Italy

Articles of cities and regions in Italy, Sicily and western Europe.

  Italy
  Sicily


To see the map of the Italy,   click here.

Related articles:
      All Things Roman (Fact and Figures)
      Tales of Rome






Italy


Geographically, Italy, or Italia, referred to the Italian peninsula, which included the Apennines (Apennine Ranges) that extend from south of the river Po, all the way south to the "toe" (Calabrian Apennine). Southern Italy looked very much like high-heel boot.

There was no single king ruling the whole peninsula in ancient myth, or even in ancient Italian history. There were many kingdoms or city-states in the Italian peninsula.

According to Apollodorus, in his 10th labour, Heracles was returning to Greece with the cattle of Geryon, and on his way, he went through Italy. At the toe of Italy, near the city of Rhegium, he lost the best bull that swam to Sicily. When he ask the locals, who were Tyrrhenians, they told the hero the bull, which is italus for "bull" in their language, had run off and cross the strait. So Heracles named the peninsula, Italy.

In ancient Italy, the majority of those living in Italy, spoke one of the number of Italic languages. Italic languages belonged to the family of Indo-European languages, like Greek, Gaullish and Messapic (in Apulia), which can also be found spoken in the Italian Peninusla. There are some non-Indo-European languages in Italy which can't be classified, like Etruscan, Rhaetic and some Sicilian dialects.

Latin was a language that would predominate the entire peninsula in the later part of Roman history, but originally the region it was spoken was smaller; around the Tiber River, east of the Etruscans, and surrounded by the Oscan-speaking tribes from north and east. (See All Things Roman, Roman Alphabets for more information about Latin). Faliscan was the language probably the most closely related to Latin, but the people who spoke Faliscan was small in population and region. Faliscan was spoken north of Latium and east of Etruria, on the west bank of the Tiber, where the river Nera branch out from the Tiber.

Oscan language was the largest group of Italic family, and it was spoken by tribes of the Volsci, Samnites, Marsi, Paeligni, Marrucini and Vistini in Central Italy, and in the south by the Lucani and Bruttii in the south. Closely related to Oscan was Umbrian, which was spoken at Upper Tiber. Venetic langage was spoken in northeast of Italy, north of the river Po, all the way north to the Danube river, and east of Illyria. Venetic would also include the area in what would later call Venice. South Picene was spoken by the tribe of Picentes that lived on the eastern coast of Adriatic.

 
Liguria
Etruria
Latium
Campania
Samnium
Apulia
Calabria




Liguria
 
 

Liguria is a coastal region of northwest Italy, the principal city being Genoa, which was small town called in Genua in ancient time. As far as I can tell, there were no ancient myth or legend, involving Genoa.

However, ancient Liguria extend beyond the modern boundary of Italy, into southeastern France (Gaul), which included the modern French city of Marseille, which was then called Massalia or Massilia.

By the time of Augustus, the part of the region of Liguria on the French side (southeastern Gaul or southeastern of modern France), became the Roman province Narbonensis, or more fully in Latin, Gallia Narbonensis. Narbonensis was named after the Roman legionary post. It was the first part of Gaul to become fully Romanized.

Heracles, during his 10th labour passed through Liguria, and fought Ialebion and Dercynus, sons of Poseidon, near Massalia. Zeus had sent showered stones, and Heracles used these stones, to repel a large force of Ligurians.

The Ligurians actually spoke Ligurian, which is not classified under the Indo-European family of languagses.

 
Related Information
Name
Liguria, Ligure.
Gallia Narbonensis, Narbonensis Gaul, Provincia (Latin; French side of Liguria).




Μασσαλία
Massalia (Marseille)
 

Massalia, or Massilia, the ancient name for the modern city, Marseille, now the 2nd largest city in France. The city is located on the coast of the Gulf of Lion, in the Provence region, or in Roman time, the region was called Provincia (which is where Provençal came from), and then later still as Gallia Narbonensis.

