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Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities

Corinthus

   A famous city of Greece, situated on the isthmus of the same name. Commanding by its position the Ionian and the Aegean seas, and holding, as it were, the keys of the Peloponnesus, Corinth, from the pre-eminent advantages of its situation, was already the seat of opulence and the arts, while the rest of Greece was sunk in comparative obscurity and barbarism. Its origin is, of course, obscure; but we are assured that it already existed under the name of Ephure before the siege of Troy. According to the assertions of the Corinthians themselves, their city received its name from Corinthus, the son of Zeus; but Pausanias does not credit this popular tradition, and cites the poet Eumelus to show that the appellation was really derived from Corinthus, the son of Marathon. Homer certainly employs both names indiscriminately. Pausanias reports that the descendants of Sisyphus reigned at Corinth until the invasion of their territory by the Dorians and the Heraclidae, when Doridas and Hyanthidas, the last princes of this race, abdicated the crown in favour of Aletes, a descendant of Heracles, whose lineal successors remained in possession of the throne of Corinth during five generations, when the crown passed into the family of the Bacchiadae, so named from Bacchis, the son of Prumnis, who retained it for five other generations. After this the sovereign power was transferred to annual magistrates, still chosen, however, from the line of the Bacchiadae, with the title of prutaneis.
   The oligarchy so long established by this rich and powerful family was at length overthrown, about B.C. 629, by Cypselus, who banished many of the Corinthians, depriving others of their possessions, and putting others to death. Among those who fled from his persecution was Demaratus, of the family of the Bacchiadae, who settled at Tarquinii in Etruria, and whose descendants beame sovereigns of Rome. The reign of Cypselus was prosperous, and the system of colonization, which had previously succeeded so well in the settlements of Corcyra and Syracuse, was actively pursued by that prince, who added Ambracia, Anactorium, and Leucas to the maritime dependencies of the Corinthians.
   Cypselus was succeeded by his son Periander. On the death of this latter (B.C. 585), after a reign of forty-four years, according to Aristotle, his nephew Psammetichus came to the throne, but lived only three years. At his decease Corinth regained its independence, when a moderate aristocracy was established, under which the Republic enjoyed a state of tranquillity and prosperity unequalled by any other city of Greece. We are told by Thucydides that the Corinthians were the first to build war-galleys or triremes; and the earliest naval engagement, according to the same historian, was fought by their fleet and that of the Corcyreans, who had been alienated from their mother-State by the cruelty and impolicy of Periander. The city is believed to have had at this time a population of 300,000 souls.
    The arts of painting and sculpture, more especially that of casting in bronze, attained to the highest perfection at Corinth, and rendered this city the ornament of Greece, until it was stripped by the rapacity of a Roman general. Such was the beauty of its vases, that the tombs in which they had been deposited were ransacked by the Roman colonists whom Iulius Caesar had established there after the destruction of the city; and these, being transported to Rome, were purchased at enormous prices.
    When the Achaean League became involved in a destructive war with the Romans, Corinth was the last hold of their tottering Republic; and had its citizens wisely submitted to the offers proposed by the victorious Metellus, it might have been preserved; but the deputation of that general having been treated with scorn and even insult, the city became exposed to all the vengeance of the Romans L. Mummius, the consul, appeared before its walls with a numerous army, and after defeating the Achaeans in a general engagement, entered the town, now left without defence and deserted by the greater part of the inhabitants. It was then given up to plunder and finally set on fire; the walls also were razed to the ground, so that scarcely a vestige of this once great and noble city remained (B.C. 146). Polybius, who saw its destruction, affirmed that he had seen the finest paintings strewed on the ground, and the Roman soldiers using them as boards for dice or draughts. Pausanias reports that all the men were put to the sword, the women and children sold, and the most valuable statues and paintings removed to Rome. Strabo observes that the finest works of art which adorned that capital in his time had come from Corinth. He likewise states that Corinth remained for many years deserted and in ruins. Iulius Caesar, however, not long before his death, sent a numerous colony thither, by means of which Corinth was once more raised from its state of ruin, and renamed Colonia Iulia Corinthus. It was already a large and populous city and the capital of Achaia, when St. Paul preached the Gospel there for a year and six months. It is also evident that when visited by Pausanias it was thickly adorned by public buildings and enriched with numerous works of art, and as late as the time of Hierocles we find it styled the metropolis of Greece. In a later age the Venetians received the place from a Greek emperor; Mohammed II. took it from them in 1458; the Venetians recovered it in 1699, and fortified the Acrocorinthus again; but the Turks took it anew in 1715, and retained it until driven from the Peloponnesus in 1822. In 1858, it was wholly destroyed by an earthquake, since which time it has been rebuilt upon a site three miles to the northeast.
    An important feature of the scenery around Corinth was the Acrocorinthus, a mention of which has been made in a previous article. On the summit of this hill was erected a temple of Aphrodite, to whom the whole of the Acrocorinthus, in fact, was sacred. In the times of Corinthian opulence and prosperity, it is said that the shrine of the goddess was attended by no less than one thousand female slaves, dedicated to her service as courtesans. These priestesses of Aphrodite contributed not a little to the wealth and luxury of the city, whence arose the well-known expression, ou pantos andros eis Korinthon est ho plous, or, as Horace expresses it, "Non cuivis homini contingit adire Corinthum," in allusion to its expensive pleasures.
    Corinth was famed for its three harbours--Lechaeum, on the Corinthian Gulf, and Cenchreae and Schoenus, on the Saronic. Near this last was the Diolkos, where vessels were transported over the isthmus by machinery. The city was the birthplace of the painters Ardices, Cleophantus, and Cleanthes; of the statesmen Periander, Phidon, Philolaus, and Timoleon; and of Arion, who invented the dithyramb.

