/euh kee"euhn/, adj.
1. of or pertaining to Achaea or the Achaeans.
2. (in the Iliad) Greek.
3. an inhabitant of Achaea.
4. a Greek, esp. a member of the Achaean League.
5. a member of one of the four main divisions of prehistoric Greeks, believed to have occupied the Peloponnesus and to have produced the Mycenaean culture. Cf. Aeolian (def. 2), Dorian (def. 2), Ionian (def. 3).
[1560-70; < L Achae(us) ( < Gk Achaiós, perh. reflected in Hittite Ahhiyawa, a country alluded to in records of the late 2nd millennium B.C.) + -AN]

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Any member of an ancient Greek people identified in Homer as those who, with the Danaoi and the Argeioi, attacked Troy.

Some identify them with the Mycenaeans of the 14th–13th century BC; others say that they arrived in the 12th-century Dorian invasions. They may have held power only a few generations before being replaced by the Dorians. Herodotus claims the later Achaeans of the northern Peloponnese (see Achaean League) were descended from these earlier Achaeans.

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Greek  Achaios,  

      any of the ancient Greek people, identified in Homer, along with the Danaoi and the Argeioi, as the Greeks who besieged Troy. Their area as described by Homer—the mainland and western isles of Greece, Crete, Rhodes, and adjacent isles, except the Cyclades—is precisely that covered by the activities of the Mycenaeans in the 14th–13th century BC, as revealed by archaeology. From this and other evidence, some authorities have identified the Achaeans with the Mycenaeans. Other evidence suggests that the Achaeans did not enter Greece until the so-called Dorian invasions of the 12th century BC. It seems at least possible that Homer's Achaean chiefs, with their short genealogies and their renown for infiltrating into Mycenaean kingships by way of military service and dynastic marriages, held power in the Mycenaean world only for a few generations in its last, warlike, and semibarbarous phase, until replaced by the Dorians, their relatively close kindred. The Achaeans of the northern Peloponnese in historic times were reckoned by Herodotus to be descendants of these earlier Achaeans. The name Ahhiyawā, occurring in Hittite documents of the 14th and 13th centuries BC, has sometimes been identified with the Achaeans, but this is disputed.

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Universalium. 2010.

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  • Achaean League — a political confederation of Achaean and other Greek cities, established in the late 3rd century B.C. and dissolved by the Romans in 146 B.C …   Useful english dictionary

  • Achaean — I. adjective or Achaian Date: 1567 of, relating to, or characteristic of Achaea; broadly of or relating to Greece II. noun or Achaian Date: 1607 a native or inhabitant of Achaea; broadly Greek …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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