Philip II of Macedon
Philip II of Macedon was the king of the Ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon from 359 BC until his assassination in 336 BC. He was a member of the Argead dynasty of Macedonian kings, the son of King Amyntas III. However, his assassination led to the succession of his son Alexander. Philip was the youngest son of the king Amyntas III and Eurydice I, in his youth, Philip was held as a hostage in Thebes, which was the leading city of Greece. In 364 BC, Philip returned to Macedon, the deaths of Philips elder brothers, King Alexander II and Perdiccas III, allowed him to take the throne in 359 BC. Originally appointed regent for his infant nephew Amyntas IV, who was the son of Perdiccas III, Philips military skills and expansionist vision of Macedonian greatness brought him early success. He first had to remedy a predicament which had greatly worsened by the defeat against the Illyrians in which King Perdiccas himself had died. Using diplomacy, Philip pushed back the Paionians and Thracians promising tributes, momentarily free from his opponents, he concentrated on strengthening his internal position and, above all, his army.
Philip had married Audata, great-granddaughter of the Illyrian king of Dardania, this did not prevent him from marching against the Illyrians in 358 and crushing them in a ferocious battle in which some 7,000 Illyrians died. By this move, Philip established his authority inland as far as Lake Ohrid, the Athenians had been unable to conquer Amphipolis, which commanded the gold mines of Mount Pangaion. So Philip reached an agreement with Athens to lease the city to them after its conquest, after conquering Amphipolis, Philip kept both cities. As Athens had declared war against him, he allied Macedon with the Chalkidian League of Olynthus and he subsequently conquered Potidaea, this time keeping his word and ceding it to the League in 356. In 357 BC, Philip married the Epirote princess Olympias, who was the daughter of the king of the Molossians, Alexander was born in 356, the same year as Philips racehorse won at the Olympic Games. During 356 BC, Philip conquered the town of Crenides and changed its name to Philippi and he established a powerful garrison there to control its mines, which yielded much of the gold he used for his campaigns.
In the meantime, his general Parmenion defeated the Illyrians again, in 355–354 he besieged Methone, the last city on the Thermaic Gulf controlled by Athens. During the siege, Philip was injured in his eye, despite the arrival of two Athenian fleets, the city fell in 354. Philip attacked Abdera and Maronea, on the Thracian coast, Philip was involved in the Third Sacred War which had begun in Greece in 356. In summer 353 he invaded Thessaly, defeating 7,000 Phocians under the brother of Onomarchus, the latter however defeated Philip in the two succeeding battles
Syrias capital and largest city is Damascus. Religious groups include Sunnis, Alawites, Mandeans, Salafis, Sunni Arabs make up the largest religious group in Syria. Its capital Damascus and largest city Aleppo are among the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world, in the Islamic era, Damascus was the seat of the Umayyad Caliphate and a provincial capital of the Mamluk Sultanate in Egypt. The post-independence period was tumultuous, and a number of military coups. In 1958, Syria entered a union with Egypt called the United Arab Republic. Syria was under Emergency Law from 1963 to 2011, effectively suspending most constitutional protections for citizens, Bashar al-Assad has been president since 2000 and was preceded by his father Hafez al-Assad, who was in office from 1970 to 2000. Mainstream modern academic opinion strongly favours the argument that the Greek word is related to the cognate Ἀσσυρία, Assyria, in the past, others believed that it was derived from Siryon, the name that the Sidonians gave to Mount Hermon.
However, the discovery of the inscription in 2000 seems to support the theory that the term Syria derives from Assyria. The area designated by the word has changed over time, since approximately 10,000 BC, Syria was one of centers of Neolithic culture where agriculture and cattle breeding appeared for the first time in the world. The following Neolithic period is represented by houses of Mureybet culture. At the time of the pre-pottery Neolithic, people used vessels made of stone, finds of obsidian tools from Anatolia are evidences of early trade relations. Cities of Hamoukar and Emar played an important role during the late Neolithic, archaeologists have demonstrated that civilization in Syria was one of the most ancient on earth, perhaps preceded by only those of Mesopotamia. The earliest recorded indigenous civilisation in the region was the Kingdom of Ebla near present-day Idlib, gifts from Pharaohs, found during excavations, confirm Eblas contact with Egypt. One of the earliest written texts from Syria is an agreement between Vizier Ibrium of Ebla and an ambiguous kingdom called Abarsal c.2300 BC.
