Sites & cities that bear the name of Abae


Today in : Greece
First trace of activity : ca. 15th century B.C.E
Last trace of activity : ca. 2nd century C.E
Recorded names : Kalapodi, Καλαπόδι, Ἄβαι, Abai, Abé, Aba

Description : Abae (Ancient Greek: Ἄβαι, Abai) was an ancient town in the northeastern corner of ancient Phocis, in Greece, near the frontiers of the Opuntian Locrians, said to have been built by the Argive Abas, son of Lynceus and Hypermnestra, and grandson of Danaus. This bit of legend suggests an origin or at least an existence in the Bronze Age. Its protohistory supports a continued existence in Iron-Age antiquity. It was famous for its oracle of Apollo Abaeus, one of those consulted by Croesus, king of Lydia, and Mardonius, among others. The site of the oracle was rediscovered at Kalapodi and excavated in modern times. The results confirm an archaeological existence dating from the Bronze Age, as is suggested by the lore. Among the most exciting recent archaeological discoveries in Greece is the recognition that the sanctuary site near the modern village of Kalapodi is not only the site of the oracle of Apollon at Abae but that it was in constant use for cult practices from early Mycenaean times to the Roman period. It is thus the first site where the archaeology confirms the continuity of Mycenaean and Classical Greek religion, which has been inferred from the presence of the names of Classical Greek divinities on Linear B texts from Pylos and Knossos. Before the Persian invasion the temple was richly adorned with treasuries and votive offerings. It was twice destroyed by fire; the first time by the Persians in the invasion of Xerxes in their march through Phocis (480 BCE), and a second time by the Boeotians in the Sacred or Phocian War in 346 BCE. It was rebuilt by Hadrian. Hadrian caused a smaller temple to be built near the ruins of the former one. In the new temple there were three ancient statues in brass of Apollo, Leto, and Artemis, which had been dedicated by the Abaei, and had perhaps been saved from the former temple. The ancient agora and the ancient theatre still existed in the town in the time of Pausanias. According to the statement of Aristotle, as preserved by Strabo, Thracians from the Phocian town of Abae emigrated to Euboea, and gave to the inhabitants the name of Abantes.

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