صور الصفحة
PDF

U.nia quae subjecta Pyrenaeis montibus est. Liv.). Their M pathless forests" (devia et sUvestris gens, Liv.) lay S. of the Cerretaki, W, of the Indi<.k i Ks, and N. of the I. Ai.ktani. (It is impossible to avoid the suspicion that these names are identical, especially as we hare the intermediate form L&eAstani, and that Lacetania is only the N. part of Laletania, , Moreover, the name is confounded with the Jacetani in the MSS. of Caes. B. C. i. 60.) Only one town is mentioned as belonging to them, and that without a name, but simply as having been taken by M. Cato. (Plut. Cat Maj. 11; Liv. xxi. 23, 26, 60, et seq., xxviii. 24, 26, et seq., xxxiii. 34, xxxiv. 20; Dion Cass. xlv. 10: Martial, L 49. 22.) [P. S.]

LACHISH (Aaxt'y, LXX.; Adx*is, AaX*i(ra, Joseph.), a city to the south of the tribe of Judah (Josh. xv. 39), the capital of one of the petty kings or sheikhs of the Canaanites (x. 3). It was taken and destroyed by Joshua (iv. 31—33), and is joined with Adoraim and Azekah (2 Ckron. xi. 9) as one of the cities built, or rather forti6ed, by Rehoboam. It was besieged by Sennacherib on his invasion of Judaea, B. C. 713. (2 Kings, xviii. 14,17, xix. 8.) It is placed bj Eusebius and St. Jerome (Onomast. $. p.) seven miles south of Eleutheropolis, in Daroma or 14 the valley." (Josh. xv. 39.) But for this it might have been identified with 27m Lakis, on the left of the road between Gaza and Hebron, about five hours from the former, where is an ancient site "now covered confusedly with heaps of small round stones, among which are seen two or three fragments of marble columns.'* (Robinson, BibL Res. vol. ii. p. 388.) The objections to the identification are not, perhaps, so great as is represented: the title Vm, equivalent to metropolis, would seem to mark it as a place of importance; and there is no other vestige of a town in those parts that can be referred to Lachish. It is considerably south of west from Beit Jtbrm (Eleutheropolis), which x& near enough to satisfy the description of Eusebius, who is not remarkable for precise accuracy in his bearings, nor, indeed, in his distances, except in the parts with which he was familiar, and on the more frequented thoroughfares. No argument can be drawn from its juxtaposition with Adoraim and Azekah, in 2 Chron. xi. 9, as it might be near enough to group with them in a list of names which, it is evident, does not pretend to geographical precision. [G. W.]

LACIACA or LACIACUM (in the Peut. Table it is called Laciacis), a town in the north-west of Noricum (It Ant. pp. 235, 258). The name seems to be connected with "lacus," and thus to point to the lake district in upper Austria; hence some have identified the place with Seewalchen, or St. Georgen on the Attersee. But Muchar {Noricum, p. 267) is probably right in identifying it with FrankentnarkL [L. S.]

LA'CIBI (Plin. iii. 1. s. 3; Acuci€is, PtoL ii. 4. § 11), a tributary town of Hispania Baetica, which Pliny assigns to the convent us of Gades, while Ptolemy places it among the cities of the Turduli, in in the neighbourhood of Hispalis. [P. S.]

LACIBU'RGIUM (AcuctSovpyioy), aGennan town on the south coast of the Baltic, betweeu ihe rivers Chalusus, and Suevus or Suebus. It is mentioned only by Ptolemy (ii. 11. § 27). and it is certain that its site must be looked for to the west of Warnemunde, but the precise spot cannot be ascertained, whence tome have identified it with Wismar, others with Hatzeburg, and otht-rs again with Lauenburg. [L.S.]

LACIDAE. [attica, p. 826, a.]
LACI'NIA. [iapydia.]

