The Pleiades gazetteer of the ancient world provides open access to the most comprehensive geospatial dataset for antiquity available today. It is useful as a geographic reference work, helping students and scholars alike find the locations for (and additional information about) places they encounter when reading ancient texts and when investigating the history and archaeology of the ancient world. It also provides data in a variety of formats that can be download for re-use in other projects and in mapping tools and geographic information systems. Pleiades also serves as a component of other important digital humanities projects, ranging from online editions of primary sources for students to expert systems supporting advanced research in fields like archaeology, epigraphy, and numismatics. It also constitutes a core resource for classroom activities focused on ancient geography.
At present, Pleiades has extensive coverage for the Greek and Roman world, and is expanding to treat other cultures and periods from ancient Europe and the Mediterranean littoral into Southwest Asia and beyond. It contains information about over 30,000 ancient places, names, and locations. This content is constantly growing and improving thanks to the hard work of volunteers around the world, whose efforts are supported and guided by a team of scholarly editors and seasoned reviewers. For a complete listing, including individual contributions, see the credits page.
Pleiades is a joint project of the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World at New York University and the Ancient World Mapping Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In addition to financial and in-kind support from these institutions, Pleiades got started thanks to a development server provided by the Stoa Consortium, and has matured thanks to three generous grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
All published content is freely accessible to everyone under open licence and may be accessed place-by-place in multiple formats or downloaded en masse. All interested parties are invited to join the Pleiades community and contribute new or improved content.