MOTYA, an ancient Phoenician settlement in Sicily, on a
low island [mod. S. Pantaleo], 5 m. north of Lilybaeum [mod.
Marsala]. It was the centre of the Phoenician trade in Sicily.
It was accessible from the mainland by a mole, which is still
used as a track for wagons. The line of the city wall, of rough
rectangular blocks of stone without mortar, may still be traced
all round the coast, with two gates, one on the north towards
the mole, which is still in part preserved, and one on the south.
The date of its foundation is uncertain. In 398 B.C. it was taken
after a desperate struggle (which, owing to the height and
strength of the houses, continued even after a breach had
been made in the city wall) by Dionysius of Syracuse, but
recovered in the next year: it was, however, abandoned by
the Carthaginians, and its place taken by Lilybaeum on the
mainland. (T. As.)