previous next

CLAZO´MENAE

CLAZO´MENAE (Κλαζομεναί: Eth. Κλαζομένιος: Kelisman), one of the cities of Ionia. Strabo (p. 644) fixes its position within certain limits accurately enough. Clazomenae occupied the northern side of an isthmus, of which the Teii had the southern part; and this isthmus is the neck of land that connects the peninsula on which Erythrae stands with the mainland. The Clazomenii had the Smyrnaei for their neighbours on the east, and the Erythraei on the west; and on the west side, at the point where the isthmus commenced, there was a rugged spot which was the boundary of the territories of Erythrae and Clazomenae. Between Erythrae, which was on the west coast of the peninsula, and this rugged boundary was the promontory of Mimas, a mountain [p. 1.632]covered with forests. Close upon the boundary was a place called Chytrium, as it is in Strabo's text, which, he says, was the original site of Clazomenae; and next to it was the city of Clazomenae, as it existed in his time, with eight small islands in front of it, which were cultivated. Pliny (5.31) names numerous islands in this part, and Thucydides (8.31) mentions three, which are in Pliny's list, Pele, Drymussa, and Marathussa. Chandler (Asia Minor, 100.24) could only count six, and all uncultivated. This name Chytrium is not mentioned by any writer except Strabo, but it is evidently the place which Stephanus (s. v. Χυτόν) calls Chytum; and Aristotle (Aristot. Pol. 5.3) Chytrum.

Clazomenae was on the south side of the bay of Smyrna, as Strabo's description shows. The original settlement was on the mainland, but the people through fear of the Persians passed over to the island (Paus. 7.3.8). Alexander, as Pausanias says, intended to make Clazomenae a peninsula by uniting it to the mainland by a causeway. It appears that this was done, for Chandler found near Vourla, on the south side of the bay of Smyrna, a causeway about a quarter of a mile in length, and about 30 ft. wide, which connected the mainland with a small island. He estimated the length of the island at a mile, and the breadth at a quarter of a mile. The town was small, and the port was to the NNW. Near the sea Chandler found traces of the walls, and on a hill the remains of a theatre. It appears from this that the site of Clazomenae must have been very contracted, and the city inconsiderable.

Clazomenae, it is said, did not exist before the Ionians settled in Asia. The greater part of the first settlers were not Ionians, but people from Cleonae and Phlius, who left these cities when the Dorians came into the Peloponnesus. These emigrants first occupied a place in the territory of Colophon, named Scyppium or Schyphia (Steph. s. v. Σκυφία), and finally they removed to the place called Clazomenae (Paus. 7.3.8). This old town was on the mainland, and it successfully resisted the attacks of Alyattes king of Lydia (Hdt. 1.16). The enterprise of the people is shown by an early attempt to colonise Abdera in Thrace, and by their trade with Egypt (Hdt. 1.168, 2.178). In the time of Croesus the Clazomenii had a treasury at Delphi (1.51). Herodotus enumerates Clazomenae among the states of Ionia that were on the mainland, for the only insular states which he names are, Chios and Samos; and yet the city of Clazomenae was on the island in his time. But as the territory of the Clazomenii was on the mainland, and the city was merely their stronghold on a small island close to the main, it could not be properly called an insular state like Chios and Samos. (Hdt. 1.142). Otanes the Persian took Clazomenae soon after the commencement of the Ionian revolt (Hdt. 5.123) and we must suppose that the city at that time was on the island.

Clazomenae became a dependency of Athens, but after the losses of the Athenians in Sicily, it revolted with Chios and Erythrae. The Clazomenii at the same time began to fortify Polichne on the main as a place of refuge, if it should be necessary. The Athenians took Polichne, and removed the people back to the island, except those who had been most active in the revolt; and they went off to a place called Daphnus (Thuc. 8.14, 23). Clazomenae was now again in alliance with or dependence on Athens; but Astyochus the Lacedaemonian commander arriving soon after bade those who were of the Athenian party, remove from Clazomenae to Daphnus, which they refused to do, and Astyochus failed in the attack that he made on Clazomenae, though it was unwalled (Thuc. 8.31). Some critics have argued that Polichne is not the name of a place, and that it is Daphnus; but this does not appear to be so. Xenophon (Xenoph. Hell. 5.1.28) speaks of Clazomenae as an island even after the close of the Peloponnesian War, and this is consistent with the story in Pausanias. The walls of the city may have been built after the construction of the causeway, for Thucydides speaks of Clazomenae as unwalled. Stephanus (s. v. Λάμψος), on the authority of Ephorus, names Lampsus as a part of the territory of Clazomenae. Strabo (p. 646) also speaks of a temple of Apollo, and warm springs between Clazomenae and the bay of Smyrna, and he appears to place them in the territory of Clazomenae. These are the springs (Λούτρα) mentioned by Pausanias (7.5.11); and those which Chandler visited on the road from Smyrna to Vourla, a place which is not far from the site of Clazomenae. He found the heat of the water “in the vein” to be 150 degrees (of Fahrenheit).

When the Romans settled the affairs of this part of Asia after their treaty with Antiochus (B.C. 188), they made the Clazomenii “immunes” or tax-free, and gave them the island Drymussa, one of the small islands near Clazomenae, not a very valuable present (Liv. 38.39; Plb. 22.27). At the time when L. Sulla was in Asia, after bringing Mithridates to terms (B.C. 84), Clazomenae and other places on this coast were plundered by the pirates who infested the Aegean sea. (Appian, App. Mith. 63.) Clazomenae was included in the Roman province of Asia.

Clazomenae was the birthplace of Anaxagoras ( φυσικός), who was one of the masters of Archelaus, and the dramatist Euripides. Hamilton (Researches, &c. vol. ii. p. 9) obtained a few coins of Clazomenae at Ritri (Erythrae), and accordingly not far from the site of the place to which they belonged.

COIN OF CLAZOMENAE.

[G.L]

hide References (15 total)
  • Cross-references from this page (15):
    • Aristotle, Politics, 5.1303b
    • Herodotus, Histories, 1.168
    • Herodotus, Histories, 2.178
    • Herodotus, Histories, 5.123
    • Herodotus, Histories, 1.142
    • Herodotus, Histories, 1.16
    • Pausanias, Description of Greece, 7.5.11
    • Pausanias, Description of Greece, 7.3.8
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.23
    • Xenophon, Hellenica, 5.1.28
    • Appian, Mithridatic Wars, 9.63
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.14
    • Pliny the Elder, Naturalis Historia, 5.31
    • Livy, The History of Rome, Book 38, 39
    • Thucydides, Histories, 8.31
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: