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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



4471
Diodorus Siculus, Historical Library, 17.15.2-17.15.5


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nan1.  Now the Egyptians have an account like this: When in the beginning the universe came into being, men first came into existence in Egypt, both because of the favourable climate of the land and because of the nature of the Nile. For this stream, since it produces much life and provides a spontaneous supply of food, easily supports whatever living things have been engendered; for both the root of the reed and the lotus, as well as the Egyptian bean and corsaeon, as it is called, and many other similar plants, supply the race of men with nourishment all ready for use.,2.  As proof that animal life appeared first of all in their land they would offer the fact that even at the present day the soil of the Thebaid at certain times generates mice in such numbers and of such size as to astonish all who have witnessed the phenomenon; for some of them are fully formed as far as the breast and front feet and are able to move, while the rest of the body is unformed, the clod of earth still retaining its natural character.,3.  And from this fact it is manifest that, when the world was first taking shape, the land of Egypt could better than any other have been the place where mankind came into being because of the well-tempered nature of its soil; for even at the present time, while the soil of no other country generates any such things, in it alone certain living creatures may be seen coming into being in a marvellous fashion.,4.  In general, he says that if in the flood which occurred in the time of Deucalion most living things were destroyed, it is probable that the inhabitants of southern Egypt survived rather than any others, since their country is rainless for the most part; or if, as some maintain, the destruction of living things was complete and the earth then brought forth again new forms of animals, nevertheless, even on such a supposition the first genesis of living things fittingly attaches to this country.,5.  For when the moisture from the abundant rains, which fell among other peoples, was mingled with the intense heat which prevails in Egypt itself, it is reasonable to suppose that the air became very well tempered for the first generation of all living things.,6.  Indeed, even in our day during the inundations of Egypt the generation of forms of animal life can clearly be seen taking place in the pools which remain the longest;,7.  for, whenever the river has begun to recede and the sun has thoroughly dried the surface of the slime, living animals, he says, take shape, some of them fully formed, but some only half so and still actually united with the very earth.,1.  Now the men of Egypt, he says, when ages ago they came into existence, as they looked up at the firmament and were struck with both awe and wonder at the nature of the universe, conceived that two gods were both eternal and first, namely, the sun and the moon, whom they called respectively Osiris and Isis, these appellations having in each case been based upon a certain meaning in them.,2.  For when the names are translated into Greek Osiris means "many-eyed," and properly so; for in shedding his rays in every direction he surveys with many eyes, as it were, all land and sea. And the words of the poet are also in agreement with this conception when he says: The sun, who sees all things and hears all things.,3.  And of the ancient Greek writers of mythology some give to Osiris the name Dionysus or, with a slight change in form, Sirius. One of them, Eumolpus, in his Bacchic Hymn speaks of Our Dionysus, shining like a star, With fiery eye in ev'ry ray; while Orpheus says: And this is why men call him Shining One And Dionysus.,4.  Some say that Osiris is also represented with the cloak of fawn-skin about his shoulders as imitating the sky spangled with the stars. As for Isis, when translated the word means "ancient," the name having been given her because her birth was from everlasting and ancient. And they put horns on her head both because of the appearance which she has to the eye when the moon is crescent-shaped, and because among the Egyptians a cow is held sacred to her.,5.  These two gods, they hold, regulate the entire universe, giving both nourishment and increase to all things by means of a system of three seasons which complete the full cycle through an unobservable movement, these being spring and summer and winter; and these seasons, though in nature most opposed to one another, complete the cycle of the year in the fullest harmony. Moreover, practically all the physical matter which is essential to the generation of all things is furnished by these gods, the sun contributing the fiery element and the spirit, the moon the wet and the dry, and both together the air; and it is through these elements that all things are engendered and nourished.,6.  And so it is out of the sun and moon that the whole physical body of the universe is made complete; and as for the five parts just named of these bodies — the spirit, the fire, the dry, as well as the wet, and, lastly, the air-like — just as in the case of a man we enumerate head and hands and feet and the other parts, so in the same way the body of the universe is composed in its entirety of these parts.,1.  Each of these parts they regard as a god and to each of them the first men in Egypt to use articulate speech gave a distinct name appropriate to its nature.,2.  Now the spirit they called, as we translate their expression, Zeus, and since he was the source of the spirit of life in animals they considered him to be in a sense the father of all things. And they say that the most renowned of the Greek poets also agrees with this when he speaks of this god as The father of men and of gods.,3.  The fire they called Hephaestus, as it is translated, holding him to be a great god and one who contributes much both to the birth and full development of all things.,4.  The earth, again, they looked upon as a kind of vessel which holds all growing things and so gave it the name "mother"; and in like manner the Greeks also call it Demeter, the word having been slightly changed in the course of time; for in olden times they called her Gê Meter (Earth Mother), to which Orpheus bears witness when he speaks of Earth the Mother of all, Demeter giver of wealth.,5.  And the wet, according to them, was called by the men of old Oceanê, which, when translated, means Fostering-mother, though some of the Greeks have taken it to be Oceanus, in connection with whom the poet also speaks of Oceanus source of gods and mother Tethys.,6.  For the Egyptians consider Oceanus to be their river Nile, on which also their gods were born; since, they say, Egypt is the only country in the whole inhabited world where there are many cities which were founded by the first gods, such as Zeus, Helius, Hermes, Apollo, Pan, Eileithyia, and many more.,7.  The air, they say, they called Athena, as the name is translated, and they considered her to be the daughter of Zeus and conceived of her as a virgin, because of fact that the air is by its nature uncorrupted and occupies the highest part of the entire universe; for the latter reason also the myth arose that she was born from the head of Zeus.,8.  Another name given her was Tritogeneia (Thrice-born), because her nature changes three times in the course of the year, in the spring, summer, and winter. They add that she is also called Glaucopis (Blue-eyed), not because she has blue eyes, as some Greeks have held — a silly explanation, indeed — but because the air has a bluish cast.,9.  These five deities, they say, visit all the inhabited world, revealing themselves to men in the form of sacred animals, and at times even appearing in the guise of men or in other shapes; nor is this a fabulous thing, but possible, if these are in very truth the gods who give life to all things.,10.  And also the poet, who visited Egypt and became acquainted with such accounts as these from the lips of the priests, in some place in his writings sets forth as actual fact what has been said: The gods, in strangers' form from alien lands, Frequent the cities of men in ev'ry guise, Observing their insolence and lawful ways. Now so far as the celestial gods are concerned whose genesis is from eternity, this is the account given by the Egyptians.,1.  And besides these there are other gods, they say, who were terrestrial, having once been mortals, but who, by reason of their sagacity and the good services which they rendered to all men, attained immortality, some of them having even been kings in Egypt.,2.  Their names, when translated, are in some cases the same as those of the celestial gods, while others have a distinct appellation, such as Helius, Cronus, and Rhea, and also the Zeus who is called Ammon by some, and besides these Hera and Hephaestus, also Hestia, and, finally, Hermes. Helius was the first king of the Egyptians, his name being the same as that of the heavenly star.,3.  Some of the priests, however, say that Hephaestus was their first king, since he was the discoverer of fire and received the rule because of this service to mankind; for once, when a tree on the mountains had been struck by lightning and the forest near by was ablaze, Hephaestus went up to it, for it was winter-time, and greatly enjoyed the heat; as the fire died down he kept adding fuel to it, and while keeping the fire going in this way he invited the rest of mankind to enjoy the advantage which came from it.,4.  Then Cronus became the ruler, and upon marrying his sister Rhea he begat Osiris and Isis, according to some writers of mythology, but, according to the majority, Zeus and Hera, whose high achievements gave them dominion over the entire universe. From these last were sprung five gods, one born on each of the five days which the Egyptians intercalate; the names of these children were Osiris and Isis, and also Typhon, Apollo, and Aphroditê;,5.  and Osiris when translated is Dionysus, and Isis is more similar to Demeter than to any other goddess; and after Osiris married Isis and succeeded to the kingship he did many things of service to the social life of man.,1.  Osiris was the first, they record, to make mankind give up cannibalism; for after Isis had discovered the fruit of both wheat and barley which grew wild over the land along with the other plants but was still unknown to man, and Osiris had also devised the cultivation of these fruits, all men were glad to change their food, both because of the pleasing nature of the newly-discovered grains and because it seemed to their advantage to refrain from their butchery of one another.,2.  As proof of the discovery of these fruits they offer the following ancient custom which they still observe: Even yet at harvest time the people make a dedication of the first heads of the grain to be cut, and standing beside the sheaf beat themselves and call upon Isis, by this act rendering honour to the goddess for the fruits which she discovered, at the season when she first did this.,3.  Moreover in some cities, during the Festival of Isis as well, stalks of wheat and barley are carried among the other objects in the procession, as a memorial of what the goddess so ingeniously discovered at the beginning. Isis also established laws, they say, in accordance with which the people regularly dispense justice to one another and are led to refrain through fear of punishment from illegal violence and insolence;,4.  and it is for this reason also that the early Greeks gave Demeter the name Thesmophorus, acknowledging in this way that she had first established their laws.,1.  Osiris, they say, founded in the Egyptian Thebaid a city with a hundred gates, which the men of his day named after his mother, though later generations called it Diospolis, and some named it Thebes.,2.  There is no agreement, however, as to when this city was founded, not only among the historians, but even among the priests of Egypt themselves; for many writers say that Thebes was not founded by Osiris, but many years later by a certain king of whom we shall give a detailed account in connection with his period.,3.  Osiris, they add, also built a temple to his parents, Zeus and Hera, which was famous both for its size and its costliness in general, and two golden chapels to Zeus, the larger one to him as god of heaven, the smaller one to him as former king and father of the Egyptians, in which rôle he is called by some Ammon.,4.  He also made golden chapels for the rest of the gods mentioned above, allotting honours to each of them and appointing priests to have charge over these. Special esteem at the court of Osiris and Isis was also accorded to those who should invent any of the arts or devise any useful process;,5.  consequently, since copper and gold mines had been discovered in the Thebaid, they fashioned implements with which they killed the wild beasts and worked the soil, and thus in eager rivalry brought the country under cultivation, and they made images of the gods and magnificent golden chapels for their worship.,6.  Osiris, they say, was also interested in agriculture and was reared in Nysa, a city of Arabia Felix near Egypt, being a son of Zeus; and the name which he bears among the Greeks is derived both from his father and from the birthplace, since he is called Dionysus.,7.  Mention is also made of Nysa by the poet in his Hymns, to the effect that it was in the vicinity of Egypt, when he says: There is a certain Nysa, mountain high, With forests thick, in Phoenicê afar, Close to Aegyptus' streams.,8.  And the discovery of the vine, they say, was made by him near Nysa, and that, having further devised the proper treatment of its fruit, he was the first to drink wine and taught mankind at large the culture of the vine and the use of wine, as well as the way to harvest the grape and to store wine.,9.  The one most highly honoured by him was Hermes, who was endowed with unusual ingenuity for devising things capable of improving the social life of man.,1.  It was by Hermes, for instance, according to them, that the common language of mankind was first further articulated, and that many objects which were still nameless received an appellation, that the alphabet was invented, and that ordinances regarding the honours and offerings due to the gods were duly established; he was the first also to observe the orderly arrangement of the stars and the harmony of the musical sounds and their nature, to establish a wrestling school, and to give thought to the rhythmical movement of the human body and its proper development. He also made a lyre and gave it three strings, imitating the seasons of the year; for he adopted three tones, a high, a low, and a medium; the high from the summer, the low from the winter, and the medium from the spring.,2.  The Greeks also were taught by him how to expound (hermeneia) their thoughts, and it was for this reason that he was given the name Hermes. In a word, Osiris, taking him for his priestly scribe, communicated with him on every matter and used his counsel above that of all others. The olive tree also, they claim, was his discovery, not Athena's, as the Greeks say.,1.  Of Osiris they say that, being of a beneficent turn of mind, and eager for glory, he gathered together a great army, with the intention of visiting all the inhabited earth and teaching the race of men how to cultivate the vine and sow wheat and barley;,2.  for he supposed that if he made men give up their savagery and adopt a gentle manner of life he would receive immortal honours because of the magnitude of his benefactions. And this did in fact take place, since not only the men of his time who received his gift, but all succeeding generations as well, because of the delight which they take in the foods which were discovered, have honoured those who introduced them as gods most illustrious.,3.  Now after Osiris had established the affairs of Egypt and turned the supreme power over to Isis his wife, they say that he placed Hermes at her side as counsellor because his prudence raised him above the king's other friends, and as general of all the land under his sway he left Heracles, who was both his kinsman and renowned for his valour and physical strength, while as governors he appointed Busiris over those parts of Egypt which lie towards Phoenicia and border upon the sea and Antaeus over those adjoining Ethiopia and Libya; then he himself left Egypt with his army to make his campaign, taking in his company also his brother, whom the Greeks call Apollo.,4.  And it was Apollo, they say, who discovered the laurel, a garland of which all men place about the head of this god above all others. The discovery of ivy is also attributed to Osiris by the Egyptians and made sacred to this god, just as the Greeks also do in the case of Dionysus.,5.  And in the Egyptian language, they say, the ivy is called the "plant of Osiris" and for purposes of dedication is preferred to the vine, since the latter sheds its leaves while the former ever remains green; the same rule, moreover, the ancients have followed in the case of other plants also which are perennially green, ascribing, for instance, the myrtle to Aphroditê and the laurel to Apollo.,1.  Now Osiris was accompanied on his campaign, as the Egyptian account goes, by his two sons Anubis and Macedon, who were distinguished for their valour. Both of them carried the most notable accoutrements of war, taken from certain animals whose character was not unlike the boldness of the men, Anubis wearing a dog's skin and Macedon the fore-parts of a wolf; and it is for this reason that these animals are held in honour among the Egyptians.,2.  He also took Pan along on his campaign, who is held in special honour by the Egyptians; for the inhabitants of the land have not only set up statues of him at every temple but have also named a city after him in the Thebaid, called by the natives Chemmo, which when translated means City of Pan. In his company were also men who were experienced in agriculture, such as Maron in the cultivation of the vine, and Triptolemus in the sowing of grain and in every step in the harvesting of it.,3.  And when all his preparations had been completed Osiris made a vow to the gods that he would let his hair grow until his return to Egypt and then made his way through Ethiopia; and this is the reason why this custom with regard to their hair was observed among the Egyptians until recent times, and why those who journeyed abroad let their hair grow until their return home.,4.  While he was in Ethiopia, their account continues, the Satyr people were brought to him, who, they say, have hair upon their loins. For Osiris was laughter-loving and fond of music and the dance; consequently he took with him a multitude of musicians, among whom were nine maidens who could sing and were trained in the other arts, these maidens being those who among the Greeks are called the Muses; and their leader (hegetes), as the account goes, was Apollo, who was for that reason also given the name Musegetes.,5.  As for the Satyrs, they were taken along in the campaign because they were proficient in dancing and singing and every kind of relaxation and pastime; for Osiris was not warlike, nor did he have to organize pitched battles or engagements, since every people received him as a god because of his benefactions.,6.  In Ethiopia he instructed the inhabitants in agriculture and founded some notable cities, and then left behind him men to govern the country and collect the tribute.,1.  While Osiris and his army were thus employed, the Nile, they say, at the time of the rising of Sirius, which is the season when the river is usually at flood, breaking out of its banks inundated a large section of Egypt and covered especially that part where Prometheus was governor; and since practically everything in this district was destroyed, Prometheus was so grieved that he was on the point of quitting life wilfully.,2.  Because its water sweeps down so swiftly and with such violence the river was given the name Aëtus; but Heracles, being ever intent upon great enterprises and eager for the reputation of a manly spirit, speedily stopped the flood at its breach and turned the river back into its former course.,3.  Consequently certain of the Greek poets worked the incident into a myth, to the effect that Heracles had killed the eagle which was devouring the liver of Prometheus.,4.  The river in the earliest period bore the name Oceanê, which in Greek is Oceanus; then because of this flood, they say, it was called Aëtus, and still later it was known as Aegyptus after a former king of the land. And the poet also adds his testimony to this when he writes: On the river Aegyptus my curvéd ships I stayed. For it is at Thonis, as it is called, which in early times was the trading-port of Egypt, that the river empties into the sea. Its last name and that which the river now bears it received from the former king Nileus.,5.  Now when Osiris arrived at the borders of Ethiopia, he curbed the river by dykes on both banks, so that at flood-time it might not form stagnant pools over the land to its detriment, but that the flood-water might be let upon the countryside, in a gentle flow as it might be needed, through gates which he had built.,6.  After this he continued his march through Arabia along the shore of the Red Sea as far as India and the limits of the inhabited world.,7.  He also founded not a few cities in India, one of which he named Nysa, wishing to leave there a memorial of that city in Egypt where he had been reared. He also planted ivy in the Indian Nysa, and throughout India and those countries which border upon it the plant to this day is still to be found only in this region.,8.  And many other signs of his stay he left in that country, which have led the Indians of a later time to lay claim to the god and say that he was by birth a native of India.,1.  In general, then, it is because of that commemoration of goodly deeds which history accords men that some of them have been induced to become the founders of cities, that others have been led to introduce laws which encompass man's social life with security, and that many have aspired to discover new sciences and arts in order to benefit the race of men. And since complete happiness can be attained only through the combination of all these activities, the foremost meed of praise must be awarded to that which more than any other thing is the cause of them, that is, to history.,2.  For we must look upon it as constituting the guardian of the high achievements of illustrious men, the witness which testifies to the evil deeds of the wicked, and the benefactor of the entire human race. For if it be true that the myths which are related about Hades, in spite of the fact that their subject-matter is fictitious, contribute greatly to fostering piety and justice among men, how much more must we assume that history, the prophetess of truth, she who is, as it were, the mother-city of philosophy as a whole, is still more potent to equip men's characters for noble living!,3.  For all men, by reason of the frailty of our nature, live but an infinitesimal portion of eternity and are dead throughout all subsequent time; and while in the case of those who in their lifetime have done nothing worthy of note, everything which has pertained to them in life also perishes when their bodies die, yet in the case of those who by their virtue have achieved fame, their deeds are remembered for evermore, since they are heralded abroad by history's voice most divine.,4.  Now it is an excellent thing, methinks, as all men of understanding must agree, to receive in exchange for mortal labours an immortal fame. In the case of Heracles, for instance, it is generally agreed that during the whole time which he spent among men he submitted to great and continuous labours and perils willingly, in order that he might confer benefits upon the race of men and thereby gain immortality; and likewise in the case of other great and good men, some have attained to heroic honours and others to honours equal to the divine, and all have been thought to be worthy of great praise, since history immortalizes their achievements.,5.  For whereas all other memorials abide but a brief time, yet the power of history, which extends over the whole inhabited world, possesses in time, which brings ruin upon all things else, a custodian which ensures its perpetual transmission to posterity. History also contributes to the power of speech, and a nobler thing than that may not easily be found.,6.  For it is this that makes the Greeks superior to the barbarians, and the educated to the uneducated, and, furthermore, it is by means of speech alone that one man is able to gain ascendancy over the many; and, in general, the impression made by every measure that is proposed corresponds to the power of the speaker who presents it, and we describe great and human men as "worthy of speech," as though therein they had won the highest prize of excellence.,7.  And when speech is resolved into its several kinds, we find that, whereas poetry is more pleasing than profitable, and codes of law punish but do not instruct, and similarly, all the other kinds either contribute nothing to happiness or else contain a harmful element mingled with the beneficial, while some of them actually pervert the truth, history alone, since in it word and fact are in perfect agreement, embraces in its narration all the other qualities as well as that are useful;,8.  for it is ever to be seen urging men to justice, denouncing those who are evil, lauding the good, laying up, in a word, for its readers a mighty store of experience.,1.  Osiris also took an interest in hunting elephants, and everywhere left behind him inscribed pillars telling of his campaign. And he visited all the other nations of Asia as well and crossed into Europe at the Hellespont.,2.  In Thrace he slew Lycurgus, the king of the barbarians, who opposed his undertaking, and Maron, who was now old, he left there to supervise the culture of the plants which he introduced into that land and caused him to found a city to bear his name, which he called Maroneia.,3.  Macedon his son, moreover, he left as king of Macedonia, which was named after him, while to Triptolemus he assigned the care of agriculture in Attica. Finally, Osiris in this way visited all the inhabited world and advanced community life by the introduction of the fruits which are most easily cultivated.,4.  And if any country did not admit of the growing of vine he introduced the drink prepared from barley, which is little inferior to wine in aroma and strength.,5.  On his return to Egypt he brought with him the very greatest presents from every quarter and by reason of the magnitude of his benefactions received the gift of immortality with the approval of all men and honour equal to that offered to the gods of heaven.,6.  After this he passed from the midst of men into the company of the gods and received from Isis and Hermes sacrifices and every other highest honour. These also instituted rites for him and introduced many things of a mystic nature, magnifying in this way the power of the god.,1.  Although the priests of Osiris had from the earliest times received the account of his death as a matter not to be divulged, in the course of years it came about that through some of their number this hidden knowledge was published to the many.,2.  This is the story as they give it: When Osiris was ruling over Egypt as its lawful king, he was murdered by his brother Typhon, a violent and impious man; Typhon then divided the body of the slain man into twenty-six pieces and gave one portion to each of the band of murderers, since he wanted all of them to share in the pollution and felt that in this way he would have in them steadfast supporters and defenders of his rule.,3.  But Isis, the sister and wife of Osiris, avenged his murder with the aid of her son Horus, and after slaying Typhon and his accomplices became queen over Egypt.,4.  The struggle between them took place on the banks of the Nile near the village now known as Antaeus, which, they say, lies on the Arabian side of the river and derives its name from that of Antaeus, a contemporary of Osiris, who was punished by Heracles.,5.  Now Isis recovered all the pieces of the body except the privates, and wishing that the burial-place of her husband should remain secret and yet be honoured by all the inhabitants of Egypt, she fulfilled her purpose in somewhat the following manner. Over each piece of the body, as the account goes, she fashioned out of spices and wax a human figure about the size of Osiris;,6.  then summoning the priests group by group, she required all of them an oath that they would reveal to no one the trust which she was going to confide to them, and taking each group of them apart privately she said that she was consigning to them alone the burial of the body, and after reminding them of the benefactions of Osiris she exhorted them to bury his body in their own district and pay honours to him as to a god, and to consecrate to him also some one that they might choose of the animals native to their district, pay it while living the honours which they had formerly rendered to Osiris, and upon its death accord it the same kind of funeral as they had given to him.,7.  And since Isis wished to induce the priests to render these honours by the incentive of their own profit also, she gave them the third part of the country to defray the cost of the worship and service of the gods.,8.  And the priests, it is said, being mindful of the benefactions of Osiris and eager to please the queen who was petitioning them, and incited as well by their own profit, did everything just as Isis had suggested.,9.  It is for this reason that even to this day each group of priests supposes that Osiris lies buried in their district, pays honours to the animals which were originally consecrated to him, and, when these die, renews in the funeral rites for them the mourning for Osiris.,10.  The consecration to Osiris, however, of the sacred bulls, which are given the names Apis and Mnevis, and worship of them as gods were introduced generally among all the Egyptians,,11.  since these animals had, more than any others, rendered aid to those who discovered the fruit of the grain, in connection with both the sowing of the seed and with every agricultural labour from which mankind profits.,1.  Isis, they say, after the death of Osiris took a vow never to marry another man, and passed the remainder of her life reigning over the land with complete respect for the law and surpassing all sovereigns in benefactions to her subjects.,2.  And like her husband she also, when she passed from among men, received immortal honours and was buried near Memphis, where her shrine is pointed out to this day in the temple-area of Hephaestus.,3.  According to some writers, however, the bodies of these two gods rest, not in Memphis, but on the border between Egypt and Ethiopia, on the island in the Nile which lies near the city which is called Philae, but is referred to because of this burial as the Holy Field.,4.  In proof of this they point to remains which still survive on this island, both to the tomb constructed for Osiris, which is honoured in common by all the priests of Egypt, and to the three hundred and sixty libation bowls which are placed around it;,5.  for the priests appointed over these bowls fill them each day with milk, singing all the while a dirge in which they call upon the names of these gods.,6.  It is for this reason that travellers are not allowed to set foot on this island. And all the inhabitants of the Thebaid, which is the oldest portion of Egypt, hold it to be the strongest oath when a man swears "by Osiris who lieth in Philae." Now the parts of the body of Osiris which were found were honoured with burial, they say, in the manner described above, but the privates, according to them, were thrown by Typhon into the Nile because no one of his accomplices was willing to take them. Yet Isis thought them as worthy of divine honours as the other parts, for, fashioning a likeness of them, she set it up in the temples, commanded that it be honoured, and made it the object of the highest regard and reverence in the rites and sacrifices accorded to the god.,7.  Consequently the Greeks too, inasmuch as they received from Egypt the celebrations of the orgies and the festivals connected with Dionysus, honour this member in both the mysteries and the initiatory rites and sacrifices of this god, giving it the name "phallus.",1.  The number of years from Osiris and Isis, they say, to the reign of Alexander, who founded the city which bears his name in Egypt, is over ten thousand, but, according to other writers, a little less than twenty-three thousand.,2.  And those who say that the god was born of Semelê and Zeus in Boeotian Thebes are, according to the priests, simply inventing the tale. For they say that Orpheus, upon visiting Egypt and participating in the initiation and mysteries of Dionysus, adopted them and as a favour to the descendants of Cadmus, since he was kindly disposed to them and received honours at their hands, transferred the birth of the god to Thebes; and the common people, partly out of ignorance and partly out of their desire to have the god thought to be a Greek, eagerly accepted his initiatory rites and mysteries.,3.  What led Orpheus to transfer the birth and rites of the god, they say, was something like this.,4.  Cadmus, who was a citizen of Egyptian Thebes, begat several children, of whom one was Semelê; she was violated by an unknown person, became pregnant, and after seven months gave birth to a child whose appearance was such as the Egyptians hold had been that of Osiris. Now such a child is not usually brought into the world alive, either because it is contrary to the will of the gods or because the law of nature does not admit of it.,5.  But when Cadmus found out what had taken place, having at the same time a reply from an oracle commanding him to observe the laws of his fathers, he both gilded the infant and paid it the appropriate sacrifices, on the ground that there had been a sort of epiphany of Osiris among men.,6.  The fatherhood of the child he attributed to Zeus, in this way magnifying Osiris and averting slander from his violated daughter; and this is the reason why the tale was given out among the Greeks to the effect that Semelê, the daughter of Cadmus, was the mother of Osiris by Zeus. Now at a later time Orpheus, who was held in high regard among the Greeks for his singing, initiatory rites, and instructions on things divine, was entertained as a guest by the descendants of Cadmus and accorded unusual honours in Thebes.,7.  And since he had become conversant with the teachings of the Egyptians about the gods, he transferred the birth of the ancient Osiris to more recent times, and, out of regard for the descendants of Cadmus, instituted a new initiation, in the ritual of which the initiates were given the account that Dionysus had been born of Semelê and Zeus. And the people observed these initiatory rites, partly because they were deceived through their ignorance, partly because they were attracted to them by the trustworthiness of Orpheus and his reputation in such matters, and most of all because they were glad to receive the god as a Greek, which, as has been said, is what he was considered to be.,8.  Later, after the writers of myths and poets had taken over this account of his ancestry, the theatres became filled with it and among following generations faith in the story grew stubborn and immutable. In general, they say, the Greeks appropriate to themselves the most renowned of both Egyptian heroes and gods, and so also the colonies sent out by them.,1.  Heracles, for instance, was by birth an Egyptian, who by virtue of his manly vigour visited a large part of the inhabited world and set up his pillar in Libya;,2.  and their proofs of this assertion they endeavour to draw from the Greeks themselves. For inasmuch as it is generally accepted that Heracles fought on the side of the Olympian gods in their war against the Giants, they say that it in no way accords with the age of the earth for the Giants to have been born in the period when, as the Greeks, Heracles lived, which was a generation before the Trojan War, but rather at the time, as their own account gives it, when mankind first appeared on the earth; for from the latter time to the present the Egyptians reckon more than ten thousand years, but from the Trojan War less than twelve hundred.,3.  Likewise, both the club and the lion's skin are appropriate to their ancient Heracles, because in those days arms had not yet been invented, and men defended themselves against their enemies with clubs of wood and used the hides of animals for defensive armour. They also designate him as the son of Zeus, but about the identity of his mother they say that they know nothing.,4.  The son of Alcmenê, who was born more than ten thousand years later and was called Alcaeus at birth, in later life became known instead as Heracles, not because he gained glory (kleos) by the aid of Hera, as Matris says, but because, having avowed the same principles as the ancient Heracles, he inherited that one's fame and name as well.,5.  The account of the Egyptians agrees also with the tradition which has been handed down among the Greeks since very early times, to the effect that Heracles cleared the earth of wild beasts, a story which is in no way suitable for man who lived in approximately the period of the Trojan War, when most parts of the inhabited world had already been reclaimed from their wild state by agriculture and cities and the multitude of men settled everywhere over the land.,6.  Accordingly this reclamation of the land suits better a man who lived in early times, when men were still held in subjection by the vast numbers of wild beasts, a state of affairs which was especially true in the case of Egypt, the upper part of which is to this day desert and infested with wild beasts.,7.  Indeed it is reasonable to suppose that the first concern of Heracles was for this country as his birthplace, and that, after he had cleared the land of wild beasts, he presented it to the peasants, and for this benefaction was accorded divine honours.,8.  And they say that Perseus also was born in Egypt, and that the origin of Isis is transferred by the Greeks to Argos in the myth which tells of that Io who was changed into a heifer.,1.  In general, there is great disagreement over these gods. For the same goddess is called by some Isis, by others Demeter, by others Thesmophorus, by others Selenê, by others Hera, while still others apply to her all these names.,2.  Osiris has been given the name Sarapis by some, Dionysus by others, Pluto by others, Ammon by others, Zeus by some, and many have considered Pan to be the same god; and some say that Sarapis is the god whom the Greeks call Pluto. As for Isis, the Egyptians say that she was the discoverer of many health-giving drugs and was greatly versed in the science of healing;,3.  consequently, now that she has attained immortality, she finds her greatest delight in the healing of mankind and gives aid in their sleep to those who call upon her, plainly manifesting both her very presence and her beneficence towards men who ask her help.,4.  In proof of this, as they say, they advance not legends, as the Greeks do, but manifest facts; for practically the entire inhabited world is their witness, in that it eagerly contributes to the honours of Isis because she manifests herself in healings.,5.  For standing above the sick in their sleep she gives them aid for their diseases and works remarkable cures upon such as submit themselves to her; and many who have been despaired of by their physicians because of the difficult nature of their malady are restored to health by her, while numbers who have altogether lost the use of their eyes or of some other part of their body, whenever they turn for help to this goddess, are restored to their previous condition.,6.  Furthermore, she discovered also the drug which gives immortality, by means of which she not only raised from the dead her son Horus, who had been the object of plots on the part of Titans and had been found dead under the water, giving him his soul again, but also made him immortal.,7.  And it appears that Horus was the last of the gods to be king after his father Osiris departed from among men. Moreover, they say that the name Horus, when translated, is Apollo, and that, having been instructed by his mother Isis in both medicine and divination, he is now a benefactor of the race of men through his oracular responses and his healings.,1.  The priests of the Egyptians, reckoning the time from the reign of Helius to the crossing of Alexander into Asia, say that it was in round numbers twenty-three thousand years.,2.  And, as their legends say, the most ancient of the gods ruled more than twelve hundred years and the later ones not less than three hundred.,3.  But since this great number of years surpasses belief, some men would maintain that in early times, before the movement of the sun had as yet been recognized, it was customary to reckon the year by the lunar cycle.,4.  Consequently, since the year consisted of thirty days, it was not impossible that some men lived twelve hundred years; for in our own time, when our year consists of twelve months, not a few men live over one hundred years.,5.  A similar explanation they also give regarding those who are supposed to have reigned for three hundred years; for at their time, namely, the year was composed of the four months which comprise the seasons of each year, that is, spring, summer, and winter; and it is for this reason that among some of the Greeks the years are called "seasons" (horoi) and that their yearly records are given the name "horographs.",6.  Furthermore, the Egyptians relate in their myths that in the time of Isis there were certain creatures of many bodies, who are called by the Greeks Giants, but by themselves . . ., these being the men who are represented on their temples in monstrous form and as being cudgelled by Osiris.,7.  Now some say that they were born of the earth at the time when the genesis of living things from the earth was still recent, while some hold that they were only men of unusual physical strength who achieved many deeds and for this reason were described in the myths as of many bodies.,8.  But it is generally agreed that when they stirred up war against Zeus and Osiris they were all destroyed. ,1.  The Egyptians also made a law, they say, contrary to the general custom of mankind, permitting men to marry their sisters, this being due to the success attained by Isis in this respect; for she had married her brother Osiris, and upon his death, having taken a vow never to marry another man, she both avenged the murder of her husband and reigned all her days over the land with complete respect for the laws, and, in a word, became the cause of more and greater blessings to all men than any other.,2.  It is for these reasons, in fact, that it was ordained that the queen should have greater power and honour than the king and that among private persons the wife should enjoy authority over her husband, the husbands agreeing in the marriage contract that they will be obedient in all things to their wives.,3.  Now I am not unaware that some historians give the following account of Isis and Osiris: The tombs of these gods lie in Nysa in Arabia, and for this reason Dionysus is also called Nysaeus. And in that place there stands also a stele of each of the gods bearing an inscription in hieroglyphs.,4.  On the stele of Isis it runs: "I am Isis, the queen of every land, she who was instructed of Hermes, and whatsoever laws I have established, these can no man make void. I am the eldest daughter of the youngest god Cronus; I am the wife and sister of the king Osiris; I am she who first discovered fruits for mankind; I am the mother of Horus the king; I am she who riseth in the star that is in the Constellation of the Dog; by me was the city of Bubastus built. Farewell, farewell, O Egypt that nurtured me.",5.  And on the stele of Osiris the inscription is said to run: "My father is Cronus, the youngest of all the gods, and I am Osiris the king, who campaigned over every country as far as the uninhabited regions of India and the lands to the north, even to the sources of the river Ister, and again to the remaining parts of the world as far as Oceanus. I am the eldest son of Cronus, and being sprung from a fair and noble egg I was begotten a seed of kindred birth to Day. There is no region of the inhabited world to which I have not come, dispensing to all men the things of which I was the discoverer.",6.  So much of the inscriptions on the stelae can be read, they say, but the rest of the writing, which was of greater extent, has been destroyed by time. However this may be, varying accounts of the burial of these gods are found in most writers by reason of the fact that the priests, having received the exact facts about these matters as a secret not to be divulged, are unwilling to give out the truth to the public, on the ground that perils overhang any men who disclose to the common crowd the secret knowledge about these gods.,1.  Now the Egyptians say that also after these events a great number of colonies were spread from Egypt over all the inhabited world. To Babylon, for instance, colonists were led by Belus, who was held to be the son of Poseidon and Libya; and after establishing himself on the Euphrates river he appointed priests, called Chaldaeans by the Babylonians, who were exempt from taxation and free from every kind of service to the state, as are the priests of Egypt; and they also make observations of the stars, following the example of the Egyptian priests, physicists, and astrologers.,2.  They say also that those who set forth with Danaus, likewise from Egypt, settled what is practically the oldest city in Greece, Argos, and that the nation of the Colchi in Pontus and that of the Jews, which lies between Arabia and Syria, were founded as colonies by certain emigrants from their country;,3.  and this is the reason why it is a long-established institution among these two peoples to circumcise their male children, the custom having been brought over from Egypt.,4.  Even the Athenians, they say, are colonists from Saïs in Egypt, and they undertake to offer proofs of such a relationship; for the Athenians are the only Greeks who call their city "Asty," a name brought over from the city Asty in Egypt. Furthermore, their body politic had the same classification and division of the people as found in Egypt, where the citizens have been divided into three orders:,5.  the first Athenian class consisted of the "eupatrids," as they were called, being those who were such as had received the best education and were held worthy of the highest honour, as is the case with the priests of Egypt; the second was that of the "geomoroi," who were expected to possess arms and to serve in defence of the state, like those in Egypt who are known as husbandmen and supply the warriors; and the last class was reckoned to be that of the "demiurgoi," who practise the mechanical arts and render only the most menial services to the state, this class among the Egyptians having a similar function.,6.  Moreover, certain of the rulers of Athens were originally Egyptians, they say. Petes, for instance, the father of that Menestheus who took part in the expedition against Troy, having clearly been an Egyptian, later obtained citizenship at Athens and the kingship. . . .,7.  He was of double form, and yet the Athenians are unable from their own point of view to give the true explanation of this nature of his, although it is patent to all that it was because of his double citizenship, Greek and barbarian, that he was held to be of double form, that is, part animal and part man.,1.  In the same way, they continue, Erechtheus also, who was by birth an Egyptian, became king of Athens, and in proof of this they offer the following considerations. Once when there was a great drought, as is generally agreed, which extended over practically all the inhabited earth except Egypt because of the peculiar character of that country, and there followed a destruction both of crops and of men in great numbers, Erechtheus, through his racial connection with Egypt, brought from there to Athens a great supply of grain, and in return those who had enjoyed this aid made their benefactor king.,2.  After he had secured the throne he instituted the initiatory rites of Demeter in Eleusis and established the mysteries, transferring their ritual from Egypt. And the tradition that an advent of the goddess into Attica also took place at that time is reasonable, since it was then that the fruits which are named after her were brought to Athens, and this is why it was thought that the discovery of the seed had been made again, as though Demeter had bestowed the gift.,3.  And the Athenians on their part agree that it was in the reign of Erechtheus, when a lack of rain had wiped out the crops, that Demeter came to them with the gift of grain. Furthermore, the initiatory rites and mysteries of this goddess were instituted at Eleusis at that time.,4.  And their sacrifices as well as their ancient ceremonies are observed by the Athenians in the same way as by the Egyptians; for the Eumolpidae were derived from the priests of Egypt and the Ceryces from the pastophoroi. They are also the only Greeks who swear by Isis, and they closely resemble the Egyptians in both their appearance and manners.,5.  By many other statements like these, spoken more out of a love for glory than with regard for the truth, as I see the matter, they claim Athens as a colony of theirs because of the fame of that city. In general, the Egyptians say that their ancestors sent forth numerous colonies to many parts of the inhabited world, the pre-eminence of their former kings and their excessive population;,6.  but since they offer no precise proof whatsoever for these statements, and since no historian worthy of credence testifies in their support, we have not thought that their accounts merited recording. So far as the ideas of the Egyptians about the gods are concerned, let what we have said suffice, since we are aiming at due proportion in our account, but with regard to the land, the Nile, and everything else worth hearing about we shall endeavour, in each case, to give the several facts in summary.,1.  Consequently we, observing that writers of history are accorded a merited approbation, were led to feel a like enthusiasm for the subject. But when we turned our attention to the historians before our time, although we approved their purpose without reservation, yet we were far from feeling that their treatises had been composed so as to contribute to human welfare as much as might have been the case.,2.  For although the profit which history affords its readers lies in its embracing a vast number and variety of circumstances, yet most writers have recorded no more than isolated wars waged by a single nation or a single state, and but few have undertaken, beginning with the earliest times and coming down to their own day, to record the events connected with all peoples; and of the latter, some have not attached to the several events their own proper dates, and others have passed over the deeds of barbarian peoples; and some, again, have rejected the ancient legends because of the difficulties involved in their treatment, while others have failed to complete the plan to which they had set their hand, their lives having been cut short by fate. And of those who have undertaken this account of all peoples not one has continued his history beyond the Macedonian period.,3.  For while some have closed their accounts with the deeds of Philip, others with those of Alexander, and some with the Diadochi or the Epigoni, yet, despite the number and importance of the events subsequent to these and extending even to our own lifetime which have been left neglected, no historian has essayed to treat of them within the compass of a single narrative, because of the magnitude of the undertaking.,4.  For this reason, since both the dates of the events and the events themselves lie scattered about in numerous treatises and in divers authors, the knowledge of them becomes difficult for the mind to encompass and for the memory to retain.,5.  Consequently, after we had examined the composition of each of these authors' works, we resolved to write a history after a plan which might yield to its readers the greatest benefit and at the same time incommode them the least.,6.  For if a man should begin with the most ancient times and record to the best of his ability the affairs of the entire world down to his own day, so far as they have been handed down to memory, as though they were the affairs of some single city, he would obviously have to undertake an immense labour, yet he would have composed a treatise of the utmost value to those who are studiously inclined.,7.  For from such a treatise every man will be able readily to take what is of use for his special purpose, drawing as it were from a great fountain.,8.  The reason for this is that, in the first place, it is not easy for those who propose to go through the writings of so many historians to procure the books which come to be needed, and, in the second place, that, because the works vary so widely and are so numerous, the recovery of past events becomes extremely difficult of comprehension and of attainment; whereas, on the other hand, the treatise which keeps within the limits of a single narrative and contains a connected account of events facilitates the reading and contains such recovery of the past in a form that is perfectly easy to follow. In general, a history of this nature must be held to surpass all others to the same degree as the whole is more useful than the part and continuity than discontinuity, and, again, as an event whose date has been accurately determined is more useful than one of which it is not known in what period it happened.,1.  The land of Egypt stretches in a general way from north to south, and in natural strength and beauty of landscape is reputed to excel in no small degree all other regions that have been formed into kingdoms.,2.  For on the west it is fortified by the desert of Libya, which is full of wild beasts and extends along its border for a long distance, and by reason of its lack of rain and want of every kind of food makes the passage through it not only toilsome but even highly dangerous; while on the south the same protection is afforded by the cataracts of the Nile and the mountains flanking them,,3.  since from the country of the Trogodytes and the farthest parts of Ethiopia, over a distance of five thousand five hundred stades, it is not easy to sail by the river or to journey by land, unless a man is fitted out like a king or at least on a very great scale.,4.  And as for the parts of the country facing the east, some are fortified by the river and some are embraced by a desert and a swampy flat called the Barathra. For between Coele-Syria and Egypt there lies a lake, quite narrow, but marvellously deep and some two hundred stades in length, which is called Serbonis and offers unexpected perils to those who approach it in ignorance of its nature.,5.  For since the body of the water is narrow, like a ribbon, and surrounded on all sides by great dunes, when there are constant south winds great quantities of sand are strewn over it. This sand hides the surface of the water and makes the outline of the lake continuous with the solid land and entirely indistinguishable from it.,6.  For this reason many who were unacquainted with the peculiar nature of the place have disappeared together with whole armies, when they wandered from the beaten road.,7.  For as the sand is walked upon it gives way but gradually, deceiving with a kind of malevolent cunning those who advance upon it, until, suspecting some impending mishap, they begin to help one another only when it is no longer possible to turn back or escape.,8.  For anyone who has been sucked in by the mire cannot swim, since the slime prevents all movement of the body, nor is he able to wade out, since he has no solid footing; for by reason of the mixing of the sand with the water and the consequent change in the nature of both it comes about that the place cannot be crossed either on foot or by boat.,9.  Consequently those who enter upon these regions are borne towards the depths and have nothing to grasp to give them help, since the sand along the edge slips in with them. These flats have received a name appropriate to their nature as we have described it, being called Barathra.,1.  Now that we have set forth the facts about the three regions which fortify Egypt by land we shall add to them the one yet remaining.,2.  The fourth side, which is washed over its whole extent by waters which are practically harbourless, has for a defence before it the Egyptian Sea. The voyage along the coast of this sea is exceedingly long, and any landing is especially difficult; for from Paraetonium in Libya as far as Iopê in Coele-Syria, a voyage along the coast of some five thousand stades, there is not to be found a safe harbour except Pharos.,3.  And, apart from these considerations, a sandbank extends along practically the whole length of Egypt, not discernible to any who approach without previous experience of these waters.,4.  Consequently those who think that they have escaped the peril of the sea, and in their ignorance turn with gladness towards the shore, suffer unexpected shipwreck when their vessels suddenly run aground;,5.  and now and then mariners who cannot see land in time because the country lies so low are cast ashore before they realize it, some of them on marshy and swampy places and others on a desert region.,6.  The land of Egypt, then, is fortified on all sides by nature in the manner described, and is oblong in shape, having a coast-line of two thousand stades and extending inland about six thousand stades. In density of population it far surpassed of old all known regions of the inhabited world, and even in our own day is thought to be second to none other;,7.  for in ancient times it had over eighteen thousand important villages and cities, as can be seen entered in their sacred records, while under Ptolemy son of Lagus these were reckoned at over thirty thousand, this great number continuing down to our own time.,8.  The total population, they say, was of old about seven million and the number has remained no less down to our day.,9.  