The Areopagus council was the most respected court in Classical Athens. It had jurisdiction in trials for intentional homicide, intentional wounding, poisoning, and arson. The Areopagus could launch investigations into crimes on its own initiative or at the command of the assembly and exercised surveillance over religious matters. The assembly might also delegate specific tasks to the Areopagus. There is no reason to think that the Areopagus acquired additional powers during the Persian Wars later removed by the reforms of Ephialtes. During the Roman period, the Areopagus was the leading political body alongside the council and assembly, and the herald of the Areopagus one of the most prestigious offices.The Areopagus was the most respected political institution in Classical Athens and retained its prestige down to the Roman Empire. Lycurgus(Leoc. 12) called it the finest example of justice in all of Greece. Demosthenes(23.65) claims that “in this tribunal alone no defendant who has been convicted or accuser who has lost has even proved that his case was wrongly decided.” .
Caesarea Maritima was founded (22–10/9 bce) by Herod (1) the Great. Named after Caesar Augustus, Herod’s patron, it served as the administrative capital and main port of his kingdom of Judaea, later the Roman province of Syria-Palaestina. Herod’s building projects are described in detail by Flavius Josephus (AJ 15.331–341; BJ 1.408–415). Many of its structures have been uncovered in the archaeological excavations carried out at the site since the 1950s. In 71 ce, Caesarea became a Roman colony and Latin became the official language. A praetorium for the financial procurator provinciae was erected there by Vespasian and Titus in 77/78 ce. In the 2nd–4th centuries it was a prosperous city where Gentiles, Jews, Samaritans, and Christians lived side by side. It was a centre of intellectual activity.Caesarea (2) in Palaestina (Qisri, Qisrin in the Rabbinic sources), also known as Caesarea Maritima, was founded (22–10/9bce) by .
Megarian colony founded in 685 bce (so Euseb. Chron.) on the Asiatic side of the *Bosporus (1) opposite Byzantium (mod. Kadıköy). It was called the city of the blind (Hdt. 4. 144) because its founders missed the uncolonized site of *Byzantium, with which it was subsequently closely linked. Apart from stray tombs few ancient remains have survived.
Constantinople was founded by *Constantine I on the site of *Byzantium in 324 ce, shortly after his victory over *Licinius near by. There are hardly any sources before the 6th cent., and these are already full of myths: e.g. that Constantine started to build at Troy and brought the *Palladium from Rome. When he claimed to ‘bestow an eternal name’ he probably meant his own! The city was styled ‘New Rome’ from the start, but it is not likely that Constantine had any thought of superseding Rome. He was simply building his own tetrarchic capital: the New Rome motif took on new significance after the sack of Rome (410) and the disappearance of the western empire.Though not such an obvious site as has often been claimed (being vulnerable from its hinterland and deficient in drinking-water), the new foundation grew rapidly in size and importance, though it did not become a regular imperial residence till the end of the century. By the reign of *Valens (373) an elaborate system of *aqueducts and conduits was installed to provide sufficient water for the growing population.
Tarsus, a native Cilician (see cilicia) town with a long prehistoric past, which later claimed *Triptolemus, *Perseus(1), and above all *Heracles as its founder. It was capital of the Cilician kings and of the Persian satraps of the region (see persia; satrap), but it issued coins in its own name with Greek and *Aramaic legends and with predominantly Persian types during the 5th and 4th cents. bce. It was renamed Antioch on the Cydnus and issued coins in this name under *Antiochus (4) IV between 175 and 164; the old name prevailed later and is still used today. Annexed to Cilicia by *Pompey it was granted freedom and immunity (see free cities; immunitas) by Antony (M. *Antonius(2)) and was capital of the province of Cilicia from c. ce 72. The city's prosperity owed much to the linen industry and it was a notable centre of commerce. During the 1st cent. bce it was the centre of a famous philosophical school and was the birthplace of St *Paul.
Thamugadi (modern Timgad, Algeria), a settlement in *Numidia 32 km. (20 mi.) east of *Lambaesis, is one of the few almost totally excavated towns in the Roman empire. Founded in 100ce by *Trajan as a veteran colony,1 the original town was designed on a very regular orthogonal street grid; cardo and decumanus intersect at right angles, curia, basilica, and forum were placed at this intersection, and smaller streets run parallel to the two main roads. Thamugadi had fourteen public baths and a theatre; public-spirited citizens gave it a market and (in the 4th century) a library. When it outgrew the original walled square (which measured 200 Roman ft. each side, making it a 12.5-ha. (30-acre) settlement), an enormous Capitoline temple was built in the second half of the 2nd century outside the walls (which were largely dismantled as the city grew). African cults, however, with thinly Romanizing veneer, flourished: especially numerous are stelai (see stele) to Baal-Saturn, worshipped in another extramural temple.
Thessalonica, a city of *Macedonia, founded by *Cassander, who synoecized the small towns at the head of the Thermaic Gulf (see synoecism); perhaps on the site of Therme (Strabo 7 fr. 24). It was named after Cassander's wife. It stood at the junction of the Morava–Axius route from the Danube basin with the route from the Adriatic to Byzantium (the later *via Egnatia). An open roadstead sheltered by *Chalcidice, Thessalonica became the chief Macedonian port, displacing *Pella when its harbour was silted up. Strongly fortified, it withstood a Roman siege but surrendered after the battle of *Pydna. It became the capital of the Roman province of Macedonia (see provincia), and it served as Pompey's base in the Civil War. As a ‘*free city’ and as the main station on the *via Egnatia, it enjoyed great prosperity, to which its prolific *coinage bears witness.