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Calatiaa

Calatia, an ancient town of Campania, Italy, 6 m. SE of Capua, on the Via Appia, near the point where the Via Popillia branches off from it. It is represented by the church of S. Giacomo alle Galazze.b The Via Appia here, as at Capua, abandons its former SE direction for a length of 2000 Oscan ft. (1804½ English ft.), for which it runs due E and then resumes its course SE. There are no ruins, but a considerable quantity of débris; and the pre-Roman necropolis was partially excavated in 1882.c Ten shafts lined with slabs of tufa which were there found may have been the approaches to tombs or may have served as wells. The history of Calatia is practically that of its more powerful neighbour Capua, but as it lay near the point where the Via Appia turns east and enters the mountains, it had some strategic importance. In 313 B.C. it was taken by the Samnites and recaptured by the dictator Q. Fabius; the Samnites captured it again in 311,d but it must have been retaken at an unknown date. In the 3rd century we find it issuing coins with an Oscan legend, but in 211 B.C. it shared the fate of Capua. In 174 we hear of its walls being repaired by the censors. In 59 B.C. a colony was established here by Caesar.

See Ch. Hülsen in Pauly-Wissowa, Realencyclopädie, III.1334 (Stuttgart, 1899).


Thayer's Notes:

a The place is not to be confused with Caiatia, sometimes unfortunately (whether correctly or by confusion) also called Calatia, which is barely 20 km N; see separate article.

b in the modern comune of Maddaloni (Caserta province).

c For what "débris" there are, as well as a history of the town, and some information about the Museum (including a page with a clear locator map), see the site of the Gruppo Archeologico Calatino.

d Diodorus (XX.80) dates the Samnite reoccupation to 306.


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Page updated: 30 Nov 08