The Greek theatre
Shown within Italy
|Location||Palazzolo Acreide, Italy|
|Abandoned||Approximately 827 AD|
|Periods||Archaic Greek to Byzantine period|
Akrai was among the first colonies of Syracuse founded by Corinthian colonists arriving in Sicilian territory in 663 BC. It was on the road to Gela, along with the Pantalica, Kasmene (military outpost on Monte Lauro), Akrillai and Camarina (the most distant of the colonies, founded 598 BC). Akrai and Kasmene were founded by the Syracusans: Akrai, seventy years after Syracuse, Kasmenae about twenty years later (c.640 BC). The original colonisation of Kamarina is attributed to the Syracusans, around a hundred and thirty years after the foundation of Syracuse; the founders were called Daskon and Menekolos. Loyal to Syracuse, it nevertheless had its own political life with administrative and military autonomy. Notably, its army intercepted the invasion force of Nicias in the Val di Noto or Anapo in 421 BC, contributing to his defeat.
Constructed on the peak of a hill, Akrai was difficult to attack and at the time of its construction an ideal point for watching the surrounding territory. Indeed, Dion of Syracuse, when marching upon Syracuse, halted at Acrae to watch the effect of his proceedings. By the treaty concluded by the Romans with Hieron II, king of Syracuse (270 - 215 BC), Akrai was included in the dominions of that monarch, and this was probably the period of its greatest prosperity.
During the Second Punic War it followed the fortunes of Syracuse, and afforded a place of refuge to Hippocrates of Syracuse, after his defeat by Marcus Claudius Marcellus at Acrillae, 214 BC. In 211 BC, after the fall of Syracuse, it became part of the Roman province, being known in Latin as Acre. This is the last mention of it in Classical history, and its name is not once noticed by Cicero. It was probably in his time a mere dependency of Syracuse, though it is found in Pliny's list of the "stipendiariae civitates," so that it must then have possessed a separate municipal existence, and is noted by the geographer Ptolemy. The city continued to be under Roman rule into the Byzantine period.
One of the first scholars to identify the site of the lost city was a Sicilian monk Tommaso Fazello (1498–1570). Subsequently others showed interest in the site, especially baron Gabriele Judica, who undertook the first archaeological excavations at the site in the early 19th century and described his findings in the book Le antichità di Acre (The Antiquities of Akrai), published in 1819. Unearthed monuments were described also by German scholar Julius Schubring. In the 20th century Akrai had been investigated by various scholars including farther-founder of Sicilian archaeology Paolo Orsi (at the beginning of the 20th century), Luigi Bernabò Brea (in the 50s), Giuseppe Voza (in the 70s) and Maria Musumeci with Lorenzo Guzzardi (in the 90s). Excavations of the archaic city have revealed a theatre which is relatively small but were very well reconstructed. There are two stone quarries known as Intagliata and Intagliatella that were used as catacombs and dwellings in the late Antiquity. On the flat area above Intagliata are the foundation stones of the Aphrodision, the temple of Aphrodite, erected in the mid-6th century BC. At the western end of the site is the Bouleuterion, where the city council met. East of the hill are the Feral Temples, dedicated to the cult of the dead. Most of the researches that had been undertaken in the XXth century brought into light public architecture. Currently, the image of life in Akrai is being fulfilled by the results of researches on residential part of the city. Greek and Roman houses have been discovered recently by Polish mission from University of Warsaw led by professor Roksana Chowaniec.
The residential part of the city was recognized during the first season of non-invasive researches in 2009. Archaeologists mapped the site and proceeded with geophysical detection. In between 2010-2017 regular archaeological excavations were carried out. Archaeologists discovered the remains of Greco-Roman houses and numerous artifacts. Currently, international team of archaeologists is elaborating the findings that include: coins, different types of pottery, glass, metal and stone objects. Multidisciplinary researches engage archaeometric, lipid, petrographic, and isotopic analyses. All the results are published regularly in international journals and in the form of monographs (Akrai Studies, see: Chowaniec R. ed., Unveiling the past of an ancient town. Akrai/Acrea in south-eastern Sicily, Warsaw 2015).
Acrae or Akrai (Ancient Greek: Ἄκραι) was a town of ancient Aetolia, on the road from Metapa to Conope. Stephanus of Byzantium erroneously calls it an Acarnanian town.
Its site is located the acropolis of modern Pappadates.Akrillai
Akrillai (Ἄκριλλαι in Greek and Acrillae in Latin) was an ancient Greek colony located in the modern province of Ragusa, Sicily, Italy, where the town of Chiaramonte Gulfi stands today. The ruins of the old colony can be found in the contrada (quarter) Piano del Conte-Morana and Piano Grillo. A necropolis dating from the 6th-5th century BC has been identified in the contrada Paraspola-Pirruna.