This text is cited Sep 2002 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


The Princeton Encyclopedia of Classical Sites

Corinth

  On the S coast of the Gulf of Corinth, some 9 km W of the Isthmus of Corinth. Principal city of the region, whose territory extended W to the river Nemea (adjacent to the territory of Sikyon), E across the Isthmus to Krommyon (modern Haghioi Theodoroi), and S to an uncertain line in the mountains bordering on the lands of Mycenae and Epidauros; due N of the city, across the SE bay of the Gulf, the peninsula of Peraion (modern Perachora) with its Sanctuaries of Hera was also under Corinthian control. The ancient city lay on the slopes of its fortified acropolis (Akrokorinthos), some 3.5 km from the shore and from the harbor town of Lechnion, which served the maritime traffic to and from the West. A second harbor town, Kenchreai, 10 km distant toward the SE on the shore of the Saronic Gulf, enabled Corinth to enjoy also the benefits of trade with the East. A stone-paved portage road, built across the narrowest part of the Isthmus in the 6th c. B.C., made it possible to transport whole ships (with their cargos?) between the Gulf of Corinth and the Saronic Gulf.
  Human occupation of the late Neolithic period is found at various mounds lying W, N, and E of the Classical city; on the hill of Korakou, near the shore at Lechaion, appear extensive remains of domestic habitation of all three phases of the Bronze Age. Within the area of the Classical city there is evidence of almost uninterrupted occupation from the Late Neolithic period through the Bronze and the Early Iron Age; but no significant architectural remains of those periods have yet appeared.
  The earliest architectural monument is to be associated with the Bacchiad kings. About 700 B.C. a primitive temple (middle or 3d quarter of 7th c.) was built on the so-called Temple Hill which dominates the center of the city. Its walls were of small limestone blocks from ground to eaves; the roof, hipped at one end, was covered with the earliest known Corinthian terracotta tiles. There was probably no peristyle. This temple was destroyed ca. 580 B.C., possibly in the violence attending the fall of the tyranny and the establishment of the oligarchy which was to control Corinth for the next four centuries. The temple, sacred probably to Apollo Pythios, was replaced ca. 560-540 B.C. by a larger, peripteral (6 x 15) temple of limestone; only seven columns survive in situ. The cella of the temple is divided: the smaller, W chamber contained a basis probably used for a chryselephantine or bronze image of Apollo of the 5th-4th c.; the more ancient image of Apollo (xoanon or sanis) would have been located in the larger, E chamber; a tank for holy water was located beneath the floor of the pronaos (cf. the Temple of Apollo Pythios at Gortyn in Crete).
  With the construction of the second temple the Temenos of Apollo was enlarged to the N and a ramp or stairway led from the lower ground at the N up through the temenos wall to the sanctuary. SE of the temple another stair led down to the area of a shrine (Athena Hellotis?) with semicircular mudbrick altar, a sacred spring, an apsidal building (of oracular function), and a racecourse. From there a road led N past the Fountainhouse of Peirene (the city's main public water supply) toward the sea and the harbor town of Lechaion. Immediately N of Peirene was a shrine, possibly of Artemis. A small Doric temple (A; distyle in antis) of the 5th c. B.C. was replaced in the 4th c. by a tetrastyle baldachino (covering a cult image?); at the same time the circular altar of the sanctuary was also covered with a baldachino. Beyond this shrine to the N lay a cleaning and dyeing works, with vats and concrete drying floors. Across the street to the W of Temple A lay a commercial building, a stoa of the 5th c., possibly a fish market. To the N of the archaic Temple of Apollo Pythios a stoa and a hot bath were constructed in the 5th c.; W of the temple a public road led NW toward Sikyon. Thus at a relatively early date constructions of civic and secular use encroached upon the great temple on the W, N, and E; to the S lay the Sanctuary of Athena Hellotis and the racecourse. The location of the civic