LACi'NIUM (to AaKivioy Sucpuv: Capo detle Cotonne), a promontory on the E. coast of the Bruttian peninsula, about 6 miles S. of Crotona. It formed the southern limit of the gulf of Tare n turn, as the Iapygian promontory did the northern one: the distance between the two is stated by Strabo, on the authority of Polybius, at 700 stadia, while Pliny apparently (for the passage in its present state is obviously corrupt) reckons it at 75 Roman miles, or 600 stadia; both of which estimates are a fair approximation to the truth, the real interval being 65 geog. miles, or 650 stadia. (^Strab. vi p. 261; Pliu. iii. 11. a. 15; Mel. ii. 4. § 8.) The Lacinian promontory is a bold and rocky headland, forming the termination of one of the offshoots or branches of the great range of the Apennines (Lucan. ii. 434; Plin. iii. 5. s. 6): it was crowned in ancient times by the celebrated temple of the Lacinian Juno, the ruins of which, surviving through the middle ages, have given to the promontory its modern appellation of Capo delie Colonne. It is also known by that of Capo Nau, a name evidently derived from the Greek Nods, a temple; and which seems to date from an early period, as the promontory is already designated in the Maritime Itinerary (p. 490) by the name of Ha us. That Itinerary reckons it 100 stadia from thence to Crotona: Strabo gives the same distance as 150 stadia; but both are greatly overrated. Livy correctly says that the temple (which stood at the extreme point of the promontory) was only about 6 miles from the city. (Liv. xxi v. 3.) For the history and description of this famous temple, see Ckotona.

Pliny tells us (iii. 10. s. 15) that opposite to the Lacinian promontory, at a distance of 10 miles from the land, was an island called DioBCoron (the island of the Dioscuri), and another called the island of Calypso, supposed to be the Ogygia of Homer. Scylax also mentions the island of Calypso immediately after the Lacinian promontory (§ 13, p. 5). But there s at the present day no island at all that will answer to either of those mentioned by Pliny: there is, in fact, no islet, however small, off the Lacinian cape, and hence modern writers have been reduced to seek for the abode of Calypso in a small and barren rock, close to the shore, near Capo Rizzuto, about 12 miles S. of Lacimum. Swinburne, who visited it, remarks how little it corresponded with the idea of the Homeric Ogygia: but it is difficult to believe that so trifling a rock (which is not even marked ou Zannoni a elaborate map) could have been that meant by Scylax and Pliny.* The statement of the latter concerning the island which he calls Dioscoron is still more precise, and still more difficult to account for. Ou the other hand, he adds the names of three others, Tiris, Eranusa, and Meloessa, which he introduce* somewhat vaguely, as if be were himself not clear of their position. Their names were probably taken from some poet now lost to us. ' [E. H. B.]

LAC I PEA. f L Usitami A.]

LACIPPO (Atwtinrw, Ptol. ii. 4. § 11; Lacipo, coin op, Sestini, Med. Isp. p. 57 ; M ion net, Suppl.

* The different positions that have been assigned to the island of Calypso, and the degree of probability of their claims, will be discussed under the article Ogygia.

vol. i. p. 34), a tributary town of the Turduli in Hi spa nia Baetica, near the shore of the Mediterranean, where its ruins are still seen at Alecippe, near Casares. Ptolemy places it too far inland. (Mela, ii. 6. § 7; Plin. iii. 1. s. 3; Carter, Travels, p. 128; Ukert, vol. U. pt. 1. p. 348.) [P. S.]

LACMON (\&kumv, Hecat, Fr. 70; Herod, ix. 92; Staph. B. $. v.) or LACMUS (AdxuAts, Strab. vi. p. 271, vii. p. 316), the highest summit of Mount Pindus, the Zygds or ridge of Metzovo. This is geographically the most remarkable mountain in Greece; situated in the heart of Pindus as to its breadth, and centrally also in the longitudinal chain which pervades the continent from N. to S.: it gives rise to five principal rivers, in fact to all the great streams of Northern Greece except the Sperchetus; north-eastward to the Haliacmon, south-eastward to the Peneius, southward to the Achelous, south-westward to the Arachthus, and north-westward to the Aous. (Leake, Northern Greece, vol. i. pp. 294, 411—415, voL iv. pp.240, 261, 276.> [E. B. J.]

