- D. Graham J. Shipley
ExtractSamos, an important *polis on the large Aegean island of the same name (476 sq. km.), only 1.8 km. from Asia Minor. Though western Samos is dominated by Mt. Kerkis (1, 433 m.; ancient Cerceteus) and the centre by Mt. Karvounis (1, 153 m.)—whose ancient name (Ampelus) implies viticulture—Samos has arable slopes and coastal plains, and was considered fertile. Wheat was grown in the *peraea (mainland territory) in Asia Minor, possibly by a serf population. Exports included olive oil and Samian Earth (a clay used in fulling); Samian transport *amphorae are a distinct type.The city was in the south-eastern lowlands, at modern Pythagorio (or Tigani); 8 km. to the west along a sacred road, at the site of a bronze age cult, lay the *Heraion or sanctuary of Hera, the city's patron goddess. Both sites have Mycenaean remains. Samos was reputedly Carian (see caria) before *Ionians arrived, perhaps in the 10th cent.
- Ancient Geography