center or agora of Greek times is by no means certain, though scholars have long tended to place it S of Temple Hill, on the site of the Roman forum. It is not clear just what civic buildings were required for the processes of the oligarchic government of Greek Corinth or what open meeting places (if any) were used by its popular assembly. A public archives must have existed for the preservation of documents on papyrus or parchment (the Corinthians appear not to have recorded public documents on stone, probably because of the lack of local marble quarries to supply a material suitable for the inscribing of long texts). None of the Greek buildings so far excavated can be associated with specifically civic functions.
  During the 5th and 4th c. the irregular terrain dominated by the sacred spring and oracular building was gradually filled in until a broad floor, rising slightly toward the S, covered the whole valley that lay to the S of Temple Hill. At the S limit of this valley, a large stoa of the Doric order (165 m long) was built toward the end of the 4th c. This S Stoa consisted of a single order on the N facade; but in the rear half of the interior the 33 two-room shops were covered by as many rooms on a mezzanine level. Each of the ground-floor shops but two was provided with a well; many of these shops apparently served as establishments for eating and drinking. Broneer believes the building was constructed by Philip II after the battle of Chaironeia in order to provide food and accommodations for the delegates of the various Greek states to the meetings in Corinth of the Hellenic League which Philip founded. For the construction of the S Stoa there were sacrificed several private houses of the 5th c. and two shrines, one of Aphrodite and the other probably for a hero cult, connected with the sacred races run on the nearby racecourse.
  Towards the end of the 4th c. the racecourse was redesigned, its orientation changed so as to create a wider open area N of the S Stoa. At the W end of this open area, and on a rock ledge rising about 7 m above the racecourse level, lay an old shrine, perhaps rebuilt at this time and certainly enclosed now by a large peribolos measuring about 93 x 130 m. In Roman times this temple was replaced by the heavy rubble-concrete basement of a podium temple (E) which completely obscures the Greek or Hellenistic construction.
  By 300 B.C. the valley S of Temple Hill had acquired the form it was to retain until the Roman sack in 146. Meanwhile other areas of the ancient city had been developed. The fortifications of Corinth may go back in part to the 6th c.; by the 4th c. they had reached their maximum extent, enclosing an area two and one-half times as great as that of Classical Athens. From the fortress of Akrokorinthos at the S, walls extended N to enclose the city; the N city wall lay along the top of a rock ledge, which gave strategic advantage to the defenses. From the N wall two long walls (patterned after those of 5th c. Athens) extended to the sea and enclosed the harbor town of Lechaion. Within the main city enclosure were not only public buildings and residential structures, but also extensive farming and grazing lands. Cemeteries (burials of Geometric to Hellenistic times) occur at several points within the city. These are for the most part small; the largest cemeteries were outside the walls at the N and E.
  The athletes who competed in the sacred contests on the racecourse in the center of the city had at their disposal one gymnasium (frequented in the 4th c. by Diogenes the Cynic) located in the suburb of Kraneion to the SE and another at the N, referred to by Pausanias as the ancient gymnasium. Recent excavations on the supposed site of the latter have revealed only the constructions of the gymnasium of Roman times. Between that and the N city wall there had existed, as early as the 6th c. B.C., a Sanctuary of Apollo; in the 4th c. Asklepios took over this shrine, where a temple was constructed on a rock terrace; at a lower level to the W a colonnaded court with fitted banquet rooms and abundant water supply served the physical needs of the worshipers. Some distance to the W lay a Sanctuary of Zeus; the exact site is not yet identified, but architectural fragments from the shrine indicate a late archaic Doric temple, greater in size than any other at Corinth (or in the entire Peloponnesos). A road connected the gymnasium and Asklepieion area with the center of the city further S. Adjacent to the W side of this road lay a theater. The stone seats and stairways of the cavea (capacity ca. 15,000) and the earliest (wooden) skene were laid out at the end of the 5th or in the early 4th c. B.C.; the skene was rebuilt in stone about a century later.
