1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Abae
|←Abadeh|| 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica, Volume 1
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ABAE (Ἄβαι), a town in the N.E. corner of Phocis, in Greece, famous in early times for its oracle of Apollo, one of those consulted by Croesus (Herod. i. 46). It was rich in treasures (Herod. viii. 33), but was sacked by the Persians, and the temple remained in a ruined state. The oracle was, however, still consulted, e.g. by the Thebans before Leuctra (Paus. iv. 32. 5). The temple seems to have been burnt again during the Sacred War, and was in a very dilapidated state when seen by Pausanias (x. 35), though some restoration, as well as the building of a new temple, was undertaken by Hadrian. The sanctity of the shrine ensured certain privileges to the people of Abae (Bull. Corresp. Hell. vi. 171), and these were confirmed by the Romans. The polygonal walls of the acropolis may still be seen in a fair state of preservation on a circular hill standing about 500 ft. above the little plain of Exarcho; one gateway remains, and there are also traces of town walls below. The temple site was on a low spur of the hill, below the town. An early terrace wall supports a precinct in which are a stoa and some remains of temples; these were excavated by the British School at Athens in 1894, but very little was found.See also W. M. Leake, Travels in Northern Greece, ii. p. 163; Journal of Hellenic Studies, xvi. pp. 291-312 (V. W. Yorke).