Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Cyrene, the capital of Cyrenaica, was founded in 631 by Battus the Spartan, whose dynasty reigned for 200 years as had been prophesied by the oracle of Delphi. It then became a republic and fell with the rest of the district under the Roman rule. The intellectual life of Cyrene attained a high standard. The town was renowned for its school of medicine; it produced Callimachus, the poet; Carneades, the founder of the Athenian New Academy; Aristippus, the founder of the Cyrenaic School; and last, though not least, the kindly and eccentric bishop Synesius, the friend of Hypatia, whose charming character and noble disposition have been well portrayed by Charles Kingsley. Many magnificent ruins and a number of hill-tombs testify to the former importance of Cyrene.