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Ancient Philippi

Philippi in Roman period

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General view of the city and plain of Philippi.

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General view of the city

An important event in the history of the city of Philippi was the battle fought in 42 BC outside its walls between the Roman republicans Brutus and Cassius on the one hand, and the avengers of Julius Caesar Octavian and Mark Antony on the other.

After the battle, a Roman colony settled by veterans was established at Philippi. The imposition of Roman institutions and of Latin in the administration did not extirpate the Greek language from the city. The Roman colony of Philippi prospered greatly in the following centuries.

The city was diagonally traversed by the Via Egnatia. Public buildings such as the 'forum' of Philippi, temples for the Imperial cult, the library, the commercial 'agora', the public baths and the 'palaestra' (wrestling school) were in the southern part.

North of the Via Egnatia, the sanctuary of the Egyptian gods and smaller sanctuaries dedicated to various other deities were built on the side of the hill of the acropolis. The monumental theatre of Philippi, whose foundations were laid by Philip II, was in the same quarter.

The life of the city of Philippi was marked by the visit of the Apostle Paul in 49 AD, who laid the foundations of a flourishing Christian community, the first one on European soil.

See Also
Civilization - Palaces and theatres in Antiquity
Public buildings in Antiquity
Sanctuaries in Antiquity

Macedonian Heritage
Content courtesy Ekdotike Athenon S.A.