Messenia

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Messenia

(mĕsē`nēə), ancient region of SW Greece, in the Peloponnesus and corresponding to the modern nome of Messinías. Excavation has revealed an important center of Mycenaean culture at PylosPylos
, ancient harbor, Messenia, SW Greece, on a bay of the Ionian Sea. Excavations have revealed a great Mycenaean palace of the 13th cent. B.C., perhaps the dwelling of King Nestor.
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 dating from the 13th cent. B.C. From the 8th cent. B.C. the Messenians were engaged in a series of revolts against expanding Sparta. After the First Messenian War the Spartans annexed (c.700 B.C.) the eastern part of Messenia. With the Second Messenian War the remaining inhabitants were reduced (7th cent. B.C.) to helots. The Third Messenian War (464–459 B.C.) was a failure for Messenia, but very costly to Sparta. The battle of LeuctraLeuctra
, village of ancient Greece, in Boeotia, 7 mi (11.3 km) SW of Thebes. There the Spartans were defeated (371 B.C.) by the Thebans under Epaminondas. A brilliant tactical success, the battle also dealt a severe blow to Spartan hegemony.
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 (371 B.C.) freed Messenia, and Messene was founded (c.369 B.C.) as the capital. The region gave its name to Messina, Sicily, because of an influx of Messenian colonists (c.490 B.C.).

Bibliography

See C. A. Roebuck, A History of Messenia from 369 to 146 B.C. (1941); The Minnesota Messenia Expedition, ed. by W. A. McDonald and G. R. Rapp (1972).

Messenia

 

(Messinia), the name of a region in ancient Greece, in the southwestern Peloponnesus, and of a modern nomos. According to legend, it was inhabited by the Leleges. Homer describes it as the kingdom of the legendary Nestor, with its capital at Pilos, where many remains of the Aegean culture have been preserved. As a result of the Messenian Wars, Messenia came under Spartan rule. It regained its independence in 369 B.C., after Epaminondas’ victory over Sparta. That year Messene was founded as the capital of the region. In the first century B.C., Messenia was incorporated into the Roman province of Achaea.

Messenia

the southwestern area of the Peloponnese in S Greece
References in periodicals archive ?
Further coastal explorations followed as I drove north on the pleasant highway circling the Messenian Gulf, stopping briefly in Koroni, a very attractive small port with a citadel built by Venetians and Turks, and then stopping for a few days in Methoni, further west.
By the end of the eighth century, the Spartans had spread the helot system from Laconia into the Messenian plain through a series of long wars that enabled them to destroy whatever state existed there.
(38) On 25 May 1821 (which coincided with Emerson's eighteenth birthday; he was completing his senior year at Harvard College) the Messenian Senate of Calamata made an appeal to the people of the United States "for support and recognition" in the following terms: We are drawn toward you by a just sympathy; since it is in your land that Liberty has fixed her abode, and by you that she is prized as by our fathers.
Thus, for example, Pausanias reports the story that during the second Messenian war, in the mid-seventh century B.C., women celebrating a festival of Demeter in Aigila, Lakonia, attacked the rebel Aristomenes and his men with the knives and spits that they used to slaughter and roast the sacrificial victims.(42)
Compare the similar oracle given to the Messenian Aristomenes (Parke and Wormell, II, p.
Greek elegiac poet, author of stirring poetry on military themes supposedly composed to help Sparta win the Second Messenian War.
MUSIDORUS'plan to elope with the Princess Pamela requires the removal of her rustic guardians, the chief of whom, Dametas, is lured away by the false promise of treasure buried deep beneath a ~box of cypress with the name of the valiant Aristomenes graven upon it'.(1) The identity of this Aristomenes has been the subject of considerable debate.(2) Friedrich Brie suggested in 1918 that Sidney had derived the name (and some of the surrounding detail) from Pausanias' description of the Messenian hero of the struggle with Sparta.(3) More recent scholars have cited Alciati, Apuleius, and Pindar as potential sources.(4)
As Spartans could not intermarry with the surrounding Helot or Messenian slave class or outsiders, and were only allowed clandestine conjugal visits, while also suffering increasing casualties from endemic conflict, this was a recipe for demographic disaster.
Tim, the chair of Holmfirth Writers' Group, has written 'Zeus of Ithome' about a fictional slave's struggle during the Messenian revolt against the Spartans in Greece during the fourth century BC.
As Pericles had suggested before the war, the Athenians could also fortify a base, whether at Methone (while he was still alive), at Pylos (after his death), or elsewhere in Sparta, to support a revolt of the Helots, with essential aid from the Messenian exiles at Naupactus (1.142, 2.25, 4.3-15).
If this is indeed the case, it comes as no surprise that Nino Luraghi's masterly chapter on "Messenian Ethnicity and the Free Messenians" provides the most forceful example of what ethnic politics brought to the map of the Peloponnese.
ABSTRACT: This paper approaches the issue of the messenian diaspora at different historical moments as a basic mechanism in the development of the messenian identity.