Apollonia (Sicily)

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Apollonia (Greek: Ἀπολλωνία) was an ancient city of Sicily, which, according to Stephanus of Byzantium, was situated in the neighborhood of Aluntium and Calacte. Cicero also mentions it (Or. in Verr. iii. 43) and in conjunction with Haluntium, Capitium, and Enguium, in a manner that seems to imply that it was situated in the same part of Sicily with these cities; and we learn from Diodorus (xvi. 72) that it was at one time subject to Leptines, the tyrant of Enguium, from whose hands it was wrested by Timoleon, and restored to an independent condition. A little later we find it again mentioned among the cities reduced by Agathocles, after his return from Africa, 307 BCE (Diod. xx. 56). But it evidently regained its liberty after the fall of the tyrant, and in the days of Cicero was still a municipal town of some importance. (Or. in Verr. iii. 43, v. 33) From this time it disappears from history, and the name is not found either in Pliny or Ptolemy.

Its site has been much disputed; but the passages above cited point distinctly to a position in the north-eastern part of Sicily; and it is probable that the modern Pollina, a small town on a hill, about 5 km (3 mi) from the sea-coast, and 15 km (9 mi) east from Cefalù, occupies its site. The resemblance of name is certainly entitled to: much weight; and if Enguium be correctly placed at Gangi, the connection between that city and Apollonia is easily explained. It must be admitted that the words of Stephanus require, in this case, to be construed with considerable latitude, but little dependence can be placed upon the accuracy of that writer.

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