Ancient Icaria

Ancient Icaria

Ancient Icaria

Ancient Icaria

Synopsis

This is the only English-language book-length study of ancient Icaria and its people. It traces the history of the island in five different periods and is beautifully illustrated with photographs of key sites and monuments. Also included are an appendix listing the island's main inscriptions and a select bibliography.

Excerpt

Icaria, one of the larger Aegean islands, never played a role in Aegean affairs commensurate to its size. The terrain, the lack of harbors and the fierceness of the surrounding Icarian Pelagos tended to isolate it. The island, however, was occasionally in the center and often on the periphery of major historical developments.

Eparchides, a native of Icaria, wrote a history of the island around 300 B.C. The work is not extant though Athenaeus, the author of the Deipnosophistae, written around A.D. 200, makes three references to Eparchides' History of Icaria. Apart from Eparchides there are notices of Icaria in the works of the Greek, Roman and Byzantine historians. Inscriptions and the ruins of the temple of Artemis and various buildings in Campos supplement the scanty literary sources. The body of source material is inadequate for a narrative history of Icaria. Indeed we do not know anything of the politics or internal developments of Icaria, though the literary and archaeological evidence permits us to connect Icaria with events and developments in Ionia, the islands and the Greek mainland.

Conditions in the Aegean islands are largely determined by the environment, and the environment of Icaria remained unchanged from antiquity to the late nineteenth century. The accounts of travelers through the Aegean, mainly from the seventeenth to the nineteenth century, help fill in some of . . .

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