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(prīē`nē), ancient Ionian city of W Asia Minor, near the mouth of the Maeander (now Menderes) River. It was rebuilt in the 4th cent. B.C. and was the site of a temple of Athena Polias. Carefully planned, it is an extremely well-preserved Greek city of this period.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



an ancient Greek city on the Maeander River on Mount Mycale in Asia Minor.

Priene was founded in the middle of the 11th century B.C. and became one of the 12 cities in the Ionian Confederacy. At the end of the sixth century B.C., it was conquered by Persia. Between 500 and 494 B.C., it took part in the Ionian revolt against the Persians. Priene was a member of the Delian League in the fifth century B.C. and later was included in the empire of Alexander the Great. In the third and second centuries B.C., it was a part of the Seleucid and then the Pergamum kingdoms; subsequently it became a provincial city of the Roman and Byzantine empires. Priene had two good harbors and was an important trade and artisan center from the fourth through the first century B.C.

The German scholars C. Humann and later T. Wiegand conducted archaeological excavations in Priene and studied a large part of the city and its fortifications beginning at the end of the 19th century. The city had a rectangular network of streets laid out according to the Hippodamian system. It was divided into equally rectangular blocks by longitudinal streets built in successive terraces that were intersected by 16 lateral stepped streets leading from the foot to the summit of Mount Mycale. The excavations revealed the ruins of buildings that were erected primarily during the third and second centuries B.C. on terraces fortified by underpinnings. These buildings included the temples of Athena Polias (fourth century B.C., architect Pytheas) and the Olympian Zeus, as well as the ekklesiasterion (assembly hall), the sacred stoa, the theater, the stadium, two gymnasiums, markets, and peristylar private houses.


Wiegand, T., and H. Schrader. Priene. Berlin, 1904.
Schede, M. Die Ruinen von Priene. Leipzig, 1934.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
(Plants from W Turkey, Aydin prov., Dilek Yar, W of the ruins of Priene, alt.
For example on a wall, the inscription from Priene 9 BCE celebrates the benefactions that have come through the reign of Augustus, whom divine providence has sent as a saviour and who brought wars to an end and established the reign of peace:
Despues del prohemio (una epistola al Conde de alba, en estilo senequista), el filosofo Bias de Priene [un estoico, presentado como uno de los siete sabios griegos] rebate, en 180 coplas dialogicas, los argumentos de Fortuna, segun el De remediis fortuitorum de seneca o el De remediis utriusque Fortunae de Petrarca.
Magnesia or Magnesia on the Maeander (Ancient Greek: [eth][pounds sterling][eth][eth][eth]'[eth][cedilla]Ia[eth][macron][eth] [sz]-i ICIu[sz]'[sup.1]Ie [eth][pounds sterling][eth][eth] [eth]1/4[eth]'[eth][sup.3]Iu[sz]A or [eth][pounds sterling][eth][eth][eth]'[eth][cedilla]Ia[eth][macron][eth] [sz]-i [sz]-...IC[sz]'[micro] [eth][pounds sterling][eth][eth] [eth]1/4[eth]'[eth][sup.3]Iu[sz]A; Latin: Magnesia ad Maeandrum) was an ancient Greek city in Ionia, considerable in size, at an important location commercially and strategically in the triangle of Priene, Ephesus and Tralles.
Arthemis of Ephesus, Apollon of Didyma, Kybele of Anatolia, Athena of Priene, Apollon of Klaros, Aphrodite of Miletus, Heraion of Samos, Phokaian Athena and Kybele, Athena of Smyrna and many other gods and goddesses of Ionia were the major elements of Paganism in that region.
8d) by other gastropods such as Priene spp., Mitrella unifasciata (Sowerby, 1832), and Mitra orientalis (Griffith & Pidgeon, 1838); equinoderms such as Stichaster striatus (Muller & Troschel, 1880), and fishes such as Chromis crusma (Valenciennes, 1833) and Cheilodactylus variegatus (Valenciennes, 1833).
Stops will include Ephesus, famous not only as an ancient Greek theatrical site but also as the setting of The Comedy of Errors; and Priene, Turkey, where company member Miriam Laube will offer a reading in the ruins of a 4th-century BCE theatre.