KOLONOS (Ancient demos) ATHENS
Colonus (Kolonos), celebrated as the demus of Sophocles, and the scene of one of the poet's tragedies, was situated ten stadia from the gate of the city, called Dipylum, near the Academy and the river Cephissus. (Thuc. viii. 67; Cic. de Fin. v. 1.) It derived its name from two small but conspicuous heights, which rise from the plain a little to the north of the Academy. Hence it is called by Sophocles the white Colonus (ton argeta Kolonon, Oed. Col. 670). It was under the especial care of Poseidon, and is called by Thucydides the hieron of this god. It is frequently called Colonus Hippius, to distinguish it from the Colonus Agoraeus in Athens. Besides the temple of Poseidon, it possessed a sacred inclosure of the Eumenides, altars of Athena, Hippia, Demeter, Zeus, and Prometheus, together with sanctuaries of Peirithous, Theseus, Oedipus, and Adrastus. (Paus. i. 30.4.) The natural beauties of the spot are described by Sophocles in the magnificent chorus, beginning with the words:
euippou, xene, tasde choras
hikou ta kratista gas epaula
ton argeta Kolonon.
A deme of Attica, ten stadia, or a little more than a mile, northwest of Athens, near the Academy; celebrated for a temple of Poseidon, a grove of the Eumenides, the shrine of Oedipus, and as the birthplace of Sophocles, who describes it in his Oedipus Coloneus.
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