near the modern capital Pothia. Herodotus (7. 99) states that Calymnos was later colonized by Dorians from Epidaurus. In historical times, Calymnian ships fought with the Carians during the Persian War (see artemisia (1)), and the island appears in the Athenian *tribute lists. At the end of the 3rd cent. bce it was absorbed by Cos and the population became *demes of the Coan state.

A sanctuary of *Apollo and theatre were found at the site of Christ of Jerusalem near Damos in the southern half of the island. Finds show that the cult existed there from archaic times onwards, and nearby cemeteries and walls attest ancient occupation in this area. The other main centre of occupation was around Vathy in the east, as an impressive fortification circuit wall at Embolas shows. There are Roman and Byzantine remains throughout the island as well as on the islet of Telendos to the west.

Article

The classical world witnessed many forms of landscape change in its physical geography, mostly due to longer-term geological and climatological processes, whilst only a minority were due purely to human action. The physical environment of Greek and Roman societies saw alterations through earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, sea-level fluctuations, erosion, and alluviation.

Already in Greek antiquity, Plato (Critias iii) observed how the Aegean physical landscape was being worn down over time as erosion from the uplands filled the lowland plains. Indeed, the Mediterranean region is amongst the most highly erodible in the world.1 However, scientific research in the field known as geoarchaeology has revealed a more complex picture than a continuous degradation of the ancient countryside.2

To uncover a more realistic picture of Mediterranean landscape change, the element of timescales proves to be central, and here the framework developed by the French historian Fernand Braudel3 provides the appropriate methodology. Braudel envisaged the Mediterranean past as created through the interaction of dynamic forces operating in parallel but on different “wavelengths” of time: the Short Term (observable within a human lifetime or less), the Medium Term (centuries or more, not clearly cognisant to contemporaries), and the Long Term (up to as much as thousands or millions of years, not at all in the awareness of past human agents).

Article

Delos  

R. W. V. Catling

Delos, a small island (3 sq. km.: 1.2 sq. mi.) between Myconos and Rheneia, regarded in antiquity as the centre of the *Cyclades. Composed of gneiss and granite, it is barren and almost waterless and was incapable of supporting its inhabitants.

Delos, the only place to offer shelter to *Leto, was the birthplace of *Apollo and *Artemis, as recounted in the Archaic Homeric Hymn to Apollo. This was the basis of its historical importance. It was also the burial-place of the *Hyperboreans. *Anius was its heroic founder, son and priest of Apollo, later associated with the Trojan cycle.

Early bronze age occupation on Mt. Cynthus was succeeded by a Mycenaean settlement on the low ground later occupied by the sanctuary. Two Mycenaean graves were later identified as the tombs of the Hyperborean maidens (the Theke and the Sema). Continuity of cult into historic times is unlikely.

Article

Delphi  

Catherine A. Morgan, Simon Hornblower, and Antony Spawforth

(See also Delphic oracle; Pythian Games). Delphi, one of the four great *panhellenic*sanctuaries (the others are *Isthmia, *Olympia, *Nemea), is on the lower southern slopes of *Parnassus, c.610 m. (2,000 ft.) above the gulf of *Corinth.There was an extensive Mycenaean village in the *Apollo sanctuary at the end of the bronze age; the area was resettled probably during the 10th cent., and the first dedications (tripods and figurines) appear c.800. The settlement was probably relocated after the first temple was built (late 7th cent.). The first archaeological links are with Corinth and Thessaly. The 6th cent. Homeric *hymn to Apollo says Apollo chose *Cretans for his Delphic priests, and early Cretan metal dedications have been found, but Cretan material could have come via Corinth, and Cretan priests may have been invented because Crete was distant i.e. this is a way of stressing the end of local domination. The first .

Article

Ephyra  

W. M. Murray

Ephyra (also Cichyrus: Strabo 7. 7. 5), a city in western Epirus near the mouth of the *Acheron river. Here *Neoptolemus (1) landed on his return from Troy (Pind. Nem. 7. 37–9) and *Odysseus came to gather poison for his arrows (Od. 1. 259–62). The ancient city is marked by a circuit-wall of three phases at modern Xylokastro. Some 600 m. (650 yds.) to the south, at Agios Ioannis, a heavily built complex of Hellenistic date incorporating an underground chamber was identified by its excavator with the ‘oracle of the dead’ (nekyomanteion) of Herodotus 5.

