Article

Olynthus

Nicholas Geoffrey Lemprière Hammond

in Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Classics


Published online March 2016 | e-ISBN: 9780199381135 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acrefore/9780199381135.013.4554

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Olynthus, a city north of *Potidaea on the mainland of the Chalcidic peninsula (see chalcidice). Originally Bottiaean, it became a Greek city after its capture by *Persia (479 bce) and repopulation from Chalcidice; its position and mixed population made it the natural centre of Greek Chalcidice against attacks from Athens, Macedonia, and Sparta. In 433 the city was strengthened by further migration and received territory from Macedon (Thuc. 1. 58), and it soon became the capital of a Chalcidian Confederacy issuing federal coinage (see federal states); by 382 the growth of the Confederacy aroused the enmity of Sparta, which reduced Olynthus after a two-year siege and disbanded the Confederacy (Xen.Hell. 5. 2. 11 f.). When Sparta collapsed, Olynthus re-formed the Confederacy and resisted Athenian attacks on Amphipolis; when that city fell to *Philip (1) II of Macedon Olynthus allied with him against Athens (Diod. Sic. 16. 8), expelled the Athenian *cleruchy from Potidaea, and received Anthemus from Philip (357–356).

Article.  308 words. 

Subjects: Historical Geography ; Greek and Roman Archaeology

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