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Information about the place (5)
The Princeton Encyclopedia of Classical Sites
City in Ionia 40 km SW of Smyrna. Founded according to tradition (Paus.
7.3.6) by Minyans from Orchomenos, joined later by Ionians and Athenians under
the sons of Kodros. Because of its central situation Teos was proposed by Thales
as the seat of a common political assembly of the Ionian cities, but this was
not done. When Teos fell to Harpagos the citizens, unable to endure the Persian
arrogance, sailed in a body to Thrace and founded Abdera (Hdt. 1.168; Strab. 644),
but many of them soon returned. The city sent 17 ships to the battle of Lade (Hdt.
6.8). In the Delian Confederacy Teos was assessed at six talents, roughly on a
par with Miletos and Ephesos; she revolted after the Sicilian expedition, but
was quickly reduced (Thuc. 8.16.20). In 303 B.C. Antigonos was intending to synoecise
Teos, which was poor at that time, with Lebedos, and to transfer the Lebedians
thither, but Lysimachos took Teos from him in the following year, and instead
transferred many Teians and Lebedians to his new foundation at Ephesos. About
200 B.C. Teos was selected as headquarters of the Asiatic branch of the Artists
of Dionysos, but dissension caused a move to Ephesos within half a century. In
the war against Antiochos III the Romans and Rhodians won a naval victory over
the king at Teos (Livy 37.27). Coinage begins in the 6th c. B.C. and continues,
with an interruption in the 3d c., down to the time of Gallienus.
The site is on the neck of a peninsula, with harbors to N and S. The
N harbor, where the village now stands, is used today; remains of an ancient quay
or mole may be seen in the water. It is called by Strabo Gerrhaiidai, by Livy
Geraesticus. The S harbor is now deserted and silted up; a line of quay wall survives,
with projecting blocks at intervals, pierced with round holes to form mooring
stations. Now hardly above the water line, these blocks originally stood 1.5-1.8
m above sea level. The scrub-covered headland W of the city seems to have been
unoccupied in ancient times.
The acropolis is on a separate hill halfway between the N and S shores;
on its summit are some scanty fragments of polygonal wall. The inhabited city
lay between this hill and the S harbor; an area of ca. 0.5 sq. km is enclosed
by rectilinear walls of Hellenistic date at right angles to one another. These
are poorly preserved, but a short stretch on the W has recently been excavated.
At the S foot of the acropolis hill is the theater, indifferently
preserved. The building was originally Hellenistic, but was provided in Roman
times with a new stage building; a vaulted gallery runs under the cavea. The stage
building, recently cleared, has some puzzling features, in particular horizontal
holes pierced through the projecting blocks of the proscenium. The stage is about
4 m deep.
Below the acropolis on the NE are the meager ruins of a large building
identified as a gymnasium, and SE of the theater is the odeum. It is fairly well
preserved with 11 rows of seats, and is adorned with two tall statue bases of
The temple of Dionysos Setaneios, chief deity of Teos, stood just
inside the W wall; some of the columns have been reerected. The temple, in the
Ionic order, was the work of Hermogenes in the 2d c. B.C. The stylobate is 35
by 19 m; the peristyle has 11 columns by 6, equally spaced, giving a ratio of
length to breadth of exactly 2:1. The temenos is trapezoidal. In the 2d c. A.D.
the building was restored and rededicated to Hadrian. Adjacent to the temple excavation
has revealed a narrow paved street with a central water channel, and a similar
one a little to the N.
The blue limestone used at Teos came from a hill beside the present
road from Seferihisar to Sigacik. In the 19th c. 15 or 20 huge blocks cut into
curious shapes were visible around a small lake less than 1 km to the NW; they
seem to have been intended for export as bulk material. One or two are still lying
by the lake, and another in the sea at the N harbor.
G. E. Bean, 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.
Perseus Project index
Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities
Now Sighajik; one of the Ionian cities on the coast of Asia
Minor, renowned as the birthplace of the lyric poet Anacreon. It stood at the
end of the bay, between the promontories of Coryceum and Myonnesus. Here was a
celebrated temple of Dionysus and a theatre, of which remains still exist.
- Perseus: Harry Thurston Peck, Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities (1898)
Greek & Roman Geography (ed. William Smith)
Teos (Teos: Eth. Teios), an Ionian city on the coast of Asia Minor,
on the south side of tle isthmus connecting the Ionian peninsula of Mount Mimas
with the mainland. It was originally a colony of the Minyae of Orchomenos led
out by Athamas, but during the Ionian migration the inhabitants were joined by
numerous colonists from Athens under Nauclus, a son of Codrus, Apoecus, and Damasus;
and afterwards their number was further increased by Boeotians under Geres. (Strab.
xiv. p. 633; Paus. vii. 3. § 3; Herod. i. 142; Scylax, p. 37; Steph. B. s. v.)
The city had two good harbours, one of which is mentioned even by Scylax, and
the second, 30 stadia distant from the former, is called by Strabo Gerrhaidai
(xiv. p. 644), and by Livy (xxxvii. 27) Geraesticus. Teos became a flourishing
commercial town, and enjoyed its prosperity until the time of the Persian dominion,
when its inhabitants, unable to bear the insolence of the barbarians, abandoned
their city and removed to Abdera in Thrace. (Herod. i. 168; Strab. l. c.) But
though deserted by the greater part of its inhabitants, Teos still continued to
be one of the Ionian cities, and in alliance with Athens. (Thucyd. iii. 32.) After
the Sicilian disaster, Tees revolted from Athens, but was speedily reduced (Thucyd.
viii. 16, 19, 20). In the war against Antiochus, the fleet of the Romans and Rhodians
gained a victory over that of the Syrian king in the neighbourhood of this city.
(Liv. l. c.; comp. Polyb. v. 77.) The vicinity of Teos produced excellent wine,
whence Bacchus was one of the chief divinities of the place. Pliny (v. 38) erroneously
calls Teos an island, for at most it could only be termed a peninsula. (Comp.
Pomp. Mela, i. 17; Ptol. v. 2. § 6.) There still exist considerable remains of
Teos at a place called Sighajik, which seems to have been one of the ports of
the ancient city, and the walls of which are constructed of the ruins of Teos,
so that they are covered with a number of Greek inscriptions of considerable interest,
referring, as they do, to treaties made between the Teians and other states, such
as the Romans, Aetolians, and several cities of Crete, by all of whom the inviolability
of the Teian territory, the worship of Bacchus, and the right of asylum are confirmed.
The most interesting among the ruins of Teos are those of the theatre and of the
great and splendid temple of Bacchus; the massive walls of the city also may still
be traced along their whole extent. The theatre commands a magnificent view, overlooking
the site of the ancient city and the bay as far as the bold promontory of Myonnesus
and the distant island of Samos. For a detailed description of these remains,
see Hamilton, Researches, ii. p. 1 1, foll.; comp. Leake, Asia Minor, p. 350.
This text is from: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD). Cited September 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks
- Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD)