The city of the blind and the founding of byzantium

Irad Malkin, Nino Shmueli

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


When the Persian Megabazos visited Byzantium in the fifth century BCE, he observed its marvellous position and, comparing it with that of Chalkedon on the Asian side of the narrow entrance to the Bosporus, remarked that its founders must have been blind not to have settled Byzantium first.1 Both colonies were founded by Megara, with Chalkedon (founded 688 BCE) preceding Byzantium by some seven teen years.2 These words of the Persian general became famous in antiquity, and we find them reverberating in a fictitious Delphic oracle given to the Megarians and ordering them to found die colony (Byzantium) 'opposite the City of the Blind.'3

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMediterranean Cities
Subtitle of host publicationHistorical Perspectives
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781317845300
ISBN (Print)9781138980808
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2015


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