1. Yes, ‘Athens of the North’ or ‘Nashville of Greece’ would each make sense, altho I doubt there’s an answer for either.

  2. I can see where there’d be a lot of towns and small cities calling themselves “Athens of the North,” just as there are many contenders for “the 8th Wonder of the World” (or the 5th Beatle, etc).

  3. Assuming Nashville is in fact the “Athens of the South,” then I would think that Athens would automatically be the “Nashville of Greece.” Both statements mean “Nashville is to the South as Athens is to Greece” (which is equivalent to “Athens is to Greece as Nashville is to the South.”)

  4. I’ve wondered how it was determined that Nashville is Athens’ sister city across the sea. I always took the life size replica of The Parthenon in Centennial Park to be more likely of a response to that designation than a reason.

  5. Shouldn’t Athens, Georgia be the “Athens of the South,” by definition? (And Sparta, New York, is the Sparta of the North.)

  6. Sorry about that, to save you from having to scroll:

    “Nashville’s moniker, the “Athens of the South”,[4] influenced the choice of the building as the centerpiece of the 1897 Centennial Exposition.”

  7. Illinois has “New Athens”. The second word is pronounced with a long ‘A’. Notably the hometown of former Cardinals manager Whitey Herzog.

  8. Boston is the “Athens of America” so Nashville couldn’t be that. “The Athens of Tennessee” wouldn’t do because every state could have its Athens. So it had to be the Athens of the South. But if, say, St. Paul were the “Boston of the Midwest” then it would be the “Athens of America of the Midwest.”

  9. As a native Nashvillian, I’ve always been told it’s because we’re a center of the arts and culture. (“The arts” mostly referring to country music.) At least that’s what we tell each other.

    Yeah, things have gone a bit downhill since the 1850s.

  10. But so many cities and towns upstate NY are named after Greek cities.

    Bill, the Parthenon looked a lot different in the movie “Nashville” when the huge concert and end of the movie is set there. – But heck, “It don’t worry me” (the final song at the end of the movie,sung at the Parthenon).

  11. When I took Spanish in high school (a not very successful project) we were told that the Barcelona is the Pittsburgh of Spain. (Presumably due to steel production.) My reaction ever since is to refer to Pittsburgh as the Barcelona of the US.

  12. New Orleans has been new for quite a while; I’d have expected a New New Orleans by now, or at least a Newer Orleans.

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