Massalia was found in the 7th century BC, by the Phocaean Greek from Asia Minor. During the classical period, Massalia resides in a region in what is called Liguria. It remained independent city until Julius Caesar captured Massalia.

According to Apollodorus, Heracles passed through Abderia and was near Massalia when he was attacked by Ialebion and Dercynos, both sons of Poseidon. They tried to rob the hero's cattle, which Heracles had captured after killing the owner Geryon, in his 10th labour.

 
Related Information
Name
Massalia, Massilia, Μασσαλία (Greek).
Marseille (French).




Etruria
 
 

The people who spoke the extinct Etrucan language, were called Etrucans by the Romans, but Tyrrhenians or Tyrrenians by the Greeks. The sea was named after the Etruscans - the Tyrrhenian Sea. Their land were called Etruria, a region that comprised of all of modern Tuscany and part of Lazio north of Rome and the Tibur river, all the way north to Liguria. However, their empire in the 6th century BC extends pass Latium, to south as far as Capua in Campania, a city founded by the Etruscans. Historically, the last 3 kings of Rome were of Etruscan desents. (See Tales of Rome).

The Etruscans were teachers of Rome in engineering skills, such as the walls erected around the Capioline hill and the construction of the sewer, known as Cloaca Maxima. Rome was also indebted to Etruscans because the Latin alphabets owe much to the Etruscan alphabets; many of the Latin letters were recognisably Etruscan; Rome had adopted 21 out of the 23 Etruscan letters.

According to Virgil's Aeneid, the Etruscans existed in the time of Aeneas, and most likely before his time. The Etruscans had banished their king, Mezentius, because of his oppressive rule, so the exiled king became an ally of Turnus, king of the Rutulians. Mezentius died at the end of Aeneas' sword. Because of the hostility towards their former king, the Etruscans became Aeneas' largest ally instead of with Turnus. The Etrucans were under the leadership of Tarchon, whom seemed to be more of chieftain than a king.

 
Related Information
Name
Etruria;
Tuscany (modern).

Rulers
Mezentius.




Tarquinia
 

An Etruscan city. Tarquinia was the birthplace of first Etruscan king in Rome, Lucius Priscus Tarquinius (Lucumo). Tarquinius was a son of a Corinthian named Demaratus, and an unnamed Etruscan woman. Tarquinius' wife, Tanaquil, who encouraged him to go to Rome, where he succeeded Ancus Marcius.

 
Related Information
Name
Tárchuna, or Tarchna (Etruscan); Tarquinia Tarquinii (Latin).




Latium
 
 

Ancient Latium correspond to the geographical region of Lazio. Tribe of Italic people living in this area, spokes the language Latin, which includes those living in the city of Rome. However, in classical mythology, Rome was not originally of Latin origin.

The Latin villages formed a federation, for defensive purpose against any hostile neighbour. This federation was known as the Latin League. Alba Longa was the chief city in the league, where Rome originally played minor role and didn't entered the league (493 BC) until shortly after the expulsion of Rome's last king (510 BC). In 358 BC, Rome gained leadership in the Latin League. Rome was not a popular choice, because some of the cities rebelled against Rome's leadership. The Latin League ended in 338 in a long protracted war; Rome had obviously won.

According to the Aeneid, Virgil wrote that most of the Latin towns were against the Trojan presence, and sided with Turnus of Ardea. Latinus, king of Latium, favoured Aeneas to be his son-in-law over Turnus, but his wife Amata favoured the Rutalian leader. The hatred of Juno (Hera) for the Trojans drove the Latins and the Rutalians into war. War was fought around Laurentum, Latinus' city.

 
Related Information
Name
Latium (Latin), Lazio (Italian).

Rulers
Latinus.




Rome
 

Rome (Roma) was a citystate on the banks of River Tiber, located in the region of ancient Latium. Though, Rome is now larger than it was back then, Rome in ancient time, occupied the seven hills: Palatine, Capitoline, Quirinal, Viminal, Esquiline, Caelian, and Aventine.

