Elea (Called Velia by Romans) was founded by of Phocians between 540 and 535 bC.
The city of Phocaea in Western Turkey was at that time under an important Persian pressure.
The inhabitants took the sea, giving up a deserted city to the invaders to join Aleria in Corsica where were yet installed Phocians settlers.
Good sailors, they caused the mistrust of the Etruscans and the Carthaginian against which they engaged an important battle they gained in spite of heavy losses. They took refuge in Reggio, Greek city, where the ambassador of Paestum (Poseidonia) incited them to acquire the territory of Yela on the grounds of Enotres tribes close to his own city Poseidonia.
Pictures of Velia