||The neutrality of this article is disputed. (July 2011)|
Dimale (Greek: Διμάλη or Δίμαλλον, Latin: Dimallum) was an ancient town in Illyria, possibly situated in the territory of the Illyrian Parthini, northeast of the ancient Greek colony of Apollonia near modern Krotinë, Berat County, Albania. The city was of uncertain foundation, Greek or Illyrian.
According to N.G.L. Hammond, Dimale was possible founded by King Pyrrhus of Epirus or by settlers from the nearby Greek colony of Apollonia. M. B. Hatzopoulos believes that the non-Greek name of the city, the lack of any Greek founding legends associated with it and the mixed (colonial Greek, Greek from Epirus, non-Greek) onomastics of its inhabitants create the impression that Dimale had not a Greek character from the beginning, but was originally a Parthinian settlement that was hellenized under the influence of Epirus and Apollonia. Although, the city is frequently linked with the Parthini in various sources, it was never explicitly stated to be a city of that tribe.
During the Second Illyrian War in 219 BC, Demetrius of Pharos, after expelling all his Illyrian opponents from Dimale, fortified the city against an imminent Roman attack and left to defend Pharos. In spite of the fortress of Dimale being considered impregnable, the Romans, under the command of L. Aemilius Paullus, captured the city in a seven-day siege with local Illyrian help. After Demetrius' complete defeat at Roman hands and ultimate flight to Macedonia, Dimale entered into a friendly relationship (amicitia) with Rome. During the First Macedonian war, in 213 or 212 BC, Philip V of Macedon managed to take control of the city but, after an unsuccessful Roman assault led by P. Sempronius Tuditanus in 205 B.C., the city was given up by Philip V in the peace treaty between Rome and Macedon in Phoenice the same year.
Findings and organization
The identification of the site with the ancient city became possible thanks to the discovery of ancient tiles stamped with the word DIMALLITAN in Northwestern or Doric Greek (ΔΙΜΑΛΛΙΤΑΝ "of the Dimallians"). Epigraphy in Dimale mentions a number of Greek offices such as prytanis, grammateus and phylarchos as well as a single dedication to Phoebus. The city hosted a number of monuments, typical of the ancient Greek architectural style, such as a stoa.
- It possibly means "two peaks", from a root *mal-, see Albanian mal "mountain" and Romanian mal "bank" but also e.g. Latvian mala "bank, shore". N. G. L. Hammond, on the other hand, believes the name to be a Greek compound *di-mallon "of double fleece" (μαλλός mallos "flock of wool") referring to the sheep-pastures of Myzeqeja, see N. G. L. Hammond, Illyris, Rome and Macedon in 229-205 B.C., The Journal of Roman Studies, Vol. 58, p. 15.
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- Cambridge Ancient History, Vol. 8, pp. 92-93.
- Cambridge Ancient History, Vol. 8, pp. 98.
- Cambridge Ancient History, Vol. 8, pp. 104.
- Halil Myrto, "Dimale" in Albania archeologica: bibliografia sistematica dei centri antichi, Volume 1: A-D, 1998
- Polybius, Histories, 3.18 - Demetrius Fortifies Dimale
- Polybius, Histories, 7.9 - Treaty Between Hannibal and King Philip V of Macedon
- Titus Livius, Ab Urbe Condita, 29.12
- Krotine Locator