- a peninsula forming the S part of Greece: seat of the early Mycenaean civilization and the powerful city-states of Argos, Sparta, etc. 8356 sq. mi. (21,640 sq. km).
- the Peloponnese the S peninsula of Greece, joined to central Greece by the Isthmus of Corinth: chief cities in ancient times were Sparta and Corinth, now Patras. Pop: 503 300 (2001). Area: 21 439 sq km (8361 sq miles)Also known as: Peloponnesus Medieval name: Morea Modern Greek name: Peloponnesos
n.peninsula of southern Greece, late 15c., from Latin, from Greek Peloponnesos, second element apparently nesos “island” (see Chersonese); first element said to be named for Pelops, son of Tantalus, who killed him and served him to the gods as food (they later restored him to life). The proper name is probably from pellos “dark” + ops “face, eye.” But the association with the peninsula name likely is folk etymology. Related: Peloponnesian.