Heraclea Lyncestis was an ancient Macedonian city situated 2 km south of the present-day town of Bitola, Republic of Macedonia.It was founded by Philip II of Macedon in the middle of the 4th century BC, after he had conquered the surrounding region of Lynkestis and incorporated it into his kingdom of Macedon. The city was named in honor of the mythological Greek hero Heracles. The epithet Lynkestis means "the Land of the Lynx" in Greek.
Heraclea was a strategically important town during the Hellenistic period, as it was at the edge of Macedon's border with Epirus to the west, and to the non-Greek world to the north, until the middle of the 2nd century BC, when the Romans conquered Macedon and destroyed its political power. The Romans divided Macedonia into 4 regions and Heraclea was in the fourth region. The main Roman road in the area, Via Egnatia went through Heraclea, and Heraclea was an important stop.