- the capital of Greece; population 745,500 (est. 2009). Greek name Athínai.
A flourishing city state of ancient Greece, Athens was an important cultural centre in the 5th century bc. It came under Roman rule in 146 bc and fell to the Goths in ad 267. After its capture by the Turks in 1456 Athens declined to the status of a village, until chosen as the capital of a newly independent Greece in 1834