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CUPRA (Κούπρα: Eth. Cuprensis), the name of two cities or towns in Picenum, called for the sake of distinction Cupra Maritima and Cupra Montana.


CUPRA MARITIMA (Κούπρα μαπιτίμα, Ptol.) was situated on the sea coast, between the Castellum Firmanum and Castrum Truentinum. (Strab. v. p.241; Mela, 2.4.6; Plin. Nat. 3.13. s. 18; Ptol. 3.1.21.) Strabo does not describe it as a town, but speaks only of the temple of Cupra (τὸ τῆς Κύπρας ἱερόν) which he says was founded by the Tyrrhenians (Etruscans), and that Cupra was the Tyrrhenian name of Juno. But it is clear that a town had grown up around the temple; for it is mentioned as such by all the other geographers, and appears to have become the more considerable place of the two, so that it was often called Cupra without any distinctive epithet. (Cupra urbs, Mel. l.c.; Cupra oppidum, Plin. l.c.) The temple of Cupra is also mentioned by Silius Italicus (8.433), and an inscription records its restoration by Hadrian. The discovery of this fixes the site of the temple and the town of Cupra Maritima, at a place called le Grotte a Mare, about 3 miles N. of S. Benedetto, and 8 miles from the mouth of the Truentus or Tronto. (Cluver. Ital. p. 734; Gruter. Inscr. p. 1016, 2; Colucci, Cupra Maritima, p. 130.)


CUPRA MONTANA (Κούπρα μοντάνα, Ptol. 3.1.52; Cuprenses cognomine Montani, Plin. Nat. 3.13. s. 18) is mentioned both by Pliny and Ptolemy, among the towns of the interior of Picenum, and was certainly distinct from the preceding. It is considered by local topographers to have occupied the site of the modern Ripatransone, a town on a hill, only 8 miles inland from the site of the maritime Cupra. (Cluver. Ital. p. 741; Abeken, Mittel Italien, p. 120.) [E.H.B]

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  • Cross-references from this page (2):
    • Pliny the Elder, Naturalis Historia, 3.13
    • Claudius Ptolemy, Tetrabiblos, 3.1
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