/ / The ruins of the ancient Olbia: photo description (Olbia de Provence)

The ruins of the ancient Olbia: photo description (Olbia de Provence)

Olbia - ancient colony belonging to the major trading point of Massalia (modern Marseille). As there are two geographical object with the same name, this settlement is called Provencal Olbia. It was founded in the year 325 BC. With ancient Greek language the word "Olbia" means "blessed", "prosperous", which suggests to us about the important economic role played by this settlement.

The first mention of this place appeared almost immediately after its inception - already in the III century BC. About it he wrote the great Strabo, one of the foremost geographers and cartographers of the ancient world. ... Described as "fortified Marseilles colony". There was an impressive fortress and the city government offered a military escort trade ships to the shores of Italy.

At the time of the founding of the city had a population of approximately 720 people. After Marcel was captured by the troops of Julius Caesar in 49 BC, Olbia was separated from this town and joined the Roman traditions. The settlement survived the fall of the Western Roman Empire and lasted the first two centuries of the middle Ages. But the kings of the dynasty of the Merovingians was not versed in Maritime trade, and therefore in the VII century the port of Olbia had been flooded, and local inhabitants managed to escape. On the site of the ancient colony has grown large city and now a famous resort of the French Riviera Hyeres.

About Olbia remembered only in the nineteenth century and then began a major restoration and archaeological work. Now this place has a Museum under the open sky, all the ruins are in excellent condition and interest of all lovers of antiquity. It is possible to determine the plan of an ancient Greek colony - it was found about 40 residential blocks, a fortress surrounded by towers and other fortifications, city gates and two temples. According to Strabo, one of them was dedicated to the goddess Artemis, and the goddess Aphrodite or the other, the local mother goddess.