Ancient Corinth Archaia Corinthos is an amazing place to visit during your staying in Athens. Ancient Corinth site is a great choice! Corinth once a great ancient Greek city-states has a history stretching for more than 8000 years. It played an important role not just for Greek history but also to the rest of the world, with Athens and Sparta. What makes Corinth so special?
The most important element to understand the importance of Ancient Corinth Archaia Corinthos is its strategic place at ancient times to this day! At the exact point that connects Peloponnese with Greece Mainland at the Ancient world and the Corinth Canal at the modern world! This means trade! Extensive archaeological research has shown that people reside in this area since Neolithic times. With artifacts dated as early as 6500 BCE, the settlement of Corinth gradually developed and grew into a dominant trade center of Greece since the early Bronze Age. The era of Kings in Ancient Corinth Archaia Corinthos resulted in a powerful state not only able to control its nearby territories but also rich enough to raise the interest of its enemies. The 8th century for Corinth brought the invasion of the Bacchiadae, a Doric-clan that put an end to the succession of Kings and established an aristocratic regiment with them as the rulers of Corinth. A new phase of construction and prosperity begun and the population of the city-state rose up to 5000 individuals, quite a substantial number for this time-period.
The Isthmian Games were one of the four Panhellenic Games that existed in antiquity. Just like the Olympic Games, athletes from all over Greece and the Greek region rushed to participate in the Games honoring the patron god, Poseidon. According to the legend, the founder of the Games was Sisyphus himself and an Isthmian Truce (just like the Olympian one) was declared before the start of the festival to ensure the safe passage of the athletes to Corinth. The prize for these games were wreaths of celery and later on made out of pine.
Only during the 2nd century BCE, Romans were allowed to take part in the festival and eventually the games stopped after the decision of Theodosius I in the 4th century AD. The ancient stadium of Isthmia is still preserved right next to the temple of Poseidon.
After the destruction of Carthage in 146 BCE, the Romans proclaimed to the rest of the world their hegemony and unquestionable rule. In Greece, the Achaean League reacted to the provocations of the Romans and later that year a decisive battle between those two parties happened outside of the city of Corinth. Despite the minor victories of the Greeks, the commander Lucius Mummius vanquished the Greek army and continued by destroying to the ground the city of Corinth. Not only that, but he captured all the male population of the city and executed them on site while women and young children were sold as slaves. This dramatic event shook the reality of the Greeks that observed everything in horror. The destroyed city was left in ruins for almost a century when Julius Caesar, re-founded the city under the name Colonia Laus Iulia Corinthiensis (colony of Corinth in honor of Julius) in 44 BC before his assassination. After some years, Corinth recovered, reintroducing itself as one of the most dynamic harbors of the Mediterranean with a huge population of Greeks, Romans, and Jews.