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ANXANUM or ANXA (Ἄγξανον: Eth. Anxanus, Plin.; Anxas,--ātis, Anxianus, Inscrr.)


A city of the Frentani, situated on a hill about 5 miles from the Adriatic, and 8 from the mouth of the river Sagrus or Sangro. It is not mentioned in history, but is noticed both by Pliny and Ptolemy among the cities of the Frentani; and from numerous inscriptions which have been discovered on the site, it appears to have been a municipal town of considerable importance. Its territory appears to have been assigned to military colonists by Julius Caesar, but it did not retain the rank of a colony. (Plin. Nat. 3.12. s. 17; Ptol. 3.1.65; Lib. Colon. p. 259; Zumpt, de Colon. p. 307.) The name is retained by the modern city of Lanciano (the see of an archbishop, and one of the most populous and flourishing places in this part of Italy), but the original site of the ancient city appears to have been at a spot called II Castellare, near the church of Sta. Giusta, about a mile to the NE. of the modern town, where numerous inscriptions, as well as foundations and vestiges of ancient buildings, have been discovered. Other inscriptions, and remains of an aqueduct, mosaic pavements, &c., have also been found in the part of the present city still called Lanciano Vecchio, which thus appears to have been peopled at least under the Roman empire. From one of these inscriptions it would appear that Anxanum had already become an important emporium or centre of trade for all the surrounding country, as it continued to be during the middle ages, and to which it still owes its present importance. (Romanelli, vol. iii. pp. 55--62; Giustiniani, Diz. Geogr. vol. v. pp. 196--205.) The Itineraries give the distances from Anxanum to Ortona at xiii. miles (probably an error for viii.), to Pallanum xvi., and to Histonium (Il Vasto) xxv. (Itin. Ant. p. 313; Tab. Peut.)


A town of Apulia situated on the coast, of the Adriatic, between Sipontum and the mouth of the Aufidus. The Tab. Peut. places it at 9 M. P. from the former city, a distance which coincides with the Torre di Rivoli, where there are some ancient remains. (Romanelli, vol. ii. p. 204.) [E.H.B]

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