). A country in Europe, north of Greece, said to
have been originally named Emathia
. Its boundaries
before the time of Philip, the father of Alexander, were, on the south, Olympus and the
Cambunian Mountains, which separated it from Thessaly and Epirus; on the east, the river
Strymon, which separated it from Thrace; and on the north and west, Illyria and Paeonia.
Macedonia was greatly enlarged by the conquests of Philip. He added to his kingdom Paeonia on
the north; a part of Thrace on the east as far as the river Nestus, which Thracian district
was usually called Macedonia Adiecta; the peninsula Chalcidicé on the south; and on
the west a part of Illyria as far as Lake Lychnitis. On the conquest of the country by the
Romans, B.C. 168, Macedonia was divided into four districts, independent of one another; but
the whole country was formed into a Roman province after the conquest of the Achaeans in 146.
Macedonia may be described as a large plain, surrounded on three sides by lofty mountains.
Through this plain, however, run many smaller ranges of mountains, between which are wide and
fertile valleys, extending from the coast far into the interior. The chief mountains were
Scordus, or Scardus, on the northwest frontier, towards Illyria and Dardania; further
east Orbelus and Scomius, which separated it from Moesia; and Rhodopé, which
extended from Scomius in a southeasterly direction, forming the boundary between Macedonia and
Thrace. On the southern frontier were the Cambunii Montes and Olympus. The chief rivers were
in the direction of east to west— the Nestus, the Strymon, the Axius, the largest of
all, the Ludias or Lydias, and the Haliacmon. The chief cities were Aegae and Pella, the
capitals, and Pydna, Potidaea, Olynthus, Amphipolis, and Philippi. The great bulk of the
inhabitants of Macedonia consisted of Thracian and Illyrian tribes. At an early period some
Greek tribes settled in the southern part of the country. They are said to have come from
Argos, and to have been led by the three sons of Temenus, the Perdiccas, the youngest of the
three, was looked upon as the founder of the Macedonian monarchy. A later tradition, however,
regarded Caranus, who was also a Heraclid from Argos, as the founder of the monarchy. These
Greek settlers intermarried with the original inhabitants of the country. The dialect which
they spoke was akin to the Doric, but it contained many barbarous words and forms; and the
Macedonians accordingly were never regarded by the other
Silver Coin of Macedonia after the Roman Conquest.
Greeks as genuine Hellenes. Moreover, it was only in the south of Macedonia that the
Greek language was spoken. See Brugmann, Comp. Gram.
vol. i. p. 7.
Very little is known of the history of Macedonia till the reign of Amyntas I., who was a
contemporary of Darius Hystaspis; but from that time their history is more or less intimately
connected with that of Greece, till at length Philip, the father of Alexander the Great,
became the virtual master of the whole of Greece. The conquests of Alexander extended the
Macedonian supremacy over a great part of Asia; and the Macedonian kings continued to exercise
their sovereignty over Greece till the conquest of Perseus by the Romans, in B.C. 168, brought
the Macedonian monarchy to a close. See Abel, Makedonien vor König
Phillipp (Leipzig, 1847)
; Döll, Geographie der alt.
; Henzey and Daumet, Mission
Archéologique de Macédonie
, 2 vols. (Paris, 1876)
Curteis, Rise of the Macedonian Empire (N. Y. 1878)
; and the