It is for this reason that, according to our historical accounts, the ancient kings Egypt built great and marvellous works with the aid of so many hands and left in them immortal monuments to their glory. But these matters we shall set forth in detail a little later; now we shall tell of the nature of the river and the distinctive features of the country.,1.  The Nile flows from south to north, having its sources in regions which have never been seen, since they lie in the desert at the extremity of Ethiopia in a country that cannot be approached because of the excessive heat.,2.  Being as it is the largest of all rivers as well as the one which traverses the greatest territory, it forms great windings, now turning towards the east and Arabia, now turning towards the west and Libya; for its course from the mountains of Ethiopia to where it empties into the sea is a distance, inclusive of its windings, of some twelve thousand stades.,3.  In its lower stretches it is more and more reduced in volume, as the flow is drawn off to the two continents.,4.  Of the streams which thus break off from it, those which turn off into Libya are swallowed up by the sand, which lies there to an incredible depth, while those which pour in the opposite direction into Arabia are diverted into immense fens and large marshes on whose shores dwell many peoples.,5.  But where it enters Egypt it has a width of ten stades, sometimes less, and flows, not in a straight course, but in windings of every sort; for it twists now towards the east, now towards the west, and at times even towards the south, turning entirely back upon itself.,6.  For sharp hills extend along both sides of the river, which occupy much of the land bordering upon it and are cut through by precipitous ravines, in which are narrow defiles; and when it comes to these hills the stream rushes rapidly backward through the level country, and after being borne southward over an area of considerable extent resumes once more its natural course.,7.  Distinguished as it is in these respects above all other streams, the Nile is also the only river which makes its way without violence or onrushing waves, except at the cataracts, as they are called.,8.  This is a place which is only about ten stades in length, but has a steep descent and is shut in by precipices so as to form a narrow cleft, rugged in its entire length and ravine-like, full, moreover, of huge boulders which stand out of the water like peaks. And since the river is split about these boulders with great force and is often turned back so that it rushes in the opposite direction because of the obstacles, remarkable whirlpools are formed;,9.  the middle space, moreover, for its entire length is filled with foam made by the backward rush of the water, and strikes those who approach it with great terror. And, in fact, the descent of the river is so swift and violent that it appears to the eye like the very rush of an arrow.,10.  During the flood-time of the Nile, when the peaked rocks are covered and the entire rapids are hidden by the large volume of the water, some men descend the cataract when they find the winds against them, but no man can make his way up it, since the force of the river overcomes every human device.,11.  Now there are still other cataracts of this nature, but the largest is the one on the border between Ethiopia and Egypt.,1.  The Nile also embraces islands within its waters, of which there are many in Ethiopia and one of considerable extent called Meroë, on which there also lies a famous city bearing the same name as the island, which was founded by Cambyses and named by him after his mother Meroë.,2.  This island, they say, has the shape of a long shield and in size far surpasses the other islands in these parts; for they state that it is three thousand stades long and a thousand wide. It also contains not a few cities, the most famous of which is Meroë.,3.  Extending the entire length of the island where it is washed by the river there are, on the side towards Libya, the dunes containing an infinite amount of sand, and, on the side towards Arabia, rugged cliffs. There are also to be found in it mines of gold, silver, iron, and copper, and it contains in addition much ebony and every kind of precious stone.,4.  Speaking generally, the river forms so many islands that the report of them can scarcely be credited; for, apart from the regions surrounded by water in what is called the Delta, there are more than seven hundred other islands, of which some are irrigated by the Ethiopians and planted with millet, though others are so overrun by snakes and dog-faced baboons and other animals of every kind that human beings cannot set foot upon them.,5.  Now where the Nile in its course through Egypt divides into several streams it forms the region which is called from its shape the Delta.,6.  The two sides of the Delta are described by the outermost branches, while its base is formed by the sea which receives the discharge from the several outlets of the river.,7.  It empties into the sea in seven mouths, of which the first, beginning at the east, is called the Pelusiac, the second the Tanitic, then the Mendesian, Phatnitic, and Sebennytic, then the Bolbitine, and finally the Canopic, which is called by some the Heracleotic.,8.  There are also other mouths, built by the hand of man, about which there is no special need to write. At each mouth is a walled city, which is divided into two parts by the river and provided on each side of the mouth with pontoon bridges and guard-houses at suitable points. From the Pelusiac mouth there is an artificial canal to the Arabian Gulf and the Red Sea.,9.  The first to undertake the construction of this was Necho the son of Psammetichus, and after him Darius the Persian made progress with the work for a time but finally left it unfinished;,10.  for he was informed by certain persons that if he dug through the neck of land he would be responsible for the submergence of Egypt, for they pointed out to him that the Red Sea was higher than Egypt.,11.  At a later time the second Ptolemy completed it and in the most suitable spot constructed an ingenious kind of a lock. This he opened, whenever he wished to pass through, and quickly closed again, a contrivance which usage proved to be highly successful.,12.  The river which flows through this canal is named Ptolemy, after the builder of it, and has at its mouth the city called Arsinoë.,1.  The Delta is much like Sicily in shape, and its sides are each seven hundred and fifty stades long and its base, where it is washed by the sea, thirteen hundred stades.,2.  This island is intersected by many artificial canals and includes the fairest land in Egypt. For since it is alluvial soil and well watered, it produces many crops of every kind, inasmuch as the river by its annual rise regularly deposits on it fresh slime, and the inhabitants easily irrigate its whole area by means of a contrivance which was invented by Archimedes of Syracuse and is called, after its shape, a screw.,3.  Since the Nile has a gentle current, carries down a great quantity of all kinds of earth, and, furthermore, gathers in stagnant pools in low places, marshes are formed which abound in every kind of plant.,4.  For tubers of every flavour grow in them and fruits and vegetables which grow on stalks, of a nature peculiar to the country, supplying an abundance sufficient to render the poor and the sick among the inhabitants self-sustaining.,5.  For not only do they afford a varied diet, ready at hand and abundant for all who need it, but they also furnish not a few of the other things which contribute to the necessities of life;,6.  the lotus, for instance, grows in great profusion, and from it the Egyptians make a bread which is able to satisfy the physical needs of the body, and the ciborium, which is found in great abundance, bears what is called the "Egyptian" bean.,7.  There are also many kinds of trees, of which that called persea, which was introduced from Ethiopia by the Persians when Cambyses conquered those regions, has an unusually sweet fruit,,8.  while of the fig-mulberry trees one kind bears the black mulberry and another a fruit resembling the fig; and since the latter produces throughout almost the whole year, the result is that the poor have a ready source to turn to in their need.,9.  The fruit called the blackberry is picked at the time the river is receding and by reason of its natural sweetness is eaten as a dessert.,10.  The Egyptians also make a drink out of barley which they call zythos, the bouquet of which is not much inferior to that of wine.,11.  Into their lamps they pour for lighting purposes, not the oil of the olive, but a kind which is extracted from a plant and called kiki. Many other plants, capable of supplying men with the necessities of life, grow in Egypt in great abundance, but it would be a long task to tell about them.,1.  As for animals, the Nile breeds many of peculiar form, and two which surpass the others, the crocodile and what is called the "horse.",2.  Of these animals the crocodile grows to be the largest from the smallest beginning, since this animal lays eggs about the size of those of a goose, but after the young is hatched it grows to be as long as sixteen cubits. It is as long-lived as man, and has no tongue.,3.  The body of the animal is wondrously protected by nature; for its skin is covered all over with scales and is remarkably hard, and there are many teeth in both jaws, two being tusks, much larger than the rest.,4.  It devours the flesh not only of men but also of any land animal which approaches the river. The bites which it makes are huge and severe and it lacerates terribly with its claws, and whatever part of the flesh it tears it renders altogether difficult to heal.,5.  In early times the Egyptians used to catch these beasts with hooks baited with the flesh of pigs, but since then they have hunted them sometimes with heavy nets, as they catch some kinds of fish, and sometimes from their boats with iron spears which they strike repeatedly into the head.,6.  The multitude of them in the river and the adjacent marshes is beyond telling, since they are prolific and are seldom slain by the inhabitants; for it is the custom of most of the natives of Egypt to worship the crocodile as a god, while for foreigners there is no profit whatsoever in the hunting of them since their flesh is not edible.,7.  But against this multitude's increasing and menacing the inhabitants nature has devised a great help; for the animal called the ichneumon, which is about the size of a small dog, goes about breaking the eggs of the crocodiles, since the animal lays them on the banks of the river, and — what is most astonishing of all — without eating them or profiting in any way it continually performs a service which, in a sense, has been prescribed by nature and forced upon the animal for the benefit of men.,8.  The animal called the "horse" is not less than five cubits high, and is four-footed and cloven-hoofed like the ox; it has tusks larger than those of the wild boar, three on each side, and ears and tail and a cry somewhat like those of the horse; but the trunk of its body, as a whole, is not unlike that of the elephant, and its skin is the toughest of almost any beast's.,9.  Being a river and land animal, it spends the day in the streams exercising in the deep water, while at night it forages about the countryside on the grain and hay, so that, if this animal were prolific and reproduced each year, it would entirely destroy the farms of Egypt.,10.  But even it is caught by the united work of many men who strike it with iron spears; for whenever it appears they converge their boats upon it, and gathering about it wound it repeatedly with a kind of chisel fitted with iron barbs, and then, fastening the end of a rope of tow to one of them which has become imbedded in the animal, they let it go until it dies from loss of blood.,11.  Its meat is tough and hard to digest and none of its inward parts is edible, neither the viscera nor the intestines.,1.  Beside the beasts above mentioned the Nile contains every variety of fish and in numbers beyond belief; for it supplies the natives not only with abundant subsistence from the fish freshly caught, but it also yields an unfailing multitude for salting.,2.  Speaking generally, we may say that the Nile surpasses all the rivers of the inhabited world in its benefactions to mankind. For, beginning to rise at the summer solstice, it increases in volume until the autumnal equinox, and, since it is bringing down fresh mud all the time, it soaks both the fallow land and the seed land as well as the orchard land for so long a time as the farmers may wish.,3.  For since the water comes with a gentle flow, they easily divert the river from their fields by small dams of earth, and then, by cutting these, as easily let the river in again upon the land whenever they think this to be advantageous.,4.  And in general the Nile contributes so greatly to the lightening of labour as well as to the profit of the inhabitants, that the majority of the farmers, as they begin work upon the areas of the land which are becoming dry, merely scatter their seed, turn their herds and flocks in on the fields, and after they have used these for trampling the seed in return after four or five months to harvest it; while some, applying light ploughs to the land, turn over no more than the surface of the soil after its wetting and then gather great heaps of grain without much expense or exertion.,5.  For, generally speaking, every kind of field labour among other peoples entails great expense and toil, but among the Egyptians alone is the harvest gathered in with very slight outlay of money and labour. Also the land planted with the vine, being irrigated as are the other fields, yields an abundant supply of wine to the natives.,6.  And those who allow the land, after it has been inundated, to lie uncultivated and give it over to the flocks to graze upon, are rewarded with flocks which, because of the rich pasturage, lamb twice and are twice shorn every year.,7.  The rise of the Nile is a phenomenon which appears wonderful enough to those who have witnessed it, but to those who have only heard of it, quite incredible. For while all other rivers begin to fall at the summer solstice and grow steadily lower and lower during the course of the following summer, this one alone begins to rise at that time and increases so greatly in volume day by day that it finally overflows practically all Egypt.,8.  And in like manner it afterwards follows precisely the opposite course and for an equal length of time gradually falls each day, until it has returned to its former level. And since the land is a level plain, while the cities and villages, as well as the farm-houses, lie on artificial mounds, the scene comes to resemble the Cyclades Islands.,9.  The wild land animals for the larger part are cut off by the river and perish in its waters, but a few escape by fleeing to higher ground; the herds and flocks, however, are maintained at the time of the flood in the villages and farm-houses, where fodder is stored up for them in advance.,10.  The masses of the people, being relieved of their labours during the entire time of the inundation, turn to recreation, feasting all the whole and enjoying without hindrance every device of pleasure.,11.  And because of the anxiety occasioned by the rise of the river the kings have constructed a Nilometer at Memphis, where those who are charged with the administration of it accurately measure the rise and despatch messages to the cities, and inform them exactly how many cubits or fingers the river has risen and when it has commenced to fall.,12.  In this manner the entire nation, when it has learned that the river has ceased rising and begun to fall, is relieved of its anxiety, while at the same time all immediately know in advance how large the next harvest will be, since the Egyptians have kept an accurate record of their observations of this kind over a long period of terms.,1.  Since there is great difficulty in explaining the swelling of the river, many philosophers and historians have undertaken to set forth the causes of it; regarding this we shall speak summarily, in order that we may neither make our digression too long nor fail to record that which all men are curious to know.,2.  For on the general subject of the rise of the Nile and its sources, as well as on the manner in which it reaches the sea and the other points in which this, the largest river of the inhabited world, differs from all others, some historians have actually not ventured to say a single word, although wont now and then to expatiate at length on some winter torrent or other, while others have undertaken to speak on these points of inquiry, but have strayed far from the truth.,3.  Hellanicus and Cadmus, for instance, as well as Hecataeus and all the writers like them, belonging as they do one and all to the early school, turned to the answers offered by the myths;,4.  Herodotus, who was a curious inquirer if ever a man was, and widely acquainted with history, undertook, it is true, to give an explanation of the matter, but is now found to have followed contradictory guesses; Xenophon and Thucydides, who are praised for the accuracy of their histories, completely refrained in their writings from any mention of the regions about Egypt; and Ephorus and Theopompus, who of all writers paid most attention to these matters, hit upon the truth the least. The error on the part of all these writers was due, not to their negligence, but to the peculiar character of the country.,5.  For from earliest times until Ptolemy who was called Philadelphus, not only did no Greeks ever cross over into Ethiopia, but none ascended even as far as the boundaries of Egypt — to such an extent were all these regions inhospitable to foreigners and altogether dangerous; but after this king had made an expedition into Ethiopia with an army of Greeks, being the first to do so, the facts about that country from that time forth have been more accurately learned.,6.  Such, then, were the reasons for the ignorance of the earlier historians; and as for the sources of the Nile and the region where the stream arises, not a man, down to the time of the writing of this history, has ever affirmed that he has seen them, or reported from hearsay an account received from any who have maintained that they have seen them.,7.  The question, therefore, resolves itself into a matter of guesswork and plausible conjecture; and when, for instance, the priests of Egypt assert that the Nile has its origin in the ocean which surrounds the inhabited world, there is nothing sound in what they say, and they are merely solving one perplexity by substituting another, and advancing as proof an explanation which itself stands much in need of proof.,8.  On the other hand, those Trogodytes, known as the Bolgii, who migrated from the interior because of the heat, say that there are certain phenomena connected with those regions, from which a man might reason that the body of the Nile is gathered from many sources which converge upon a single place, and that this is the reason for its being the most fertile of all known rivers.,9.  But the inhabitants of the country about the island called Meroë, with whom a man would be most likely to agree, since they are far removed from the art of finding reasons in accordance with what is plausible and dwell nearest the regions under discussion, are so far from saying anything accurate about these problems that they even call the river Astapus, which means, when translated into Greek, "Water from Darkness.",10.  