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Bible Encyclopedias

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature

Corinth (2)

The following additional particulars concerning this once famous city are taken from Kittoy Pict. Bible, note on 1 Corinthians 1:1 : "This great and wealthy city was the metropolis of Achaia, and situated upon the isthmus of the same name, which joins the Peloponnesus to the continent. Its position was highly favorable for that commerce which ultimately rendered it one of the most luxurious cities of the world. For, having two ports, one of which was open to the eastern and the other to the western navigator, while its geographical situation placed it, as it were, in the centre of the civilized world, it became the point where the merchants from every quarter of the globe met and exchanged their treasures. It was also celebrated for the Isthmian Games, to which the apostle makes some striking and remarkably appropriate allusions in his Epistles to the Corinthians. Nor should it be unnoticed that in the centre of the city there stood a famous temple of Venus, in which a thousand priestesses of the goddess ministered to licentiousness, under the guise of religion. From such various causes Corinth had an influx of foreigners of all descriptions, who carried the productions and the vices of all nations into a city in which the merchant, the warrior, and the seaman could have them for money.

Devoted to traffic, and to the enjoyment of the wealth which that traffic secured, the Corinthian were exempt from the influence of that thirst for conquest and military glory by which their neighbors were, actuated; hence they were seldom engaged in any war except for the defence of their country, or in behalf of the liberties of Greece; yet this city furnished many brave and experienced commanders to other Grecia; states, among whom it was common to prefer a Corinthian general to one of their own state. As might be, expected, Corinth was not remarkably distinguished for philosophy or science; but its wealth attracted to it the arts, which assisted to enrich and aggrandize it, till it became one of the very finest cities in all Greece. The Corinthian order of architecture took its name from tharich and flowery style which prevailed in its sumptuous edifices, its temples, palaces, theatres, and porticoes. [Yet it is noteworthy that no specimen of this style of architecture has been found there.]

"Corinth still exists as an inhabited town, under the same name Korinthos. It is a long, straggling place, which is well-paved, and can boast of a few tolerably good buildings, with a castle of some strength, which under the Turkish rule was kept in a good state of defence. There are still considerable ruins, to attest the ancient consequence of the city, and the taste and elegance of its public buildings. The extensive view from the summit of the high mountain which commands the town, and which was a the Acropolis (Acro-Corinth) of the ancient city, is pronounced by travellers to be one of the finest in the world." (See cut on opposite page.)

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These files are public domain.

Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Corinth (2)'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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