STAGEIRA or STAGEIRUS
, Hdt. 7.115
; Thuc. 4.88
; Strab. vii. p.331
33, 35; Στάγειρα
, al. Στάντειρα
, Ptol. 3.13.10
; Plin. Nat. 4.17
), a town of Chalcidice in Macedonia, and a colony of Andros.
The army of Xerxes, after passing through the plain of Syleus, passed through Stageirus to arrive at Acanthus.
In the eighth year of the Peloponnesian War it surrendered to Brasidas, and two years afterwards was included in the treaty between Sparta and Athens.
It was the birthplace of Aristotle. Alexander, from regard to his great teacher, restored this town, which with other Grecian colonies in that quarter had fallen into decay, when W. Thrace had become part of the Macedonian kingdom. (Plut. Alex. 7
; D. L. 5.4
; Theophr. H. P.
102; Aelian, Ael. VH 3.17
But the improvement was not permanent, and no memorial of the birthplace of Aristotle remains, unless the coins inscribed Ὀρθαγορέων
are of this place, as Eckhel (vol. ii. p. 73) supposed, on the authority of a fragment in the Geographi Minores (vol. iv. p. 42, ed. Hudson). Leake (Northern Greece,
vol. iii. p. 168) has fixed the site at Stavròs,
which he considers to be a contraction of the old name: it is almost presumption to differ with so great an authority in comparative geography; but it may be observed that the name Stavrós
or “Cross” is common enough in Greece, and Mr. Bowen (Mount Athos, &c.
p. 120, London, 1852) has shown, from a comparison with the passage in Herodotus (l.c.
), that the traditional belief of the Macedonian peasants in identifying Isboros
as it is called by them, with Stageirus, rests upon satisfactory grounds.
The position of this village, on the S. face of a wooded mountain which commands a view of Mt. Athos and the Aegean, is very much that of an Hellenic city, and there are vast substructions of Hellenic masonry all around. The Epitomiser of Strabo (vii. p.331
), who lived not long before the eleventh century, has a port and island called CAPRUS
) near Stageirus, which is probably the island of Lefthéridha
near C. Marmári;
) prefers, in accordance with his views that Stavrós
represents Stageirus, the port and island of Lybtzádha.