Troizina is in the northeast part of the Argolic peninsula, opposite the island of Poros and on the north foothills of Mount Aderes. It is a small town and a municipal unit of the Troizinia municipality. The seat of the municipality is Galatas. The greater area is part of the Islands regional unit of the Attica administrative region. Situated in a prime position and on fertile ground, the area of Troizina is the largest centre of floriculture in the country. The natural environment is magnificent. Production of agricultural products, mainly citrus fruits, is also high.
The Ancient city
The modern town of Troizina is built on the site of the ancient city Troezen. Ancient Troezen was closely associated with the hero Theseus. It was also a place of worship for the hero’s son, Hippolytus. A glorious heroon (shrine) and Asclepeion were erected there in his honor. Ruins of the structure survive to this day.
The area of the ancient Acropolis in Troezen is located just above the Tower of Theseus. Most ruins are hidden amid dense vegetation. The medieval castle of Damalas was built on top of the old Tower.
The area received its name from the siblings, Troezen and Pittheus. Pittheus was crowned King of Anthea (present name: Troizina) and Troezen was crowned King of Hyperea (present name: Kalaureia). After Troezen’s untimely death, Pittheus united the two cities and named them after his brother to honor his memory. Pittheus was considered the wisest man of his times and he raised Theseus himself. It was Pittheus who first taught the art of oratory and wrote treatises on rhetoric. Pittheus acquired a daughter Aethra who was originally betrothed to Bellerophontes (also Bellerophon). Bellerophontes was a mythical hero, whose father was Glaucus, King of Ephyra (Corinth). However, Bellerophontes was banished from the city, and Pittheus decided to marry his daughter to Aegeas instead.
According to Pausanias, Theseus was not the son of Aegeas, but of god Poseidon. Goddess Athena appeared to Aethra in a dream and asked her to go to the memorial of Sphairos and offer choes (libations). Supposedly, Athena did so, either to please god Poseidon or to favor Sphairos. When Aethra reached the location, she met god Poseidon who slept with her. At the exact location where she met Poseidon, Aethra erected the temple of Apaturia Athena. Today, the church of Aghios Georgios stands there. Ruins of the temple exist around the church.
The tower of Theseus
The tower overlooks Pagona beach (present name: Vidi), where the Greek ships gathered before the Battle of Salamis. The Temple of the Muses (a Roman structure) is located north of the tower.
The Sanctuary of Hippolytus
The Sanctuary of Hippolytus, famed for the unrequited love of Phaedra for Hippolytus, was a place of worship for the hero. It was situated outside the city walls of Ancient Troezen and at a distance of roughly 800m from the ancient agora (gathering place). The tomb of Phaedra and the memorial of Hippolytus were built at a short distance. According to mythology, Hippolytus was the son of Theseus and either the Amazon Antiope or Hippolyte. Pausanias (ΙΙ.27.4), as well as subsequent sources, mentions that Asclepius brought the hero back to life at the request of goddess Artemis. Hence, the worship of Hippolytus was linked to that of Asclepius.
The Sanctuary of Hippolytus covers an area of approximately 4,000 m2. Its style was peripteral, featuring 11 columns on one side and 6 on the other. It was excavated at the end of the 19th century by Legrand, while the entire temple was excavated in 1933 by Welter. The ruins of the sanctuary, as well as the buildings and the enclosure, which were built at the end of the 4th century, can still be admired today. With the advent of Christianity, building materials were removed from the monument and were used for the construction of Christian temples such as the Episcope. Ancient building materials were removed for the purposes of re-use up until the recent past!
Το Ιερό των Μουσών
Pittheus taught the art of discourse at the temple. An apsidal structure which was part of the temple and which is preserved to this day was used by archeologists in order to identify the ruins as the Temple of the Muses.
Dionysios Pyrros the Thessalian (1777-1853), an erudite man who fought in the War for
Independence, praised the area for its variety of products and wine.
The Stone of Theseus
According to the myth, the sandals and the sword left behind by Aegeas were hidden under a stone. Theseus lifted the stone and retrieved his father’s sandals and knife. He then began his journey towards Athens and eventually eternity. The foundations of the temple of Acraea Aphrodite are located nearby.
And so the legend begins...