Virtually nothing remains from the ancient city of Beroea, once the second city of the Macedonian Empire. In the 1st century the Apostle Paul found Beroea hospitable to his message, and today the city contains the most notable individual monument in Greece to the Christian missionary. The ancient city of Beroea today is known as Veria, located 42 miles west of Thessaloniki and 9 miles northwest of Vergina. Public buses are available from Thessaloniki’s KTEL stations (be sure to use the west side stations). Check carefully for departing and returning times, as the frequency of connections varies. Fares are inexpensive, less than $10 round trip. It is possible, if desired or time is limited, to make a day trip from Thessaloniki to nearby Vergina, go on to Veria, and return. Beroea was first mentioned by Thucydides in his histories when he records that the Athenians failed to take the city by siege in 432 B.C.E., during the Peloponnesian War. Plutarch later tells of a successful siege of Beroea in 288 B.C.E., after which the city was occupied by Pyrrhus. The Gauls who later robbed the royal tombs at Vergina were unsuccessful in taking Beroea. The city became part of the Roman Empire in 148 B.C.E. and was the site of training for the armies of Pompey, who spent the winter of 49–48 B.C.E. in Beroea prior to the battle of Pharsalos (48 B.C.E.). In the 1st century C.E. Beroea found favor with several of the Roman emperors and became an international city of varied races and religions. The Apostle Paul visited the city in 50 C.E. Later Diocletian made Beroea one of the two capitals of Macedonia. The biblical account of Paul’s visit to Beroea, following his escape from the hostility at Thessalonica, is found in Acts 17:10–15: . . . That very night the believers sent Paul and Silas off to Beroea; and when they arrived, they went to the Jewish synagogue. These Jews were more receptive than those at Thessalonica, for they welcomed the message very eagerly and examined the scriptures every day to see whether these things were so. . . .
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