LACOBRI'GA. [1. Lusitania; 2. Vaccaki.] LACO'NIA, LACO'NICA, or LACEDAEMON, the south-easterly district of Peloponnesus.

I. Name.

Its most ancient name was Lacedaemon (Aa«Saf/iaif), which is the only form found in Homer, who applies this name as well to the country, as to its capital. (IL ii. 581, iii. 239, 244, &c.) The usual name in the Greek writers was Laconica (i; AawetKTj, sc. yrf), though the form Lacedaemon still continued to be used. (Herod, vi. 58.) The Romans called the country Laconica (Plin. xxv. 8. s. 53; Laconice, Mela, it 3) or Laconia (Plin. vi. 34. a. 39, xvii. 18. s. 30), the latter of which is the form usually employed by modern writers. Mela (/. c.) also uses Laconis, which is borrowed from the Greek (fl AatcwU yaia, Horn. Hymn, in Apoll. 410.) The Ethnic names are Aixuv, -<avo$, Aax&ai^vios, Lat. Laco or Lacon, -nis, Lacedaemonius; fern. A&tccuva, Aatcmris, Laconis. These names are applied to the whole free population of Laconia, both to the Spartan citizens and to the Perioeci, spoken of below (for authorities, see Clinton, F. H. vol. ii. pp. 405, 406). They are usually derived from a mythical hero. Lacon or Lacedaemon; but some modem writers think that the root Lac is connected with kdtcos, Xdxxos, lacus, lacuna, and was given originally to the central district from its being deeply sunk between mountains. (Curtius, Ptloponnesos, vol. ii. p. 309.)

II. General Description Of The Country:.

The natural features of Laconia are strongly marked, and exercised a powerful influence up.m the history of the people It is a long valley, surrounded on three sides by mountains, and open only on the fourth to the sea. On the north it is bounded by the southern barrier of the Arcadian mountains, from which run in a parallel direction towards the south, the two lofty mountain ranges of Taygetus and Parnon, — the former dividing Laconia and Messenia, and terminating in the promontory of Taenarum, now C. Matapan, the southernmost extremity of Greece and of Europe, the latter stretching along the eastern coast, and terminating in the promontory of Malca. The river Eurotas flows through the entire length of the valley lying between these mouuUiu masses, and falls into the sea, which'

was called the Laconian gulf. Laconia is well described by Euripides as a country "hollow, surrounded by mountains, rugged, and difficult of access to an enemy (ap. Strab. viii. p. 366); and the difficulty of invading it made even Epaininondas hesitate to enter it with his army. (Xen. Hell, v. 5. § 10.) On the northern side there are only two natural passes by which the plain of Sparta can be invaded. (See below.) On the western side the lofty masses of Taygetus form an almost insurmountable barrier; and the pass across them, which leads into the plain of Sparta, is so difficult as scarcely to be practicable for an army. On the eastern side the rocky character of the coast protects it from invasion by sea.

III. Mountains, Rivers, And Plains.

Mount Tatgetus (Tat^eToc, To Trj6ycro¥ vpos, the common forms; Ta&ytros, Lucian, Icartrm. 19; ra TafrytTa, Polyaen. vii. 49; Taygeta, Virg. Georg. ii. 487: the first half of this word is said by Hesychius to signify great). This mountain is the loftiest in Peloponnesus, and extends in an almost unbroken line for the space of 70 miles from Jjeondari in Arcadia to C. Matapan. Its vast height, unbroken length, and majestic form, have been celebrated by both ancient and modern writers. Homer gives it the epithet of wfpiw^K«Tw (0d. vi. 103), and a modern traveller remarks that, "whether from its real height, from the grandeur of its outline, or the abruptness of its rise from the plain, it created in his mind a stronger impression of stupendous bulk and loftiness than any mountain he had seen in Greece, or perhaps in any other part of Europe.1* (Mure, Tour in Greece, vol. ii. p. 221.) TaVgetus rises to its greatest height immediately above Sparta. Its principal summit was called Talktum (ToAe-roV) in antiquity: it was sacred to the Sun, and horses and other victims were here sacrificed to this god. (Paus. iii. 20. § 4.) It is now called S. Elias, to whose chapel on the summit an annual pilgrimage is made in the middle of the summer. Its height has been ascertained by the French Commission to be 2409 metres, or 7902 English feet. Another summit near Taletum was called Evokas (Zv6pas, Belvedere, Paus. ic), which Leake identifies with Mt. Paximadki, the highest summit next to St. Elias, from which it is distant 5j geographical miles. The ancient names of none of the other heights are mentioned.

