Template talk:Pontic colonies

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A map[edit]

Based on your message on my Talk page, Ghirlandajo, I like the idea of putting together a map of the North Pontic Greek Colonies. This map would include the colonies listed in this template (assuming space works out) and would show the north and east shores of the Black Sea. I would foresee this map being used on many of the colony articles, perhaps at 300px (so that the names can be read from the article).

I am struggling with the use of "Pontic" to describe the north shore of the Black Sea as well as the steppe north of that. Although I am not familiar with the term, "Pontic" generally seems to refer to the south shore of the Black Sea (see Pontus or Pontic). I wonder if there's not some more intuitive term to use here.

Also, it seems that Charax was not a Greek colony, and I'm thinking it should be removed from the list.

Finally, I had earlier listed Georgia here as the present-day home of Dioscurias. Very few native English speakers would recognize the name "Abkhazia" and it is not, after all, a true nation-state. No big deal to me, but thought I would explain.

Let me know about the map, MapMaster 18:08, 27 November 2006 (UTC)

Sounds like a good idea to me. I'm not in favour of removing Charax from the template, because there is no instruction creep on what should be included. If not included into the template, this important settlement of antiquity will simply be lost to our readers. In my opinion, the meaning of the template is to keep linkless articles linked. You may not represent Charax on your map; some Scythian centre (Scythian Neapolis) may take its place there. As for Abkhazia, I think the terms "Russia", "Ukraine", "Abkhazia" or "Georgia" are simply anachronistic for the period in question and are better avoided. As regards the epithet "Pontic", I believe it is applicable to the northern coast but I will ask User:Dbachmann to opine. --Ghirla -трёп- 18:48, 27 November 2006 (UTC)
Well, I uploaded a map (Image:Greek Colonies 3.png). I am not particularly pleased with it because the colonies are too small (or the rest of the map is too large). I'm thinking of dropping Pitiunt and Dioscurias to allow the map to focus on the other colonies (and maybe making a separate map for those two). But before making changes, I thought I'd see if you had any alterations: deletions, additions, fixes, suggestions, etc. Let me know, MapMaster 22:19, 27 November 2006 (UTC)

I generally concur with Ghirla, although Charax is rightly not shown on the 450 BC map of course. A very nice map, btw, what is your source for the coastline & rivers? I should begin making less amateurish maps myself. To be pedantic, the labels are a little bit inconsistent in picking Greek, Latin, or Anglicized names (e.g. either "Maeotian Lake" and "Euxine Sea", or "Palus Maeotis" and "Euxeinos Pontos". "Pontic" of course primarily refers to the Black Sea itself, and "Pontic colonies" are those on the shores of the Black Sea. The term has been expanded to label the Pontic steppe, but that is from a Greek perspective, as it were "the steppe beyond the Pontus". dab () 09:47, 28 November 2006 (UTC)

While you were sleeping, Ghirla, I did change the map and uploaded a new version (Image:Ancient Greek Colonies of N Black Sea.png) and inserted it into the Tyras article. I did leave out a few of the colonies: Charax (not Greek), Tyritake and Myrmekion (too close to Panticapaeum), and Pitiunt and Dioscurias (off the map). What do you think?? MapMaster 05:09, 28 November 2006 (UTC)
A very nice map, thank you. I believe it will be of help to our readers. Since you ask for my opinion, here are some suggestions for its improvement:
  • As Dieter says above, we should use either ancient or Anglicized names: either "Maeotian Lake" and "Euxine Sea", or "Palus Maeotis" and "Euxeinos Pontos".
  • The Crimea may be conveniently referred as Taurica, the Krasnodar Krai of Russia - as Sindica, and Georgia - as Colchis. The Kerch strait was known as the Cimmerian Bosporus.
  • I believe the date ca. 450 BC should be changed to something later. Eupatoria, for instance, takes its name from Mithridates Eupator, although there was a Greek settlement on the site prior to that.
  • The position of Hermonassa and Phanagoria is not very accurate. I don't think it is so problematic, given the small resolution. In fact, both colonies were situated in the strait of Kerch. Their position may be seen in Russian maps here or, better still, here.
  • A very minor point: the large expanses of water along the courses of the Don and the Dnieper are reservoirs constructed by the Soviets in the 20th century. If we can eliminate them, it would be fine. If we can't, there is no problem. --Ghirla -трёп- 14:02, 28 November 2006 (UTC)
I think all of those changes are do-able. I think I will use the phrases "Maeotian Lake" etc so as to match the river names. And speaking of the river names, it seems from my reading (all this is new to me, by the way) that the Tyras River was called "Danastris" by the Greeks and that Tyras is a Latin name.
Also, what date would you like me to use on the map?
Let me know, and thanks, for your kind comments. MapMaster 15:07, 28 November 2006 (UTC)
P.S. To get the shorelines, etc., I traced a very large paper atlas. Of course, that's why the reservoirs show up on the map. I will remove those -- I think it's very important to have the map show matters as they stood then.
P.P.S. Regarding your suggestion that the map be added to the template, I don't think this is a good idea. The map was specifically designed to be integrated into the articles so that the visitor can quickly reference the map as they read the article. See my User page for a discussion on the role integrated maps should play in Wikipedia (or any encyclopedia).
Just a note -- you should try to add relevant categories to images when you upload them to commons (see [1]). AnonMoos 03:07, 29 November 2006 (UTC)

A second version[edit]

Thanks for all the suggestions and corrections for the Image:Ancient Greek_Colonies of N Black Sea.png map. I have endeavoured to put them into the second version -- let me know if you see anything else that needs to be addessed. Cheers, MapMaster 04:09, 29 November 2006 (UTC)

Improvement[edit]

I think this template is quite useful. I'd like to suggest some improvement:

1. Phasis, Kalos Limen and Nikonoi should be included; 2. I'm not sure that Eupatoria bore that name before XVIII century - it seems to me it always was Kerkinis. 93.183.253.190 (talk) 10:50, 27 February 2009 (UTC)