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Neapolis(nēăp`əlĭs) [Gr.,=new city], name of many cities in ancient Greek and Roman times. The most important is the modern NaplesNaples,
Ital. Napoli, city (1991 pop. 1,067,365), capital of Campania and of Naples prov., S central Italy, on the Bay of Naples, an arm of the Tyrrhenian Sea. It is a major seaport, with shipyards, and a commercial, industrial, and tourist center.
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(Russian, Neapol’), an ancient city mentioned in the Chersonesus decree of the second century B.C. and in the Geography of Strabo as one of the Scythian royal fortifications in the Crimea. Neapolis probably was located in the southeastern outskirts of what is now Simferopol’, on a high plateau that constitutes the largest Crimean Scythian archaeological site (20 hectares). The governmental center of the late Scythians from the third century B.C. to the third century A.D., the city reached the height of its development in the second century B.C. Neapolis was destroyed as the result of an invasion by the Goths in the third century A.D.
Major archaeological excavations of Neapolis were conducted in the 1940’s and 1950’s. Finds include the remains of a strong defensive wall (8.5 m thick) with two gate towers. One of the towers was a mausoleum with 72 burials belonging to a king and nobles, who were buried with their horses, weapons, and many gold ornaments. Remains of dwellings and public buildings, including some with frescoes, have been uncovered. Archaeologists have also found portrait reliefs, fragments of statues, and pedestals inscribed in Greek dedicated to the gods.
More than 200 burials have been investigated in the necropolis; these include sumptuous family vaults carved into the cliffs, earthen vaults, and rows of flat graves. A painting in one of the burial vaults depicts a horseman, a Scythian with a lyre, and boar hunters with dogs. Another painting depicts a Scythian archer and dancing figures.
REFERENCESShul’ts, P. N. Mavzolei Neapolia skifskogo. Moscow, 1953.
Shul’ts, P. N. “Issledovaniia Neapolia skifskogo (1945–1950 gg.).” In the collection Istoriia i arkheologiia drevnego Kryma. Kiev, 1957.
Babenchikov, V. P. “Nekropol’ Neapolia skifskogo.” In the collection Istoriia i arkheologiia drevnego Kryma. Kiev, 1957.
Dashevskaia, O. D. “K voprosu o lokalizatsii trekh skifskikh krepostei, upominaemykh Strabonom.” Vestnik drevnei istorii, 1958, no. 2.
Pogrebova, N. N. “Pogrebeniia v mavzolee Neapolia skifskogo.” In the collection Materialy i issledovaniia po arkheologii SSSR, no. 96, Moscow, 1961.
Raevskii, D. S. “Skify i sarmaty v Neapole.” In the collection Problemy skifskoi arkheologii. Moscow, 1971. (Materialy i issledovaniia po arkheologii SSSR, no. 177.)
O. D. DASHEVSKAIA