Record ID: 159

Site Name

Piraeus

Type

Seaport - European

Description

city (1981 pop. 196,389), Attica prefecture, Attica dept., E central Greece, on the Saronic Gulf; part of Greater Athens; 37�57'N 23�38'E. Port of Athens and chief port in Greece. Commercial center; shipyards; mfg. of chemicals, textiles, and machinery. Construction was planned by Themistocles and executed (c.450 B.C.) by the architect Hippodamus of Miletus. Quickly replaced Phaleron as the port of Athens. The famed Long Walls, 2 parallel walls about 600 ft/183 m apart, connected Athens with Piraeus and enabled Athens to receive supplies from its port during the Peloponnesian War. The port, itself strongly fortified, consisted of 3 harbors�1 for grain vessels, 1 for merchant ships in general, and 1 for warships. In 404 B.C. the Spartans destroyed the Long Walls to the accompaniment of flute music, but Conon rebuilt them in 393 B.C. The arsenal (built 347�323 B.C.) and fortifications were destroyed by the Roman general Sulla in 86 B.C., and few traces of the Long Walls remain. The modern development of Piraeus began only after Greece achieved independence in the 19th cent. Heavily bombed by Germany in World War II. Also Pirai�vs.