Historically Rome would later conquered the entire of Italian peninsula and then beyond, its empire covered the entire coast of the Mediterranean, which included the Syrian and north African coasts, through centuries of military campaigns and occupations of conquered territories.

Rome (Roma) was a city said to be traditionally founded in 753 BC by Romulus. Romulus was a son of the Roman god of war, Mars (Ares), and Rhea Silvia daughter of Numitor, king of Alba Longa. He was twin brother of Remus. When they were young men, Romulus wanted to built a city, began piling rocks to build his wall. Remus mocked Romulus as leapt on to Romulus' waist wall. Romulus angrily murdered his brother for the mockery. Romulus would ruled, and then succeeded by 6 other kings, before the monarchy fell, and replaced by Republic in c. 510 BC.

Virgil, author of the epic Aeneid, alluded to Romulus and foundation of Rome. Romulus was to be descendant of Aeneas.

This was the official legend of Rome's foundation told by the Roman Livy and the Greek biographer Plutarch, but there were others told by Greek historians, like Dionysius of Halicarnassus and Diodorus Sicilus.

According to the Dionysius of Halicarnassus was not named after Romulus, but to a Trojan woman, Rhome, who journeyed to Italy in one of Aeneas' ships. Rhome had set fire to the Trojan ships, preventing them from travelling further. Two Greek writers, Hellanicus of Lesbos and Damastes of Sigeum, had actually named Aeneas himself as the founder of Rome.

The story of Aeneas can be found in Aeneid, and that of legends of Romulus and other kings in the Tales of Rome.

 
Related Information
Name
Rome, Roma.

Rulers
Romulus; Numa Pompilius; Tullus Hostilius; Ancus Marcius; Lucius Tarquinius Priscus; Servius Tullius; Lucius Tarquinius Superbus.




Alba Longa
 

Alba Longa was on the Alban hills, Latium, on the shore of Lake Albanus.

The city was said to be founded by Ascanius, son of Aeneas and Creusa, who was a daughter of Priam and Hecuba. A succesion line of 13 kings were listed. Alba Longa was the birthplace of the twins, Romulus and Remus, sons of Mars (Ares) and Ilia (also known as Rea or Rhea Silvia), daughter of Numitor. Numitor's brother, Amulius, had imprisoned him and usurped the throne. Numitor regained his kingdom, when his grandsons rescued him and killed Amulius.

 
Related Information
Name
Alba Longa.

Rulers
Ascanius (Iulus), Silvius, Latinus, Epytus, Capys, Capetus, Tiberinus, Remulus, Acrota, Aventinus, Proca, Numitor, Amulius.




Laurentum
 

The city of Latinus, king of Latium. It is not certain if this city actually exist, or if this city was another name for Lavinium. It was probably located not far from Ardea, the Rutalian city.

According to the Aeneid, the temple of Janus has two gates. In order to declare war, both gates must be opened. Latinus refused to open them, but Juno the goddess who hate the Trojans, incited Amata, Latinus's wife, to open the gates. It is not certain if any such gates of Janus exist.

 
Related Information
Name
Laurentum.

Rulers
Latinus.




Lavinium
 

Lavinium was a city founded by Aeneas, who had named it after his wife, Lavinia, daughter of Latinus and Amata. It is possible that this city was Virgil's Laurentum, which doesn't exist historically, and Laurentum was its original name for Lavinium and Aeneas had possibly renamed it to Lavinium.

The town was seperated from Ardea, by small stream, Numicus.

 
Related Information
Name
Lavinium

Rulers
Aeneas.




Ardea
 

The capital of the Rutali people or the Rutalians, and home of Turnus. Ardea was a city in Latin coast.

According to the Aeneid, Turnus led into Rutalians into war because Latinus favoured Aeneas as his son-in-law. Turnus was originally betrothed to Lavinia, Latinus' daughter, but Latinus changed his mind because of the prophecy. The goddess Juno (Hera) incited him and Amata, Latinus' wife, into war against the Trojans. The war led to Turnus' defeat, and eventually to his death in single combat against Aeneas.