  Pausanias records many small sanctuaries lying beyond the center of the city; some of these clearly had their origins in Greek times. The important cult of Aphrodite had its center in a shrine on Akrokorinthos; the architectural remains are meager, but the sanctuary appears to have originated at least in the period of the tyrants. Recent excavations have brought to light one of the ten sanctuaries which Pausanias noted on the road leading up to Akrokorinthos--the Sanctuary of Demeter and Kore. A small, popular rather than civic, shrine, it was founded in the early 7th c. B.C. It is marked by no distinctive temple building but has an open-air meeting place (seats cut as steps in the rock); a stoa below at the N perhaps constituted a skene. Several dining rooms with couches point to communal religious banquets. Extremely fine examples of terracotta sculpture of the 6th through the 3d c. have been found here. To the NW of the city, on the ancient road just outside the Sikyonian Gate, has appeared a stela-shrine where hundreds of votive terracotta figurines of the 5th and 4th c. were offered (by travelers?); many of the figurines represent groups of women dancing about a central figure of a flute player.
  Residential buildings always crowded close to the civic and commercial buildings of the city. Private houses lay near the central area at E and S. East of the theater, just across the road that connected the center with the gymnasium, lie the remains of a private house with an early and unusual pebble-mosaic floor. Further W other houses of the 5th and 4th c. and of Hellenistic times are known to exist, but all have been damaged by Roman or later rebuilding and no complete Greek house plan has yet been exposed in Corinth. Ancient sources record that the suburb of Kraneion, lying to the SE of the civic center, on a hillock between the Kenchreai and Argos gates, was marked by a grove of cypresses and by luxurious residences: no excavations have been carried out here.
  The Corinthians of Greek and Roman times have left many monuments of their understanding of hydraulic engineering. Rain water, penetrating the porous upper limestone beds, was trapped (at levels varying from 2 to 30 m below the surface) by the lower, impervious clay deposit. This water made its appearance naturally at many points where a vertical rock scarp exposed both the upper limestone and the lower clay. The Fountain of Peirene near the center of the city is the best example of this type of supply; another is the so-called Baths of Aphrodite below the N city wall E of the Asklepieion. At both these points tunnels dug back into the clay, just below the overlying limestone, served to augment the water supply and to draw it forward to the rock scarp. The tunnels dug for the Peirene system extend S, SE, and SW in a network well over a km in length. Manholes dug at varying distances from one another served for the initial tunnel construction and subsequently as a means of drawing water for public and private use. The Peirene tunnels may have been initiated in the period of the tyrants. From a natural water source at the foot of Akrokorinthos a tunnel, excavated in the late 5th c. or earlier, carried water NW to serve private houses, farmsteads, and small industries (a pottery?), and to provide water for irrigation. The tunnel of this system has been investigated over a length of more than 1 km. Here the manholes were dug generally at intervals of ca. 60 m. Other similar tunnels are known to have existed in the ancient city but have not yet been explored.
