Pylos

/pee"laws/; Eng. /puy"los, -lohs/, n.
Greek name of Navarino.

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▪ ancient site, Greece
Modern Greek  Pílos,  also called  Navarino,  

      any of three sites in Greece. The most important of them is identified with the modern Pílos (or Navarino, locally called Neókastro), the capital of the eparkhía (“eparchy”) of Pylia in the nomós (department) of Messenia, Greece, on the southern headland of the Órmos (bay) Navarínou, a deepwater shipping channel on the southwest coast of the Peloponnese. It is protected and almost blocked from the sea by the island of Sphakteria (Sfaktiría), which has a summit (Mt. Illia) of 450 ft (137 m). The smaller island of Pílos to the south has a lighthouse and a monument to French sailors who fell at the Battle of Navarino (1827). The ancient historian Thucydides described Pylos as a deserted headland in 425 BC, when Athens defeated Sparta there in a land and naval battle during the Peloponnesian war. The modern town behind the south headland of the bay was built in 1829 by the French.

      Much confusion over the proper place-names for Pylos began in the Middle Ages. One of the present alternative names, Navarino, may be derived from a group of Avars (Avar) (a people of unknown origin and language) who settled there during the 6th to 8th century AD. The Venetians later corrupted the name of their castle, Ton Avarinon, to Navarino. In 1278 the Franks built the Paleo Kastro (Old Castle), which still commands the west channel to the harbour. In 1381 a company of Gascon and Navarrese adventurers took over Pylos. The Turks in 1573 built the citadel at the foot of Mt. Áyios Nikólaos, calling it Neo Kastro to distinguish it from the Frankish structure. From 1498 to 1821 Navarino and its bay were in the hands of the Turks except for two periods (1644–48 and 1686–1715), when it was held by the Venetians. The bay was the scene of a notable naval battle between European and Turkish fleets in 1827, which consolidated the independence of Greece. Local inhabitants prefer the name Neókastro, after the Turkish-Venetian fortifications.

      Scholarly dispute over the location of Pylos, the capital of King Nestor described in Homer, may have begun as early as the 3rd century BC. An impressive Mycenaean palace compound that was occupied from about 1700 BC to just before 1200 was unearthed north of present Pylos–Navarino–Neókastro in 1939. This Epano Englianos palace, together with dependent despoiled tombs, appears to match closely the dignity and position of the royal seat as described by Homer. Transcending the Pylos locational controversy, however, was the discovery at Epano Englianos of hundreds of inscribed clay tablets baked hard by the fire that destroyed the palace. The tablets are inscribed in the so-called Linear B script found earlier in the palace at Knossos in Crete, as well as those discovered after 1952 in excavations at Mycenae.

      Two other Greek sites of this name are Pylos in Elis, on the Peneus (Pinios) River in the northwestern Peloponnese, and Pylos in Triphylia (near Kakóvatos), once thought to be the site of Homeric Pylos.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Pylos — Πύλος …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Pylos — Pylos,   1) Hafenstadt im Verwaltungsbezirk (Nomos) Messenien, Griechenland, an der südlichen Westküste der Peloponnes, 2 000 Einwohner. Seit der fränkischen, im 13. Jahrhundert dann venezianische Besetzung wurde Pylos Navarino …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Pylos — Pylos, 1) im Altertum Stadt in Messenien, auf dem Vorgebirge Koryphasion, berühmt in den Homerischen Gedichten als Sitz des Nestor, der letzte Ort außer Methone, der den Spartanern im zweiten Messenischen Kriege Widerstand leistete. Im… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • Pylos — (a. Geogr.), 1) Stadt im nördlichen Elis, am Ladon; j. Ruinen bei Kulugli u. Klisura; 2) Stadt in Triphylia, am Mamaos, beim jetzigen Piskini od. bei Tschorbadschi; 3) Stadt in Messenien, an der Küste; zerstört, wurde die Stadt auf dem Vorgebirge …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Pylos — Pylos, alte Stadt in Messenien, Residenz des Nestor; das heutige Navarino (s.d.) …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Pylos — Pylos, der Name von 3 Städten im Peloponnes; P. in Messenien, das heutige Navarin; P., am Ladon, im eigentlichen Elis; P., im triphylischen Elis …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

  • Pylos — For the mythological figure, see Pylus (mythology). For the board game, see Pylos (board game). Pylos Πύλος The bay of Pylos …   Wikipedia

  • Pylos — 36° 54′ 38″ N 21° 41′ 39″ E / 36.9105555, 21.69416667 …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Pylos — Original name in latin Plos Name in other language Navarino, Neon Kastrov, Non Kastrov, Pilos, Pylos, Plos State code GR Continent/City Europe/Athens longitude 36.91344 latitude 21.69639 altitude 9 Population 5402 Date 2012 01 17 …   Cities with a population over 1000 database

  • Pylos — Sp Pilas Ap Πύλος/Pylos L P Graikija …   Pasaulio vietovardžiai. Internetinė duomenų bazė

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