Ardea was a cult centre of Juno.

 
Related Information
Name
Ardea.

Rulers
Pilumnus, Turnus.




Campania
 
 

Campania is a region, southeast of Latium.

Many cities from different cities were built. Etruscans founded Capua. Several Greek cities were founded, Cumae and Naples were the best known of these cities.

 
Related Information
Name
Campania.




Κύμυη
Cumae
 

Cumae was ancient major port city in Campania, some 20 km west of Naples. The city was found and colonised by the Greeks from the Chalcís, city on the island of Euboea, in mid-8th century BC; perhaps the earliest to be colonised by the Greeks in Italy. Cumae became involved in the war against Etruscans, whom have founded a city on the river Voltuma - Capua. In 524 BC, Aristodemus led the army of Cumaeans to defeat the Etruscans. Their success didn't last long, because Cumae was captured by the Samnites around 425 BC. The Italic language of Oscan became dominant in the city replacing the Greek dialect. Almost a century later, Cumae was in Rome's hand.

According to Virgil in the Aeneid, Cumae was where Aeneas found the seeress, known as the Sibyl, who lived in a cave. She guided the Trojan hero into the Underworld, where the hero reunited with his father's shade and learned about his destiny and the future of his descendants. In order to enter the Underworld, Aeneas must find the Golden Bough in Diana's Woods, and then he must enter the Underworld through lake Avernus, near Cumae.

 
Related Information
Name
Cumae, Κύμυη, Κύμαι (Greek).




Capua
 

Capua was a city located on the bank of Voltumus, 26 km north of Naples, Campania. It was founded by the Etruscans at the height of their power, around 600 BC.

 
Related Information
Name
Capua (Etruscan); Santa Maria Capua Vetere (modern).




(Νεάπολις)
Naples (Neapolis)
 

Naples is a major port in Campania, found by the Greeks around 600 BC, on the coast of the Bay of Naples. To the east is Mount Vesuvius. The city was called Neapolis, or "New City".

To the west, is Lake Avernus, and beyond that is Cumae, home of the Sibyl. Avernus was horrible smell that was said to be so toxic that it could kill birds; and it was known by Virgil as the entrance to the Underworld.

 
Related Information
Name
Neapolis, Νεάπολις (Greek). Naples (Latin); Napoli (Italian).




Samnium
 
 

Samnium is the name of the region where the tribes known as the Samnites lived. The region are mountainous, in Abruzzo mountains, east of Latium, and north of Campania and Apulia.

The Samnites were the largest group that spoke the Italic dialect - Oscan, and are probably related to the Sabines. The Samnites were warlike people, who later encroach into the regions of Campania, Apulia and Calabria. They became involved in 3 wars against Rome, known as the Samnite Wars, fought two in 2nd half of the 4th century BC and the 3rd war in early 3rd century BC.

The Samnites were said to offshoot of the Sabines, or Sabini or Sabellians, a tribe that became involve with Rome's early history. The Sabines, like the Samnites, spoke Oscan, an Italic language. Sabinus was said to be the founding father of the Sabines. The Roman god, Quirinus, may have been originally a Sabine war god, but the Romans later identified Quirinus as the deified Romulus.

 
Related Information
Name
Samnium.




Apulia
 
 

Apulia was a region that included the resemblance to a heel of a boot of Italy, now known as the Salentina (Salentine) peninsula, in southeast Italy. Apulia is now called Puglia. It had also been called Iapygia, after the Iapyges.

A number of Greek cities were found in Apulia, including Taras (Tarentum) by the Spartans, Brentesion (Roman Brindisium, now Brindisi), Sybaris (Thurii, Θούριοι), Lucce, Bari (Bárion, Βαριον) and many others.

Diomedes was said to be banished from Argos, so he migrated to Apulia, where he founded the city of Argyripa (modern Arpi).

 
Related Information
Name
Apulia, Puglia (modern).