  Cisterns of many forms were used by the Corinthians: large chambers dug into the rock (one, excavated in 1962, had a storage capacity of ca. 245,000 liters); long, narrow, rock-cut tunnels connecting two or three manholes (one such tunnel cistern had a capacity of ca. 100,000 liters); a series of tunnels intersecting in a pattern not unlike that of the so-called Hippodamian city plan; small bottle-shaped cisterns dug in rock near the surface of the ground (this type, common in Athens, is infrequent in Corinth). Although many of these cisterns and tunnels were in use in Roman times, it seems almost certain that most represent engineering feats of the Greek period. They are generally coated with a fine, creamy-yellow hydraulic cement which is typical of Greek times. Throughout the city, wells (independent of cisterns and tunnels) provided water to individual private and public buildings; the earliest so far excavated is of the Late Geometric period.
  The public water supply of the center of the city was provided by the Fountain of Peirene, to the E of the archaic Temple of Apollo, and by the Fountain of Glauke, W of the same temple. Glauke consisted of a series of three storage chambers cut into the rock of the W extension of Temple Hill; the N slope of the hill provided access to an architectural facade, cut from the living rock, just in front of the storage chambers. Water was brought to the chambers in terracotta pipes from some source lying far away to the S. Another and important water supply existed on Akrokorinthos, where a natural spring welled up among the rocks. This was doubtless in use in the time of the tyrants; in the Hellenistic period the collecting basin was covered by a concrete vault, which survives today.
  The building material of Greek Corinth was almost exclusively native limestone (poros). Marble, of which there was no local source, was used very rarely in Greek times, though Roman builders employed it extensively from the 1st c. A.D. Limestone was obtained from quarries some 4 km to the E of Corinth or even from the rock outcrops within the city itself. Quarrying of the W extension of Temple Hill (begun at least as early as the 4th c. B.C. and terminated in early Roman times) eventually isolated the Fountain of Glauke from the hillside of which it had been an integral part and left the monument, as it stands today, a lonely cube of living rock rising about 6 m above the surrounding terrain.
  In 146 B.C. a Roman army, led by the consul L. Mummius (Achaicus), sacked Corinth, then the leading city of the Achaian League. All the citizens were killed or enslaved; the buildings, to a large extent, demolished. The site lay waste for a century; such land as was not turned over to the people of Sikyon was declared ager publicus. In 44 B.C., on the initiative of Julius Caesar, a Roman colony (Laus Julia Corinthiensis) was established at Corinth. The purpose of the foundation was in part commercial, in part political--Corinth became the administrative center of the senatorial province of Achaia.
  In the first quarter of the 1st c. A.D. an extensive building program was begun. The designers made use of some Greek structures whose ruins were substantial enough to permit repair (the Temple of Apollo Pythios, S Stoa, Fountains of Peirene and Glauke, theater, Asklepieion), but otherwise they created a Roman city. Within 75 years of the foundation of the colony the plan of the new city was well established. A Roman arch (ornamental rather than triumphal) marked the S end of the stone-paved road from Lechaion, where it entered the forum. Adjacent to the arch at the W a basilica was constructed, with shops in the basement level opening out onto Lechaion Road. Two other basilicas, almost identical with one another in plan and elevation, were built at the E end and on the S side of the forum; a third similar structure apparently existed at the W. The S basilica was entered through the reconstructed S Stoa, into which were now incorporated also a horseshoe-shaped meeting room for the members of the local senate and several large administrative rooms. A row of one-story shops extending E-W through the center of the forum area was interrupted at its midpoint by a speakers' platform designated rostra (inscription of 2d c. A.D.) or bema (Nov. Test., Act. Ap. xviii.12). All these structures served the administrative needs of the colony itself and of the provincial governor and his considerable staff. A rectangular structure built in the early 1st c. A.D. in the SE corner of the forum has been identified tentatively as the tabularium.
