later VIBO VALENTIA (until 1928
called Monteleone di Calabria) Italy.
of the toe of Italy dominating from the S the modern
Tyrrhenian Golfo di S. Eufemio. As a colony of Lokroi
Epizephyroi it had the name Hipponion, which may contain an element of an older name; at all events a connection with horses is hard to find. Its foundation date
is uncertain; no very early material has been found, and
it has even been suggested that it was founded as a consequence of the destruction of Sybaris in 510 B.C. But
Medma, its sister colony, existed before the middle of
the 6th c., and a late 7th c. date for both seems the most
Hipponion revolted from its mother city in 422 (Thuc.
); prior to this time owing to protection by the
tyrants of Syracuse, it seems to have flourished (Ath.
12.542a). Being well developed and fortified, it now
made a successful but short-lived bid for independence.
A little later (388 B.C.) it took part with other cities of
Italy in the battle of the Helleporus against Dionysios
of Syracuse because Lokri had allied itself with him
(Polyb. 1.6.2; Diod. 14.103-7
). Following Dionysios'
victory, Hipponion was destroyed and its citizenry moved
to Syracuse, while its lands were given to Lokri (Diod.
). In 379 the Carthaginians, being at war with
Syracuse, helped the Hipponiates rebuild their city (Diod.
). But the destruction of Dionysios' empire in 356
opened the way to the Bruttii, who moved down from the
mountains to attack the Greek cities. Hipponion was one
of the first to fall, sometime between 356 and 345 (Diod.
). Thereafter the Bruttii held the place and seem,
from the evidence of coins and inscriptions, to have
thrived until the Romans sent a Latin colony there in
192 B.C. (Livy 34.53.1
; 35.40.5-6). This was composed
of 3700 infantry and 300 cavalry under the tresviri Q.
Naevius, M. Minucius, and M. Furius Crassipes; each
infantryman received 15 iugera of land, each cavalryman
30. The colony took the name Valentia, later Vibo Valentia, the first element possibly the Bruttian corruption of
the name of Hipponion.
In its Romanized form the city was governed by quattuorviri, responsible to a senate. It coined its own money
and prospered. After the social war it was inscribed in
the tribus Aemilia. We hear of it from time to time in
the civil wars, especially in connection with Octavian
war against Sextus Pompey when it was one of his most
important bases of operations. Owing to the proximity
of the great Sila forests, Vibo seems to have been a center of ship-building during the Empire as well as an important exporter of timber.
During excavations in 1916-17 and 1921, a stretch of
the N front of the fortifications was laid bare for 225 m,
and the foundations of two temples and a sanctuary were
brought to light. The walls are of large squared blocks
of calcareous sandstone laid in alternating courses of
headers and stretchers, built solid in the curtains, an
average of 2.8 m thick. They are interrupted at regular
intervals of ca. 40 m by semicircular towers mounted on
square bases, ca. 10 m on a side. One tower, at a point
where the wall turns, is two-thirds of a circle, and one
guarding a sally port virtually a full circle. In front of
the walls was found a fossa 4.5 m wide, 3.25 m deep.
Four periods of construction have been construed in
what is preserved. The earliest, not earlier than the 4th c.,
is perhaps best ascribed to the time when Agathokles of
Syracuse briefly seized the city back from the Bruttii in
294 B.C. (Diod. 21.8
). The second wall, of rubblework
imbedded in clay mortar with facings of rough stonework, has been ascribed to the Bruttii. The third, that
with the semicircular towers and isodomic curtains, must
then be the wall of the Latin colony of 192; its high
sophistication will permit no earlier date. And the fourth,
a repair or remodeling of the third, must then belong to
the 1st c. B.C., the troubled times of the Roman revolution.
Substantial remains of two temples were found. The
one on the height of the Belvedere (or Telegrafo), dominating the sea, was reduced to only a portion of its
foundations, but the plan could be recovered. It was
peripteral (37.45 x 20.5 m in over-all dimensions) with
a shallow pronaos and a squarish adyton or opisthodomus. It seems to have been Doric with terracotta revetment of the roof, notably a lateral sima with lion's-head
spouts. Votive material was scarce but ran from the archaic period to the Hellenistic.
The second temple, also peripteral (27.5 x 18.1 m in
over-all dimensions) was found on the height known as
Cofino. The cella was relatively short and can have been
preceded by only a token pronaos. Fragments of the columns and their bases showed that it was Ionic, and this
was confirmed by the style of the lateral sima in fine
limestone. A 5th c. date for this has been proposed.
A third sacred building was discovered at Coltura del
Castello on the presumed acropolis of the city, the substructions of a small temple together with a mass of figured terracottas; the presence of a large temple nearby
was indicated by fragments of a colossal terracotta gorgoneion, 1.10 m in diameter.
Vibo was some distance from the sea and must have
had its port at the site now known as Porto S. Venere,
but little is known about it. At the site of Torre Galli,
ca. 16 km W of Vibo, a necropolis has come to light
that shows a native population in contact with the Greeks
from the late 7th c. (Late Protocorinthian vases) and a
gradually increasing hellenization down into the second
half of the 6th c., when the graves stop. This makes an
illuminating example of the influence Hipponion exerted
and an interesting study in itself.
The Collezione Capialbi in Vibo was formed locally,
and the majority of the material belongs to the site and
its dependencies; the Collezione Cordopatri, also made
chiefly at Vibo, is now in the Museo Nazionale at Reggio
P. Orsi, NSc
(1921) 473-85; id., MonAnt
31 (1926) 5-212; G. Saeflund, OpusArch
87-107; T. J. Dunbabin, The Western Greeks
L. RICHARDSON, JR.