This people, then, have given the Nile a name which accords with the want of any first-hand information about those regions and with their own ignorance of them; but in our opinion the explanation nearest the truth is the one which is farthest from pure assumption.,11.  I am not unaware that Herodotus, when distinguishing between the Libya which lies to the east and that which lies to the west of this river, attributes to the Libyans known as the Nasamones the exact observation of the stream, and says that the Nile rises in a certain lake and then flows through the land of Ethiopia for a distance beyond telling; and yet assuredly no hasty assent should be given to the statements either of Libyans, even though they may have spoken truthfully, or of the historian when what he says does not admit of proof.,1.  Now that we have discussed the sources and course of the Nile we shall endeavour to set forth the causes of its swelling.,2.  Thales, who is called one of the seven wise men, says that when the etesian winds blow against the mouths of the river they hinder the flow of the water into the sea, and that this is the reason why it rises and overflows Egypt, which is a low and level plain.,3.  But this explanation, plausible as it appears, may easily be shown to be false. For if what he said were true, all the rivers whose mouths face the etesian winds would rise in a similar way; but since this is the case nowhere in the inhabited world the true cause of the swelling must be sought elsewhere.,4.  Anaxagoras the physical philosopher has declared that the cause of the rising is the melting snow in Ethiopia, and the poet Euripides, a pupil of his, is in agreement with him. At least he writes: He quit Nile's waters, fairest that gush from earth, The Nile which, drawn from Ethiop land the black Man's home, flows with full flood when melts the snow.,5.  But the fact is that this statement also requires but a brief refutation, since it is clear to everyone that the excessive heat makes it impossible that any snow should fall in Ethiopia;,6.  for, speaking generally, in those regions there is no frost or cold or any sign whatsoever of winter, and this is especially true at the time of the rising of the Nile. And even if a man should admit the existence of great quantities of snow in the regions beyond Ethiopia, the falsity of the statement is still shown by this fact:,7.  every river which flows out of the snow gives out cool breezes, as is generally agreed, and thickens the air about it; but the Nile is the only river about which no clouds form, and where no cool breezes rise and the air is not thickened.,8.  Herodotus says that the size of the Nile at its swelling is its natural one, but that as the sun travels over Libya in the winter it draws up to itself from the Nile a great amount of moisture, and this is the reason why at that season the river becomes smaller than its natural size;,9.  but at the beginning of summer, when the sun turns back in its course towards the north, it dries out and thus reduces the level of both the rivers of Greece and those of every other land whose geographical position is like that of Greece.,10.  Consequently there is no occasion for surprise, he says, in the phenomenon of the Nile; for, as a matter of fact, it does not increase in volume in the hot season and then fall in the winter, for the reason just given.,11.  Now the answer to be made to this explanation also is that it would follow that, if the sun drew moisture to itself from the Nile in the winter, it would also take some moisture from all the other rivers of Libya and reduce the flow of their waters.,12.  But since nowhere in Libya is anything like this to be seen taking place, it is clear that the historian is caught inventing an explanation; for the fact is that the rivers of Greece increase in winter, not because the sun is farther away, but by reason of the enormous rainfall.,1.  Democritus of Abdera says that it is not the regions of the south that are covered with snow, but only those of the north, and that this is evident to everyone.,2.  The great quantities of heaped-up snow in the northern regions still remain frozen until about the time of the winter solstice, but when in summer its solid masses are broken up by the heat, a great melting sets up, and this brings about the formation of many thick clouds in the higher altitudes, since the vapour rises upwards in large quantities.,3.  These clouds are then driven by the etesian winds until they strike the highest mountains in the whole earth, which, he says, are those of Ethiopia; then by their violent impact upon these peaks, lofty as they are, they cause torrential rains which swell the river, to the greatest extent at the season of the etesian winds.,4.  But it is easy for anyone to refute this explanation also, if he will but note with precision the time when the increase of the river takes place; for the Nile begins to swell at the summer solstice, when the etesian winds are not yet blowing, and commences to fall after the autumnal equinox, when the same winds have long since ceased.,5.  Whenever, therefore, the precise knowledge derived from experience prevails over the plausibility of mere argumentation, while we should recognize the man's ingenuity, yet no credence should be given to his statements.,6.  Indeed, I pass over the further fact that the etesian winds can be seen to blow just as much from the west as from the north; since Borean and Aparctian winds are not the only winds which are called etesian, but also the Argestean, which blow from the direction of the sun's summer setting. Also the statement that by general agreement the highest mountains are those of Ethiopia is not only advanced without any proof, but it does not possess, either, the credibility which is accorded to facts established by observation.,7.  Ephorus, who presents the most recent explanation, endeavours to adduce a plausible argument, but, as may be seen, by no means arrives at the truth. For he says that all Egypt, being alluvial soil and spongy, and in nature like pumice-stone, is full of large and continuous cracks, through which it takes up a great amount of water; this it retains within itself during the winter season, but in the summer season it pours this out from itself everywhere like sweat, as it were, and by means of this exudation it causes the flood of the river.,8.  But this historian, as it appears to us, has not only never personally observed the nature of the country in Egypt, but has not even inquired with any care about it of those who are acquainted with the character of this land.,9.  For in the first place, if the Nile derived its increase from Egypt itself, it would then not experience a flood in its upper stretches, where it flows through a stony and solid country; yet, as a matter of fact, it floods while flowing over a course of more than six thousand stades through Ethiopia before it ever touches Egypt.,10.  Secondly, if the stream of the Nile were, on the one hand, lower than the rifts in the alluvial soil, the cracks would then be on the surface and so great an amount of water could not possibly remain in them; and if, on the other hand, the river occupied a higher level than the rifts, there could not possibly be a flow of water from the lower hollows to the higher surface.,11.  In general, can any man think it possible that the exudations from rifts in the ground should produce so great an increase in the waters of the river that practically all Egypt is inundated by it! For I pass over the false statements of Ephorus about the ground being alluvial and water being stored up in the rifts, since the refutation of them is manifest.,12.  For instance, the Meander river in Asia has laid down a great amount of alluvial land, yet not a single one of the phenomena attending the flooding of the Nile is to be seen in its case.,13.  And like the Meander the river in Acarnania known as the Acheloüs, and the Cephisus in Boeotia, which flows out of Phocis, have built up not a little land, and in the case of both there is clear proof that the historian's statements are erroneous. However, under no circumstances would any man look for strict accuracy in Ephorus, when he sees that in many matters he has paid little regard for the truth.,1.  And so we, appreciating that an undertaking of this nature, while most useful, would yet require much labour and time, have been engaged upon it for thirty years, and with much hardship and many dangers we have visited a large portion of both Asia and Europe that we might see with our own eyes all the most important regions and as many others as possible; for many errors have been committed through ignorance of the sites, not only by the common run of historians, but even by some of the highest reputation.,2.  As for the resources which have availed us in this undertaking, they have been, first and foremost, that enthusiasm for the work which enables every man to bring to completion the task which seems impossible, and, in the second place, the abundant supply which Rome affords of the materials pertaining to the proposed study.,3.  For the supremacy of this city, a supremacy so powerful that it extends to the bounds of the inhabited world, has provided us in the course of our long residence there with copious resources in the most accessible form.,4.  For since the city of our origin was Agyrium in Sicily, and by reason of our contact with the Romans in that island we had gained a wide acquaintance with their language, we have acquired an accurate knowledge of all the events connected with this empire from the records which have been carefully preserved among them over a long period of time.,5.  Now we have begun our history with the legends of both Greeks and barbarians, after having first investigated to the best of our ability the accounts which each people records of its earliest times.,6.  Since my undertaking is now completed, although the volumes are as yet unpublished, I wish to present a brief preliminary outline of the work as a whole. Our first six Books embrace the events and legends previous to the Trojan War, the first three setting forth the antiquities of the barbarians, and the next three almost exclusively those of the Greeks; in the following eleven we have written a universal history of events from the Trojan War to the death of Alexander;,7.  and in the succeeding twenty-three Books we have given an orderly account of all subsequent events down to the beginning of the war between the Romans and the Celts, in the course of which the commander, Gaius Julius Caesar, who has been deified because of his deeds, subdued the most numerous and most warlike tribes of the Celts, and advanced the Roman Empire as far as the British Isles. The first events of this war occurred in the first year of the One Hundred and Eightieth Olympiad, when Herodes was archon at Athens.,1.  Certain of the wise men in Memphis have undertaken to advance an explanation of the flooding, which is incapable of disproof rather than credible, and yet it is accepted by many.,2.  They divide the earth into three parts, and say that one part is that which forms our inhabited world, that the second is exactly opposed to these regions in its seasons, and that the third lies between these two but is uninhabited by reason of the heat.,3.  Now if the Nile rose in the winter, it would be clear that it was receiving its additional waters from our zone because of the heavy rains which fall with us in that season especially; but since, on the contrary, its flood occurs in the summer, it is probable that in the regions opposite to us the winter storms are being produced and that the surplus waters of those distant regions flow into our inhabited world.,4.  And it is for this reason that no man can journey to the sources of the Nile, because the river flows from the opposite zone through the uninhabited one. A further witness to this is the excessive sweetness of the water of the Nile; for in the course of the river through the torrid zone it is tempered by the heat, and that is the reason for its being the sweetest of all rivers, inasmuch as by the law of nature that which is fiery always sweetens what is wet.,5.  But this explanation admits of an obvious rebuttal, for plainly it is quite impossible for a river to flow uphill into our inhabited world from the inhabited world opposite to ours, especially if one holds to the theory that the earth is shaped like a sphere. And indeed, if any man makes bold to do violence, by means of mere words, to facts established by observation, Nature at least will in no wise yield to him. For, in general, such men think that, by introducing a proposition incapable of being disproved and placing the uninhabited region between the two inhabited ones, they will in this way avoid all precise refutations of their argument;,6.  but the proper course for such as take a firm position on any matter is either to adduce the observed facts as evidence or to find their proofs in statements which have been agreed upon at the outset. But how can the Nile be the only river which flows from that inhabited world to our parts? For it is reasonable to suppose that other rivers as well are to be found there, just as there are many among us.,7.  Moreover, the cause which they advance for the sweetness of the water is altogether absurd. For if the river were sweetened by being tempered by the heat, it would not be so productive as it is of life, nor contain so many kinds of fishes and animals; for all water upon being changed by the fiery element is quite incapable of generating life.,8.  Therefore, since by the "tempering" process which they introduce they entirely change the real nature of the Nile, the causes which they advance for its flooding must be considered false.,1.  Oenopides of Chios says that in the summer the waters under the earth are cold, but in the winter, on the contrary, warm; and that this may be clearly observed in deep wells, for in midwinter their water is least cold, while in the hottest weather the coldest water is drawn up from them.,2.  Consequently it is reasonable that the Nile should be small and should diminish in the winter, since the heat in the earth consumes the larger part of the moisture and there are no rains in Egypt; while in the summer, since there is no longer any consumption of the moisture down in the depths of the earth, the natural flow of the river is increased without hindrance.,3.  But the answer to be given to this explanation also is that there are many rivers in Libya, whose mouths are situated like those of the Nile and whose courses are much the same, and yet they do not rise in the same manner as the Nile; on the contrary, flooding as they do in the winter and receding in the summer, they refute the false statement of any man who tries to overcome the truth with specious arguments.,4.  The nearest approach to the truth has been made by Agatharchides of Cnidus. His explanation is as follows: Every year continuous rains fall in the mountains of Ethiopia from the summer solstice to the autumnal equinox;,5.  and so it is entirely reasonable that the Nile should diminish in the winter when it derives its natural supply of water solely from its sources, but should increase its volume in the summer on account of the rains which pour into it.,6.  And just because no one up to this time has been able to set forth the causes of the origin of the flood waters, it is not proper, he urges, that his personal explanation be rejected; for nature presents many contradictory phenomena, the exact causes of which are beyond the power of mankind to discover.,7.  As to his own statement, he adds, testimony to its truth is furnished by what takes place in certain regions of Asia. For on the borders of Scythia which abut upon the Caucasus mountains, annually, after the winter is over, exceptionally heavy snow-storms occur over many consecutive days; in the northern parts of India at certain seasons hailstones come beating down which in size and quantity surpass belief; about the Hydaspes river continuous rains fall at the opening of summer; and in Ethiopia, likewise, the same thing occurs some days later, this climatical condition, in its regular recurrence, always causing storms in the neighbouring regions.,8.  And so, he argues, it is nothing surprising if in Ethiopia as well, which lies above Egypt, continuous rains in the mountains, beating down in the summer, swell the river, especially since the plain fact itself is witnessed to by the barbarians who inhabit these regions.,9.  And if what has been said is of a nature opposite to what occurs among us, it should not be disbelieved on that score; for the south wind, for example, with us is accompanied by stormy weather, but in Ethiopia by clear skies, and in Europe the north winds are violent, but in that land they are gentle and light.,10.  With regard, then, to the flooding of the Nile, though we are able to answer with more varied arguments all who have offered explanations of it, we shall rest content with what has been said, in order that we may not overstep the principle of brevity which we resolved upon at the beginning. And since we have divided this Book into two parts because of its length, inasmuch as we are aiming at due proportion in our account, at this point we shall close the first portion of our history, and in the second we shall set forth the facts in the history of Egypt which come next in order, beginning with the account of the former kings of Egypt and of the earliest manner of life among the Egyptians.,1.  The First Book of Diodorus being divided because of its length into two volumes, the first contains the preface of the whole treatise and the accounts given by the Egyptians of the genesis of the world and the first forming of the universe; then he tells of the gods who founded cities in Egypt and named them after themselves, of the first men and the earliest manner of life, of the honour paid to the immortals and the building of their temples to them, then of the topography of Egypt and the marvels related about the river Nile, and also of the causes of its flooding and the opinions thereupon of the historians and the philosophers as well as the refutation of each writer.,2.  In this volume we shall discuss the topics which come next in order after the foregoing. We shall begin with the first kings of Egypt and set forth their individual deeds down to King Amasis, after we have first described in summary fashion the most ancient manner of life in Egypt.,1.  As for their means of living in primitive times, the Egyptians, they say, in the earliest period got their food from herbs and the stalks and roots of the plants which grew in the marshes, making trial of each one of them by tasting it, and the first one eaten by them and the most favoured was that called Agrostis, because it excelled the others in sweetness and supplied sufficient nutriment for the human body;,2.  for they observed that this plant was attractive to the cattle and quickly increased their bulk. Because of this fact the natives, in remembrance of the usefulness of this plant, to this day, when approaching the gods, hold some of it in their hands as they pray to them; for they believe that man is a creature of swamp and marsh, basing this conclusion on the smoothness of his skin and his physical constitution, as well as on the fact that he requires a wet rather than a dry diet.,3.  A second way by which the Egyptians subsisted was, they say, by the eating of fish, of which the river provided a great abundance, especially at the time when it receded after its flood and dried up.,4.  They also ate the flesh of some of the pasturing animals, using for clothing the skins of the beasts that were eaten, and their dwellings they built out of reeds. And traces of these customs still remain among the herdsmen of Egypt, all of whom, they say, have no other dwelling up to this time than one of reeds, considering that with this they are well enough provided for.,5.  After subsisting in this manner over a long period of time they finally turned to the edible fruits of the earth, among which may be included the bread made from the lotus. The discovery of these is attributed by some to Isis, but by others to one of their early kings called Menas.,6.  The priests, however, have the story that the discoverer of the branches of learning and of the arts was Hermes, but that it was their kings who discovered such things as are necessary for existence; and that this was the reason why the kingship in early times was bestowed, not upon the sons of their former rulers, but upon such as conferred the greatest and most numerous benefits upon the peoples, whether it be that the inhabitants in this way sought to provoke their kings to useful service for the benefit of all, or that they have in very truth received an account to this effect in their sacred writings.,1.  Some of them give the story that at first gods and heroes ruled Egypt for a little less than eighteen thousand years, the last of the gods to rule being Horus, the son of Isis; and mortals have been kings over their country, they say, for a little less than five thousand years down to the One Hundred and Eightieth Olympiad, the time when we visited Egypt and the king was Ptolemy, who took the name of The New Dionysus.,2.  For most of this period the rule was held by native kings, and for a small part of it by Ethiopians, Persians, and Macedonians. Now four Ethiopians held the throne, not consecutively but with intervals between, for a little less than thirty-six years in all;,3.  and the Persians, after their king Cambyses had subdued the nation by arms, ruled for one hundred and thirty-five years, including the periods of revolt on the part of the Egyptians which they raised because they were unable to endure the harshness of their dominion and their lack of respect for the native gods.,4.  Last of all the Macedonians and their dynasty held rule for two hundred and seventy-six years. For the rest of the time all the kings of the land were natives, four hundred and seventy of them being men and five women. About all of them the priests had records which were regularly handed down in their sacred books to each successive priest from early times, giving the stature of each of the former kings, a description of his character, and what he had done during his reign; as for us, however, it would be a long task to write of each of them severally, and superfluous also, seeing that most of the material included is of no profit.,5.  Consequently we shall undertake to recount briefly only the most important of the facts which deserve a place in history. ,1.  After the gods the first king of Egypt, according to the priests, was Menas, who taught the people to worship gods and offer sacrifices, and also to supply themselves with tables and couches and to use costly bedding, and, in a word, introduced luxury and an extravagant manner of life.,2.  For this reason when, many generations later, Tnephachthus, the father of Bocchoris the wise, was king and, while on a campaign in Arabia, ran short of supplies because the country was desert and rough, we are told that he was obliged to go without food for one day and then to live on quite simple fare at the home of some ordinary folk in private station, and that he, enjoying the experience exceedingly, denounced luxury and pronounced a curse on the king who had first taught the people their extravagant way of living; and so deeply did he take to heart the change which had taken place in the people's habits of eating, drinking, and sleeping, that he inscribed his curse in hieroglyphs on the temple of Zeus in Thebes; and this, in fact, appears to be the chief reason why the fame of Menas and his honours did not persist into later ages.,3.  And it is said that the descendants of this king, fifty-two in number all told, ruled in unbroken succession more than a thousand and forty years, but that in their reigns nothing occurred that was worthy of record.,4.  Subsequently, when Busiris became king and his descendants in turn, eight in name, the last of the line, who bore the same name as the first, founded, they say, the city which the Egyptians call Diospolis the Great, though the Greeks call it Thebes. Now the circuit of it he made one hundred and forty stades, and he adorned it in marvellous fashion with great buildings and remarkable temples and dedicatory monuments of every other kind;,5.  in the same way he caused the houses of private citizens to be constructed in some cases four stories high, in others five, and in general made it the most prosperous city, not only of Egypt, but of the whole world.,6.  And since, by reason of the city's pre-eminent wealth and power, its fame has been spread abroad to every region, even the poet, we are told, has mentioned it when he says: Nay, not for all the wealth Of Thebes in Egypt, where in ev'ry hall There lieth treasure vast; a hundred are Her gates, and warriors by each issue forth Two hundred, each of them with car and steeds.,7.  Some, however, tell us that it was not one hundred "gates" (pulai) which the city had, but rather many great propylaea in front of its temples, and that it was from these that the title "hundred-gated" was given it, that is, "having many gateways." Yet twenty thousand chariots did in truth, we are told, pass out from it to war; for there were once scattered along the river from Memphis to the Thebes which is over against Libya one hundred post-stations, each one having accommodation for two hundred horses, whose foundations are pointed out even to this day.,1.  Not only this king, we have been informed, but also many of the later rulers devoted their attention to the development of the city. For no city under the sun has ever been so adorned by votive offerings, made of silver and gold and ivory, in such number and of such size, by such a multitude of colossal statues, and, finally, by obelisks made of single blocks of stone.,2.  Of four temples erected there the oldest is a source of wonder for both its beauty and size, having a circuit of thirteen stades, a height of forty-five cubits, and walls twenty-four feet thick.,3.  In keeping with this magnificence was also the embellishment of the votive offerings within the circuit wall, marvellous for the money spent upon it and exquisitely wrought as to workmanship.,4.  Now the buildings of the temple survived down to rather recent times, but the silver and gold and costly works of ivory and rare stone were carried off by the Persians when Cambyses burned the temples of Egypt; and it was at this time, they say, that the Persians, by transferring all this wealth to Asia and taking artisans along from Egypt, constructed their famous palaces in Persepolis and Susa and throughout Media.,5.  So great was the wealth of Egypt at that period, they declare, that from the remnants left in the course of the sack and after the burning the treasure which was collected little by little was found to be worth more than three hundred talents of gold and no less than two thousand three hundred talents of silver.,6.  There are also in this city, they say, remarkable tombs of the early kings and of their successors, which leave to those who aspire to similar magnificence no opportunity to outdo them.,7.  Now the priests said that in their records they find forty-seven tombs of kings; but down to the time of Ptolemy son of Lagus, they say, only fifteen remained, most of which had been destroyed at the time we visited those regions, in the One Hundred and Eightieth Olympiad.,8.  Not only do the priests of Egypt give these facts from their records, but many also of the Greeks who visited Thebes in the time of Ptolemy son of Lagus and composed histories of Egypt, one of whom was Hecataeus, agree with what we have said.  ,1.  Ten stades from the first tombs, he says, in which, according to tradition, are buried the concubines of Zeus, stands a monument of the king known as Osymandyas. At its entrance there is a pylon, constructed of variegated stone, two plethra in breadth and forty-five cubits high;,2.  passing through this one enters a rectangular peristyle, built of stone, four plethra long on each side; it is supported, in place of pillars, by monolithic figures sixteen cubits high, wrought in the ancient manner as to shape; and the entire ceiling, which is two fathoms wide, consists of a single stone, which is highly decorated with stars on a blue field. Beyond this peristyle there is yet another entrance and pylon, in every respect like the one mentioned before, save that it is more richly wrought with every manner of relief;,3.  beside the entrance are three statues, each of a single block of black stone from Syene, of which one, that is seated, is the largest of any in Egypt, the foot measuring over seven cubits, while the other two at the knees of this, the one on the right and the other on the left, daughter and mother respectively, are smaller than the one first mentioned.,4.  And it is not merely for its size that this work merits approbation, but it is also marvellous by reason of its artistic quality and excellent because of the nature of the stone, since in a block of so great a size there is not a single crack or blemish to be seen. The inscription upon it runs: "King of Kings am I, Osymandyas. If anyone would know how great I am and where I lie, let him surpass one of my works.",5.  There is also another statue of his mother standing alone, a monolith twenty cubits high, and it has three diadems on its head, signifying that she was both daughter and wife and mother of a king.,6.  Beyond the pylon, he says, there is a peristyle more remarkable than the former one; in it there are all manner of reliefs depicting the war which the king waged against those Bactrians who had revolted; against these he had made a campaign with four hundred thousand foot-soldiers and twenty thousand cavalry, the whole army having been divided into four divisions, all of which were under the command of sons of the king.,1.  On the first wall the king, he says, is represented in the act of besieging a walled city which is surrounded by a river, and of leading the attack against opposing troops; he is accompanied by a lion, which is aiding him with terrifying effect. Of those who have explained the scene some have said that in very truth a tame lion which the king kept accompanied him in the perils of battle and put the enemy to rout by his fierce onset; but others have maintained that the king, who was exceedingly brave and desirous of praising himself in a vulgar way, was trying to portray his own bold spirit in the figure of a lion.,2.  On the second wall, he adds, are wrought the captives as they are being led away by the king; they are without their privates and their hands, which apparently signifies that they were effeminate in spirit and had no hands when it came to the dread business of warfare.,3.  The third wall carries every manner of relief and excellent paintings, which portray the king performing a sacrifice of oxen and celebrating a triumph after the war.,4.  In the centre of the peristyle there had been constructed of the most beautiful stone an altar, open to the sky, both excellent in its workmanship and marvellous because of its size.,5.  By the last wall are two monolithic seated statues, twenty-seven cubits high, beside which are set three entrances from the peristyle; and by way of these entrances one comes into a hall whose roof was supported by pillars, constructed in the style of an Odeum, and measuring two plethra on each side.,6.  In this hall there are many wooden statues representing parties in litigation, whose eyes are fixed upon the judges who decide their cases; and these, in turn, are shown in relief on one of the walls, to the number of thirty and without any hands, and in their midst the chief justice, with a figure of Truth hanging from his neck and holding his eyes closed, and at his side a great number of books. And these figures show by their attitude that the judges shall receive no gift and that the chief justice shall have his eyes upon the truth alone.,1.  Next to these courts, he says, is an ambulatory crowded with buildings of every kind, in which there are representations of the foods that are sweetest to the taste, of every variety.,2.  Here are to be found reliefs in which the king, adorned in colours, is represented as offering to the god the gold and silver which he received each year from the silver and gold mines of all Egypt; and an inscription below gives also the total amount, which, summed up according to its value in silver, is thirty-two million minas.,3.  Next comes the sacred library, which bears the inscription "Healing-place of the Soul," and contiguous to this building are statues of all the gods of Egypt, to each of whom the king in like manner makes the offering appropriate to him, as though he were submitting proof before Osiris and his assessors in the underworld that to the end of his days he had lived a life of piety and justice towards both men and gods.,4.  Next to the library and separated from it by a party wall is an exquisitely constructed hall, which contains a table with couches for twenty and statues of Zeus and Hera as well as of the king; here, it would seem, the body of the king is also buried.,5.  In a circle about this building are many chambers which contain excellent paintings of all the animals which are held sacred in Egypt. There is an ascent leading through these chambers to the tomb as a whole. At the top of this ascent there is a circular border of gold crowning the monument, three hundred and sixty-five cubits in circumference and one cubit thick; upon this the days of the year are inscribed, one in each cubit of length, and by each day the risings and settings of the stars as nature ordains them and the signs indicating the effects which the Egyptian astrologers hold that they produce. This border, they said, had been plundered by Cambyses and the Persians when he conquered Egypt.,6.  Such, they say, was the tomb of Osymandyas the king, which is considered far to have excelled all others, not only in the amount of money lavished upon it, but also in the ingenuity shown by the artificers.,1.  As for the periods included in this work, we do not attempt to fix with any strictness the limits of those before the Trojan War, because no trustworthy chronological table covering them has come into our hands: but from the Trojan War we follow Apollodorus of Athens in setting the interval from then to the Return of the Heracleidae as eighty years, from then to the First Olympiad three hundred and twenty-eight years, reckoning the dates by the reigns of the kings of Lacedaemon, and from the First Olympiad to the beginning of the Celtic war, which we have made the end of our history, seven hundred and thirty years; so that our whole treatise of forty Books embraces eleven hundred and thirty-eight years, exclusive of the periods which embrace the events before the Trojan War.,2.  We have given at the outset this precise outline, since we desire to inform our readers about the project as a whole, and at the same time to deter those who are accustomed to make their books by compilation, from mutilating works of which they are not the authors. And throughout our entire history it is to be hoped that what we have done well may not be the object of envy, and that the matters wherein our knowledge is defective may receive correction at the hands of more able historians.,3.  Now that we have set forth the plan and purpose of our undertaking we shall attempt to make good our promise of such a treatise. ,1.  The Thebans say that they are the earliest of all men and the first people among whom philosophy and the exact science of the stars were discovered, since their country enables them to observe more distinctly than others the rising and settings of the stars.,2.  Peculiar to them also is their ordering of the months and years. For they do not reckon the days by the moon, but by the sun, making their month of thirty days, and they add five and a quarter days to the twelve months and in this way fill out the cycle of the year. But they do not intercalate months or subtract days, as most of the Greeks do. They appear to have made careful observations of the eclipses both of the sun and of the moon, and predict them, foretelling without error all the events which actually occur.,3.  Of the descendants of this king, the eighth, known as Uchoreus, founded Memphis, the most renowned city of Egypt. For he chose the most favourable spot in all the land, where the Nile divides into several branches to form the "Delta," as it is called from its shape; and the result was that the city, excellently situated as it was at the gates of the Delta, continually controlled the commerce passing into upper Egypt.,4.  Now he gave the city a circumference of one hundred and fifty stades, and made it remarkably strong and adapted to its purpose by works of the following nature.,5.  Since the Nile flowed around the city and covered it at the time of inundation, he threw out a huge mound of earth on the south to serve as a barrier against the swelling of the river and also as a citadel against the attacks of enemies by land; and all around the other sides he dug a large and deep lake, which, by taking up the force of the river and occupying all the space about the city except where the mound had been thrown up, gave it remarkable strength.,6.  And so happily did the founder of the city reckon upon the suitableness of the site that practically all subsequent kings left Thebes and established both their palaces and official residences here. Consequently from this time Thebes began to wane and Memphis to increase, until the time of Alexander the king; for after he had founded the city on the sea which bears his name, all the kings of Egypt after him concentrated their interest on the development of it.,7.  Some adorned it with magnificent palaces, some with docks and harbours, and others with further notable dedications and buildings, to such an extent that it is generally reckoned the first or second city of the inhabited world. But a detailed description of this city we shall set forth in the appropriate period.,1.  The founder of Memphis, after constructing the mound and the lake, erected a palace, which, while not inferior to those of other nations, yet was no match for the grandeur of design and love of the beautiful shown by the kings who preceded him.,2.  For the inhabitants of Egypt consider the period of this life to be of no account whatever, but place the greatest value on the time after death when they will be remembered for their virtue, and while they give the name of "lodgings" to the dwellings of the living, thus intimating that we dwell in them but a brief time, they call the tombs of the dead "eternal homes," since the dead spend endless eternity in Hades; consequently they give less thought to the furnishings of their houses, but on the manner of their burials they do not forgo any excess of zeal.,3.  The aforementioned city was named, according to some, after the daughter of the king who founded it. They tell the story that she was loved by the river Nile, who had assumed the form of a bull, and gave birth to Egyptus, a man famous among the natives for his virtue, from whom the entire land received its name.,4.  