  Across the W end of the forum, in front of and below the peribolos of temple E (see supra), were built six small podium temples and a circular monopteros (the last, dedicated by Gn. Babbius Philinus before the middle of the 1st c., perhaps housed a statue of Aphrodite). This architectural complex, developed between the years A.D. 35 and 190, included a pantheon and Temples of Venus-Fortuna, Herakles, and the emperor Commodus. Between the NW corner of the forum and the Fountain of Glauke a Temple of Hera Akraia (?) with peribolos was built during the 1st c.
  North of Peirene the Greek Shrine of Artemis was replaced in early Roman times by a peribolos, sacred to Apollo but apparently serving as a place of meeting and of business for those engaged in shipping; a row of shops separated the peribolos from the colonnaded sidewalk of Lechaion Road to the W. The N flank of Temple Hill was quarried away in the early 1st c. to create space for a large quadrangular marketplace enclosed on all sides by colonnades. Another commercial structure, of like width, opened onto the W side of Lechaion Road.
  Roman Corinth boasted at least three great public baths. The thermae built by Eurykles in the late 1st or early 2d c. are probably to be identified with the ruins just N of the Peribolos of Apollo. Another great bath is being excavated at a point some 200 m N of the forum (its ground area may surpass 10,000 sq. m); it is probably the Thermae of Hadrian mentioned by Pausanias. The third large bath is located due N of the theater. At least four other small public baths of the later Roman period are known within the city.
  For the entertainment of the populace the Romans rebuilt the Greek theater, constructing a typical Roman scenae frons. In later times the orchestra was redesigned for use as an arena and even for aquatic performances. A smaller odeum was constructed in the 1st c. A.D. S of the theater; a colonnaded court of trapezoidal plan joined the two structures. In the 2d c. the odeum was remodeled at the expense of Herodes Atticus (as was also the court of the Fountain of Peirene). For more typically Roman performances, an amphitheater (the only one in the province of Achaia) was laid out (3d or 4th c.) in the NE quarter of the city.
  Traces of Roman private houses are found throughout the city area. Two have been excavated. One, lying some 750 m W of the odeum, was built in the early 1st c. and was remodeled several times. A dining room, redesigned in the last quarter of the 1st c. to accommodate nine couches, was provided with a splendid mosaic floor in which many tesserae of glass were employed; adjacent to this room was a small, Italianate atrium. A house of the 3d c., built just outside the city wall at the NW, beside the road to Sikyon, is distinguished by numerous well-preserved mosaics with mythological and pastoral scenes; this house, too, had an atrium. It is clear that Herodes Atticus possessed a villa in or near Corinth; it may have been N of the suburb of Kraneion. An elaborate villa near the shore, just E of Lechaion, is probably of the 3d c.; it is marked by extensive and complex provisions for the supply of water.
  In Roman times the Sanctuary of Aphrodite on Akrokorinthos continued to flourish, and Romans inscribed their names on the walls of the subterranean chamber that gave access to the natural fountain on the citadel. The fortifications of the hill, however, as well as those of the lower town, demolished by Mummius, were not needed in the Early Imperial period and were not rebuilt. There is no evidence of a rebuilding prior to the invasion of the Heruli in A.D. 267; but traces of N-S lines of rubble-concrete walls some 1,000 m W and a like distance E of the forum may perhaps represent the post-Herulian fortifications of a smaller area than that covered by the Greek and early Roman city. The major repairs to the walls of Akrokorinthos are to be attributed to the Byzantines and their successors.
  Excavations at Corinth were begun in 1896. A museum at the site (built 1932, enlarged 1950) houses almost all finds from the excavations as well as chance finds from the vicinity.

