) or Piraeus.
Leone or Porto Dracone. The most important of the harbours of Athens, was situated in the
Plan of the Harbour of Athens.
about five miles southwest of Athens. This peninsula, which is
sometimes called by the general name of Piraeeus, contained three harbours: Piraeeus
proper on the western side, by far the largest
of the three; Zea on the eastern side, separated from the Piraeus by
a narrow isthmus; and Munychia
farther to the east. The northern part of the great harbour of the Piraeus was divided into
three smaller harbours: Zea for corn-vessels, Aphrodisium for merchant-ships in general, and
Cantharus for ships of war. It was through the suggestion of Themistocles that the Athenians
were induced to make use of the harbour of Piraeeus. Before the Persian Wars their principal
harbour was Phalerum, which was not situated in the Piraean peninsula at all, but lay to the
east of Munychia. At the entrance of the harbour of the Piraeus there were two
promontories—the one on the right-hand, called Alcimus (Ἄλκιμος
), on which was the tomb of Themistocles (Pausan. i. 1, 2), and
), where the Four Hundred built
a fortress (Thuc.viii. 90
). The Piraeus had a good-sized
population, especially of resident aliens, who were attracted by its facility for trade. The
town was strongly fortified by Themistocles, and was connected with Athens by the Long Walls,
due to Pericles. The narrow entrance to its harbour was protected by two great mole-heads,
across which a huge chain could be drawn to keep out hostile ships.
The town had a fine agora, which stood in the centre of the place, and temples to Zeus
Soter, Athené Soteira, and Aphrodité; and fine halls or στοαί.