Argyripa
 

Argyripa is ancient name for Arpi, a city in Apulia. A city found by the Argive hero, Diomedes, who had fought against the Trojans at Troy. According to the Aeneid, Virgil says that Diomedes migrated to Apulia when his wife Aegialeia took a lover Cometes, who drove him out of Argos. Diomedes arrived with some Argives followers.

When emissary from Turnus of Ardea, arrived asking for aid in the war against Aeneas and the Trojans, Diomedes refused to fight another war; he had lost all desires for war against the Trojans. He advised Turnus should make peace with Aeneas. Diomedes had lost his wife and home due to Venus' (Aphrodite's) machination, because he had wounded the goddess and her son in Troy, so he didn't want to offend the goddess again.

 
Related Information
Name
Argyripa; Argos Hippion (Greek); Arpi (modern).

Rulers
Diomedes.




Τάρας
Taras (Tarentum)
 

Taras was a city founded by Spartan colonists; it was the only important colony of Sparta outside of Greece, during the great migration or colonisation period.

The city became a focal point of resistance against Rome's hegamony in Italy; Taras welcomed King Pyrrhus of Epeirus. In the end, Taras fell into Roman dominance after Pyrrhus' defeat and withdrawal from Italy, and the city was renamed Tarentum. Today, the city is called Taranto.

No important myth or legend is associated with Taras, though Virgil did mention it as being the town of Hercules (Heracles) in the Aeneid and Ovid mentioned Tarentum only in reference to the foundation of Croton, by Myscelus (Metamorphoses, book 15).

 
Related Information
Name
Taras, Τάρας, Tarantas (Greek).
Tarentum (Latin);
Taranto (modern).




Brindisium (Brentesion)
 

The ancient Roman name for Brindisi, a modern coastal city in the Adriatic Sea. Formerly, Brentesion in Greek, the city was renamed to Brindisium when the Romans took the city in 266 BCE, during the Pyrrhic war. Brentesion was one of the cities that took the side of Pyrrhus, king of Epeirus.

Though, the Argive hero Diomedes was named founder of Argyripa, he was also said to have found Brindisium or Brentesion too. Apart from this, Brindisium doesn't have much mythical importance.

 
Related Information
Name
Brentesion, Βρεντεσιον (Greek).
Brindisium (Latin), Brindisi (modern).

Rulers
Diomedes.




Calabria
 
 

The peninsula in the south of Italy, that look like the foot of a boot. Historically, many of the Greek cities were founded in this region, including Croton and Rhegion.

Not much myth in this region. Perhaps, the most notable is that Heracles travelled through this region, and where Heracles lost one of his bull, which had crossed the Stait of Messina, near Rhegion, at the toe of Italy.

 
Related Information
Name
Calabria.




Κρότων
Croton
 

Croton was a coastal city in Calabria, southern Italy. It was founded by Achaean Greeks around 710 BC.

There is no myth in regarding to Croton, but Philoctetes founded a town in Crimissa, near Croton, after the Trojan War. Philoctetes was the Greek leader of the contingents from Methone and Meliboea. Philoctetes was the owner of bow of Heracles, and he used to kill Paris. Philoctetes, at first, landed in Campania, fought a war against the Lucanians, before finding this Crimissa.

 
Related Information
Name
Croton, Κρότων;
Crotone (Italian).

Rulers
Philoctetes?




Rhegion
 

Rhegion, or in Latin Rhegium, was an ancient city at the "toe" of Italy in the region called Calabria, but the city is now called Reggio. The Strait of Messina separated this end of Italy from Sicily, and opposite to Rhegion is a city called Messina. The Stait of Messina was said to be the place of the monster Scylla and Charybdis.

Rhegion was the place where Heracles lost one of the bulls, trying to complete the 10th labour - to fetch the cattle of Geryon. In jumped into the water, and swam across the Strait of Messina to Sicily.

 
Related Information
Name
Rhegion, Ρηγιων (Greek),
Rhegium (Latin); Reggio (Italian).






