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Historical region and current administrative region (pop., 2001: 754,893), east-central Greece. The ancient region corresponded roughly to the modern one. Mount Olympus rises in the northeast. Thessaly is drained by the Piniós River. It was the site of many cultures in the 3rd–2nd millennia BC; by c. 1000 BC Greeks had established power there. Incorporated into the Roman province of Macedon in the 2nd century BC, it was made a separate Roman province in the 4th century AD. In the 7th–13th centuries it was controlled by Slavs, Saracens, Bulgars, and Normans. In the late 14th century it passed to the Turks; it was returned to Greece in 1881. It saw heavy fighting between Allied and Axis forces in 1941.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Thessaly, visit Britannica.com.