H. S. Robinson, ed.
This text is from: The Princeton encyclopedia of classical sites, Princeton University Press 1976. Cited Nov 2002 from Perseus Project URL below, which contains 99 image(s), bibliography & interesting hyperlinks.


Skoutela

  The site of an Early Christian basilica of the first quarter of the 6th c. ca. 2 km NW of ancient Corinth. Some fine marble architectural fragments excavated in the basilica are in the Corinth Museum. That Skoutela, which lies in the plain below the N cemetery, was inhabited in ancient times is clear from archaic and Classical pottery under the basilica, from a Classical grave nearby, and from Roman coins found in the excavations.

R. Stroud, ed.
This text is from: The Princeton encyclopedia of classical sites, Princeton University Press 1976. Cited Nov 2002 from Perseus Project URL below, which contains bibliography & interesting hyperlinks.


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Corinth, Corinthian, Corinthians

Corinthos, Ephyraea, Korinth, Korinthos, Korinthians


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The Catholic Encyclopedia

Corinth

  A titular archiepiscopal see of Greece.
  The origin of Corinth belongs to prehistoric legend. About 1100 B.C. this city, delivered from the Argives by the Dorian invasion, became the centre of the Heracleid rule in Peloponnesus; at this time it waged successful wars against neighbouring cities, including Athens. A little later, under the tyranny of the Bacchiadae (750-657 B.C.), it founded many colonies, among them Corcyra and Syracuse. About 657 B.C. a revolution substituted for tyranny a government based on popular election; from that time Corinth took no great part in Greek history, except as the scene of the Isthmian games and by the transit duty it imposed on all goods passing by its citadel.
  The foreign policy of this submissive vassal of Philip (later the federal centre, but not the inspirer, of the Achaean league) was never positive and domestic; its true glory was its luxury, riches, and artistic culture. It gave its name to the third and most ornamental of the orders of Greek architecture. Corinth was captured and plundered by Mummius (146 B.C.), restored and embellished again by Caesar and Hadrian, and ravaged in turn by the Heruli, Visigoths, and Slavs. In 1205 it was captured by the French, who gave it up to the Venetians, by whom it was held, excepting brief intervals, until 1715. The Turks left it in 1821, and in 1858, after a severe earthquake, it was transferred to the western shore of the gulf.
  The new town, in the provinces of Argolis and Corinthia, has about 4500 inhabitants, and exports dried currants, oil, corn, and silk. The ancient site is now occupied by a wretched village, Palaeo-Corinthos, or Old Corinth, with five churches, probably built where temples had formerly stood. Nearby are the lofty Acropolis (Acro-Corinthus) and ruins of a temple and amphitheatre. The ship canal between the bay of Corinth and the gulf of Aegina, about four miles in length, was opened 8 November, 1893.
  St. Paul preached successfully at Corinth. Corinth was the metropolis of all Hellas. After the Byzantine emperors had violently withdrawn Illyricum from Papal direction, Corinth appears as a metropolis with seven suffragan sees; at the beginning of the eighteenth century there were only two united in one title.
  Since 1890 Corinth, for the Greeks, has been a simple bishopric, but the first in rank, Athens being the sole archbishopric of the Kingdom of Greece.

S. Petrides, ed.
Transcribed by: Fr. Paul-Dominique Masiclat, O.P.
This extract is cited June 2003 from The Catholic Encyclopedia, New Advent online edition URL below.


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Corinthos


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