The name appears in different forms among different authors: Akrilla, Akrille; in ancient sources: Akrillaiu; the name is variously written by Latin writers Acrilla and Acrille.Ancient Greek dialects
Ancient Greek in classical antiquity, before the development of the common Koine Greek of the Hellenistic period, was divided into several varieties.
Most of these varieties are known only from inscriptions, but a few of them, principally Aeolic, Doric, and Ionic, are also represented in the literary canon alongside the dominant Attic form of literary Greek.
Likewise, Modern Greek is divided into several dialects, most derived from Koine Greek.Carole Bouquet
Carole Bouquet (born 18 August 1957) is a French actress and fashion model, who has appeared in more than 50 films since 1977. She played Bond girl Melina Havelock in the 1981 James Bond film For Your Eyes Only. In 1990, she was awarded the César Award for Best Actress for her role in Too Beautiful for You.Casmenae
Casmenae or Kasmenai (Casmene in Italian) was an ancient Greek colony located on the Hyblaean Mountains, founded in 644 BC by the Syracusans at a strategic position for the control of central Sicily. It was also intended as a military forward-position on the Via Selinuntina road that connected Syracuse to Akragas (modern-day Agrigento) - also on that road were Gela and Akrillai to Casmene's west and Akrai to its east. Destroyed by the Romans in 212 BC, Casmene was abandoned during the 3rd century BC and never inhabited again.
The site was discovered by the Sicilian archeologist Paolo Orsi during the first half of the 20th century, after he had identified the most probably site at Monte Casale in Buscemi at 830m above sea level, on an extinct volcano near Monte Lauro, 7 km from Giarratana and 12 km from Palazzolo Acreide. Remains of the defensive walls, long 3.400m, are still visible with the base of one of the temples and some dwellings.Cycladic culture
Cycladic culture (also known as Cycladic civilisation or, chronologically, as Cycladic chronology) was a Bronze Age culture (c. 3200–c. 1050 BC) found throughout the islands of the Cyclades in the Aegean Sea. In chronological terms, it is a relative dating system for artefacts which broadly complements Helladic chronology (mainland Greece) and Minoan chronology (Crete) during the same period of time.Geography of Asia
Geography of Asia reviews geographical concepts of classifying Asia, the central and eastern part of Eurasia, comprising approximately fifty countries.Greece in the Roman era
Greece in the Roman era describes the period of Greek history when Ancient Greece was dominated by the Roman Republic (509 – 27 BC), the Roman Empire (27 BC – AD 395), and the Byzantine Empire (AD 395 – 1453). The Roman era of Greek history began with the Corinthian defeat in the Battle of Corinth in 146 BC. However, before the Achaean War, the Roman Republic had been steadily gaining control of mainland Greece by defeating the Kingdom of Macedon in a series of conflicts known as the Macedonian Wars. The Fourth Macedonian War ended at the Battle of Pydna in 148 BC and defeat of the Macedonian royal pretender Andriscus.
The definitive Roman occupation of the Greek world was established after the Battle of Actium (31 BC), in which Augustus defeated Cleopatra VII, the Greek Ptolemaic queen of Egypt, and the Roman general Mark Antony, and afterwards conquered Alexandria (32 BC), the last great city of Hellenistic Greece. The Roman era of Greek history continued with Emperor Constantine the Great's adoption of Byzantium as Nova Roma, the capital city of the Roman Empire; in AD 330, the city was renamed Constantinople; afterwards, the Byzantine Empire was a generally Greek-speaking polity.Kaliakra
Kaliakra (Bulgarian: Калиакра) is a long and narrow headland in the Southern Dobruja region of the northern Bulgarian Black Sea Coast, 12 kilometres (7 mi) east of Kavarna, 60 kilometres (37 mi) northeast of Varna and 65 kilometres (40 mi) southwest of Mangalia. The coast is steep with vertical cliffs reaching 70 metres (230 ft) down to the sea.
Kaliakra is a nature reserve, where dolphins and cormorants can be observed. It sits on the Via Pontica, a major bird migration route from Africa into Eastern and Northern Europe. Many rare and migrant birds can be seen here in spring and autumn and, like much of this coastline, is home to several rare breeding birds (e.g. pied wheatear and a local race of European shag). The rest of the reserve also has unusual breeding birds; saker falcon, lesser grey shrike and a host of others.