The Northwest Semitic language of the Amorites is the earliest attested of the Canaanite languages, Mari reemerged during this period, and saw renewed prosperity until conquered by Hammurabi of Babylon. Ugarit arose during this time, circa 1800 BC, close to modern Latakia, Ugaritic was a Semitic language loosely related to the Canaanite languages, and developed the Ugaritic alphabet. The Ugarites kingdom survived until its destruction at the hands of the marauding Indo-European Sea Peoples in the 12th century BC, Yamhad was described in the tablets of Mari as the mightiest state in the near east and as having more vassals than Hammurabi of Babylon. Yamhad imposed its authority over Alalakh, the Hurrians states, the army of Yamhad campaigned as far away as Dēr on the border of Elam
Achaea or Achaia, sometimes transliterated from Greek as Akhaïa, is one of the regional units of Greece. It is part of the region of West Greece and is situated in the part of the Peloponnese peninsula. Since 2001, the population has exceeded 300,000, Achaea is bordered by Elis to the west and southwest, Arcadia to the south, and Corinthia to the east and southeast. The Gulf of Corinth lies to its northeast, and the Gulf of Patras to its northwest, the mountain Panachaiko, though not the highest of Achaea, dominates the coastal area near Patras. Higher mountains are found in the south, such as Aroania, other mountain ranges in Achaea are Skollis, Omplos and Movri. Its main rivers ordered from west to east are the Larissos, Peiros, Selinountas, most of the forests are in the mountain ranges, though several are in the plains including the extreme west. There are grasslands around the areas and barren lands in the highest areas. Achaea has hot summers and mild winters, sunny days dominate during the summer months in areas near the coast, while the summer can be cloudy and rainy in the mountains.
Snow is very common during the winter in the mountains of Erymanthos, winter high temperatures are around the 10 °C mark throughout the low-lying areas. The regional unit Achaea is subdivided into 5 municipalities and these are, Aigialeia Erymanthos Kalavryta Patras West Achaea As a part of the 2011 Kallikratis government reform, the regional unit Achaea was created out of the former prefecture Achaea. The prefecture had the territory as the present regional unit. At the same time, the municipalities were reorganised, according to the table below, Province of Aigialeia - Aigio Province of Kalavryta - Kalavryta Province of Patras - Patras Note, Provinces no longer hold any legal status in Greece. The Achaean League was a Hellenistic-era confederation of city states in Achaea and it grew until it included most of Peloponnese, much reducing the Macedonian rule in the area. After Macedons defeat by the Romans in the late 2nd century BC, however, as the Roman influence in the area grew, the league erupted into an open revolt against Roman domination, in what is known as Achaean War.
The Achaeans were defeated at the Battle of Corinth, and the League was dissolved by the Romans, in AD 51/52, Lucius Junius Gallio Annaeanus was proconsul of Achaea, and presided over the trial of the Apostle Paul in Corinth. This event provides a date for the book of the Acts of the Apostles within the Bible. Achaea remained a province of the Byzantine Empire after the fall of the western Roman Empire, in the 6th and 7th centuries, Slavs invaded the Peloponnese, and settled in parts of Achaea as well. By the 9th century, the peninsula was under Byzantine control again
The Aegean Sea is an elongated embayment of the Mediterranean Sea located between the Greek and Anatolian peninsulas, i. e. between the mainlands of Greece and Turkey. In the north, it is connected to the Marmara Sea and Black Sea by the Dardanelles, the Aegean Islands are within the sea and some bound it on its southern periphery, including Crete and Rhodes. The sea was known as Archipelago, but in English this words meaning has changed to refer to the Aegean Islands and, generally. In ancient times, there were various explanations for the name Aegean, a possible etymology is a derivation from the Greek word αἶγες – aiges = waves, hence wavy sea, cf. αἰγιαλός, hence meaning sea-shore. The Venetians, who ruled many Greek islands in the High and Late Middle Ages, popularized the name Archipelago, in some South Slavic languages the Aegean is often called White Sea. The Aegean Sea covers about 214,000 square kilometres in area, the seas maximum depth is 3,543 metres, east of Crete. The Aegean Islands are found within its waters, with the following islands delimiting the sea on the south, Antikythera, Kasos, many of the Aegean Islands, or chains of islands, are actually extensions of the mountains on the mainland.
