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MONTE CAVALLI (“Hyppana”) Palermo, Sicily.

Remains of an ancient settlement on the plateau of a mountain (1000 m high) with the modern village of Prizzi 3 km to the S. On the basis of ancient sources (Polyb. 1.24.10; Diod. 23.9.5), some scholars have suggested that the settlement could be identified with ancient Hyppana, but this identification has not met with general approval.

Recent excavations have confirmed the presence of a habitation center and have uncovered stretches of the circuit walls and the remains of houses and of a small theater. These remains and the other archaeological finds are datable from the 4th c. B.C. onward. Sporadic finds of painted and incised pottery of a much earlier date suggest the presence of an earlier settlement, perhaps Elymian.

The finds give evidence of contact with the Phoenicians and the Greeks. A terracotta plaque bears a 12-line inscription in Greek, perhaps a dodekatheon. This tablet belongs to the latest known phase of the city. It is not known when it ceased to exist.


V. Tusa, “Ii centro abitato su Monte Cavalli è identificabile con Hippana?” Kokalos 7 (1961) 113ffPI; E. Manni, “Hippana, Sittana o Hipana?” Kokalos 7 (1961) 122ff; S. Fern, “La ΕΥΧΗ ΔΩΔΕΚΑΘΕΟΣ di Monte Cavalli (Palermo),” La Parola del Passato 91 (1963) 302ffI.


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