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ALETIUM (Alezio) Apulia, Italy.

This ancient Messapian center was mentioned by Pliny (HN 3.105) and Ptolemy (3.1). Its position is clearly indicated in the name of the ancient church of S. Maria della Lizza, around which the mediaeval settlement called Picciotti grew up, and from which the modern town retook the ancient name. The flourishing economic life of Aletium was associated, especially around the 4th c. B.C., with its proximity to Kallipolis (Gallipoli) ca. 7 km away. There is evidence of the ancient city in the modern town, on the outskirts of which tombs with Messapian inscriptions frequently appear. Several tombs have been reconstructed in an archaeological park. Messapian inscriptions are to be found in the Municipal Library at Alezio and in the Castromediano Museum at Lecce. BIBLIOGRAPHY. W. Smith, Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography, (1856) 95 (E. H. Bunbury); RE 1.2 (1894) 1371 (Hülsen); O. Parlangeli, Studi Messapici (1960) 202.


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