Dr. Yannis Kourtzellis - Hellenic Ministry of Culture & Sports, Ephorate of Antiquities Lesbos and Dr. Theotokis Theodoulou - Hellenic Ministry of Culture & Sports, Ephorate of Underwater Antiquities
“Harbours and relations between Lesbos and Asia Minor during antiquity. Connecting people, cultures and lands.”
Ancient literary and epigraphic testimonies preserve valuable information of the relations that the city-states of Lesbos developed with the coastal cities of Asia Minor at the opposite coast. The proximity of the island to the shores of Asia Minor led to the establishment of several Lesbian colonies in Aeolis and Troas regions during the Archaic period in the framework of the so called Aeolian Colonization. As a result the cities of Lesbos and especially the city of Mytilene seems to be strongly connected with the “Mytilenaean Peraia”, the so called “Aktaian Cities” (=coastal cities) and the “Shore of the Mytilenaeans” = (Μυτιληναίωναἰγιαλὸς).
Later on, from the Classical to the late-Roman periods, the island’s relations with the Aeolian and Ionian cities, including Pergamon, are mainly maritime oriented, commercial and inevitably political, known through agreements, degrees and treaties, in which two or more cities or federal “Koina”were included.
In our paper, taking into account the aforementioned we aim to present the layout and the development of the harbours of the cities of Lesbos, in the framework of a maritime micro-region.