(Oinotros). A son of Lycaon. He was fabled to have passed with
a body of followers from Arcadia into Southern Italy, and to have given the name
of Oenotria to that part of the country where he settled.
Oenotrus :Perseus Encyclopedia
According to the historians one of the settlers there, a certain Italus, became king of Oenotria, and from him they took the name of Italians instead of that of Oenotrians, and the name of Italy was given to all that promontory of Europe lying between the Gulfs of Scylletium and of Lametus, which are half a day's journey apart.
Italus, (Italos). A fabled monarch of early Italy, said to have
been the son of Telegonus by Penelope.
An ancient people in the south of Italy. According to Strabo, they dwelt in the neighbourhood of Rhegium, but being driven out of Italy by the Oenotrians crossed over to Sicily and there founded the town of Morgantium. According to Dionysius of Halicarnassus, Morges was the successor of the Oenotrian king Italus, and hospitably received Siculus, who had been driven out of Latium by the Aborigines, in consequence of which the earlier Oenotrians were called Italietes, Morgetes, and Siculi; according to this account, the Morgetes ought to be regarded as a branch of the Oenotrians.
This text is from: Harry Thurston Peck, Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. Cited Nov 2002 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks
Morgetes, an ancient people of southern Italy, who had disappeared before the period of authentic history, but are noticed by several ancient writers among the earliest inhabitants of that part of the peninsula, in connection with the Oenotrians, Itali, and Siculi. Antiochus of Syracuse (ap. Dionys. i. 12) represented the Siculi, Morgetes and Italietes as all three of Oenotrian race; and derived their names, according to the favourite Greek custom, from three successive rulers of the Oenotrians, of whom Italus was the first, Merges the second, and Siculus the third. This last monarch broke up the nation into two, separating the Siculi from their parent stock; and it would seem that the Morgetes followed the fortunes of the younger branch; for Strabo, who also cites Antiochus as his authority, tells us that the Siculi and Morgetes at first inhabited the extreme southern peninsula of Italy, until they were expelled from thence by the Oenotrians, when they crossed over into Sicily. (Strab. vi. p. 257.) The geographer also regards the name of Morgantium in Sicily as an evidence of the existence of the Morgetes in that island (Ibid. pp. 257. 270); but no other writer notices them there, and it is certain that in the time of Thucydides their lame must have been effectually merged in that of the Siculi. In the Etymologicon Magnum, indeed, Merges is termed a king of Sicily: but it seems clear that a king of the Siculi is intended; for the fable there related, which calls Siris a daughter of Merges, evidently refers to Italy alone. (Etym. M. v. Siris.) All that we can attempt to deduce as historical from the legends above cited, is that there appears to have existed in the S. of Italy, at the time when the Greek colonists first became acquainted with it, a people or tribe bearing the name of Morgetes, whom they regarded as of kindred race with the Chones and other tribes, whom they included under the more general appellation of the Oenotrians. Their particular place of abode cannot be fixed with certainty; but Strabo seems to place them in the southern peninsula of Bruttium, adjoining Rhegium and Locri. (Strab. vi. p. 257.)
This text is from: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD). Cited August 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks
Receive our daily Newsletter with all the latest updates on the Greek Travel industry.Subscribe now!