DORIS, in ancient geography, a small district in central Greece, forming a wedge between Mts. Oeta and Parnassus, and containing the head-waters of the Cephissus, which passes at the gorge of Dadion into the neighbouring land of Phocis. This little valley, which nowhere exceeds 4 m. in breadth and could barely give sustenance to four small townships, owed its importance partly to its command over the strategic road from Heracleia to Amphissa, which pierced the Parnassus range near Cytinium, but chiefly to its prestige as the alleged mother-country of the Dorian conquerors of Peloponnesus (see Dorians). Its history is mainly made up of petty wars with the neighbouring Oetaeans and Phocians. The latter pressed them hard in 457, when the Spartans, admitting their claim to be the Dorian metropolis, sent an army to their aid, and again during the second Sacred War (356-346). Except for a casual mention of its cantonal league in 196, Doris passed early out of history; the inhabitants may have been exterminated during the conflicts between Aetolia and Macedonia.
See Strabo, pp. 417, 427; Herodotus i. 56, viii. 31; Thucydides i. 107, iii. 92; Diodorus xii. 29, 33; W. M. Leake, Travels in Northern Greece, chap. xi. (London, 1835).
(M. O. B. C.)
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)