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Thasos

Θάσος) or Thasus. Now Thaso or Tasso. An island in the north of the Aegaean Sea, off the coast of Thrace, and opposite the mouth of the river Nestus. It was at a very early period taken possession of by the Phœnicians, on account of its valuable gold-mines. According to tradition the Phœnicians were led by Thasus, son of Poseidon or Agenor, who came from the East in search of Europa, and from whom the island derived its name. Thasos was afterwards colonized by the Parians, B.C. 708, and among the colonists was the poet Archilochus. The Thracians once possessed a considerable territory on the coast of Thrace, and were one of the richest and most powerful peoples in the north of the Aegaean. They were subdued by the Persians under Mardonius, and subsequently became part of the Athenian maritime empire. They revolted, however, from Athens in B.C. 465, and, after sustaining a siege of three years, were subdued by Cimon in 463. They again revolted from Athens in 411, and called in the Spartans; but the island was again restored to the Athenians by Thrasybulus in 407. Some remains of the ancient town still exist, among them the Agora and a triumphal arch. See Hasselbach, De Insula Thaso (1838).

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