221-240 of 917 Results  for:

  • Ancient Geography x
Clear all

Article

Chersonesus (1), Thracian peninsula  

Eugene N. Borza

A long, narrow peninsula forming the European side of the *Hellespont (Dardanelles). Running generally in an east–west direction, it connects the sea of Marmara with the Aegean. It was noted in antiquity for its fertility and for its strategic location as a crossing between Europe and Asia. Several Greek cities lay along the protected southern (Hellespontine) shore, leaving no doubt about their ability to control sea traffic through the straits. It was settled by Aeolian and Ionian Greeks in the 8th and 7th cents. bce. Private Athenian interest commenced in the late 7th cent., with settlers involved in both local agriculture and trade and in the growing Greek commerce with the Black (*Euxine) Sea. By the 5th cent. the Athenian state took an official interest in protecting the grain trade, and a number of Chersonese cities became tributary states in the Athenian empire (see delian league).

Article

Chersonesus (2), the Crimea/Tauric Chersonese  

David C. Braund

Chersonesus (2), the Crimea, or Tauric Chersonese, named after the local Tauri of its mountainous south-west. Through the Archaic period, Greeks established settlements around its coast, notably at *Chersonesus (3) and *Panticapaeum. The Crimea offered the relative security of a peninsular region, rich fisheries, fertile land, abundant salt, and every opportunity for trade by sea or with the hinterland. The eastern portion of the Crimea constituted half of the Bosporan kingdom (see bosporus (2)).

Article

Chersonesus (3), city in the southwestern Crimea  

David C. Braund

City situated in the SW Crimea, near modern Sevastopol'. Literary evidence (*Strabo, *Pliny (1), etc.) suggests that it was founded from *Heraclea (3) Pontica, south across the Black (*Euxine) Sea. Until recently it was agreed that Heracleot settlement began c.420 bce, on the site of an earlier, small Ionian (Milesian?) site. But recent archaeology has been taken to show that the Heracleot settlement dates from no later than c.525 bce. It also attests a vigorous trade with the south coast of the Black Sea, which continued into the Byzantine period, when Pope Martin (7th cent. ce), exiled to the city, mentioned ships bringing grain there in search of salt. Under the Principate it received a Roman garrison, which seems to have developed the defended harbour at nearby Charax (Ai-Todor), manned by Roman forces from the 1st cent. ce to the middle of the 3rd cent.

Article

Chios  

D. Graham J. Shipley

An important *Ionian*polis on the large Aegean island of the same name (842 sq. km.: 325 sq. mi.), some 7 km. (4½ mi.) from Asia Minor. *Thucydides (2) calls it the greatest polis of Ionia and its citizens among the wealthiest Greeks (8. 24. 4, 40.1). The north and north-west comprise pine-clad limestone mountains (up to 1,297 m.: 4,255 ft.) and infertile schists; on the softer rocks of the SE lowlands mastic trees were (and are) grown for their valuable gum; but the plain beside the large eastern bay has supported the main settlement in all periods. Chios controlled the neighbouring islets of Oinoussai and modern Psara (an important bronze age site). Ionic Greek was spoken, though there were Aeolian cultural influences. Literary figures included *Homer (supposedly), *Ion (2), and *Theopompus (3); there was a distinctive artistic tradition.Reputedly colonized from *Euboea in the 9th cent.

Article

Chythri  

Hector Catling

Chythri (mod. Kythrea), a small inland city of *Cyprus in a long-populated region, possibly the ‘Kitrusi’ of the Esarhaddon prism of 673/2 bce (an Assyrian text). 11th-cent. bce tombs give some credence to the supposed foundation by Chytrus, grandson of *Acamas. The largely unexcavated site (Ayios Dimitrianos) lies 14 km. (8½ mi.) NE of Nicosia, below Mt. Pentadaktylos on the northern fringe of the Mesaoria; it is close to the island's most abundant spring, Kephalovryso, whose waters were channelled to *Salamis (2)-Constantia, perhaps in Roman, certainly in Byzantine times. Syllabic texts come from a shrine of Aphrodite Paphia; an extramural sanctuary of Apollo Alygates is nearby at Voni. Inscriptions refer to a gymnasium; an over-life-size bronze statue of Septimius Severus is now in Nicosia.

Article

Cilicia  

George Ewart Bean and Stephen Mitchell

A region of S. *Asia Minor. The name was applied variously to regions at different periods but came ultimately to designate the eastern half of the south coast. The western portion (Cilicia Tracheia, Rugged Cilicia) is wild and mountainous, the eastern (Cilicia Pedias, Plain Cilicia) is rich plainland. Greek settlers brought with them the name of the Cilices, who were located by Homer in the northern Troad (Il. 6. 397), see troas. Their leader was *Mopsus the seer, whose name survived in the place-names Mopsuhestia and Mopsucrene and occurs as a personal name in later inscriptions. Identified partly or wholly with the Hilakku of Assyrian records and with the Egyptian Kelekesh, the Cilicians were subjects of the Assyrians in the 8th cent. bce. They were then ruled by a line of kings, at first independent then subject to the Persians, called Syennesis, whose palace was probably at *Tarsus.