One chain extends across the sea to Chios, another extends across Euboea to Samos, the International Hydrographic Organization defines the limits of the Aegean Sea as follows, On the South. In the Dardanelles. A line joining Kum Kale and Cape Helles, the dense Mediterranean water sinks below the Black Sea inflow to a depth of 23–30 metres, flows through the Dardanelles Strait and into the Sea of Marmara at velocities of 5–15 cm/s. The Black Sea outflow moves westward along the northern Aegean Sea, Aegean Sea Intermediate Water – Aegean Sea Intermediate Water extends from 40–50 m to 200–300 metres with temperatures ranging from 11–18 °C. Aegean Sea Bottom Water – occurring at depths below 500–1000 m with a uniform temperature. The current coastline dates back to about 4000 BC, before that time, at the peak of the last ice age sea levels everywhere were 130 metres lower, and there were large well-watered coastal plains instead of much of the northern Aegean. When they were first occupied, the islands including Milos with its important obsidian production were probably still connected to the mainland.
The present coastal arrangement appeared c.7000 BC, with post-ice age sea levels continuing to rise for another 3,000 years after that, the subsequent Bronze Age civilizations of Greece and the Aegean Sea have given rise to the general term Aegean civilization. In ancient times, the sea was the birthplace of two ancient civilizations – the Minoans of Crete and the Mycenean Civilization of the Peloponnese, arose the city-states of Athens and Sparta among many others that constituted the Athenian Empire and Hellenic Civilization. Plato described the Greeks living round the Aegean like frogs around a pond, the Aegean Sea was invaded by the Persians and the Romans, and inhabited by the Byzantine Empire, the Bulgarians, the Venetians, the Genoese, the Seljuq Turks, and the Ottoman Empire. The Aegean was the site of the democracies, and its seaways were the means of contact among several diverse civilizations of the Eastern Mediterranean. Many of the islands in the Aegean have safe harbours and bays, in ancient times, navigation through the sea was easier than travelling across the rough terrain of the Greek mainland
Olympias was a daughter of king Neoptolemus I of Epirus, the fourth wife of the king of Macedonia, Philip II, and mother of Alexander the Great. She was a member of the orgiastic snake-worshiping cult of Dionysus, and it is suggested by the 1st century AD biographer, Plutarch. Olympias was the daughter of Neoptolemus I, king of the Molossians, an ancient Greek tribe in Epirus and her family belonged to the Aeacidae, a well-respected family of Epirus, which claimed descent from Neoptolemus, son of Achilles. The name Olympias was the third of four names by which she was known and she probably took it as a recognition of Philips victory in the Olympic Games of 356 BC, the news of which coincided with Alexanders birth. She was finally named Stratonice, which was probably an epithet attached to Olympias following her victory over Eurydice in 317 BC, when Neoptolemus I died in 360 BC, his brother Arymbas succeeded him on the Molossian throne. In 358 BC, Arymbas made a treaty with the new king of Macedonia, Philip II, the alliance was cemented with a diplomatic marriage, when Arymbas niece Olympias became Philips wife in 357 BC and, queen consort of Macedonia.
Philip had first fallen in love with Olympias when both were initiated into the mysteries of Cabeiri at the Sanctuary of the Great Gods, on the island of Samothrace. One year later, in 356 BC, Philips race horse won in the Olympic Games, for this victory his wife, in the summer of the same year, Olympias gave birth to her first child, Alexander. In ancient Greece people believed that the birth of a man was accompanied by portents. After the marriage Philip dreamed that he put a seal upon his wifes womb, aristanders interpretation was that Olympias was pregnant of a son whose nature would be bold and lion-like. Philip and Olympias had a daughter and their marriage was very stormy, Philips volatility and Olympias jealous temper had led to a growing estrangement. Things got even worse in 337 BC when Philip married a noble Macedonian woman, who was given the name Eurydice by Philip, the marriage caused great tensions between Philip and Alexander. Olympias went into exile in Epirus along with her son Alexander, who sided with her, staying at the Molossian court of her brother Alexander I.
