Syracuse was once the Mediterranean centre of the great ancient Greek civilisation, rivalling Athens as the most important metropolis.
Michael Sweet walks the streets of Ortygia to tell the story of what Cicero called ‘the greatest Greek city and the most beautiful of them all’.More than any other Sicilian city, Syracuse reflects the ancient Hellenic history of the Mediterranean’s largest Island.Located on the east coast,
Syracuse developed from a Greek colony founded by Corinthians in the 7th century BCE. For any investigating ancient Greek history, Syracuse is a fascinating window into the story of Hellenism in the Mediterraneanlike Sparta and its Peloponnesian allies, was a Dorian city and during the Peloponnesian War (431–404 BCE) it survived a two-year siege by Athenian forces. Magna Graecia was the name given by the Romans to the coastal areas of southern Italy and Sicily colonised by ancient Greek city-states from the 8th to 5th century.
As Magna Graecia’s most important metropolis, Syracuse had one of the largest ancient Greek theatres in Europe, and it’s still here. Built in the 5th century BCE with a diameter of some 140 metres, today the theatre is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.