Isthmus of Corinth


Isthmus of Corinth

The Isthmus of Corinth is the narrow landbridge which connects the Peloponnese peninsula with the mainland of Greece, near the city of Corinth. The word "isthmus" comes from the Ancient Greek word for "neck" and refers to the narrowness of the land. To the west of the Isthmus is the Gulf of Corinth, to the east the Saronic Gulf. Since 1893 the Corinth Canal has run through the 6.3 km Isthmus, effectively making the Peloponnese an island.

The idea for a way for boats around the Peloponnese was long considered by the Ancient Greeks.The first attempt to build a canal at the place was carried out by the tyrant Periander or Periandros in 7th century BC. He abandoned the project due to its technical difficulties, and instead constructed a simpler and less costly overland stone ramp, named Diolkos, as a portage road. Remnants of Diolkos still exist today next to the modern canal.When the Roman republic, later The Roman Empire took control of Greece a number of different solutions were tried. Julius Caesar foresaw the advantages of such a venture for his newly built Colonia laus Iulia Corinthiensis. By the reign of Tiberius engineers had tried to dig a canal, but because of a lack of modern equipment were reduced to using an Ancient Egyptian invention of rolling the boats on logs as the Egyptians rolled blocks of granite to make their pyramids, which was in use by AD 32. In AD 67, the philhellene Roman emperor Nero ordered 6,000 slaves to dig a canal with spades. The following year Nero died, and his successor Galba abandoned the project, since it appeared too expensive to him.

Modern preservation

There are major concerns about preservation of this path. Many Greek citizens are calling for greater effort by the Greek government to protect this archaeological site. [ [http://www.yahoo.com/s/908679 BBC report] , via Yahoo News. ]

ee also

Ancient Greece

External links


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Isthmus of Corinth — noun a narrow isthmus between the Gulf of Corinth and the Saronic Gulf; a canal crosses the isthmus so that navigation is possible between the gulfs • Instance Hypernyms: ↑isthmus …   Useful english dictionary

  • Congress at the Isthmus of Corinth — Themistocles built 200 triremes from the athens Related links See Aegina for a historical description in context and Isthmus of Corinth for the location. Categories: Military history of Ancient GreeceGreco Persian WarsAncient Greece stubs …   Wikipedia

  • Corinth Canal — Canal of Corinth Principal engineer István Türr and Béla Gerster Construction began 1881 …   Wikipedia

  • Corinth, Isthmus of — ▪ isthmus, Greece Modern Greek  Isthmós Korínthou,         isthmus dividing the Saronic Gulf (an inlet of the Aegean Sea) from the Gulf of Corinth (an inlet of the Ionian Sea). The Isthmus of Corinth connects the Peloponnese with mainland Greece …   Universalium

  • Corinth (disambiguation) — Corinth is a town in Greece. It may also refer to: Contents 1 Related to Corinth, Greece 2 Places in the United States 3 Places in Brazil 4 Places in Colombia …   Wikipedia

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  • Isthmus — Isth mus (?; 277), n.; pl. {Isthmuses}. [L. isthmus, Gr. isqmo s a neck, a neck of land between two seas, an isthmus, especially the Isthmus of Corinth; prob. from the root of ie nai to go; cf. Icel. ei[eth] isthmus. See {Issue}.] (Geog.) A neck… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Isthmus of the fauces — Isthmus Isth mus (?; 277), n.; pl. {Isthmuses}. [L. isthmus, Gr. isqmo s a neck, a neck of land between two seas, an isthmus, especially the Isthmus of Corinth; prob. from the root of ie nai to go; cf. Icel. ei[eth] isthmus. See {Issue}.] (Geog.) …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Corinth — /kawr inth, kor /, n. 1. an ancient city in Greece, on the Isthmus of Corinth: one of the wealthiest and most powerful of the ancient Greek cities. 2. a port in the NE Peloponnesus, in S Greece: NE of the site of ancient Corinth. 3. Gulf of. Also …   Universalium

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