(Velitsa) Phokis, Greece.
on the S side of the Kephissos Plain, where the ground
rises to Mt. Parnassos; the local olive oil was noted for
color and sweetness. It has been identified with Velitsa
by 3d and 2d c. B.C. inscriptions, dated by the archon
of Tithorea. Several refer to Isis, Serapis, and Anubis,
recalling the sanctuary that Pausanias (10.32
) said was
the holiest of those built to Isis in Greece. Varying opinions have arisen from Herodotos' statement (8.32) that
a number of Phokians fleeing Xerxes took refuge on the
isolated peak of Tithorea, near Neon. It is probable that
Velitsa was then called Neon, Tithorea referring to the
heights above the great cliff rising S of the village, later
applied by extension to the whole district. Others, however, have supposed Velitsa was the refuge site, and that
Neon is to be identified with the remains of a walled
site of considerable size at Palnia Pheva on the right
bank of the Kephissos about 5 km to the N. Plutarch
. 15) described Tithorea as merely a fortress in the
early 1st c. B.C. but of much greater importance a century later. It had declined again by the time of Pausanias,
who saw a theater, an ancient market, a Temple and
Grove of Athena, and the tomb of Antiope and Phokos.
In the vicinity, there was also a Temple of Asklepios
Archagetos (Founder). Scattered theater seats have been
noted outside the walls as well as other foundations for
large buildings. The most important remains are those of
the fortifications, classed with Messene and Eleutherai
as the finest examples of 4th c. work. The walls, supplementing the natural defenses of cliff to the S and gorge to the E, are of trapezoidal ashlar masonry, as much as 14 courses high. On the steep W slope, the top is both
inclined and stepped, and crowned with coping blocks.
The towers are square with windows and loopholes. Neon
is listed by Pausanias as one of the Phokian towns razed
in 346 B.C.; the walls were probably rebuilt soon after
the battle of Chaironeia eight years later.
; Plut. Sulla
15; Paus. 10.32.8-11
; J. G. Frazer, Paus. Des. Gr
. (1898) V 402f; L. B. Tillard in BSA
17 (1910-11) 54fMI
I 725, n. 65.
M. H. MC ALLISTER