By the Byzantine writers Taygetus was railed Pentedactylum (to TltvrtSdKTv\oy), or the "Five Fingers," on account of its various summits above the Spartan plain. (Constant. Porphyr. de Adm. Imp. c 50.) In the 13ih century it bore the name of Melingus (6 £uyhs roi> Me\tyyov, see Leake, Peloponncsiaca, p. 138). At the base of Taygetus, immediately above the Spartan plain, there is a lower ridge running parallel to the higher summits. This lower ridge coiis-iMs of huge projecting masses of precipitous rocks, some of which are more than 2000 feet high, though they appear insignificant when coinjtaied with the lofty barrier of Taygetus behind them. After attaining its greatest elevation, Mt. Taygetus sinks gradually down towards the south, and sends forth a long and lofty eounterfork towards the Eurotas. now called Lykobnni (avkogovv, Wolfs-inounwiin), which bounds the Spartan plain on the south. It there contracts again, and runs down, as the hack1 one of a small peninsula, to the southernmost ex

tremity of Greece. This mountainous district between
the Laconian and Messenian gulfs is now called
Manx, and is inhabited by the Maniites, who always
maintained their independence, while the rest of
Greece was subject to the Turks: the southern part
of the peninsula, as well as the promontory, bore the
name of Taenaruin in antiquity. [taenarom.]
Although there is no trace of any volcanic action in .
Mt. Taygetns, many of its chasms and the rent
forms of its rocks have been produced by the nume-
rous and violent earthquakes to which the district
has been subjected. Hence Laconia is called by
Homer "full of hollows" (mrreitcro-a, II. ii. 581,
OS. iv. 1), and Strabo describes it as a country
easily shaken by earthquakes (Strab. viii. p. 367).
In the fearful earthquake, which laid Sparta in
ruins in B. C 464, and killed more than 20,000
Lacedaemonians, huge masses of rocks were rolled
down from the highest peaks of Taygetus. (Pint.
Cm. 16.)

On the sides of Mt. Taygetns are forests of deep green pine, which abounded in ancient times with game and wild animals, among which Pausanias mentions wild goats, wild boars, stairs, and bears. The district between the summits of Taletum and Evens was called Thkras (0i)<io5), or the hunting ground. (Pans. iii. 20. §§ 4, 5.) Hence Taygetus was one of the favourite haunts of the huntress Artemis (Od. vi. 103), and the excellence of the Laconian dogs was proverbial in antiquitv. (Aristot. Hat Ah. vi. 20; Xen. de Ven. 10. § 1; Virg. Georg. iii. 405; Hor. Epod. vi. 5.) Modern travellers tell us that the dogs of the country still support their ancient character for ferocity and courage. (Mure, vol. ii. p. 231.)

The southern part of Mount Taygetus is rich in marble and iron. Near Croceae there were quarries of green porphyry, which was extensively employed by the Romans. [croceae.] There was also another kind of marble obtained from quarries more to the south, called by the Romans Taenarian marble. The whetstones of Mount Taygetus were likewise in much request. (Strab. viii. p. 367; "Taenarius lapis," riin. xxxvi. 22. s. 43; "cotes Laconicae ex Tsygeto monte," Plin. xxxvi. 22. s. 47.) The iron found in the mountain was considered very good, and was much used in the manufacture of warlike weapons and agricultural in.itruments. (Stepb. B. a. V. AaK(Saipar; Xen. Hell. iii. 3. § 7; Plin. vii. 57; Eustath. ad II. p. 298, ed. Rom.)

