previous next

SALAPIA Foggia, Apulia, Italy.

An ancient city on the Adriatic coast N of Trinitapolis, near the Salapina palus (Luc. 5.377) Lago di Salpi, today largely drained. According to legend, it was founded by Diomedes or by Elpias of Rhodes (Vitr. 1.14.12; Strab. 14.654). Others attribute Trojan origins to the city (Lycoph. 1129). The city was not, however, colonized by the Greeks in the historic period. As an important center of Daunia with its own mint (the name Salapinon or Salpinon are found on bronze coins), it participated actively in the second Punic war. In 214 B.C. Hannibal seized the city and set up his winter quarters there, but M. Claudius Marcellus reoccupied it in 210 (Livy 24.20; 26.38). During the social war (App. BCiv. 1.51), the city was destroyed, and it gradually disappeared because the lagoon was becoming a swamp. The ruins of the ancient town are found along the road which leads from Zapponeta to the district of Torre Pietra.

According to Vitruvius (bc. cit.), the old city was abandoned, made unhealthy because of malaria, and the inhabitants in the 1st B.C. moved ca. 6.4 km away to a healthier place, where a harbor was developed by joining the Lago di Salpi with the sea. The new Salapia was a Roman municipium and is mentioned by the writers of land survey as a colony (Grom. Vet. 210.261). Significant traces have recently been brought to light in the zone called Monte di Salpi, where it is believed that the second city rose.


W. Smith, Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography, II (1857) 879 (E. H. Bunbury); RE 1.2 (1920) 2007-9; EAA 6 (1965) 1072 (N. Degrassi); M. D. Marin in Atti VIII Convegno Studi Magna Grecia (1968) 242; S. F. Tiné, ibid. 233ff.


hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: