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Gallipoli, Italy

GALLIPOLI, ITALY (anc. Callipolis), a seaport town and episcopal see of Apulia, Italy, in the province of Lecce, 31 m. S. by W. of it by rail, 46 ft. above sea-level. Pop. (1901) town, 10,399; commune, 13,459. It is situated on a rocky island in the Gulf of Taranto, but is united to the mainland by a bridge, protected by a castle constructed by Charles I. of Anjou. The other fortifications have been removed. The handsome cathedral dates from 1629. The town was once famous for its exports of olive-oil, which was stored, until it clarified, in cisterns cut in the rock. This still continues, but to a less extent; the export of wine, however, is increasing, and fruit is also exported.

The ancient Callipolis was obviously of Greek origin, as its name ("beautiful city") shows. It is hardly mentioned in ancient times. Pliny tells us that in his time it was known as Anxa. It lay a little off the road from Tarentum to Hydruntum, but was reached by a branch from Aletium (the site is marked by the modern church of S. Maria della Lizza), among the ruins of which many Messapian inscriptions, but no Latin ones, have been found.

(T. As.)

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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