Sicily

Sicily is the large island, on the other side of Strait of Messina from the toe of Italy, the southern tip the peninsula.

It was known as the homes of cyclops, including Polyphemus, and near the east coast, Mount Etna or Aetna, where Zeus had buried the monster, Typhoeus, under the mountain.

Sicily was said to the home of the Sicels, the natives of the island. However many Greeks had migrated to Sicily and founding new cities, particularly on the east coast. While on the west coast, the city of Carthage found a number of cities. Rivalry between Greeks and Carthaginians have been the sources of warfare between the two.

  Syracuse
  Messina
  Eryx
  Lilybaeum


I have only included a few cities in the articles that have mythological importance. Other Greek cities are Naxos, Catane, Megara, Gela, Acragas, Segesta, Selinus and Himera. Cathaginian cities are Moyta, Drepana (Tripani) and Panormus (Palermo).





Συρακοῦσαι
Syracuse
 

Syracuse was one of the Greek cities in Sicily. The city was found by the Corinthians in 734 BC, located on the east coast, partly on the island of Ortygia, flanked by the Lesser Harbour and Great Harbour.

Syracuse proper is on the island of Ortygia. It is the island itself, not the city that was a source of myth about Alpheius and Arethusa, in Ovid's Metamorphoses.

Alpheius a son of Oceanus and Tethys, hence he was the river-god and the name of river in the region of Elis. When one of Diana's nymph, Arethusa, bathed in his river after hunting in the forest of Stymphalus, the river-god saw and fell in love with her. When he failed to seduce her, he tried to ravished her while he was in human form. She fled naked from his advances. Although she could run as fast as Alpheius, he was immortal, so she began to tire. In desperation, Arethusa called upon her goddess, Diana (Artemis) to save her. The goddess sent a thick cloud to hide Arethusa. The nymph was being transformed into water. This didn't escape his notice, and he tried to transformed himself into water and mingled with Arethusa's watery form. But Diana foresaw this, split the river bed, so Arethusa drained into the earth. The water of Arethusa traveled underground, under the Ionian Sea, until it reached the island of Ortygia, where she resurfaced.

Historically, Syracuse was involved in a number of wars against Carthage, which occupied the western Sicily. Gelon, king of Gela, another Greek city, had captured Syracuse in 485 BC. Gelon moved into Syracuse, using its base as his capital. Gelon conquered other Greek cities. When Carthage invaded west Sicily, Gelon defeated the Carthaginians at Himera in 480 BC.

During the Peloponnesian War, Syracuse was a democracy, like Athens, but Athens sent a large fleet to take Syracuse in 415 BC. Because the city was a former colony of Corinth, Athens besieged the city. Syracuse called Sparta and Corinth for aid, and they sent small force under the leadership of the Spartan Gylippus. Gylippus managed to turn thing around so that the Athenians then became besieged. Gylippus led the Syracusans to a decisive victory, and reversed Athens' fortune in the Peloponnesian War.

Dionysius the Elder became the tyrant of Syracuse (405-367 BC). Dionysius was involved in 3 separate wars against Carthage. His first two wars were successful, which included the capture of Motya, a Carthaginian stronghold. He also invaded southern Italy.

Syracuse was also the home of Archimedes (c. 285-211 BC), the most famous of inventor and mathematician. Rome captured the city in 211 BC, and Syracuse lost its independence, but only after a long siege.

 
Related Information
Name
Syracuse, Συρακοῦσαι (Greek).
Siracusa (Italian).




Messina
 

Messina is the Greek city in northeast Sicily, that was originally called Zankle and found in 730 BC, by colonists from Chalcis.

Its name was given to the strait that separate the toe of Italy from Sicily - the Strait of Messina. As far as I can tell there is no myth of the city itself, so the strait is more famous...at least mythical-wise.

The Strait of Messina was the location of the journey of Odysseus and Jason on his ship Argo, where they face two possible perils - the six-headed monster Scylla and the whirlpool Charybdis. Thetis and the Nereid aided the Argonauts to pass safely through the strait. Odysseus lost men to the Scylla, and then days later he lost his last ship and whole crew to Charybdis. Odysseus was the sole survivor.

