The Defense Network in the Chora of Mantineia

by Matthew P. Maher and Alistair Mowat

Hesperia, Volume 87, Issue 3
Page(s): 451-495
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/10.2972/hesperia.87.3.0451
Year: 2018


In addition to its impressive fortification circuit, the ancient Greek city of Mantineia was further safeguarded by a number of signal towers located along the periphery of its territory. Combining a review of the published literature with satellite reconnaissance and personal observation, this article is the first detailed architectural study and synthesis of all known Mantineian signal towers. Having examined their construction and location, and by applying viewshed analyses in the chronological and historical context of the region, it is shown how these signal towers, including two previously unknown examples, functioned together as parts of a larger defensive system built to protect both the polis and chora of Mantineia from all cardinal directions.