‘Whether this town was a new foundation, or merely a re-foundation of an earlier Libyan settlement, is not known, but its suitability for defence, its harbour, and its location are in themselves sufficient to account for its account for its foundation and long-continued existence.’ [Holmes van Mater Dennis, 1970].
There must have been reasons why it took so long before Hippo Regius came to live in historical records. One of them could be the unhealthy situation of the place. ‘Gsell, who apparently bases his opinion on two passages from St.Augustine, believes that the place was insalubrious.’ [Holmes van Mater Dennis, 1970].
Even in the later Numidian period in the time of Micipsa
was hit by a plague
outbreak in which 80.000 people died. Especially Auzia and Hippo suffered from
Another reason can be the role of Euboeans. Aubet named it “The Euboean” connection.
‘In any case, Phoenician expansion towards the west seems to be connected in some way with Euboean activity, and there may well have been common interests and enterprises, at least in the years 760-700 BC. This symbiosis between the Phoenicians and the Euboeans is no novelty to us since we had already noticed a similar phenomenon in the eastern
Indeed, at the end of the 9th
century BC Phoenicians and Euboeans were developing joint trading
acticities in Al Mina and Tell Sukas.’ [M.E.Aubet, Phoenicians of the
In the west we find late geometric Greek pottery in the tophet of
(c.760 BC) and the same in Pithecoussai with its export-harbour . In the middle of
the 7th century BC there is an Euboean urn in the tophet of Sulky
and an imitation proto-Corinthian vase in a tomb at Almunecar. In the other
direction we find Phoenician ceramics and inscriptions and metal fibula in Cumae Ischia (Pithecoussai) at the end of the 8th
In line with this statement is the finding of the earliest archaeological proof of an Attic crater with a nice black glaze in Hippo. Here we see the peculiar fact, that archaeology is in front of classical contributions!