(Νεάπολις). The name of a number of ancient cities.
I. European.(1) Now Napoli (Naples); a city of Campania in Italy on the western slope of Mount Vesuvius and the river Sebethus (Maddalena). It was founded about B.C. 1056 by Aeolian Chalcidians of Cumae, on the site of an ancient place called Parthenp (Παρθενόπη), after the Siren of that name. Hence we find the town called Parthenop by Vergil and Ovid. The year of the foundation of Neapolis is not recorded. It was perhaps called the New City, because regarded simply as a new quarter of the neighbouring city of Cumae. When the town is first mentioned in Roman history it consisted of two parts, divided from each other by a wall, and called respectively Palaeopolis and Neapolis. This division probably arose after the capture of Cumae by the Samnites, [figure in text: Coin of the Campanian Neapolis (about B.C. 300.)] when a large number of the Cumaeans took refuge in the city they had founded, whereupon the old quarter was called Palaeopolis, and the new quarter, built to accommodate the new inhabitants, was named Neapolis. There has been a dispute respecting the site of these two quarters; but it is probable that Palaeopolis was situated on the west side near the harbour, and Neapolis on the east side near the river Sebethus. In B.C. 327 the town was taken by the Samnites, and in 290 it [p. 1084]
passed into the hands of the Romans, who allowed it, however, to retain its Greek constitution. At a later period it became a municipium, and finally a Roman colony. Under the Romans the two quarters of the city were united, and the name of Palaeopolis disappeared. It continued to be a prosperous and flourishing place till the time of the Empire; and its beautiful scenery and the luxurious life of its Greek population made it a favourite residence with many of the Romans. In the reign of Titus the city was destroyed by an earthquake, but was rebuilt by this emperor in the Roman style. The modern city of Naples does not stand on exactly the same site as Neapolis. The ancient city extended farther east than the modern city, since the former was situated on the Sebethus, whereas the latter does not reach so far as the Fiume della Maddalena; but the modern city, on the other hand, extends farther north and west than the ancient one, since the island of Megaris, on which the Castel del Ovo now stands, was situated in ancient times between Pausilypum and Neapolis. In the neighbourhood of Neapolis there were warm baths, the celebrated villa of Lucullus, and the Villa Pausilypi or Pausilypum, bequeathed by Vedius Pollio to Augustus, and which has given its name to the celebrated grotto of Posilippo between Naples and Pozzuoli, at the entrance of which what is called the tomb of Vergil is still shown. Augustus frequently visited the city, and Tiberius, Claudius, Nero, Titus, and Hadrian favoured it in many ways. In 536 it was taken by Belisarius, and in 543 by the Goths under Totila. Naples is a city of much interest to archaeologists, both because of its proximity to Pompeii and Herculaneum, and because of its remarkable collection of ancient works of art and industry preserved in the Museo Nazionale. (See Museum.)
(2) A part of Syracuse. (See Syracusae.)
(3) Napoli, a town on the west coast of the island of Sardinia, celebrated for its warm baths.
(4) Kavallo, a sea-port town in Thrace, subsequently Macedonia adjecta, on the Strymonic Gulf, between the Strymon and Nessus.
II. Asiatic.(1) A small Ionian city, on the coast of Lydia, north of Mycal and southwest of Ephesus. The Ephesians, to whom it at first belonged, exchanged it with the Samians for Marathesium. (2, 3) Two towns of Caria, the one near Harpasa, the other on the coast, perhaps the new town of Myndus.
(4) In Pisidia, south of Antioch; afterwards reckoned to Galatia.
(5) In Palestine, the Sychem or Sychar of Scripture (Συχέμ, Συχάρ, Σικίμα, Nablous), one of the most ancient cities of Samaria, stood in the narrow valley between Mounts Ebal and Gerizim, and was the religious capital of the Samaritans, whose temple stood on Mount Gerizim before its destruction by Hyrcanus, B.C. 129. Its full Roman name was Flavia Neaplis. Here was born Justin Martyr.
III. African.(1) A town in North Africa on the coast west of the Great Syrtis, and by some identified with the modern Tripoli.
(2) A Phnician colony, now Nabal, on the eastern coast of Zeugitana near the northern end of the gulf called from it Sinus Neapolitanus.