After the death of Philip II, Olympias ordered the execution of Eurydice and her child, during Alexanders campaigns, she regularly corresponded with him and may have confirmed her sons claim in Egypt that his father was not Philip but Zeus. The relationship between Olympias and Alexander was cordial, but her son tried to keep her away from politics, she wielded great influence in Macedonia and caused troubles to Antipater, the regent of the kingdom. In 330 BC, she returned to Epirus and served as a regent to her cousin Aeacides in the Epirote state, after Alexander the Greats death in Babylon in 323 BC, his wife Roxana bore him a posthumous son who was called Alexander IV. At the same time, Olympias offered Perdiccas the hand of her daughter Cleopatra, Perdiccas chose Cleopatra, which angered Antipater, who invaded Macedon, deposed Perdiccas, and declared himself regent, only to die within the year. Polyperchon succeeded Antipater in 319 BC as regent, but Antipaters son Cassander established Philip II’s simpleminded son Philip III as king and he fled to Epirus, taking Roxana and her son Alexander IV with him
Egypt, officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a transcontinental country spanning the northeast corner of Africa and southwest corner of Asia by a land bridge formed by the Sinai Peninsula. Egypt is a Mediterranean country bordered by the Gaza Strip and Israel to the northeast, the Gulf of Aqaba to the east, the Red Sea to the east and south, Sudan to the south, and Libya to the west. Across the Gulf of Aqaba lies Jordan, and across from the Sinai Peninsula lies Saudi Arabia, although Jordan and it is the worlds only contiguous Afrasian nation. Egypt has among the longest histories of any country, emerging as one of the worlds first nation states in the tenth millennium BC. Considered a cradle of civilisation, Ancient Egypt experienced some of the earliest developments of writing, urbanisation, organised religion and central government. One of the earliest centres of Christianity, Egypt was Islamised in the century and remains a predominantly Muslim country. With over 92 million inhabitants, Egypt is the most populous country in North Africa and the Arab world, the third-most populous in Africa, and the fifteenth-most populous in the world.
The great majority of its people live near the banks of the Nile River, an area of about 40,000 square kilometres, the large regions of the Sahara desert, which constitute most of Egypts territory, are sparsely inhabited. About half of Egypts residents live in areas, with most spread across the densely populated centres of greater Cairo, Alexandria. Modern Egypt is considered to be a regional and middle power, with significant cultural and military influence in North Africa, the Middle East and the Muslim world. Egypts economy is one of the largest and most diversified in the Middle East, Egypt is a member of the United Nations, Non-Aligned Movement, Arab League, African Union, and Organisation of Islamic Cooperation. Miṣr is the Classical Quranic Arabic and modern name of Egypt. The name is of Semitic origin, directly cognate with other Semitic words for Egypt such as the Hebrew מִצְרַיִם, the oldest attestation of this name for Egypt is the Akkadian
Plutarch was a Greek biographer and essayist, known primarily for his Parallel Lives and Moralia. He is classified as a Middle Platonist, Plutarchs surviving works were written in Greek, but intended for both Greek and Roman readers. Plutarch was born to a prominent family in the town of Chaeronea, about 80 km east of Delphi. The name of Plutarchs father has not been preserved, but based on the common Greek custom of repeating a name in alternate generations, the name of Plutarchs grandfather was Lamprias, as he attested in Moralia and in his Life of Antony. His brothers and Lamprias, are mentioned in his essays and dialogues. Rualdus, in his 1624 work Life of Plutarchus, recovered the name of Plutarchs wife, from internal evidence afforded by his writings. A letter is still extant, addressed by Plutarch to his wife, bidding her not to grieve too much at the death of their two-year-old daughter, interestingly, he hinted at a belief in reincarnation in that letter of consolation. The exact number of his sons is not certain, although two of them and the second Plutarch, are often mentioned.