Modkt Parson (A tldpmy, Pans. ii. 38. § 7) is of an entirely different character from the opposite range of Taygetus. It does not form one uninterrupted line of mountains, but is broken up into various detached masses of less elevation, which form a striking contrast to the unbroken and majestic barrier of Taygetus. The mass to which the name of Pamon was more especially applied was the range of mountains, now called Malevd, forming the natural boundary between Arcadia, Laconia, and Argolis. It is 6355 feet high, and its summit is nearly equidistant from the Eurotas and the eastern coast. This mountain is continued in a general south-easterly direction, but how far southwards it continued to bear the name of Pamon is unknown. Its eastern declivities, which extend as far as the coast at a considerable elevation, contain the district now called Tzakonia, a corruption of the word Laconia, the inhabitants of which speak a dialect closely resembling the ancient Greek: of this an account has been given elsewhere [Vol. I.

p. 728.] On its western side Mt. Parnon sinks down more rapidly, and divides itself into separate hills, which bear the names of Barbosthenes Olympus, Ossa, Thornax, and Menelaium; tha two last are opposite Sparta, and a modern observer describes Menelainm as not remarkable either for height or variety of outline, but rising gradually in a succession of gentle ridges. (Mure, vol. ii. p. 223.) In its southern continuation, Mt. Pamon still continues of moderate height till near the commencement of the peninsula between the Myrtoan and Laconian gulfs, where it rises under the name of Mount Zaraz (ZipaQ to a height of 3500 feet, and runs along the eastern coast at a considerable elevation, till it reaches the promontory of Malea.

The El'ROTAS (e&p«stos) flows, as already observed, throughout the entire length of the valley between the ranges of Taygetus and Pamon. Its more ancient names were Bomtcas (Bujut/icar, Etym. M. t. t>.) and Himerus ('Iptpor, Plut. dt Fluv. 17): it is now called Iris and Nirit in its upper and middle course, and HaHH-potama from the time it leaves the Spartan plain till it reaches the sea. In its course three districts may be distinguished;— the vale of the upper Eurotas; the vale of the middle Eurotas,.or the plain of Sparta; and the vale of the lower Eurotas, or the maritime plain. 1. The Vale of the Upper EuroUu. The river Eurotas rises in the mountains which form the southern boundary of the Arcadian plains of Asca and Megalopolis. It was believed by both Pausanias and Strabo that the Alpheins and the Eurotas bad a common origin, and that, after flowing together for a short distance, they sank under ground; the Alpheins reappearing at Pegae, in the territory of Megalopolis in Arcadia, and the Eurotas in the Bleminatis in Laconia; but for a fuller account of their statements upon this subject the reader is referred to the article Alpheius. All that we know for certain is that the Eurotas is formed by the union of several copious springs rising on the southern side of the mountain above mentioned, and that it flows from a narrow glen, which gradually opens towards the SSW. On the eastern side it keeps close to the mountains, while on the western side there is a little level ground and some mountain slopes between the river and the heights of Taygetus. At the distance of little more than a mile from Sparta, the Eurotas receives the Oemjs (phots, Polyb. ii. 65,66; Athen. i. p. 31; Liv. xxxiv. 28), now called Kelefina, which rises in the watershed of Mt Pamon, and flows in a general south-westerly direction: the principal tributary of the Oenus was the Gorgylus (T6pyv\os, Polyb. ii. 66), probably the river of Vrex tend. (Leake, Pelopotmetiaea, p. 347.) Nearly opposite the union of the Oenus and the Eurotas, the mountains of Taygetus press close upon the river, but again almost immediately withdraw to a greater distance than before, and the river emerges into the Spartan plain.

2. The Vale of the Middle EuroUu. Fparta is situated at the commencement of this vale on the right bank of the Eurotas. Between the river and Mt. Taygetus the plain is of considerable extent. Its soil is particularly adapted for the growth of olives, which are in the present day preferred to those of Athens; and the silk of the Spartan plain is superior to the silk of every other district of Greece. (Mure, vol. ii. p. 224.) The soil, however, cannot be compared with that of the rich Messeniun

plain, and hence Euripides, in contrasting the two countries, describes Laconia as a poor land, in which there is a large tract of arable, but of laborious tillage (ap. Strab. viii. p. 366). This is in accordance with the account of Leake, who says that the soil of the plain is in general a poor mixture of white clay and stones, difficult to plough, and better suited to olives than corn. ( J/orea, vol. i. p. 148.) The vale, huwerer, possesses a genial climate, being sheltered on every side by mountains, and the scenery is of the most beautiful description. Hence Lacedaemon has been aptly characterised by Homer 9S " a hollow pleasant valley" (koi'atj Iparcirtj, //. ii. 581, iii. 443, Od. iv. 1). The climate is favourable to beauty; and the women of the Spartan plain are at present taller and more robust than the other Greeks, have more colour in general, and look healthier; which agrees also with Homer's Aa«€taifwva KaWtywatica (Leake, Morea, vol. iii. p. 149). The security of the Spartan plain against hostile attacks has been briefly alluded to. There were only two roads practicable for an invading army; one by the upper Eurotas, leading from southern Arcadia and Stenyclarus; the other by the long and narrow valley of the Oenus, in which the roads from Tegea and Argos united near Sellasia.

3. Vale of the Lower Eurotas. At the southern extremity of the Spartan plain, the mountains again approsch so close, as to leave scarcely space for the passage of the Eurotas. The mountains on the western side are the long and lofty counterfork of Mt. Taygetus, called Lykobuni, which has been already mentioned. This gorge, through which the Eurotas issues from the vale of Sparta into the maritime plain, is mentioned by Strabo (o Eupwras — 5tc£ib>v avKavd riva paxpbv, viii. p. 343). It is about 12 miles in length. The maritime plain, which is sometimes called the plain of Helos, from the town of this name upon the coast, is fertile and of some extent. In the lower part of it the Eurotas flows through marshes and sandbanks into the Laconian gulf.

The banks of the Eurotas and the dry parts of its bed are overgrown with a profusion of reeds. Hence the epithets of tiovcucoTp&pos and Sovcucdets are frequently given to it by the poets. (Theogn. 785; Eurip Iphig. m Aid. 179, Helen. 207.)

The only tributary of the Eurotas, which possesses an independent valley, is the Oenus already mentioned. The other tributaries are mere mountain torrents, of which the two following names have been preserved, both descending from Mt. Taygetus through the Spartan plain: Tiasa (TiWa, Tans. iii. 18. § 6; Athen. iv. p. 139), placed by Pausanias on the road from Amyclae to Sparta, and hence identified by Leake with the PandcUinwna; Phellia (*«AAia, iii. 20. §3), the river between Amyclae and Pharis. The Cnacion (rCvtucfwc), mentioned in one of the ordinances of Lycurgus, was identified by later writers with the Oenus. (Plut. Lyc. 6.)

The streams Smenus and Sent As, flowing into the sea on the western side of the Laconian gulf, are spoken of below. [See p. 114, b.]