For upon succeeding to the throne he showed himself to be a kindly king, just, and, in a word, upright in all matters and so, since he was held by all to merit great approbation because of his goodwill, he received the honour mentioned.,5.  Twelve generations after the king just named, Moeris succeeded to the throne of Egypt and built in Memphis itself the north propylaea, which far surpasses the others in magnificence, while ten schoeni above the city he excavated a lake which was remarkable for its utility and an undertaking of incredible magnitude.,6.  For its circumference, they say, is three thousand six hundred stades and its depth in most parts fifty fathoms; what man, accordingly, in trying to estimate the magnitude of the work, would not reasonably inquire how many myriads of men labouring for how many years were required for its completion?,7.  And as for the utility of this lake and its contribution to the welfare of all the inhabitants of Egypt, as well as for the ingenuity of the king, no man may praise them highly enough to do justice to the truth.,1.  For since the Nile did not rise to a fixed height every year and yet the fruitfulness of the country depended on the constancy of the flood-level, he excavated the lake to receive the excess water, in order that the river might not, by an excessive volume of flow, immoderately flood the land and form marshes and pools, nor, by failing to rise to the proper height, ruin the harvests by the lack of water.,2.  He also dug a canal, eighty stades long and three plethra wide, from the river to the lake, and by this canal, sometimes turning the river into the lake and sometimes shutting it off again, he furnished the farmers with an opportune supply of water, opening and closing the entrance by a skilful device and yet at considerable expense; for it cost no less than fifty talents if a man wanted to open or close this work.,3.  The lake has continued to serve well the needs of the Egyptians down to our time, and bears the name of its builder, being called to this day the Lake of Moeris.,4.  Now the king in excavating it left a spot in the centre, where he built a tomb and two pyramids, a stade in height, one for himself and the other for his wife, on the tops of which he placed stone statues seated upon thrones, thinking that by these monuments he would leave behind him an imperishable commemoration of his good deeds.,5.  The income accruing from the fish taken from the lake he gave to his wife for her unguents and general embellishment, the value of the catch amounting to a talent of silver daily;,6.  for there are twenty-two different kinds of fish in the lake, they say, and they are caught in such abundance that the people engaged in salting them, though exceedingly many, can scarcely keep up with their task. Now this is the account which the Egyptians give of Moeris.,1.  Sesoösis, they say, who became king seven generations later, performed more renowned and greater deeds than did any of his predecessors. And since, with regard to this king, not only are the Greek writers at variance with one another but also among the Egyptians the priests and the poets who sing his praises give conflicting stories, we for our part shall endeavour to give the most probable account and that which most nearly agrees with the monuments still standing in the land.,2.  Now at the birth of Sesoösis his father did a thing worthy of a great man and a king: Gathering together from over all Egypt the male children which had been born on the same day and assigning them nurses and guardians, he prescribed the same training and education for them all, on the theory that those who had been reared in the closest companionship and had enjoyed the same frank relationship would be most loyal and as fellow-combatants in the wars most brave.,3.  He amply provided for their every need and then trained the youths by unremitting exercises and hardships; for no one of them was allowed to have anything to eat unless he had first run one hundred and eighty stades.,4.  Consequently upon attaining to manhood they were all veritable athletes of robustness of body, and in spirit qualified for leadership and endurance because of the training which they had received in the most excellent pursuits.,5.  First of all Sesoösis, his companions also accompanying him, was sent by his father with an army into Arabia, where he was subjected to the laborious training of hunting wild animals and, after hardening himself to the privations of thirst and hunger, conquered the entire nation of the Arabs, which had never been enslaved before his day;,6.  and then, on being sent to the regions to the west, he subdued the larger part of Libya, though in years still no more than a youth.,7.  And when he ascended the throne upon the death of his father, being filled with confidence by reason of his earlier exploits he undertook to conquer the inhabited earth.,8.  There are those who say that he was urged to acquire empire over the whole world by his own daughter Athyrtis, who, according to some, was far more intelligent than any of her day and showed her father that the campaign would be an easy one, while according to others she had the gift of prophecy and knew beforehand, by means both of sacrifices and the practice of sleeping in temples, as well as from the signs which appear in the heavens, what would take place in the future.,9.  Some have also written that, at the birth of Sesoösis, his father had thought that Hephaestus had appeared to him in a dream and told him that the son who had been born would rule over the whole civilized world;,10.  and that for this reason, therefore, his father collected the children of the same age as his son and granted them a royal training, thus preparing them beforehand for an attack upon the whole world, and that his son, upon attaining manhood, trusting in the prediction of the god was led to undertake this campaign.,1.  In preparation for this undertaking he first of all confirmed the goodwill of all the Egyptians towards himself, feeling it to be necessary, if he were to bring his plan to a successful end, that his soldiers on the campaign should be ready to die for their leaders, and that those left behind in their native lands should not rise in revolt.,2.  He therefore showed kindnesses to everyone by all means at his disposal, winning over some by presents of money, others by gifts of land, and others by remission of penalties, and the entire people he attached to himself by his friendly intercourse and kindly ways; for he set free unharmed everyone who was held for some crime against the king and cancelled the obligations of those who were in prison for debt, there being a great multitude in the gaols.,3.  And dividing the entire land into thirty-six parts which the Egyptians call nomes, he set over each a nomarch, who should superintend the collection of the royal revenues and administer all the affairs of his division.,4.  He then chose out the strongest of the men and formed an army worthy of the greatness of his undertaking; for he enlisted six hundred thousand foot-soldiers, twenty-four thousand cavalry, and twenty-seven thousand war chariots.,5.  In command of the several divisions of his troops he set his companions, who were by this time inured to warfare, had striven for a reputation for valour from their youth, and cherished with a brotherly love both their king and one another, the number of them being over seventeen hundred.,6.  And upon all these commanders he bestowed allotments of the best land in Egypt, in order that, enjoying sufficient income and lacking nothing, they might sedulously practise the art of war.,1.  After he had made ready his army he marched first of all against the Ethiopians who dwell south of Egypt, and after conquering them he forced that people to pay a tribute in ebony, gold and the tusks of elephants.,2.  Then he sent out a fleet of four hundred ships into the Red Sea, being the first Egyptian to build warships, and not only took possession of the islands in those waters, but also subdued the coast of the mainland as far as India, while he himself made his way by land with his army and subdued all Asia.,3.  Not only did he, in fact, visit the territory which was afterwards won by Alexander of Macedon, but also certain peoples into whose country Alexander did not cross.,4.  For he even passed over the river Ganges and visited all of India as far as the ocean, as well as the tribes of the Scythians as far as the river Tanaïs, which divides Europe from Asia; and it was at this time, they say, that some of the Egyptians, having been left behind near the Lake Maeotis, founded the nation of the Colchi.,5.  And the proof which they offer of the Egyptian origin of this nation is the fact that the Colchi practise circumcision even as the Egyptians do, the custom continuing among the colonists sent out from Egypt as it also did in the case of the Jews.,6.  In the same way he brought all the rest of Asia into subjection as well as most of the Cyclades islands. And after he had crossed into Europe and was on his way through the whole length of Thrace he nearly lost his army through lack of food and the difficult nature of the land.,7.  Consequently he fixed the limits of his expedition in Thrace, and set up stelae in many parts of the regions which he had acquired; and these carried the following inscription in the Egyptian writing which is called "sacred": "This land the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, Sesoösis, subdued with his own arms.",8.  And he fashioned the stele with a representation, in case the enemy people were warlike, of the privy parts of a man, but in case they were abject and cowardly, of those of a woman, holding that the quality of the spirit of each people would be set forth most clearly to succeeding generations by the dominant member of the body.,9.  And in some places he also erected a stone statue of himself, armed with bow and arrows and a spear, in height four cubits and four palms, which was indeed his own stature.,10.  He dealt gently with all conquered peoples and, after concluding his campaign in nine years, commanded the nations to bring presents each year to Egypt according to their ability, while he himself, assembling a multitude of captives which has never been surpassed and a mass of other booty, returned to his country, having accomplished the greatest deeds of any king of Egypt to his day.,11.  All the temples of Egypt, moreover, he adorned with notable votive offerings and spoils, and honoured with gifts according to his merits every soldier who had distinguished himself for bravery.,12.  And in general, as a result of this campaign not only did the army, which had bravely shared in the deeds of the king and had gathered great wealth, make a brilliant homeward journey, but it also came to pass that all Egypt was filled to overflowing with benefits of every kind.,1.  Sesoösis now relieved his peoples of the labours of war and granted to the comrades who had bravely shared in his deeds a care-free life in the enjoyment of the good things which they had won, while he himself, being ambitious for glory and intent upon everlasting fame, constructed works which were great and marvellous in their conception as well as in the lavishness with which their cost was provided, winning in this way immortal glory for himself and for the Egyptians security combined with ease for all time.,2.  For beginning with the gods first, he built in each city of Egypt a temple to the god who was held in special reverence by its inhabitants. On these labours he used no Egyptians, but constructed them all by the hands of his captives alone; and for this reason he placed an inscription on every temple that no native had toiled upon it.,3.  And it is said that the captives brought from Babylonia revolted from the king, being unable to endure the hardships entailed by his works; and they, seizing a strong position on the banks of the river, maintained a warfare against the Egyptians and ravaged the neighbouring territory, but finally, on being granted an amnesty, they established a colony on the spot, which they also named Babylon after their native land.,4.  For a similar reason, they say, the city of Troy likewise, which even to this day exists on the bank of the Nile, received its name: for Menelaus, on his voyage from Ilium with a great number of captives, crossed over into Egypt; and the Trojans, revolting from him, seized a certain place and maintained a warfare until he granted them safety and freedom, whereupon they founded a city, to which they gave the name of their native land.,5.  I am not unaware that regarding the cities named above Ctesias of Cnidus has given a different account, saying that some of those who had come into Egypt with Semiramis founded them, calling them after their native lands.,6.  But on such matters as these it is not easy to set forth the precise truth, and yet the disagreements among historians must be considered worthy of record, in order that the reader may be able to decide upon the truth without prejudice.,1.  Now Sesoösis threw up many great mounds of earth and moved to them such cities as happened to be situated on ground that was not naturally elevated, in order that at the time of the flooding of the river both the inhabitants and their herds might have a safe place of retreat.,2.  And over the entire land from Memphis to the sea he dug frequent canals leading from the river, his purpose being that the people might carry out the harvesting of their crops quickly and easily, and that, through the constant intercourse of the peasants with one another, every district might enjoy both an easy livelihood and a great abundance of all things which minister to man's enjoyment. The greatest result of this work, however, was that he made the country secure and difficult of access against attacks by enemies;,3.  for practically all the best part of Egypt, which before this time had been easy of passage for horses and carts, has from that time on been very difficult for an enemy to invade by reason of the great number of canals leading from the river.,4.  He also fortified with a wall the side of Egypt which faces east, as a defence against inroads from Syria and Arabia; the wall extended through the desert from Pelusium to Heliopolis, and its length was some fifteen hundred stades.,5.  Moreover, he also built a ship of cedar wood, which was two hundred and eighty cubits long and plated on the exterior with gold and on the interior with silver. This ship he presented as a votive offering to the god who is held in special reverence in Thebes, as well as two obelisks of hard stone one hundred and twenty cubits high, upon which he inscribed the magnitude of his army, the multitude of his revenues, and the number of the peoples he had subdued; also in Memphis in the temples of Hephaestus he dedicated monolithic statues of himself and of his wife, thirty cubits high, and of his sons, twenty cubits high, the occasion of their erection being as follows.,6.  When Sesoösis had returned to Egypt after his great campaign and was tarrying at Pelusium, his brother, who was entertaining Sesoösis and his wife and children, plotted against them; for when they had fallen asleep after the drinking he piled great quantities of dry rushes, which he had kept in readiness for some time, around the tent in the night and set them afire.,7.  When the fire suddenly blazed up, those who had been assigned to wait upon the king came to his aid in a churlish fashion, as would men heavy with wine, but Sesoösis, raising both hands to the heavens with a prayer to the gods for the preservation of his children and wife, dashed out safe through the flames.,8.  For this unexpected escape he honoured the rest of the gods with votive offerings, as stated above, and Hephaestus most of all, on the ground that it was by his intervention that he had been saved.,1.  Although many great deeds have been credited to Sesoösis, his magnificence seems best to have been shown in the treatment which he accorded to the foreign potentates when he went forth from his palace.,2.  The kings whom he had allowed to continue their rule over the peoples which he had subdued and all others who had received from him the most important positions of command would present themselves in Egypt at specified times, bringing him gifts, and the king would welcome them and in all other matters show them honour and special preferment; but whenever he intended to visit a temple or city he would remove the horses from his four-horse chariot and in their place yoke the kings and other potentates, taking them four at a time, in this way showing to all men, as he thought, that, having conquered the mightiest of other kings and those most renowned for their excellence, he now had no one who could compete with him for the prize of excellence.,3.  This king is thought to have surpassed all former rulers in power and military exploits, and also in the magnitude and number of the votive offerings and public works which he built in Egypt. And after a reign of thirty-three years he deliberately took his own life, his eyesight having failed him; and this act won for him the admiration not only of the priests of Egypt but of the other inhabitants as well, for it was thought that he had caused the end of his life to comport with the loftiness of spirit shown in his achievements.,4.  So great became the fame of this king and so enduring through the ages that when, many generations later, Egypt fell under the power of the Persians and Darius, the father of Xerxes, was bent upon placing a statue of himself in Memphis before that of Sesoösis, the chief priest opposed it in a speech which he made in an assembly of the priests, to the effect that Darius had not yet surpassed the deeds of Sesoösis; and the king was far from being angered, but, on the contrary, being pleased at his frankness of speech, said that he would strive not to be found behind that ruler in any point when he had attained his years, and asked them to base their judgment upon the deeds of each at the same age, for that was the fairest test of their excellence.,5.  As regards Sesoösis, then, we shall rest content with what has been said.,1.  But his son, succeeding to the throne and assuming his father's appellation, did not accomplish a single thing in war or otherwise worthy of mention, though he did have a singular experience.,2.  He lost his sight, either because he shared in his father's bodily constitution or, as some fictitiously relate, because of his impiety towards the river, since once when caught in a storm upon it he had hurled a spear into the rushing current. Forced by this ill fortune to turn to the gods for aid, he strove over a long period to propitiate the deity by numerous sacrifices and honours, but received no consideration.,3.  But in the tenth year an oracular command was given to him to do honour to the god in Heliopolis and bathe his face in the urine of a woman who had never known any other man than her husband. Thereupon he began with his own wife and made trial of many, but found not one that was chaste save a certain gardener's wife, whom he married as soon as he was recovered. All the other women he burned alive in a certain village to which the Egyptians because of this incident gave the name Holy Field;,4.  and to the god in Heliopolis, out of gratitude for his benefaction, he dedicated, in accordance with the injunction of the oracle, two monolithic obelisks, eight cubits wide and one hundred high.,1.  