Philippi Battlefield - History and Facts | History Hit

Philippi Battlefield

Krinides, Macedonia - Thrace, Greece

Philippi Battlefield is the location of the Battle of Philippi, where Marc Antony and Octavian defeated the forces of those who had assassinated Julius Caesar.

Lucy Davidson

20 May 2021
Image Credit: Shutterstock

About Philippi Battlefield

Philippi Battlefield in Greece is the location of one of the most important engagements in Roman history. It was at this site that Marc Antony and Octavian defeated the forces of those who had assassinated Julius Caesar – notably Marcus Junius Brutus and Gaius Cassius Longinus.

History of Philippi Battlefield

After Caesar’s assassination in 44 BC a short, uneasy truce between those who supported Caesar and those who killed him soon denigrated into open conflict. The forces of the two sides eventually met in Greece near the ancient city of Philippi.

The Battle of Philippi was the decisive engagement of the War of the Second Triumvirate, and was the largest battle fought in Greece since the Persian invasions.

The battle actually took place in two separate engagements, one on 3 October 42 BC, and one on 23 October. The first engagement saw successes for both sides – though Cassius took his own life believing the battle to be lost. The second engagement was a victory for Antony and Octavian, and Brutus also died by suicide in the battle’s aftermath.

Since both sides were fairly evenly matched in both size and training, tens of thousands of lives were lost on both sides. Eventually, Brutus’ army was driven from the field, and after his suicide, his army was spared and absorbed into Octavius and Antony’s army.

Philippi Battlefield Today

Today the battlefield of Philippi is believed to be located outside the modern town of Krinides in north-west Greece.

The ruins of the Philippi (Filippoi) are currently preserved as an archaeological site, and are located at the site of the battlefield. The ruins contain the impressive remains of the ancient city which was founded by the survivors of the battle on what was believed to be where Brutus had his camp, and went on to thrive.

The battle site is so well-preserved that the entire area looks much as it did in ancient times. The field is an open site, while the ruins of the city are partially restricted.

It is protected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Getting to Philippi Battlefield

From the centre of Philippi, the town of Krinides, outside of which is the battlefield, is reachable in around 10 minutes via the Epar.Od. Platamona – Adrianis road. It’s also an hour’s walk via the same route.

The closest major city to the site is Thessaloniki, from where Krinides is reachable by car in just under two hours via the Egnatia Odos/EO Thessalonikis-Kavalas/A2 roads.

 

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