 
Related Information
Name
Zankle, Ζανκλη;
Messina, Μεσσινα (Greek).
Messana (Latin).




Ἔρυξ
Eryx
 

A city in west Sicily, near Lilybaeum (modern Massala). Eryx was founded by Eryx, son of Butes and Aphrodite.

Eryx's father (Butes) was a former Argonaut, who would have died, lured to his death, by the Sirens' song. But the goddess of love saved his life, and she had child by Butes. A son was born in Lilybaeum, and they named him Eryx. When Eryx was older, he went east, inland, and founded his own city.

Heracles came by Eryx, during his 10th labour, with the cattle of Geryon. One of the bull in Geryon's cattle ran off at Rhegion, crossing the strait of Messina, into Sicily, and west to Eryx. Heracles pursued it to Eryx, and demands its return. Eryx challenged the hero to a boxing match, to see who would keep the bull. Heracles killed him in the boxing match.

Aeneas came to Eryx, in the Aeneid, and gave offering to Eryx as a hero.

 
Related Information
Name
Eryx, Ἔρυξ.

Rulers
Eryx.




Lilybaeum
 

A coastal city in west Sicily. Historically, Lilybaeum (now Massala), was founded by the Carthaginians during the early 4th century BC. Lilybaeum was said to be the cult centre of Aphrodite.

According to the Argonautica, Apollonius Rhodius wrote that Aphrodite saved the Argonaut, Butes, from the Sirens.

Butes was the only who could hear the Sirens' song, while the other Argonauts couldn't. Butes jumped overboard, and swam towards his death. Aphrodite, however, spirited him away to Lilybaeum, and he became the goddess' lover. She bored him a son named, Eryx, who would grow up and found his own city, which was named after himself, near Lilybaeum.

 
Related Information
Name
Lilybaeum, Lilybaeüm (Latin); Marsala (modern).

Rulers
Butes?






Outside of Italy

Sardinia
 

Sardinia is a large island west of Italy and south of the island of Corisca.

According Apollodorus, Iolaus, nephew of Heracles, aided the Heraclids in migrating to Sardinia. These Heraclids were sons of Thespius' 49 daughters. Thespius was a king of Thespiae, a Boeotian city.

Before Heracles began his labours for Eurystheus, when he was age 18, he was looking after his father's flock (Amphitryon's) at Mount Cithaeron, when had killed a lion (known as the Cithaeron Lion) without a weapon. This deed so impressed the king, that he wanted grandchildren from the young hero, and sent his 50 daughters to mate with young Heracles. One daughter refused to so, but two of Thespius' daughters had twins, so Heracles had 51 sons. It was these sons who went to Sardinia with Iolaus' help.

 
Related Information
Name
Sardinia; Sardegna (Italian).




Corsica
 

Corsica is a large island west of Italy, and north of the island Sardinia. The Ligurian Sea in the north and Tyrrhenian Sea in the west encompassed the island.

As far as I can tell, there are no myths in regarding to this island.

 
Related Information
Name
Corsica;
Corse (French).




Aeaea
 

The island of Aeaea was the home of the sorceress Circe. Homer never disclosed the location of the island, but later writers put it in the Tyrrhenian Sea, north off Sicily and southeast off Italy, probably on one of the Aeolian islands.

Circe was a daughter of Helius and Perse, and sister of Aeetes and Pasiphae. She used her magic to turn men into animals of all sort, when they come into her home. Odysseus, with the help of moly plant, made him immune to her magic. She took the hero as her lover, and he lived for 3 years on the island. According to later myth, Odysseus had Latinus and Telegonus. When Telegonus became a young man, he sought his father, but accidentally killed him. Telegonus returned with Penelope and Telemachus, where he married his stepmother, and Circe married Telemachus.

 
Related Information
Name
Aeaea.

Rulers
Circe.










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