This book was conceived when the British Academy supported a conference in November 2001 in collaboration with the Institute of Archaeology of the National Academy of the Ukraine. However, the chapters presented in this book were conceived long before the meeting. In particular, whereas the meeting covered various topics, this book is solely concerned with the interactions of the city of Olbia with its immediate environs. Although the theme and geographical scope have been delimited, the chronological framework of the book remains expansive. It discusses the emergence of the city of Olbia up to its local situation under the early Roman empire. Although the relationship of Olbia with neighbouring communities was marked by controversies and issues, the book makes no attempt to expunge the differences in the interpretations, either between the chapters within the book or between these chapters and other accounts. In contrast, the more controversial matters are flagged within the book and are brought out more explicitly. Discussed in this text are: the progress of archaeology in Olbia, the Greek and non-Greek interactions of the lower Bug, the interpretation of Herodotus's account of Olbia and its environs, the religious dimension of contacts between Greeks and non-Greeks, the settlement of Trakhtemirov, the trade and exchanges between Olbia and its environs, and the struggles of Olbia for its existence amid intrusion of the Roman empire.
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