Bylazora or Vilazora was a Paeonian city from the period of early classic antiquity. King Philip V captured Bylazora, the largest town of Paeonia, and very favourably situated for commanding the pass from Dardania to Macedonia: so that by this achievement he was all but entirely freed from any fear of the Dardani, it being no longer easy for them to invade Macedonia, as long as this city gave Philip the command of the pass.

In 219 BC, the Dardanians collected their forces for a raid into Macedonia and at that time Bylazora must already have been in their hands. With its location at Sveti Nikole, Bylazora commanded the entrance to a long defile and, no less important, a route southwestwards into Pelagonia via the Babuna Valley, or Raec Valley into Styberra and interior of the Macedonian Kingdom. It can be assumed that Bylazora, as the largest Paeonian town, must have been in Dardanian possession when Philip V captured it in 217 BC, with the aim of garrisoning it and ending Dardanian raids. Bylazora is also mentioned by Livy in his 'The History of Rome' when Perseus in 168 BC arranged military support from the Gauls who were campaigning in Desudaba, Maedica, requesting the Gaulish army to shift their camp to Bylazora, a place in Paeonia, and their officers to go in a body to him at Almana on the River Axius. The geographic dominance over the surrounding valley has determined the communications significance of the city in ancient times. It was situated between the states (or sometimes provinces) of the Dardani, and of Thrace and Macedonia. Ancient Bylazora was the largest and most significant city of Paionia, mentioned in the records of Polybius and Titus Livius. They emphasize its strategic geographic position as a frontier of the northern border of Macedonia against the Dardanians.

According to experts, there are two significant dates related to the relations between ancient Macedonia and Bylazora: The first is 217 BC when king Philip V of Macedonia reconstructed its fortifications; The second is 168 BC when king Perseus of Macedonia, during the Third Macedonian War, arranged military support from the Gauls who were camping nearby in defending the city against the Romans.



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Founded: 3rd century BCE
Category: Prehistoric and archaeological sites in North Macedonia

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Илија Господинов (3 years ago)
Such a phenomenal archeological dig. Make sure to visit the museum in Sveti Nikole, too.
Tance Grozdanovski (3 years ago)
Lovely macedonian history place
Nenad Pivko (3 years ago)
Damjan Bogdanovski (4 years ago)
The works are still in progress.
eOrdAja (5 years ago)
Beautiful archeological site with rich history. Only problem is, it is abandoned by the local authorities and anyone can enter at any given time. No tourist guide available. Most of the newly excavated items are left unattended, which is a shame for the historical and cultural significance of this archeological site
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