Lesbos, a Greek island located in the eastern Aegean, had several prosperous city-states which thrived from the Bronze Age to the Byzantine era. Switching many times between independence, Persian and Greek control, Lesbos was often a victim of its geographical location on the edge of the Greek world. The island was famous in antiquity for its wine and its culture, producing many famous names over the centuries, notably the poetess Sappho, the statesman Pittakos, and the philosopher Theophrastus.

More about: Lesbos


  • 1000 BCE - 900 BCE
    Settlers from Thessaly arrive on Lesbos.
  • c. 650 BCE - 570 BCE
    Life of Pittakos, elected tyrant of Mytilene on Lesbos.
  • c. 630 BCE
    Aristocrats remove the ruling Penthelid clan from power on Lesbos.
  • c. 620 BCE - c. 570 BCE
    Life of Sappho of Lesbos.
  • c. 480 BCE - 395 BCE
    Life of the historian Hellanicus of Mytilene.
  • 428 BCE
    Mytilene on Lesbos unsuccessfully revolts against the Athenian domination of the Delian League.
  • 231 BCE
    Pyrrha on Lesbos is destroyed by an earthquake.
  • 168 BCE
    The Romans destroy Antissa on Lesbos.
  • 84 BCE
    The Roman general and politician Lucullus captures Lesbos.
  • 79 BCE
    Mytilene on Lesbos is sacked by the Romans after the city supported Mithridates VI.