Before leaving the rivers of Laconia, a few words must be said respecting an ancient Laconian bridge still existing, which has been assigned to the remotest antiquity. This is the bridge of Xerdkampo, built over a tributary of the Eurotas, about three hours1 ride to the south of Sparta, just where the Stream issues from one of the deepest and darkest

gorges of Taygetus. It was first discovered by Ross, and has been described by Mure, who supposes it to belong to the same period as the monuments of Mycenae. Even if it does not belong to so early a date, but is a genuine Hellenic work, it would establish the fact that the Greeks were acquainted with the use of the concentric arch at a very early period; whereas it has been usually supposed that it was not known to them till the time of Alexander the Great. The general appearance and character of this structure will be best seen from the annexed drawing taken from Mure. The masonry is of the polygonal species: the largest stones are those of the arch, some of which are from four to five feet long, from two to three in breadth, and between one and two in thickness. From the character of the structure, and from its remote situation, Mure concludes that it cannot be a Roman work; and there are strong reasons for believing that the Greeks were acquainted with the use of the arch at a much earlier period than has been nsually supposed. (Mure. vol. ii. p. 247, seq.; coin p. Leake, Pe/oponnesiaca, p. 116, seq.)

[graphic]

BRIDGE OF XEHOKAMPO.

There are no other plains in Laconia except the three above mentioned in the valley of the Eurotas; but on the slopes of the mountains, especially on those of Parnon, there is a considerable quantity of arable as well as pasture ground. The whole area of Laconia is computed to contain 1896 English square miles.

IV. History.

The political history of the country forms a prominent part of Grecian history, and cannot be narrated in this place at sufficient length to be of value to the student. But as the boundaries of Laconia differed considerably at various periods, it is necessary to mention briefly those facts in the history of the country which produced those changes.

It will be seen from the preceding description of the physical features of Laconia, that the plain of Sparta forms the very kernel and heart of the country. Accordingly, it was at all times the seat of the ruling class; and from it the whole country received its appellation. This place is said to have been originally inhabited by the Leleges, the most ancient inhabitants of the country. According to tradition, Lelex, the first king, was succeeded by his son Myles, and the latter by his son Eurotas, who collected into a channel the waters which were spread over the plain, and gave his own name to the river which he had thus formed. He died without male offspring, and was succeeded by Lacedaemon, the son of Zeus and Taygeta, who married Snarta,

the daughter of his predecessor. Lacedaemon gave to the people and the country his own name, and to the city which he founded the name of his wife. Amyclas, the son of Lacedaemon, founded the city called after him Amyclae. (Pans. iii. 1.) Subsequently Lacedaemon was ruled by Achaean princes, and Sparta was the residence of Menelaus, the brother of Agamemnon. Menelaus was succeeded by Orestes, who married his daughter Hermione, and Orestes by his son Tisamenus, who was reigning when the Dorians invaded the country under the guidance of the Heracleidae. In the threefold division of Peloponnesus among the descendants of Hercules, Lacedaemon fell to the sshare of Eurysthenes and Procles, the twin sons of Aristodemus. According to the common legend, the Dorians conquered the Peloponnesus at once; but there is sufficient evidence that they only slowly became masters of the countries in which we afterwards find them settled; and in Laconia it was some time before they obtained possession even of all the places in the plain of Spar: a. According to a statement in Ephorus, the Dorian conquerors divided Laconia into six districts; Sparta they kept for themselves; Amyclae was given to the Achaean Philonomus, who betrayed the country to them; while Las, Pharis, Aegys, and a sixth town the name of which is lost, were governed by viceroys, aud were allowed to receive new citizens. (Ephor. ap. Strab. viii. p. 364; on this corrupt passage, which has been happily restored, see Siuller, Dorians, vol. i. p. 110, transl.; Niebuhr, Ethnograph. vol. i. p. 56, transl.; Kramer, ad Strab. I. c.) It is probable that this division of Laconia into six provinces was not actually made till a much later period; but we have sufficient evidence to show that, for a long time after the Dorian conquest, the Dorians possessed only a small portion of Laconia. Of this the most striking proof is that the Achaean city of Amyclae, distant only 2J miles from Sparta, maintained its independence for nearly three centuries after the Dorian conquest, for it was only subdued shortly before the First Messenian War by the Spartan king Teleclus. The same king took Pharis and Geronthrae, both Achaean cities; and his son and successor, Alcamenes, conquered the town of llelos, upon the coast near the mouth of the Eurotas. (Paus. iii. 2. §§ 6, 7.) Of the subjugation of the other Achaean towns we have no account*; but there can be little doubt that they were mainly owing to the military organisation and martial spirit which the Spartans had acquired by the institutions of Lycurgus.

