Messenia Sentence Examples
On his brother's murder he fled to Messenia (241 B.C.).
The last of these attempts resulted in the " Dorian conquest " of the "Achaeans " and " Ionians " of Peloponnese, and in the assignment of Argolis, Laconia and Messenia to the Heracleid leaders, Temenus, Aristodemus and Cresphontes respectively; of Elis to their Aetolian allies; and of the north coast to the remnants of the conquered Achaeans.
In Messenia (according to a legend dramatized by Euripides in the 5th century, and renovated for political ends in the 4th century) the descendants of Cresphontes quarrelled among themselves and were exterminated by the natives.
Euhemerus of Messenia tried of old to rationalize the Greek myths by supposing that the Olympian gods were deified men.
At length Eira was betrayed to the Spartans (668 B.C. according to Pausanias), and after a heroic resistance Aristomenes and his followers had to evacuate Messenia and seek a temporary refuge with their Arcadian allies.Advertisement
Endeavouring next to expand into Peloponnesus, they allied themselves with Antigonus Gonatas of Macedonia against the Achaean league, and besides becoming protectors of Elis and Messenia won several Arcadian cities.
Meantime Demosthenes had formed the plan of planting the Messenians of Naupactus in Messenia - now Spartan territory - and obtained permission to accompany the expedition.
Af ter the death of Cretheus, Pelias made himself master of the kingdom of Iolous, having previously quarrelled with Neleus, who removed to Messenia, where he founded Pylos.
In spite of its long coast-line, Messenia has no good harbours except the Bay of Pylos (Navarino), and has never played an important part in Greek naval history.
The earliest inhabitants of Messenia are said to have been Pelasgians and Leleges (qq.v.), of whom the latter had their capital at Andania.Advertisement
Then came an Aeolo-Minyan immigration, which apparently extended to Messenia, though the Pylos of Nestor almost certainly lay in Triphylia, and not at the site which in historic times bore that name.
In the Homeric poems eastern Messenia is represented as under the rule of Menelaus of Sparta, while the western coast is under the Neleids of Pylos, but after Menelaus's death the Messenian frontier was pushed eastwards as far as Taygetus.
War broke out - in consequence, it was said, of the murder of the Spartan king Teleclus by the Messenians - which, in spite of the heroism of King Euphaes and his successor Aristodemus ended in the subjection of Messenia to Sparta (c. 720 B.C.).
But though independent Messenia never became really powerful or able to stand without external support.
In the middle ages Messenia shared the fortunes of the rest of the Peloponnese.Advertisement
At the present day Messenia forms a department with its capital at Kalamata, and a population numbering (according to the census of 1907), 127,991.
The term, however, came to denote not a nationality but a political status, and though the main body of the perioeci may have been Achaean in origin, yet they afterwards included Arcadians on the northern frontier of Laconia, Dorians, especially in Cythera and in Messenia, and Ionians in Cynuria.
Unlike the Spartiates they might, and did, possess gold and silver and the iron and steel wares from the mines on Mt Taygetus, the shoes and woollen stuffs of Amyclae, and the import and export trade of Laconia and Messenia probably enabled some at least of them to live in an ease and comfort unknown to their Spartan lords.
The name Pedasus occurs (i.) near Cyzicus, (ii.) in the Troad on the Satnioeis river, (iii.) in Caria, as well as (iv.) in Messenia.
Meanwhile other writers from the 4th century onwards claimed to discover them in Boeotia, west Acarnania (Leucas), and later again in Thessaly, Euboea, Megara, Lacedaemon and Messenia.Advertisement
In Messenia they were reputed immigrant founders of Pylos, and were connected with the seafaring Taphians and Teleboans of Homer, and distinguished from the Pelasgians; in Lacedaemon and in Leucas they were believed to be aboriginal.
He then settled down to the bar at Kalamata in Messenia, where he married a lady belonging to the Mavromichalis family.
The site is admirably fitted by nature to guard the only routes by which an army can penetrate Laconia from the land side, the Oenus and Eurotas valleys leading from Arcadia, its northern neighbour, and the Langada Pass over Mt Taygetus connecting Laconia and Messenia.
The Aetolians settled in Elis the Dorians pushed up to the headwaters of the Alpheus, where they divided into two forces, one of which under Cresphontes invaded and later subdued Messenia, while the other, led by Aristodemus or, according to another version, by his twin sons Eurysthenes and Procles, made its way down the Eurotas valley and gained Sparta, which became the Dorian capital of Laconia.
An attempt to throw off the yoke resulted in a second war, conducted by the Messenian hero Aristomenes; but Spartan tenacity broke down the resistance of the insurgents, and Messenia was made Spartan territory, just as Laconia had been, its inhabitants being reduced to the status of helots, save those who, as perioeci, inhabited the towns on the sea-coast and a few settlements inland.Advertisement
But Sparta had neither the men nor the money to recover her lost position, and the continued existence on her borders of an independent Messenia and Arcadia kept her in constant fear for her own safety.
After the battle, however, she refused to submit voluntarily to Philip, and was forced to do so by the devastation of Laconia and the transference of certain border districts to the neighbouring states of Argos, Arcadia and Messenia.
In Laconia Aristodemus (or his twin sons) effected a rigid military occupation which eventually embraced the whole district, and permitted (a) the colonization of Melos, Thera and parts of Crete (before 800 B.C.), (b) the reconquest and annexation of Messenia (about 750 B.C.), (c) a settlement of half-breed Spartans at Tarentum in south Italy, 700 B.C. In Argos and other cities of Argolis the descendants of the Achaean chiefs were taken into political partnership, but a tradition of race-feud lasted till historic times.