Article

Cilician gates  

Stephen Mitchell

The pass through the *Taurus mountains which connected the central Anatolian plateau with the Cilician plain and with *Syria. In Roman times this was one of the key routes of the eastern part of the empire, carrying almost all the overland traffic heading for *Antioch (1) and the Syrian regions. By the time of Caracalla the road, which had been traversed by Cicero as proconsul of Cilicia, was known as the via Tauri, and, apart from the *via Sebaste, was the only route between the highlands and the south coast of Asia Minor that was suitable for wheeled traffic.

Article

Ciminius mons  

Edward Togo Salmon and D. W. R. Ridgway

A range of volcanic mountains rising to just over 900 m. (c.3,000 ft.), which separate southern from central Etruria. A crater lake (lacus Ciminius: Lago di Vico) nestles amongst them. Q. *Fabius Maximus Rullianus won fame by penetrating their awe-inspiring, thickly wooded slopes in 310 bce (Livy 9. 36–9). *Sutrium and *Nepete are keys to the region.

Article

Circeii  

Edward Togo Salmon and T. W. Potter

Circeii (mod. Circeo), a prominent mountain on the Tyrrhenian coast, south of Rome. A Latin colony (see ius latii) was established here in 393 bce, against the *Volsci, and polygonal walls survive. Later a *municipium, there are remains of the so-called sanctuary of Circe, another temple, and villas.

Article

Cirta  

William Nassau Weech, Brian Herbert Warmington, and R. J. A. Wilson

Cirta (mod. Constantine in Algeria), a hill-top fortress perched on a dramatic site commanding the gorge of the Ampsaga (Rhummel), was the capital of *Syphax and then of *Masinissa, who encouraged the settlement of Italian merchants, and linked Cirta to the ports of Rusicade (Skikda) and Chullu (Collo). A sanctuary of Baal and Tanit with over 800 Punic votive stelae mostly of the 2nd cent. bc, is the principal witness of this heavily Punicized *Numidian phase; the Numidian mausoleum at El-Khroub, 14 km. (8½ mi.) SE of Cirta, possibly that of Masinissa's son, Micipsa, shows by its silverware and Rhodian wine amphorae Numidian commercial contacts with the Greek Hellenistic world. *Jugurtha captured Cirta from Adherbal (112 bce) and massacred the Italian inhabitants. For help in overthrowing *Juba (1), P. *Sittius and his followers were granted Cirta and the surrounding country by Caesar (46 bce).

Article

Clastidium  

Edward Togo Salmon

Clastidium (mod. Casteggio), town near *Placentia in Cisalpine Gaul. Here in 222 bce the Roman consul M. *Claudius Marcellus (1) engaged in person and slew the Celtic enemy chieftain Viridomarus—the one certainly historical instance of *spolia opima.

Article

cleruchy  

Simon Hornblower

Cleruchy (κληρουχία), a special sort of Greek colony (see colonization, greek) in which the settlers kept their original citizenship and did not form a completely independent community. In Classical Greek history (see end of this article for the Hellenistic position) the term is confined to certain Athenian settlements founded on conquered territory (Greek and non-Greek) from the end of the 6th cent. bce, especially during the period of the *Delian League. It is often difficult to decide whether a settlement of the 5th cent. is a cleruchy, as ancient authors do not always distinguish cleruchies from other colonies (see apoikia), and because it seems that colonists did not forfeit their Athenian citizenship any more than did cleruchs. Perhaps in the 5th cent. ‘cleruchy’ was appropriate where (as at *Lesbos, Thuc. 3. 50) the original Greek inhabitants remained, ‘colony’ where they did not. (This does not work for 4th-cent. *Samos.

Article

Clitumnus  

Edward Togo Salmon

A river near Trebiae in Umbria, famous for the white sacrificial cattle on its banks (Verg. G. 2. 146). It flowed into the Tinia, and subsequently into the *Tiber. Shrines of the personified Clitumnus and other deities adorned its source (called Sacraria in the *itineraries), attracting numerous tourists (Plin.

Article

Clunia  

Simon J. Keay

A town in the territory of the Celtiberian Arevaci and later in Roman *Tarraconensis, lay 40 km. (25 mi.) north-west of Uxama (mod. Osma). It was a *conventus capital which had been granted municipal status (see municipium) under *Tiberius and was made a colonia (Clunia Sulpicia) by the future emperor *Galba.

Article

Clusium  

D. W. R. Ridgway

Clusium (Etr. Clevsin-, Chamars; mod. Chiusi), above the *via Cassia in the Val di Chiana, traditionally played an important role in early Roman history under *Porsenna; it did not pass into Roman hands until a comparatively late stage. Clusium was one of the twelve cities of Etruria (see etruscans), and one of the oldest in the north-east. The earliest finds are *Villanovan, the ossuaries developing in the orientalizing period into ‘canopic urns’ (i.e. images of the dead). One of the earliest of the numerous chamber tombs produced the François vase (see pottery, greek), and a number are painted. The city was an important centre of stone-carving and, from the 5th cent. bce, of decorative bronze-working. Its territory has produced an exceptionally large number of Etruscan inscriptions (CIE475–3306). A man of Clusium, Arruns, invited the Gauls to cross the Alps into Italy (Livy 5. 33).

Article

Colchis  

David C. Braund

The triangular region on the east coast of the Black (*Euxine) Sea, fenced around by the mountains of the *Caucasus range. Colchis consisted of a coastal wetland, crossed by many rivers (see phasis), and a more elevated and fertile hinterland. Its extent was variously defined in antiquity, but the corners of its triangle were regularly located near Dioscurias (mod. Sukhumi) to the north-west, near Apsarus (mod. Gonio) or *Trapezus to the south-west and near Sarapanis (mod. Shorapani) inland to the east, towards *Iberia (2).In myth, Colchis was the destination of Phrixus on the Golden Ram, of which the fleece was the object of the *Argonauts' quest. Colchis’ king was Aeëtes, whose daughter *Medea fled with *Jason. Local kings traced their ancestry to Aeëtes, whose name remained current in the region throughout antiquity.From the 6th cent. bce the coast of Colchis was settled by Greeks, sometimes described as Milesians (see miletus).

Article

Collatia  

Edward Togo Salmon

Collatia, in *Latium about 16 km. (10 mi.) east of Rome (mod. Lunghezza?). Already under Roman control in regal times, it played a role in the Tarquin saga (see tarquinius collatinus, l.). Cicero (Leg. agr. 2. 96) records it as a village, Pliny (HN 3. 68) as non-existent. The via Collatina, however, long continued in use.

Article

Colonia Agrippinensis  

John Frederick Drinkwater

Colonia Agrippinensis (mod. Cologne), command-centre of the Rhine frontier (see rhenus), and one of the most important cities of the western Roman empire.In 38 bce Agrippa transferred the *Ubii to the left bank of the Rhine. Around 9 bce their capital, Oppidum Ubiorum, was chosen to accommodate an altar for the imperial (*ruler-cult), and was therefore renamed Ara Ubiorum. This probably signifies the Roman intention to make the city the capital of a new province of Germany. About the same time two legions were stationed close by. However, the defeat of P. *Quinctilius Varus returned the frontier to the Rhine, and the legions were subsequently transferred. The city was henceforth capital of Lower Germany. In 50 Claudius founded a veteran colony (Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensium) in honour of *Iulia Agrippina his wife. A naval base, headquarters of the Rhine fleet, was established a little upstream. The colonists and the Ubii merged rapidly, and the latter adhered only unwillingly to *C.

Article

Colonos  

Charles William John Eliot and Robin Osborne

A small Attic *deme 2½ km. (1½ mi.) north of the Acropolis, near Plato's *Academy. The deme seems to have been particularly rich in sanctuaries of gods (*Poseidon Hippios, *Athena Hippia, and probably *Demeter and the Eumenides, see erinyes) and of heroes (*Theseus, *Adrastus (1), *Pirithous, *Oedipus), although we know of these only from literary sources (Soph. OC, Paus. 1. 30. 4). The sanctuary of Poseidon may have been a gathering place for members of the Athenian cavalry (cf. Ar. Eq. 551 ff.), a group whose commitment to *democracy was often felt to be suspect, and it was at Colonos in 411 bce that the assembly was held which voted democracy out of existence (Thuc. 8. 67); see four hundred. The natural beauty of the place, now almost entirely lacking, was lovingly described by Colonos’ most famous demesman, *Sophocles (1) (OC 670 ff.

Article

Comitium  

Ian Archibald Richmond, Donald Emrys Strong, and Janet DeLaine

The chief place of political assembly in republican Rome (Varro, Ling. 5. 155; Livy 5. 55) occupying an area north of the *forum Romanum at the foot of the Capitoline. It is associated with nine levels of paving from the late 7th to the mid-1st cent. bce, after which it ceased to exist as a recognizable monument owing to Caesar's reorganization of the area, although individual elements remained into the empire. The natural topography and the archaeological evidence suggest it was an irregular triangular space, eventually flanked by three platforms: the Rostra to the south, the praetorian tribunal (whence justice was administered) to the east, and the Graecostasis (place where foreign embassies awaited reception by the Senate) to the west. Although in the mid-2nd cent. the rostra was replaced by a curved stepped structure, the rest of the Comitium retained its original form. The numerous monuments and statues which filled it have perished, except for the altar, truncated column, and archaic cippus (a stone marker), bearing a ritual inscription (ILS 4913), sealed below a black marble pavement (lapis niger) originally dating to the Caesarian alterations and subsequently incorporated into the Augustan paving.