By the middle of the eighth century the Dorians of Sparta had become undisputed masters of the whole of Laconia. They now began to extend their dominions at the expense of their neighbours. Originally Argos was the chief Dorian power in the Peloponnesus, and Sparta only the second. In ancient times the Argives possessed the whole eastern coast of Laconia down to Cape Malea, and also the island of Cytbera (Herod, i. 82); and although we have no record of the time at which this part of Laconia was conquered by the Spartans, we may safely conclude that it was before the Messenian wars. The Dorians in Messenia possessed a much more fertile territory than the Spartans in Laconia, and the latter now began to cast longing eyes upon the richer fields of their neighbours. A pretext for war soon arose; and, by two long protracted and obstinate contests, usually called the First and Second Messenian wars (the first from u. C. 743 to

724, and the second from B. C. 685 to 668), the Spartans conquered the whole of Messenia, expelled or reduced to the condition of Helots the inhabitants, and annexed their country to Laconia. The name of Messenia now disappears from history; and, for a period of three centuries, from the close of the Second Messenian War to the restoration of the independence of Messenia by Epaminondas, the whole of the southern part of Peloponnesus, from the western to the eastern sea, bore the appellation of Laconia.

The upper parts of the valleys of the Eurotas and the Oenus, the districts of Sciritis, Beleminatis, Maleatis, and Caryatis, originally belonged to the Arcadians, but they were all conquered by the Spartans and annexed to their territory before B. c. 600. (Grote, Hut. of Greece, vol. ii. p. 588.) They thus extended their territories on the north to what may be regarded as the natural boundaries of Laconia, the mountains forming the watershed between the Eurotas and the Alpheius; but when they crossed these limits, and attempted to obtain possession of the plain of Tegea, they met with the most determined opposition, and were at last obliged to be content with the recognition of their supremacy by the Tegeatans, and to leave the latter in the independent enjoyment of their territory.

The history of the early struggles between the Spartans and Argives is unknown. The district on the coast between the territories of the two states, and of which the plain of Thyreatis was the most important part, inhabited by the Cynurians, a Pelasgic people, was a frequent object of contention between them, and was in possession, sometimes of the one, and sometimes of the other power. At length, in B. c. 547, the Spartans obtained permanent possession of it by the celebrated battle fought by the 300 champions from either nation. [cyNuria.] The dominions of the Spartans now extended on the other side of Mount Parnon, as far as the pass of Anigraea.

The population of Sparta was divided into the three classes of Spartans, Perioeci, and Helots. Of the condition of these classes a more particular account is given in the Dictionary of AntiquU ties; and it is only necessary to remark here that the Spartans lived in Sparta itself, and were the ruling Dorian class; that the Perioeci lived in tht different townships in Laconia, and, though freemen, had no share in the government, but received all their orders from the ruling class at Sparta; and that the Helots were serfs bound to the soil, who cultivated it for the benefit of the Spartan proprietors, and perhaps of the Perioeci also. After the extension of the Spartan dominions by the conquest of Messenia and Cynuria, Laconia was said to possess 100 townships (Strab. viii. p. 362), among which we find mentioned Anthaua in the Cynurian Thyreatis, and Aulon in Messenia, near the frontiers of Elis. (Steph. B. w. 'AvOdva, Ai>\vv.)

According to the common story, Lycurgus divided the territory of Laconia into a number of equal lots, of which 9000 were assigned to the Spartans, and 30,000 to the Perioeci. (Plut. Lyc. 8.) Some ancient critics, however, while believing that Lycurgus made an equal division of the Lacouian lands, supposed that the above numbers referred to the distribution of the Lacedaemonian territory after the incorporation of Messenia. And even with respect to the latter opinion, there were two different statements j some lnaiutauied that 6000 lots had U*n

« السابقةمتابعة »