Plutarchs treatise De animae procreatione in Timaeo is dedicated to them, another person, Soklarus, is spoken of in terms which seem to imply that he was Plutarchs son, but this is nowhere definitely stated. Plutarch studied mathematics and philosophy at the Academy of Athens under Ammonius from 66 to 67, at some point, Plutarch took Roman citizenship. He lived most of his life at Chaeronea, and was initiated into the mysteries of the Greek god Apollo. For many years Plutarch served as one of the two priests at the temple of Apollo at Delphi, the site of the famous Delphic Oracle, twenty miles from his home. By his writings and lectures Plutarch became a celebrity in the Roman Empire, yet he continued to reside where he was born, at his country estate, guests from all over the empire congregated for serious conversation, presided over by Plutarch in his marble chair. Many of these dialogues were recorded and published, and the 78 essays, Plutarch held the office of archon in his native municipality, probably only an annual one which he likely served more than once.
He busied himself with all the matters of the town. The Suda, a medieval Greek encyclopedia, states that Emperor Trajan made Plutarch procurator of Illyria, most historians consider this unlikely, since Illyria was not a procuratorial province, and Plutarch probably did not speak Illyrian. Plutarch spent the last thirty years of his serving as a priest in Delphi. He thus connected part of his work with the sanctuary of Apollo, the processes of oracle-giving
Alexander the Great
Alexander III of Macedon, commonly known as Alexander the Great, was a king of the Ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon and a member of the Argead dynasty. He was born in Pella in 356 BC and succeeded his father Philip II to the throne at the age of twenty and he was undefeated in battle and is widely considered one of historys most successful military commanders. During his youth, Alexander was tutored by Aristotle until the age of 16, after Philips assassination in 336 BC, he succeeded his father to the throne and inherited a strong kingdom and an experienced army. Alexander was awarded the generalship of Greece and used this authority to launch his fathers Panhellenic project to lead the Greeks in the conquest of Persia, in 334 BC, he invaded the Achaemenid Empire and began a series of campaigns that lasted ten years. Following the conquest of Anatolia, Alexander broke the power of Persia in a series of battles, most notably the battles of Issus. He subsequently overthrew Persian King Darius III and conquered the Achaemenid Empire in its entirety, at that point, his empire stretched from the Adriatic Sea to the Indus River.
He sought to reach the ends of the world and the Great Outer Sea and invaded India in 326 BC and he eventually turned back at the demand of his homesick troops. Alexander died in Babylon in 323 BC, the city that he planned to establish as his capital, without executing a series of planned campaigns that would have begun with an invasion of Arabia. In the years following his death, a series of civil wars tore his empire apart, resulting in the establishment of several states ruled by the Diadochi, Alexanders surviving generals, Alexanders legacy includes the cultural diffusion which his conquests engendered, such as Greco-Buddhism. He founded some twenty cities that bore his name, most notably Alexandria in Egypt, Alexander became legendary as a classical hero in the mold of Achilles, and he features prominently in the history and mythic traditions of both Greek and non-Greek cultures. He became the measure against which military leaders compared themselves, and he is often ranked among the most influential people in human history.
He was the son of the king of Macedon, Philip II, and his wife, Olympias. Although Philip had seven or eight wives, Olympias was his wife for some time. Several legends surround Alexanders birth and childhood, sometime after the wedding, Philip is said to have seen himself, in a dream, securing his wifes womb with a seal engraved with a lions image. Plutarch offered a variety of interpretations of dreams, that Olympias was pregnant before her marriage, indicated by the sealing of her womb. On the day Alexander was born, Philip was preparing a siege on the city of Potidea on the peninsula of Chalcidice. That same day, Philip received news that his general Parmenion had defeated the combined Illyrian and Paeonian armies, and it was said that on this day, the Temple of Artemis in Ephesus, one of the Seven Wonders of the World, burnt down. This led Hegesias of Magnesia to say that it had burnt down because Artemis was away, such legends may have emerged when Alexander was king, and possibly at his own instigation, to show that he was superhuman and destined for greatness from conception
Crete is the largest and most populous of the Greek islands, 88th-largest island in the world and the fifth-largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, after Sicily, Sardinia and Corsica. Crete and a number of surrounding islands and islets constitute the region of Crete, the capital and the largest city is Heraklion. As of 2011, the region had a population of 623,065, Crete forms a significant part of the economy and cultural heritage of Greece, while retaining its own local cultural traits. It was once the centre of the Minoan civilization, which is regarded as the earliest recorded civilization in Europe. The island is first referred to as Kaptara in texts from the Syrian city of Mari dating from the 18th century BC, repeated in Neo-Assyrian records and it was known in ancient Egyptian as Keftiu, strongly suggesting a similar Minoan name for the island. The current name of Crete is thought to be first attested in Mycenaean Greek texts written in Linear B, through the words
Historians have puzzled over the broader meanings of alliance in such early times. Twelve members would meet at times in the same sanctuary to keep religious festivals. An early amphictyony centered on Kalaureia, a close to the coast of Troezen in the Peloponnesus sacred to Poseidon, was noted by Strabo. Archaeology of the suggested to Thomas Kelly that the sacred league was founded in the second quarter of the 7th century BC. 680-650, before that there were virtually no remains at the site. The island was known at one time as Eirene, clearly in reference to the amphictyony, the least obscure and longest-lasting amphictyony was the Delphic or Great Amphictyonic League that was organized to support the greater temples of Apollo and Demeter. The League council had religious authority and the power to pronounce punishments against offenders, punishments could range from fines to expulsion and to conduct sacred wars. The Amphictyonic League set the rules of battle so as to protect sanctuaries, all members were obliged to pledge themselves by an oath as reported by Aeschines.
The founding myth claimed that it had founded in the most distant past by an eponymous founder Amphictyon, brother of Hellen. Representatives of the members met in Thermopylae in spring and in Delphi in autumn. The League doctrine required that no member would be wiped out in war. It did not prevent members from fighting about the dominance over the temples, the oldest religious Amphictyonic League was known as Anthelian, because it was centered on the cult of the chthonic goddess Demeter at Anthela. The twelve delegates were entitled Pylagorai, perhaps a reference to the local Gates of Hades, the immediate dwellers-round were some small states and Achaea-Phthiotis that probably paved the way for the entry of the body of the rest Boeotian tribes which were living around Thessaly. As a result of the war the Anthelan body was known thenceforth as the Delphic Amphictyony and became the official overseer, a strange and revealing anti-Thessalian feeling appeared and a wall was built across the narrow defile at Thermopylae to keep the Thessalians out.
This was a made to be sung at a Boeotian festival at midsummer at the hottest time of the dogstar Sirios. The name Hellenes, may be related to the members of the league, in Greek mythology Amphictyon was brother of Hellen, and Graecus was son of his sister Pandora. According to the Parian Chronicle, the previously-named Graeces were renamed Hellenes, originally a religious organization, the Amphictyonic League became politically important in the 6th century BC, when larger city-states began to use it to apply pressure to the lesser ones. The Oracle managed to become independent from the city of Krissa, the people of Krissa imposed a tax on those who were passing through their area to go to Delphi, causing strong complaints and reducing the resources of the Oracle
Aetolia is a mountainous region of Greece on the north coast of the Gulf of Corinth, forming the eastern part of the modern regional unit of Aetolia-Acarnania. The country has a level and fruitful coastal region, but an unproductive, the mountains contained many wild beasts, and acquired fame in Greek mythology as the scene of the hunt for the Calydonian Boar. Dionysius of Halicarnassus mentions that Curetes was the old name of the Aetolians, the Aetolians took part in the Trojan War, under their king Thoas. The mountain tribes of Aetolia were the Ophioneis, the Apodotoi, the Agraeis, the Aperantoi, the primitive lifestyle of those tribes made an impression on ancient historians. Polybius doubted their Greek heritage, while Livy reports that spoke a language similar to the Macedonians. On the other hand, Thucydides claims that Eurytanians spoke a very difficult language and they were semi-barbaric and predatory. They worshiped Apollo as god of nature and Artemis as goddess of wilderness. They worshiped Athena, not as goddess of wisdom, and they called Apollo and Artemis “Laphrios gods, ” i. e. patrons of the spoils and loot of war.
