The Decapolis (Greek: Dekápolis) was a group of ten Hellenistic cities on the eastern frontier of the Roman Empire in the Southern Levant in the first centuries BC and AD. They formed a group because of their language, culture, religion, location, and political status, with each functioning as an autonomous city-state dependent on Rome. They are sometimes described as a league of cities, although some scholars believe that they were never formally organized as a political unit.
The Decapolis was a center of Hellenistic and Roman culture in a region which was otherwise populated by Jews, Nabataeans and Arameans. In the time of the Emperor Trajan, the cities were incorporated into the provinces of Syria and Arabia Petraea; several cities were later placed in Syria Palaestina and Palaestina Secunda. Most of the Decapolis region is located in modern-day Jordan, except Hippos and Scythopolis (in Israel), Canatha, probably Dion, Raphana and Damascus (in Syria).