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Bible Dictionaries

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible


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MACEDONIA. The Macedonians were a part of the Hellenic race who settled early in history in the region round the river Axius at the N. W. corner of the Ægæan. When they first came into Greek politics they had dominion from the mountains N. of Thessaly to the river Strymon, except where the Greek colonies of the peninsula of Chalcidice kept them back. Their race was probably much mixed with Illyrian and Thracian elements; they did not advance in culture with Southern Greece, but kept their primitive government under a king, and were regarded by the Greeks as aliens. Down to the time of Philip (b.c. 359) they played a minor part as allies of various Greek cities having interests in the N. Ægæan. Under Philip, through his organization of an army and his diplomatic skill, they became masters of Greece, and under his son Alexander conquered the East. The dynasties which they established in Syria and Egypt were Macedonian, but in the subsequent Hellenization of the East they took no larger part than other Greek races. In their original dominions they remained a hardy and vigorous race. After several wars with Rome, Macedonia was divided into four separate districts with republican government, but it received the regular organization of a province in b.c. 146.

Macedonia was the scene of St. Paul’s first work in Europe. See Philippi, Thessalonica, BerÅ“a. The province at that time included Thessaly, and stretched across to the Adriatic; but Philippi was a colony, not subject to the governor of the province, and Thessalonica was also a ‘free city,’ with the right of appointing its own magistrates. The Via Egnatia ran across the province from Dyrrhachium to Neapolis, and St. Paul’s journey was along this from Neapolis through Philippi, Amphipolis, Apollonia, to Thessalonica. A further visit is recorded in Acts 20:3-8 , and the Pastoral Epistles imply another after his first imprisonment ( 1 Timothy 1:3 ).

A. E. Hillard.

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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Bibliography Information
Hastings, James. Entry for 'Macedonia'. Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible. 1909.

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