It also features the remnants of the fortified walls, water-main, baths and residence of Despot Dobrotitsa in the short-lived Principality of Karvuna's medieval capital. The Bolata Cove with a small sheltered beach lies just north at the mouth of a picturesque canyon, also part of the nature reserve.Necropolis of Pantalica
The Necropolis of Pantalica in southeast Sicily, Italy, is a collection of cemeteries with rock-cut chamber tombs dating from the 7th to the 13th centuries BC. There have been thought to be over 5000 tombs, although the most recent estimate suggests a figure of just under 4000. They extend around the flanks of a large promontory located at the junction of the Anapo river with its tributary, the Calcinara, about 23 kilometres northwest of Syracuse. Together with the city of Syracuse, Pantalica was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.Paideia
In the culture of ancient Greece, the term paideia (also spelled paedeia) (; Greek: παιδεία, paideía) referred to the rearing and education of the ideal member of the polis. It incorporated both practical, subject-based schooling and a focus upon the socialization of individuals within the aristocratic order of the polis. The practical aspects of this education included subjects subsumed under the modern designation of the liberal arts (rhetoric, grammar, and philosophy are examples), as well as scientific disciplines like arithmetic and medicine. An ideal and successful member of the polis would possess intellectual, moral and physical refinement, so training in gymnastics and wrestling was valued for its effect on the body alongside the moral education which the Greeks believed was imparted by the study of music, poetry, and philosophy. This approach to the rearing of a well-rounded Greek male was common to the Greek-speaking world, with the exception of Sparta where a rigid and militaristic form of education known as the agoge was practiced.Palazzolo Acreide
Palazzolo Acreide (Sicilian: Palazzolu Acrèidi, in the local dialect: Palazzuolu) is a town and comune in the Province of Syracuse, Sicily (southern Italy). It is 43 kilometres (27 mi) from the city of Syracuse in the Hyblean Mountains.Phylakopi I culture
The Phylakopi I culture (Greek: Φυλακωπή) refers to a "cultural" dating system used for the Cycladic culture that flourished during the early Bronze Age in Greece. It spans the period ca. 2300-2000 BC and was named by Colin Renfrew, after the settlement of Phylakopi on the Cycladic island of Milos. Other archaeologists describe this period as the Early Cycladic III (ECIII).Santoni
The Santoni are a collection of statues carved into a rock face near Palazzolo Acreide, the ancient Akrai, in Sicily.
The statues are the remains of a sanctuary for one of the most mysterious cults of antiquity, the cult of Magna Mater. Although very badly preserved, the site is unique for its scale and for the completeness of the sculptures. It is believed to have been the principal centre of the cult of the goddess Cybele in Sicily.For stylistic reasons and as a result of archaeological discoveries in the surrounding area, the sanctuary has been dated by scholars to around the fourth or third centuries BC.Talacre
Talacre is a village in Flintshire on the north coast of Wales in the community of Llanasa and the electoral ward of Ffynnongroyw. The village itself having a population of 347 as of the 2011 census. It is a very anglicised village with only 98 residents born in Wales as of the 2011 census.
It is near Point of Ayr on the west side of the River Dee estuary and has a sandy beach with dunes with large holiday caravan parks adjacent. The hills of the Clwydian Range behind the village form the eastern boundary of the Vale of Clwyd. The name Talacre is a combination of the Welsh words tal [tal] "end" and acrau [ˈakraɨ̯] "acres", which the dialect of north-east Wales is pronounced acre [ˈakrɛ]. This has led to the local English pronunciation . Some sources claim the English version is properly pronounced .
The village is probably most popular for the lighthouse on the nearby beach and the Talacre Beach Resort, a short walk away from the Presthaven Sands holiday park. The lighthouse has been noted for numerous ghostly sightings, people claiming to see a figure wearing old fashioned lighthouse keeper clothes and standing in front of the glass dome of the abandoned lighthouse. The lighthouse was featured in popular British television drama Skins, in the episode Skins Pure.
Talacre was used by the armed forces during the Second World War, as an aircraft firing range. Fighters flew over the remote village every day, shooting at wooden targets in the dunes and at drogues towed by aircraft. It was also used for testing new devices, such as 'window' the anti-radar foil that, on occasion, covered the whole village with silver.
The village is often used as part of Paul O'Grady's comedy act, telling stories of how he spent many summers "Stuck in a four berth caravan in Talacre", and is therefore now part of popular culture as a famous "typically British" seaside holiday resort.Tommaso Fazello
Tommaso Fazello (New Latin Fazellus, 1498 – 8 April 1570) was an Italian Dominican friar, historian and antiquarian. He is known as the father of Sicilian history. He is the author of the first printed history of Sicily: De Rebus Siculis Decades Duae, published in Palermo in 1558 in Latin. He was born in Sciacca, Sicily and died in Palermo, Sicily.He rediscovered the ruins of the ancient Sicilian towns of Akrai (modern Palazzolo Acreide), Selinus (modern Selinunte) and Heraclea Minoa. He also rediscovered the Temple of Olympian Zeus at Akragas (modern Agrigento).In 1555, he taught at the Convent of San Domenico, Palermo, which later became the University of Palermo.Val di Noto
Val di Noto (English: Province of Noto) is a historical and geographical area encompassing the south-eastern third of Sicily; it is dominated by the limestone Iblean plateau. Historically, it was one of the three valli of Sicily.
Archaeological sites in Sicily
|Province of Agrigento|
|Province of Caltanissetta|
|Province of Catania|
|Province of Enna|
|Province of Messina|
|Province of Palermo|
|Province of Ragusa|
|Province of Syracuse|
|Province of Trapani|