previous next

ARGOS HIPPION or ARGYRIPPA (Arpi) Apulia, Italy.

A city whose name (Strab. 5.1.9; 6.3.9; Ptol. 3.1.72; Plin. HN 3.104), gave rise to the legend of its foundation by the Argive King Diomede. One of the most important cities of the Daunii, who were Illyrian in origin, it is in the heart of the Tavoliere, ca. 20 km E of Luceria and 30 km from Sipontum, its outlet to the sea. During the period of the city's greatest expansion, Sipontum was included in its territory (Livy 34.45; Dio. 20.3). The city played an important role in the struggle between Greeks and Italici and between Oscans and Latins for supremacy in Italy. In order to save its territory from the Sabelli during the second Samnite war, it concluded a treaty of alliance with Rome in 326 B.C. (Livy 9.13). This contributed to a flourishing period in the city's history, largely datable to the 3d c. B.C. and documented by an immense coinage in silver and bronze. The coins bore a legend in Greek and images of Greek deities, including Zeus, Athena, Persephone, and Ares. During the Pyrrhic war the city was still allied to Rome, but in the second Punic war it surrendered to Hannibal, who wintered there at the end of 215 B.C. Two years later Fabius Maximus occupied its territory, reducing its importance as a result of the loss of its outlet to the sea, where in 194 B.C. the Romans built the colony of Sipontum (Polyb. 3.118; Livy 22.61; App., Hann. 31). It had lost all importance by the Imperial age.

Two inscriptions from nearby Vaccarella belong perhaps to Luceria (CIL IX, 934, 935). The site of the ancient city is easily recognizable a few km N of Foggia. Extensive excavation during the last few years has brought to light the remains of numerous buildings of the Hellenistic-Roman age, pit tombs from the 6th-5th c. B.C. and grotto tombs from the 4th-3d c. B.C. The material found is preserved in the museums at Foggia and Taranto.


W. Smith, Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography, (1856) 220 (E. H. Bunbury); RE II.1 (1895) 1217-18 (Hülsen); E. De Ruggiero, Dizionario epigrafico di antichità romane, I (1895) 678.


hide References (4 total)
  • Cross-references from this page (4):
    • Strabo, Geography, 5.1.9
    • Livy, The History of Rome, Book 22, 61
    • Livy, The History of Rome, Book 9, 13
    • Livy, The History of Rome, Book 34, 45
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: