Monday, August 08, 2016

Greek Colonization – Searching for a New Home

In the last third of the sixth century B.C., many hundreds of “Samiers”, residents of the Greek island Samos, left their home. Among them was Pythagoras, a well-traveled man, experienced in many areas of knowledge, who, with his wife, his mother, and a servant, emigrated because he found no opportunities in the city to develop himself and make use of his knowledge, because of the rule of a tyrant.

The boat took him to Kroton (today’s Crotone), a Greek city in southern Italy. Like many who sought advice, he had previously turned to the Oracle at Delphi, and took from the utterances of the Pythia, the priestess of Apollo, that this would be a good place for him. In fact, Pythagoras founded a school in Kroton, which became very famous. Later, he moved again to Metapont, and continued his teaching and research.

The other Samiers planned a completely new beginning: they wanted to found a town, in which justice would rule, in contrast to the rule of the tyrant on Samos. Therefore, they named their new city in southern Italy “Dikaiarchia” (“the city in which justice rules”). Today it is Pozzuoli near Napoli (Naples).

The history of the people from Samos took place at the end of an era which we call the era of Greek colonization. This was part of Greece's “archaic” era.