Saturday, December 24, 2011

Some Quotes on Macedonia and Greece

A Smaller history of Greece
Smith, William, Sir, 1813-1893



Greece is the southern portion of a great peninsula of Europe, washed on three sides by the Mediterranean Sea. It is bounded on the north by the Cambunian mountains, which separate it from Macedonia. It extends from the fortieth degree of latitude to the thirty-sixth, its greatest length being not more than 250
English miles, and its greatest breadth only 180. Its surface is considerably less than that of Portugal. This small area was divided among a number of independent states, many of them
containing a territory of only a few square miles, and none of them larger than an English county. But the heroism and genius of the Greeks have given an interest to the insignificant spot of earth bearing their name, which the vastest empires have never equaled.

The name of Greece was not used by the inhabitants of the country. They called their land HELLAS, and themselves HELLENES. At first the word HELLAS signified only a small district in Thessaly, from which the Hellenes gradually spread over the whole country. The names of GREECE and GREEKS come to us from the Romans, who gave the name of GRAECIA to the country and of GRAECI to the inhabitants."

"All the Greeks were descended from the same ancestor and spoke the same language. They all described men and cities which were not Grecian by the term BARBARIAN. This word has passed into our
own language, but with a very different idea; for the Greeks applied it indiscriminately to every foreigner, to the civilized inhabitants of Egypt and Persia, as well as to the rude tribes ofScythia and Gaul."

"The Grecian colonies may be arranged in four groups:
1. Those founded in Asia Minor and the adjoining islands;
2. Those in the western parts of the Mediterranean, in Italy, Sicily, Gaul, and Spain;
3. Those in Africa;
4. Those in Epirus, Macedonia, and Thrace."
"The colonies in Macedonia and Thrace were very numerous, and extended all along the coast of the AEgean, of the Hellespont, of the Propontis, and of the Euxine, from the borders of Thessaly to
the mouth of the Danube. Of these we can only glance at the most important. The colonies on the coast of Macedonia were chiefly founded by Chalcis and Eretria in Euboea; and the peninsula of
Chalcidice, with its three projecting headlands, was covered with their settlements, and derived its name from the former city. The Corinthians likewise planted a few colonies on this coast, of which Potidaea, on the narrow isthmus of Pallene, most deserves mention.

Of the colonies in Thrace, the most flourishing were Selymbria and Byzantium, both founded by the Megarians, who appear as an enterprising maritime people at an early period."

"The power of Sparta on land had now attained its greatest height.Her unpopularity in Greece was commensurate with the extent of her harshly administered dominion. She was leagued on all slides
with the enemies of Grecian freedom--with the Persians, with Amyntas of Macedon, and with Dionysius of Syracuse. But she had now reached the turning-point of her fortunes, and her successes, which had been earned without scruple, were soon to be followed by misfortunes and disgrace. The first blow came from Thebes, where she had perpetrated her most signal injustice."

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