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This is an extract from the Wikipedia.entry


Tegea was a settlement in Arcadia, and it is also a former municipality in Arcadia, Peloponnese, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the Tripoli municipality, of which it is a municipal unit with an area of 118.350 km2. It is near the modern villages of Alea and Episkopi.

In the Peloponnesian War the Tegeatae were the firm allies of the Spartans, to whom they remained faithful both on account of their possessing an aristocratical constitution, and from their jealousy of the neighbouring democratical city of Mantineia, with which they were frequently at war. Thus the Tegeatae not only refused to join the Argives in the alliance formed against Sparta in 421, but they accompanied the Lacedaemonians in their expedition against Argos in 418. They also fought on the side of the Spartans in the Corinthian War, 394. The Temple of Athena Alea burned in 394 and was magnificently rebuilt, to designs by Scopas of Paros, with reliefs of the Calydonian boar hunt in the main pediment.
After the Battle of Leuctra in 371, however, the Spartan party in Tegea was expelled, and the city joined the other Arcadian towns in the foundation of Megalopolis and in the formation of the Arcadian League. When Mantineia a few years afterwards quarrelled with the supreme Arcadian government, and formed an alliance with its old enemy Sparta, Tegea remained faithful to the new confederacy, and fought under Epaminondas against the Spartans at the great Battle of Mantineia, in 362. Tegea at a later period joined the Aetolian League, but soon after the accession of Cleomenes III to the Spartan throne it formed an alliance with Sparta, together with Mantineia and Orchomenus. It thus became involved in hostilities with the Achaeans, and in the war which followed, called the Cleomenic War, it was taken by Antigonus Doson, the ally of the Achaeans, and annexed to the Achaean League, in 222. In 218, Tegea was attacked by Spartan king Lycurgus, who obtained possession of the whole city with the exception of the acropolis. It subsequently fell into the hands of Machanidas, the tyrant of Sparta, but was recovered by the Achaeans after the defeat of Machanidas, who was slain in battle by Philopoemen. In the time of Strabo Tegea was the only one of the Arcadian towns which continued to be inhabited, and it was still a place of importance in the time of Pausanias, who has given us a minute account of its public buildings. The "tombs" he saw there were shrines to the chthonic founding daemones: "There are also tombs of Tegeates, the son of Lycaon, and of Maira (or Maera), his wife." Maira was a daughter of Atlas, and Homer makes mention of her in the passage where Odysseus tells to Alkinous his journey to Hades, and of those whose ghosts he beheld there." Ancient Tegea was an important religious center of ancient Greece, containing the Temple of Athena Alea. The temenos was founded by Aleus, Pausanias was informed.


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