Article

Simon Hornblower

Labraunda, sanctuary of *Zeus Labraundos in *Caria, between *Mylasa (to which it was linked by a sacred way) and *Amyzon, occupying a mountainous and beautiful position. (Hdt. 5. 119 speaks of Zeus Stratios but the inscriptions mostly have Zeus Labraundos, a part-Greek part-indigenous deity; cf. *Sinuri.) The 4th-cent. bce Hecatomnid *satraps built lavishly at the sanctuary, laying it out afresh (see idrieus; mausolus) and their well-carved dedications can still be seen on the site. Other inscriptions, ILabraunda nos. 40 (= RO no. 55) and 42, illustrate the political activities and policies of *Mausolus and *Pixodarus. Thereafter there was a gap in building activity until Roman imperial times, but from the Hellenistic period there is an extensive dossier concerning the interesting figure of Olympichus, who was first a general of *Seleucus (2) II and then became in effect an independent operator, like Mausolus before him. But Olympichus had to obey the instructions of, without being formally subordinate to, *Philip (3) V of Macedon.

Article

Lemnos  

Eugene N. Borza

Lemnos, an island of the northern *Aegean Sea, about halfway between the Chalcidic peninsulas (see chalcidice) and the coast of *Asia Minor. Its volcanic activity lay behind the myth that it was the foundry of *Hephaestus, although recent studies suggest that Lemnos' fumarole fields with their smoke, vapours, and burnt earth, rather than actual volcanic cones and eruptions, have characterized the island's geology during human history. Lemnos had an important bronze age culture, and appears in *Homer's Iliad as a provisioning station for the Achaeans at *Troy. The early population was non-Greek. A late 6th-cent. bce inscription in the native Lemnian language (IG 12. 8. 1), now partially deciphered, bears affinities to the *Etruscan language. The earliest Greek inscription is dated to c.500, by which time Lemnos began to receive Athenian colonists led by the younger *Miltiades acting in his capacity as ruler of the Thracian *Chersonesus (1).

Article

Lindus  

Ellen E. Rice

Lindus was the most important of the three independent Dorian cities of *Rhodes until the *synoecism with *Ialysus and *Camirus created the federal Rhodian state in 408/7 bce. The city occupies a prominent headland with good harbours on the central SE side of Rhodes, and controlled most of the southern half of the island. Early cemeteries attest neolithic and Mycenaean occupation (see mycenaean civilization), and Lindus appears with the other Rhodian cities in *Homer (Il. 2. 656). In the 7th cent. Lindian colonists founded *Gela in Sicily and *Phaselis in Lycia. One of the tyrants governing Lindus in the early 6th cent. was Cleobulus, one of the ‘*Seven Sages’, whose so-called tomb (a round pre-Hellenic structure) lies on a nearby headland. Lindus appears in the Athenian *tribute lists.The important cult of *Athena Lindia existed from at least the 10th cent.

Article

Olympia  

Catherine A. Morgan, Simon Hornblower, and Antony Spawforth

Olympia, *panhellenic sanctuary of *Zeus located in hill country beside the river *Alpheus in *Elis.

There is evidence of extensive prehistoric settlement in the vicinity including a large EH tumulus in the Altis which remained visible into the early iron age, MH houses, and Mycenaean tombs (see mycenaean civilization) in the vicinity of the archaeological museum.

Votives (tripods and figurines) in an ash layer in the Altis indicate cult activity at least from the late 10th cent. (perhaps with an early ash altar). The first Olympiad was traditionally dated 776 bce (see time-reckoning). According to *Pindar, *Heracles founded the *Olympian Games; an alternative tradition attributed the foundation to *Pelops after his victory over Oenomaus (see olympian games). A sequence of wells on the eastern side of the sanctuary beginning in the late 8th cent. served visitors.

Article

Vladimir F. Stolba

Panskoye I is one of the most prominent and best-studied settlements in the rural territory of Chersonesus on the Tarkhankut Peninsula (north-western Crimea). Founded in the late 5th century bce as a fortified outpost (tetrapyrgia) protecting the south-eastern frontiers of Olbian territory, around 360 bce it was subjugated to Tauric Chersonesus, a close relationship which it maintained until the settlement’s catastrophic destruction around 270 bce. In 1969–1994, a significant part of the settlement and associated necropolis were investigated by the Tarkhankut Archaeological Expedition of the Leningrad Institute of Archaeology, Academy of Sciences of the USSR (since 1991, Institute for the History of Material Culture, Russian Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg). The settlement’s stratigraphy and size, as well as its unique structure and layout, representing an agglomeration of compactly placed free-standing farmsteads, adjoining house blocks, and monumental buildings accommodating more than one household, distinguish it from other rural settlements in the area. Its rich and original material culture shows a remarkable intermingling of various cultural components, both Greek and non-Greek.

Article

Pelion  

Henry Dickinson Westlake

Pelion (τὸ Πήλιον ὄρος), a mountain of over 1,615 m. (5,300 ft.) in Thessalian Magnesia (see thessaly). It was the reputed home of the centaur Chiron (see centaurs). The mountain system of Pelion with that of *Ossa cut off the plain of *Pelasgiotis from the Aegean.

