Temple E Hera - Selinunte
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SELINUNTE

Not too far from Castelvetrano, facing the Mediterranean Sea, is where the Greek colony of Selinunte is situated, today an archaeological site of rare beauty and evocative force.

Its name is thought to be derived from the Greek word Selinon, that is a wild parsley, which was found in abundance by its founders.

According to Tucidide, Selinunte was founded in 628 BC by a Greek colony which came from near to Megara Hyblaea, in turn founded in 728 BC by colonists coming from the Greek city of Megara.
The City was quickly developed and reached its peak in the 5th Century BC, when it had around 25000 inhabitants.
Its fleet participated in the Peloponnesian War between Athens and Sparta.

Its demise came about due to the continual friction with neighbouring Segesta, which asked help from the Carthaginians, who arrived with a 100,000 strong army of men. According to Diodoro Siculo, this army besieged the City for 9 days and completely destroyed it. There were 16,000 deaths, 5,000 prisoners and only 2,600 inhabitants managed to find refuge with its ally, Agrigento.

Selinunte recovered and continued for 2 more centuries under the Carthaginians, until its demise by the hands of Rome, which destroyed it once more at the end of the First Punic War.
The site was abandoned and then only inhabited by hermits in Medieval times, becoming for centuries an easy source of stone for the local population.

It’s one of the largest archaeological parks in Europe. Selinunte is divided into three areas: the Acropolis, the hills with Eastern Temples and the Sanctuary of Demetra Malophoros.

SELINUNTE
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