The first city of
the ancient region, not counting the Delphic sanctuary.
Controlling the natural route from the N into the Kephisos valley, Elateia was repeatedly attacked, sacked,
burned, occupied; earthquakes destroyed what enemies
had spared. The one attempt at excavation of the Classical
town revealed few remains; only the Temple of Athena
Kranaia, located some 3 km SE of the city, yielded important remains. Numerous inscriptions, including grave
stelai from plundered cemeteries, complement the textual
evidence concerning Classical Elateia. However, the wellwatered valley attracted primitive men and many mounds
attest their early settlements. Those near modern Drachmani, below ancient Elateia, were explored early in this
century and one of these mounds was again excavated in
1959. Occupation here began about 6000 B.C. and lasted
the three millennia of the Neolithic Period, establishing
stratigraphically its three main phases.
Pierre Paris, Élateée. La ville. Le temple
(1892); id., RE
V 2236-37; id., Praktika
(1904) 53-56; (1906) 140-42; (1910) 160-61; id.,
30 (1905) 135-40; 31 (1906) 397-402; id., REG
25 (1912) 263, 270; S. S. Weinberg, “Excavations at
Prehistoric Elateia, 1959,” Hesperia
31 (1962) 158-209.
S. S. WEINBERG