Music by Lucas Thanos
footage by various artists
location: Ancient Messene, Ancient Corinth, Bassae, Asclepeion at Kos isle, Ancient Elis, Greece
Messene (Greek: Μεσσήνη Messini), officially Ancient Messene, is a local community (topiki koinotita) of the municipal unit (dimotiki enotita) Ithomi, of the municipality (dimos) of Messini within the regional unit (perifereiaki enotita) of Messenia in the region (perifereia) of Peloponnese, one of 13 regions into which Greece has been divided. Before 2011 it held the same position in the administrative hierarchy, according to Law 2539 of 1997, the Kapodistrias Plan, except that Ithomi was an independent municipality and Ancient Messene was a local division (topiko diamerisma) within it.
Most of the area of Ancient Messene contains the ruins of the large classical city-state of Messene refounded by Epaminondas in 369 BC, after the battle of Leuctra and the first Theban invasion of the Peloponnese. Epaminondas invited the return to their native land of all the families that had gone into exile from Messenia during its long struggle with and servitude under the military state of Sparta, now finished as a conquering state. This new Messene, today's Ancient Messene, was constructed over the ruins of Ithome, an ancient city originally of Achaean Greeks, destroyed previously by the Spartans and abandoned for some time.
Bassae (Latin) or Bassai, Vassai or Vasses (Greek, Modern: Βάσσες, Ancient: Βάσσαι), meaning "little vale in the rocks", is an archaeological site in the northeastern part of Messenia, Greece. In classical antiquity, it was part of Arcadia. Bassae lies near the village of Skliros, northeast of Figaleia, south of Andritsaina and west of Megalopolis. It is famous for the well-preserved mid- to late-5th century BCE Temple of Apollo Epicurius.
Although this temple is geographically remote from major polities of ancient Greece, it is one of the most studied ancient Greek temples because of its multitude of unusual features. Bassae was the first Greek site to be inscribed on the World Heritage List (1986) Its construction is placed between 450 BCE and 400 BCE.
In ancient Greece and Rome, an asclepeion (correct form: asklepieion, Greek: Ἀσκληπιεῖον; Ἀσκλαπιεῖον in Doric dialect; Latin aesculapīum) was a healing temple, sacred to the god Asclepius.
Asclepius may first have been worshipped as a hero in Trikka, Thessaly, which ancient mythographers generally regarded as the place of his birth, but to date archaeological excavations have yet to uncover his sanctuary there. Epidauros, on the other hand, was the first place to worship Asclepius as a god, beginning sometime in the 5th century BC. The asclepieion at Epidaurus is both extensive and well preserved. There is an asclepieion located on the south slopes of the Acropolis of Athens which dates to around 420 BC.
Starting around 350 BC, the cult of Asclepius became increasingly popular. Pilgrims flocked to asclepieia to be healed. They slept overnight ("incubation") and reported their dreams to a priest the following day. He prescribed a cure, often a visit to the baths or a gymnasium. Since snakes were sacred to Asclepius, they were often used in healing rituals. Non-venomous snakes were left to crawl on the floor in dormitories where the sick and injured slept.
Elis, or Eleia (Greek, Modern: Ήλιδα Ilida, Ancient: Ἦλις Ēlis, Doric: Ἆλις Alis , Elean : Ϝάλις Walis) is an ancient district, that corresponds with the modern Ilia Prefecture. It is in southern Greece on the Peloponnesos peninsula, bounded on the north by Achaea, east by Arcadia, south by Messenia, and west by the Ionian Sea.
The first Olympic festival was organized in Elean land, Olympia, Greece by the authorities of Elis in the 8th century BCE - with tradition dating the first games at 776 BCE. The Hellanodikai, the judges of the Games, were of Elean origin.
Corinth, or Korinth (Greek: Κόρινθος, Kórinthos) was a city-state (polis) on the Isthmus of Corinth, the narrow stretch of land that joins the Peloponnesus to the mainland of Greece, roughly halfway between Athens and Sparta. The modern town of Corinth is located approximately 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) northeast of the ancient ruins. Since 1896, systematic archaeological investigations of the Corinth Excavations by the American School of Classical Studies at Athens have revealed large parts of the ancient city, and recent excavations conducted by the Greek Ministry of Culture have brought important new facets of antiquity to light.