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Early Settlement and Configuration of the Archaic poleis

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Chapter Summary

Before considering the Epicnemidian cities in the Archaic era, it is necessary to return to the role played by the ethnos in structuring Locrian political organisation in the Archaic era. An extremely ancient supraterritorial organisation which certainly recognised the importance of the ethne, perhaps before the consolidation of the poleis, was the Amphictyony of Anthele, based at its sanctuary of Demeter beside the strategic pass at Thermopylae. In any case, the important role of the ethnos that, with time, was giving way to the cities, although without being eclipsed entirely must have left its imprint on the earliest times of Eastern Locris. This chapter analyses the coastal and inland sites from west to east. The first place known is Alpenus or Alponus. The other major centre of Epicnemidian Locris is the city of Thronium which, as Strabo asserted and modern observations confirm, was some thirty stades from Scarpheia.

Keywords: Archaic era; Epicnemidian Locris; Poleis; Thronium



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