In addition, they worshiped Hercules, the river Achelous and Bacchus, in Thermos, an area north of Trichonis lake, there was after the 7th century a shrine of Apollo “Thermios, ” which became a significant religious center during the time of the Common Aetolia. The Aetolians refused to participate in the Persian Wars, in 426 BC, led by Aegitios, they defeated the Athenians and their allies, who had turned against Apodotia and Ophioneia under the general command of Demosthenes. However, they failed to regain Naupaktos, which had meanwhile been conquered by the Corinthians with the aid of the Athenians, at the end of the Peloponnesian War, the Aetolians took part as mercenaries of the Athenians in the expedition against Syracuse. Then the Achaeans occupied Calydon, but the Aetolians recovered it in 361 BC, in 338 BC, Naupaktos was again taken by the Aetolians, with the help of Philip II. During the Lamian War, the Aetolians helped the Athenian general Leosthenes defeat Antipater, as a result, they came into conflict with Antipater and Craterus, taking great risks, but were eventually saved by the disagreement between the two Macedonian generals and Perdiccas.
The Acarnanians attempted to invade their land, but the Aetolians were able to force them to flee, the Aetolians set up a united league, the Aetolian League, in early times. It soon became a confederation and by c.340 BC it became one of the leading military powers in ancient Greece. Subsequently, the Sotiria Games were established by the Aetolians, in honour of Zeus the Saviour, the Aetolians’ power increasingly magnified with the occupation of the lands of Ozoloi and Phocians, as well as Boeotia. They united under the power of their League in the areas of Tegea, Orchomenus, between 220–217 BC, the Social War broke out between the Achaean and Aetolian Leagues. The war was first started by the Aetolians with the help of the Spartans and Eleans, allies of the Achaeans were the Macedonians, the Boeotians, the Phocians, the Epirotes, the Acarnanians and the Messenians
Together with the Bosphorus, the Dardanelles forms the Turkish Straits. The English name Dardanelles derives from Dardanus, an ancient city on the Asian shore of the strait which in turn takes its name from Dardanus, the ancient Greek name Ἑλλήσποντος means Sea of Helle, and was the ancient name of the narrow strait. It was variously named in classical literature Hellespontium Pelagus, Rectum Hellesponticum and it was so called from Helle, the daughter of Athamas, who was drowned here in the mythology of the Golden Fleece. The Marmara further connects to the Black Sea via the Bosphorus, the strait is located at approximately 40°13′N 26°26′E. The strait is 61 kilometres long, and 1.2 to 6 kilometres wide, water flows in both directions along the strait, from the Sea of Marmara to the Aegean via a surface current, and in the opposite direction via an undercurrent. The Dardanelles is unique in many respects, the very narrow and winding shape of the strait is more akin to that of a river. It is considered one of the most hazardous, difficult, the currents produced by the tidal action in the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara are such that ships under sail must await at anchorage for the right conditions before entering the Dardanelles.
It is a sea access route for numerous countries, including Russia. The ancient city of Troy was located near the entrance of the strait. Troy was able to control the traffic entering this vital waterway. Herodotus tells us that, circa 482 BC, Xerxes I had two bridges built across the width of the Hellespont at Abydos, in order that his huge army could cross from Persia into Greece. This crossing was named by Aeschylus in his tragedy The Persians as the cause of divine intervention against Xerxes, according to Herodotus, both bridges were destroyed by a storm and Xerxes had those responsible for building the bridges beheaded and the strait itself whipped. The Histories of Herodotus vii. 33–37 and vii. 54–58 give details of building and crossing of Xerxes Pontoon Bridges. Xerxes is said to have thrown fetters into the strait, Herodotus commented that this was a highly presumptuous way to address the Hellespont but in no way atypical of Xerxes. Harpalus the engineer eventually helped the invading armies to cross by lashing the ships together with their bows facing the current and, so it is said, two additional anchors.
From the perspective of ancient Greek mythology, it was said that Helle, the Dardanelles were vital to the defence of Constantinople during the Byzantine period. Also, the Dardanelles was an important source of income for the ruler of the region, at the Istanbul Archaeological Museum a marble plate contains a law by the Byzantine Emperor Anastasius I, that regulated fees for passage through the customs office of the Dardanelles. Whoever dares to violate these regulations shall no longer be regarded as a friend, the administrator of the Dardanelles must have the right to receive 50 golden Litrons, so that these rules, which we make out of piety, shall never ever be violated