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Ἔρυξ). A mountain of Sicily, at the western extremity of the island, and near the city of Drepanum. It was fabled to have received its name from Eryx, who was buried there. On its summit stood a famous temple of Aphrodité Erycina, and on the western declivity was situated the town of Eryx, the approach to which from the plain was rocky and difficult. At the distance of thirty stadia stood the harbour of the same name (Polyb. i. 55; Diod.xxiv. 1; in Ver. ii. 8). The Phœnicians were most probably the founders of the place and also of the temple, and the Erycinian Aphrodité appears to be identified with the Astarté of the latter people. The native inhabitants in this quarter were called Elymi, and Eryx is said by some to have been their king. Vergil makes Aeneas to have founded the temple. The town was destroyed by the Carthaginians in the time of Pyrrhus, who a short time previous had taken it by storm, and the inhabitants were removed to Drepanum (Diod.xxii. 14; Diod. xxiii. 9). It soon, however, revived, owing to the celebrity of the adjacent temple. In the First Punic War it fell into the hands of the Romans, but was surprised by Barcas, the Carthaginian commander, and the inhabitants who escaped the slaughter were again removed to Drepanum (Diod. xxiv. 2). The place never recovered from this blow; the sanctity of the temple drew, indeed, new inhabitants around, but the city was never rebuilt. No traces of the temple remain at the present day.

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