Koroneia. A town in Boeotia, southwest of Lake Copais, and a
member of the Boeotian League. Here in B.C. 447, the Boeotians defeated the Athenians;
and in B.C. 394, the allied Greeks were defeated by Agesilaus.
Greek city of Boeotia,
west of Thebes.
In mythology, Coronea was the kingdom of Athamas, a son of Aeolus and grandson of Hellen. He was married three times and was involved in a lot of troubles with his successive wives, which inspired several tragedies in classical times.
From his first wife Nephele, Athamas had a son named Phrixus and a daughter named Helle. But he later abandonned Nephele to marry Ino, one of the daughters of Cadmus, the founder of nearby Thebes. With Ino, Athamas had two sons, Learchus and Melicertes, yet Ino was jealous of the children he had had with Nephele and decided to get rid of them. She managed to induce a famine in the country and to make her husband believe that the oracle of Delphi required the sacrifice of Phrixus to end it. But while Phrixus was led to the altar, Nephele gave him a ram with a golden fleece offered her by Hermes, on which Phrixus and his sister Helle could fly away.
When Athamas learned what Ino had done, he ordered that she be sacrificed in place of Phrixus. But then, Dionysus saved her by surrounding her in a cloud and struck Athamas with madness, so that he killed his own son Learchus. When she heard that, Ino took her other son Melicertes and jumped with him in the sea. After that, Athamas was exiled from Boeotia and seeked refuge in Thessalia, where he founded another city named Alos and married for the third time.
It is in Coronea that a battle took place in 447 between the Athenians supporting democratic regimes in Boeotia and Boeotian oligarchs led by Thebes. Athens was defeated and Thebes was thus able to reconstruct the Boeotian Confederacy under its leadership.
Bernard Suzanne (page last updated 1999), ed.
This extract is cited July 2003 from the Plato and his dialogues URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks.
Koroneia: Eth. Koroneus, the name...derived from korone, a hill. A
town of Boeotia, and a member of the Boeotian league, is described by Strabo as
situated upon a height near Mt. Helicon. Its territory was called Koroneiake.
(Strab. ix.) The town stood upon an insulated hill at the entrance of a valley
leading southwards to Mt. Helicon, the principal summit of which is seen at the
head of the valley. From this hill there is a fine view over the lake Copais,
and at its foot there is a broad plain extending as far as the marshes of the
lake. On either side of the hill flowed two streams, one on the eastern or right
hand side, called Coralius or Cuarius, and the other on the left, named Phalarus:
a tributary of the latter was the Isomantus or Hoplias. Coroneia is said to have
been founded by the Boeotians from Arne in Thessaly, after they had been driven
out of their original homes by the Thessalians; and they appear to have called
it Coroneia after the Thessalian town of this name. At the same time they built
in the plain in front of the city a temple of Athena Itonica, also named after
the one in Thessaly, and likewise gave to the river which flowed by the temple
the name of Cuarius or Curalius, after the Thessalian river. In this temple was
held the festival of the Pamboeotia, which was common to all the Boeotians. (Strab.
ix.; Paus. ix. 34. § 1.) The Thessalian origin of Coroneia is also attested by
Pausanias, who ascribes its foundation, as well as that of Haliartus, to Athamas
and his descendants, who came from Thessaly (ix. 34. § 7, seq.).
Coroneia is mentioned by Homer in conjunction with Haliartus. (Il. ii. 503.) In historical times several important battles were fought in the plain in front of the town. It was here that the Athenians under Tolmides were defeated by the Boeotians in B.C. 447, in consequence of which defeat the Athenians lost the sovereignty which they had for some years exercised over Boeotia. (Thuc. i. 113.) The plain of Coroneia was also the scene of the victory gained by Agesilaus over the Thebans and their allies in B.C. 394. (Xen. Hell. iv. 3. 15, seq.; Plut. Ages. 17.) In the Sacred War Coroneia was twice taken by the Phocians under Onomarchus. (Diod. xvi, 35, 58.) Philip, after the conquest of the Phocians, gave up the town to the Thebans. (Dem. de Pac. p. 62, Philip. ii. p. 69.) Coroneia espoused the cause both of Philip and of Perseus in their wars with the Romans. (Polyb. xx. 7, xxvii. 1, xxix. 6, a.; Liv. xxxiii. 29, xlii. 44, 67.)
Pausanias says (ix. 34. § 3) that the most remarkable objects in Coroneia were altars of Hermes Epimelius and of the winds, and a little below them the temple of Hera. The principal remains of the ancient city are those of the theatre, of the temple of Hera, and of the agora. The coins of Coroneia are very rare. The one annexed is a hemidrachma, with the Boeotian shield on one side, and on the other a full-faced mask or Gorgonian head, with the epigraph graph KOPO.
This text is from: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD). Cited June 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks
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