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Our History

Our History

Maronia, the ancient city-state of Thrace in the northern coast of Aegean Sea, was founded by Κing  Maron.  According to the myths, Maron, son of Eyanthos, was an oracle of  god Apollo and offered to Odysseus wine, olive oil, gold, silver and other supplies during his return from Troy in order to thank him for his protection. Later, Odysseus used Maron’s wine in order to get Cyclop Polyphemus drunk and escape with his crew. In the wider area of ancient Ismaros, Maron was reverenced as a god similar to Jupiter and Dionysus.  

The ancient city-state of Maronia, was bordered from the west with Strymi, the ancient colony of Thasos, whereas it was expanded to the mount Ismaros in the north and the east.  The three pre-historic settlements that have already been verified in the area, the caves and a walled acropolis reveal Maronia’s history that is rooted even further than the ancient times during the Age of Bronze. At the end of the Bronze period, these early settlements seem to have been vanished by the Thracian population which has permanently settled in the area. Homer calls them Kikones and who mentioned to be brave warriors leaded by Eyphemus fought in the side of Trojans during Trojan War.

During the first half of 7th B.C. century, colonials from Chios established the ancient settlement in the south-west hillside of mount Ismaros, in the current location of Agios Charalampos. At the beginning of the 5th B.C. century, Xerxes passed through the ancient Maronia’s territory in order to invade in the Greek mainland. In 478-477 B.C. Maronia became a member of the first Athenian alliance with a premium contribution relevant to its great wealth. The ancient city-state of Maronia, used its own currency up until its final conquer by Macedonians and king Filippos II in 350 B.C. Later, during 240-220 B.C. it came under control of Ptolemy governor of Egypt and transformed into a powerful military base.

In 200 B.C. the city was destroyed by Filippos V and was intergraded into the kingdom of Antiochus the governor of Syria (197-189 B.C.) and later of Romans (189 B.C.).  During the Romans’ control, the city was considered as independent and in 148 (B.C) it began to use its own currency as a sign of a new economic prosperity. During the later Christian period, the city maintained its name and its initial location. It has also managed to survive during the so called “dark” periods of the 7th and 8th centuries and up until the 13th century, most archeological findings reveal its economic prosperity as a trade and rural center of the region.