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MYKALESSOS (Rhitsona) Boiotia, Greece.

A town belonging to the earliest Boiotian League, flourishing from the 6th c. until its destruction and the massacre of its inhabitants by the Athenians in 413 B.C. Strabo classed it as a village belonging to Tanagra. There are a few remains of undated walls at Rhitsona, which is generally accepted as the site of Mykalessos. Excavations have concentrated on graves, largely of the 6th c., but also 5th c. and Hellenistic, which produced material of considerable importance for the history of Greek ceramics. Pausanias mentions a Sanctuary of Mykalessian Demeter on the shore of the Euripos, which was probably near the modern village of Megalovouno above Aulis. The ancient wall which appears on both sides of the road through the Anaghoritis pass marks the Chalkis-Thebes boundary. Frazer suggested a nearby location for the Hermaion mentioned in Thucydides' account of the Athenian attack, while locating Livy's Hermaion on the Euripos at a ferry terminus.


Thuc. 4.93.4, 7.29.30; Strab. 9.2.11; Livy 25.50; Paus. 1.23.3, 9.19.4; J. G. Frazer, Paus. Des. Gr. (1898) v 66f; BSA 14 (1907) 226f; S. C. Bakhuizen, Salganeus and the Fortifications on its Mountains (Chalcidean Studies III, 1970).


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