Pallantium (Arcadia)

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Pallantium or Pallantion (Ancient Greek: Παλλάντιον), more rarely Palantium or Palantion (Παλάντιον), was one of the most ancient towns of Arcadia, in the district Maenalia, said to have been founded by Pallas, a son of Lycaon. It was situated west of Tegea, in a small plain called the Pallantic plain (Παλλαντικόν πέδιον)[1] which was separated from the territory of Tegea by a choma (χῶμα) or dyke. It was from this town that Evander of Pallene was said to have led colonists to the banks of the Tiber, and from it the Palatium or Palatine Mount at Rome was reputed to have derived its name.[2][3][4][5][6]

Pallantium took part in the foundation of Megalopolis, 371 BCE;[7] but it continued to exist as an independent state, since we find the Pallantieis mentioned along with the Tegeatae, Megalopolitae and Aseatae, as joining Epaminondas before the Battle of Mantineia in 362 BCE.[8] Pallantium subsequently sank into a mere village, but was restored and enlarged by the emperor Antoninus Pius, who conferred upon it freedom from taxation and other privileges, on account of its reputed connection with Rome. The town was visited by Pausanias, who found here a shrine containing statues of Pallas and Evander, a temple of Core (Persephone), a statue of Polybius; and on the hill above the town, which was anciently used as an acropolis, a temple of the pure (καθαροί) gods.[9]

Its site is located near the modern Palantio (formerly Berbati),[10][11] which was renamed to reflect association with the ancient town. In 1939-1940, in fact, the archaeological site was discovered and excavated by the Italian Archaeological School of Athens (Guido Libertini, but especially Alfonso De Franciscis) and again in 1984-1986 (including two years for studying all the finds from both excavations) under a collaboration of the Norwegian Institut at Athens with the Italian School (Erik Østby and Mario Iozzo).


  1. ^ Pausanias. Description of Greece. 8.44.5.
  2. ^ Hes. ap. Stephanus of Byzantium. Ethnica. s.v.
  3. ^ Pausanias. Description of Greece. 8.43.2.
  4. ^ Livy. Ab Urbe Condita Libri (History of Rome). 1.5.
  5. ^ Pliny. Naturalis Historia. 4.6.
  6. ^ Justin, 43.1.
  7. ^ Pausanias. Description of Greece. 8.27.3.
  8. ^ Xenophon. Hellenica. 7.
  9. ^ Pausanias. Description of Greece. 8.43.1. , 8.44.5-6.
  10. ^ Lund University. Digital Atlas of the Roman Empire.
  11. ^ Richard Talbert, ed. (2000). Barrington Atlas of the Greek and Roman World. Princeton University Press. p. 58, and directory notes accompanying.

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainSmith, William, ed. (1854–1857). "Pallantium". Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography. London: John Murray.

Coordinates: 37°27′09″N 22°19′44″E / 37.4526°N 22.3289°E / 37.4526; 22.3289