Article

Ptoion  

John Buckler

Ptoion, sanctuary of *Apollo located in the territory of *Acraephnium in *Boeotia. The ruins of the oracle on Mt. Ptoon consist of the remains of a temple, a grotto and spring, and various sacred buildings. Excavations have found rich dedications of Archaic date, especially statuary. The cult dates at least from the 8th cent. bce, and was marked by a male prophet who gave responses in a state of *ecstasy. Apollo was associated with a female goddess or heroine. *Pindar (fr. 51b; Paian 7. f.) and *Herodotus (1) (8. 135) constitute the earliest literary evidence for the origin of the cult. The sanctuary, but not the oracle, flourished until the third century ce.

Article

rivers  

Brian Campbell

Ancient peoples lived in close proximity to the environment and experienced at first hand natural phenomena and landscape features that, while often helpful or indeed essential to life, were also potentially threatening. The land and its produce were crucial to survival, and in a predominantly rural world dotted with towns and cities, many people will have observed at first hand mountains, rivers, and the relationship of landscape to available space for settlement. Rivers expressed the local community’s link with the landscape and sustained river valley communities by providing water for drinking, washing, irrigation, and watering of animals, as well as offering routes of communication. Many rivers were also a fruitful source of fish, especially if the water was clean, such as the high-quality fish from the Pamisos in Messenia (Paus. 4.34.1–2). But of course rivers could also flood a settlement or sweep it away. In addition, popular reaction to the environment around the local area was often influenced by strong cultural and religious feelings associated with landscape. In this context, it is not surprising that some literary works were exclusively devoted to natural features of the landscape, for example describing rivers, their character, history, and legendary associations. Mythology helped to explain natural phenomena. Furthermore, the theme of rivers in various guises appears repeatedly in the work of geographers, ethnographers, teachers, poets, and historians. Philosophers were also interested in the curiosities of riverine conditions, which, by their timeless quality yet constant movement, seemingly offered a comment on the human condition.

Article

Rogozen  

Simon Hornblower

Rogozen, Bulgarian site in ancient *Thrace (see also religion, thracian), at which important finds of beautiful 4th-cent. bce silver and silver-gilt vessels were made in 1986. Some carry Greek inscriptions (e.g. the name of *Cersobleptes) and depict Greek mythological scenes.

Article

James Roy

Stymphalus, *polis of NE *Arcadia, situated in a long, narrow, enclosed upland basin. The basin, with no outward surface drainage, floods and produces a lake of varying size, famous in antiquity as the home of the man-eating Stymphalian birds killed by *Heracles. An older settlement (not securely located) was replaced in the 4th cent. bce by a fortified, orthogonally planned, town on the north shore of the lake. Stymphalus' limited resources gave it only modest political influence. By the 2nd cent. ce Stymphalus, like neighbouring Alea, was linked to the Argolid (see argos(1)) rather than Arcadia.

Article

Richard Hunter

Symplegades, the ‘Clashing Rocks’ which, according to legend, guarded the entrance at the *Bosporus (1) to the Black Sea (see euxine); they are also regularly called ‘Dark (Kyaneai) Rocks’ (first at Hdt. 4. 85. 1 and Soph. Ant. 966). They ceased clashing together when *Jason (1)'s ship, the Argo (see Argonauts) succeeded in passing between them. The name ‘Symplegades’ occurs first in *Euripides; *Pindar speaks of ‘rocks that run together’ (Pyth. 4. 208–9). They were presumably originally identified with the Planktai, ‘Wandering Rocks’, which the Homeric *Circe (see homer) says were safely navigated by the Argo with Hera's help (Od. 12. 59–72), but these were later sited in the western Mediterranean (usually in the Aeolian islands near Sicily; see aeoliae insulae) and distinguished from the Symplegades. *Apollonius (1) of Rhodes has a marvellous description of the Argo's passage through the Symplegades (Arg.

Article

Radcliffe G. Edmonds III

Depictions of the underworld, in ancient Greek and Roman textual and visual sources, differ significantly from source to source, but they all draw on a common pool of traditional mythic motifs. These motifs, such as the realm of Hades and its denizens, the rivers of the underworld, the paradise of the blessed dead, and the places of punishment for the wicked, are developed and transformed through all their uses throughout the ages, depending upon the aims of the author or artist depicting the underworld. Some sources explore the relation of the world of the living to that of the dead through descriptions of the location of the underworld and the difficulties of entering it. By contrast, discussions of the regions within the underworld and existence therein often relate to ideas of afterlife as a continuation of or compensation for life in the world above. All of these depictions made use of the same basic set of elements, adapting them in their own ways to describe the location of, the entering into, and the regions within the underworld.