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RENTINA (“Angeia”) Thessaly, Greece.

One of a number of fortresses in the Dolopian mountains between the Spercheios Valley and the central plain to the N. They are characteristically small in circuit, generally little more than 200 m; much of the masonry is primitive and difficult to date. The ancient names are unknown or disputed, the identification depending largely on Livy's account of the Aitohian expedition in 198 B.C.

There are two sites, one to the S where a flat hilltop is encircled by a rough polygonal wall, the other to the W where double-faced rubble-filled walls present the most imposing remains in the area. Stälhin dated them by a coin of the 3d c. The masonry is of small regular blocks, drafted on the corners of the towers. Although all the literary references for it are to the 2d c., these are probably the remains of the city of Angeia, which served at that time as Dolopian representative at Delphi, replacing Ktimenai as chief city. Delphic representative in the 4th c., Ktimenai is known to have been an old city, and is probably to be located at Anodranitsa, the only site in the region where there are traces of occupation from the end of the Mycenaean period. Its walls are faced with polygonal masonry and filled with small stones; Béquignon saw two towers. The original sanctuary of Omphale, known from inscriptions, was near the boundary between Angeia and Ktimenal.

At Smokovon a double peak was fortified by a rough polygonal wall with towers, laid out to take advantage of the natural precipices. An ashlar wall made an interior division, but the lack of house walls suggests the site was used only in emergencies or by summer herdsmen. At Kydonia there are three circuits of walls, again making use of natural scarps. In some parts of the innermost circuit there are as many as five courses preserved of double-faced wall formed of approximately rectangular blocks; there are traces of at least two towers. There are ashlar walls defending the long, narrow acropolis SW of Kaitsa, which Stählin identified with the 4th c. city Kypaira. Palaiokastro, near Mavrillon, also had ashlar walls, now largely gone on the N side; Stählin dated the remains from coins of the 3d and 2d centuries. At Papa, a relatively large circuit (more than 400 m) of double-faced polygonal masonry apparently had two gates; coins were found of the 2d and 3d c. A.D.


BIBLIOGRAPHY

Livy 32.13.10; F. Stälhin, Das hellenische Thessalien (1924)MPI; Y. Béquignon, La Vallée du Spercheios (1937)MPI.

M. H. MCALLISTER

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  • Cross-references from this page (1):
    • Livy, The History of Rome, Book 32, 13.10
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