Concerning the various conceptions of the gods formed by those who were the first to introduce the worship of the deity, and concerning the myths which are told about each of the immortals, although we shall refrain from setting forth the most part in detail, since such a procedure would require a long account, yet whatever on these subjects we may feel to be pertinent to the several parts of our proposed history we shall present in a summary fashion, that nothing which is worth hearing may be found missing.,2.  Concerning, however, every race of men, and all events that have taken place in the known parts of the inhabited world, we shall give an accurate account, so far as that is possible in the case of things that happened so long ago, beginning with the earliest times.,3.  Now as regards the first origin of mankind two opinions have arisen among the best authorities both on nature and on history. One group, which takes the position that the universe did not come into being and will not decay, has declared that the race of men also has existed from eternity, there having never been a time when men were first begotten; the other group, however, which hold that the universe came into being and will decay, has declared that, like it, men had their first origin at a definite time.,1.  After this king a long line of successors on the throne accomplished no deed worth recording. But Amasis, who became king many generations later, ruled the masses of the people with great harshness; many he punished unjustly, great numbers he deprived of their possessions, and towards all his conduct was without exception contemptuous and arrogant.,2.  Now for a time his victims bore up under this, being unable in any way to protect themselves against those of greater power; but when Actisanes, the king of the Ethiopians, led an army against Amasis, their hatred seized the opportunity and most of the Egyptians revolted.,3.  As a consequence, since he was easily overcome, Egypt fell under the rule of the Ethiopians. But Actisanes carried his good fortune as a man should and conducted himself in a kindly manner towards his subjects.,4.  For instance, he had his own manner of dealing with thieves, neither putting to death such as were liable to that punishment, nor letting them go with no punishment at all;,5.  for after he had gathered together out of the whole land those who were charged with some crime and had held a thoroughly fair examination of their cases, he took all who had been judged guilty, and, cutting off their noses, settled them in a colony on the edge of the desert, founding the city which was called Rhinocolura after the lot of its inhabitants.,6.  This city, which lies on the border between Egypt and Syria not far from the sea-coast, is wanting in practically everything which is necessary for man's existence;,7.  for it is surrounded by land which is full of brine, while within the walls there is but a small supply of water from wells, and this is impure and very bitter to the taste.,8.  But he settled them in this country in order that, in case they continued to practise their original manner of life, they might not prey upon innocent people, and also that they might not pass unrecognized as they mingled with the rest of mankind.,9.  And yet, despite the fact that they had been cast out into a desert country which lacked practically every useful thing, they contrived a way of living appropriate to the dearth about them, since nature forced them to devise every possible means to combat their destitution.,10.  For instance, by cutting down reeds in the neighbourhood and splitting them, they made long nets, which they set up along the beach for a distance of many stades and hunted quails; for these are driven in large coveys from the open sea, and in hunting them they caught a sufficient number to provide themselves with food.,1.  After the death of this king the Egyptians regained the control of their government and placed on the throne a native king, Mendes, whom some call Marrus.,2.  So far as war is concerned this ruler did not accomplish anything at all, but he did build himself a tomb known as the Labyrinth, which was not so remarkable for its size as it was impossible to imitate in respect to its ingenious design; for a man who enters it cannot easily find his way out, unless he gets a guide who is thoroughly acquainted with the structure.,3.  And some say that Daedalus, visiting Egypt and admiring the skill shown in the building, also constructed for Minos, the king of Crete, a labyrinth like the one in Egypt, in which was kept, as the myth relates, the beast called Minotaur.,4.  However, the labyrinth in Crete has entirely disappeared, whether it be that some ruler razed it to the ground or that time effaced the work, but the one in Egypt has stood intact in its entire structure down to our lifetime.,1.  After the death of this king there were no rulers for five generations, and then a man of obscure origin was chosen king, whom the Egyptians call Cetes, but who among the Greeks is thought to be that Proteus who lived at the time of the war about Ilium.,2.  Some tradition records that this Proteus was experienced in the knowledge of the winds and that he would change his body, sometimes into the form of different animals, sometimes into a tree or fire or something else, and it so happens that the account which the priests give of Cetes is in agreement with that tradition.,3.  For, according to the priests, from the close association which the king constantly maintained with the astrologers, he had gained experience in such matters, and from a custom which has been passed down among the kings of Egypt has arisen the myths current among the Greeks about the way Proteus changed his shape.,4.  For it was a practice among the rulers of Egypt to wear upon their heads the forepart of a lion, or bull, or snake as symbols of their rule; at times also trees or fire, and in some cases they even carried on their heads large bunches of fragrant herbs for incense, these last serving to enhance their comeliness and at the same time to fill all other men with fear and religious awe.,5.  On the death of Proteus his son Remphis succeeded to the throne. This ruler spent his whole life looking after the revenues and amassing riches from every source, and because of his niggardly and miserly character spent nothing either on votive offerings to the gods or on benefactions to the inhabitants.,6.  Consequently, since he had been not so much a king as only an efficient steward, in the place of a fame based upon virtue he left a treasure larger than that of any king before him; for according to tradition he amassed some four hundred thousand talents of silver and gold.,1.  After Remphis died, kings succeeded to the throne for seven generations who were confirmed sluggards and devoted only to indulgence and luxury. Consequently, in the priestly records, no costly building of theirs nor any deed worthy of historical record is handed down in connection with them, except in the case of one ruler, Nileus, from whom the river came to be named the Nile, though formerly called Aegyptus. This ruler constructed a very great number of canals at opportune places and in many ways showed himself eager to increase the usefulness of the Nile, and therefore became the cause of the present appellation of the river.,2.  The eighth king, Chemmis of Memphis, ruled fifty years and constructed the largest of the three pyramids, which are numbered among the seven wonders of the world.,3.  These pyramids, which are situated on the side of Egypt which is towards Libya, are one hundred and twenty stades from Memphis and forty-five from the Nile, and by the immensity of their structures and the skill shown in their execution they fill the beholder with wonder and astonishment.,4.  For the largest is in the form of a square and has a base length on each side of seven plethra and a height of over six plethra; it also gradually tapers to the top, where each side is six cubits long.,5.  The entire construction is of hard stone, which is difficult to work but lasts for ever; for though no fewer than a thousand years have elapsed, as they say, to our lifetime, or, as some writers have it, more than three thousand four hundred, the stones remain to this day still preserving their original position and the entire structure undecayed.,6.  It is said that the stone was conveyed over a great distance from Arabia and that the construction was effected by means of mounds, since cranes had not yet been invented at that time;,7.  and the most remarkable thing in the account is that, though the constructions were on such a great scale and the country round about them consists of nothing but sand, not a trace remains either of any mound or of the dressing of the stones, so that they do not have the appearance of being the slow handiwork of men but look like a sudden creation, as though they had been made by some god and set down bodily in the surrounding sand.,8.  Certain Egyptians would make a marvel out of these things, saying that, inasmuch as the mounds were built of salt and saltpetre, when the river was let in it melted them down and completely effaced them without the intervention of man's hand.,9.  However, there is not a word of truth in this, but the entire material for the mounds, raised as they were by the labour of many hands, was returned by the same means to the place from which it came; for three hundred and sixty thousand men, as they say, were employed on the undertaking, and the whole structure was scarcely completed in twenty years. JavaScript must be enabled in order for you to use Google Maps. It seems, though, that JavaScript is either disabled or not supported by your browser. To view Google Maps, enable JavaScript by changing your browser options, and then try again. The Pyramids of Gizeh and the Sphinx. Diodorus' measurements can be checked, more or less. Although there were several slightly different stadia, 180 meters can be taken as an approximate value, with six plethra to a stade. Assuming Google's scale to be accurate and the text of Diodorus followed by the Loeb editors to have been transmitted without error and not tampered with by modern scholars to conform to what we now know to be the facts — two big if's — his figures are very accurate; maybe slightly low. [and if you need it,, including my own symbols & added information.] --,1.  Upon the death of this king his brother Cephren succeeded to the throne and ruled fifty-six years; but some say that it was not the brother of Chemmis, but his son, named Chabryes, who took the throne.,2.  All writers, however, agree that it was the next ruler who, emulating the example of his predecessor, built the second pyramid, which was the equal of the one just mentioned in the skill displayed in its execution but far behind it in size, since its base length on each side is only a stade.,3.  And an inscription on the larger pyramid gives the sum of money expended on it, since the writing sets forth that on vegetables and purgatives for the workmen there were paid out over sixteen hundred talents.,4.  The smaller bears no inscription but has steps cut into one side. And though the two kings built the pyramids to serve as their tombs, in the event neither of them was buried in them;,5.  for the multitudes, because of the hardships which they had endured in the building of them and the many cruel and violent acts of these kings, were filled with anger against those who had caused their sufferings and openly threatened to tear their bodies asunder and cast them in despite out of the tombs.,6.  Consequently each ruler when dying enjoined upon his kinsmen to bury his body secretly in an unmarked place. After these rulers Mycerinus, to whom some give the name Mencherinus, a son of the builder of the first pyramid, became king.,7.  He undertook the construction of a third pyramid, but died before the entire structure had been completed. The base length of each side he made three plethra, and for fifteen courses he built the walls of black stone like that found about Thebes, but the rest of it he filled out with stone like that found in the other pyramids.,8.  In size this structure falls behind those mentioned above, but far surpasses them in the skill displayed in its execution and the great cost of the stone; and on the north side of the pyramid is an inscription stating that its builder was Mycerinus.,9.  This ruler, they say, out of indignation at the cruelty of his predecessors aspired to live an honourable life and one devoted to the welfare of his subjects; and he continually did many other things which might best help to evoke the goodwill of the people towards himself, and more especially, when he gave audiences, he spent a great amount of money, giving presents to such honest men as he thought had not fared in the courts of law as they deserved.,10.  There are also three more pyramids, each of which is one plethrum long on each side and in general construction is like the others save in size; and these pyramids, they say, were built by the three kings named above for their wives.,11.  It is generally agreed that these monuments far surpass all other constructions in Egypt, not only in their massiveness and cost but also in the skill displayed by their builders.,12.  And they say that the architects of the monuments are more deserving of admiration than the kings who furnished the means for their execution; for in bringing their plans to completion the former called upon their individual souls and their zeal for honour, but the latter only used the wealth which they had inherited and the grievous toil of other men.,13.  But with regard to the pyramids there is no complete agreement among either the inhabitants of the country or the historians; for according to some the kings mentioned above were the builders, according to others they were different kings; for instance, it is said that Armaeus built the largest, Amosis the second, and Inaros the third.,14.  And this last pyramid, some say, is the tomb of the courtesan Rhodopis, for some of the nomarchs became her lovers, as the account goes, and out of their passion for her carried the building through to completion as a joint undertaking.,1.  After the kings mentioned above Bocchoris succeeded to the throne, a man who was altogether contemptible in personal appearance but in sagacity far surpassed all former kings.,2.  Much later Egypt was ruled by Sabaco, who was by birth an Ethiopian and yet in piety and uprightness far surpassed his predecessors.,3.  A proof of his goodness may be found in his abolition of the severest one of the customary penalties (I refer to the taking of life);,4.  for instead of executing the condemned he put them in chains at forced labour for the cities, and by their services constructed many dykes and dug out not a few well-placed canals; for he held that in this way he had reduced for those who were being chastised the severity of their punishment, while for the cities he had procured, in exchange for useless penalties, something of great utility.,5.  And the excessiveness of his piety may be inferred from a vision which he had in a dream and his consequent abdication of the throne.,6.  For he thought that the god of Thebes told him while he slept that he would not be able to reign over Egypt in happiness or for any great length of time, unless he should cut the bodies of all the priests in twain and accompanied by his retinue pass through the very midst of them.,7.  And when this dream came again and again, he summoned the priests from all over the land and told them that by his presence in the country he was offending the god; for were that not the case such a command would not be given to him in his sleep.,8.  And so he would rather, he continued, departing pure of all defilement from the land, deliver his life to destiny than offend the Lord, stain his own life by an impious slaughter, and reign over Egypt. And in the end he returned the kingdom to the Egyptians and retired again to Ethiopia.,1.  There being no head of the government in Egypt for two years, and the masses betaking themselves to tumults and the killing of one another, the twelve most important leaders formed a solemn league among themselves, and after they had met together for counsel in Memphis and had drawn up agreements setting forth their mutual goodwill and loyalty they proclaimed themselves kings.,2.  After they had reigned in accordance with their oaths and promises and had maintained their mutual concord for a period of fifteen years, they set about to construct a common tomb for themselves, their thought being that, just as in their lifetime they had cherished a cordial regard for one another and enjoyed equal honours, so also after their death their bodies would all rest in one place and the memorial which they had erected would hold in one embrace the glory of those buried within.,3.  Being full of zeal for this undertaking they eagerly strove to surpass all preceding rulers in the magnitude of their structure. For selecting a site at the entrance to Lake Moeris in Libya they constructed their tomb of the finest stone, and they made it in form a square but in magnitude a stade in length on each side; and in the carvings and, indeed, in all the workmanship they left nothing wherein succeeding rulers could excel them.,4.  For as a man passed through the enclosing wall he found himself in a court surrounded by columns, forty on each side, and the roof of the court consisted of a single stone, which was worked into coffers and adorned with excellent paintings.,5.  This court also contained memorials of the native district of each king and of the temples and sacrificial rites therein, artistically portrayed in most beautiful paintings.,6.  And in general, the kings are said to have made the plan of their tomb on such an expensive and enormous scale that, had they not died before the execution of their purpose, they would have left no possibility for others to surpass them, so far as the construction of monuments is concerned.,7.  After these kings had reigned over Egypt for fifteen years it came to pass that the sovereignty devolved upon one man for the following reasons.,8.  Psammetichus of Sais, who was one of the twelve kings and in charge of the regions lying along the sea, furnished wares for all merchants and especially for the Phoenicians and the Greeks;,9.  and since in this manner he disposed of the products of his own district at a profit and exchanged them for those of other peoples, he was not only possessed of great wealth but also enjoyed friendly relations with peoples and rulers.,10.  And this was the reason, they say, why the other kings became envious and opened war against him. Some of the early historians, however, tell this fanciful story: The generals had received an oracle to the effect that the first one of their number to pour a libation from a bronze bowl to the god in Memphis should rule over all Egypt, and when one of the priests brought out of the temple eleven golden bowls, Psammetichus took off his helmet and poured the libation from it.,11.  Now his colleagues, although suspecting his act, were not yet ready to put him to death, but drove him instead from public life, with orders that he should spend his days in the marshes along the sea.,12.  Whether they fell out for this reason or because of the envy which, as mentioned above, they felt towards him, at any rate Psammetichus, calling mercenaries from Caria and Ionia, overcame the others in a pitched battle near the city called Momemphis, and of the kings who opposed him some were slain in the battle and some were driven out into Libya and were no longer able to dispute with him for the throne.,1.  After Psammetichus had established his authority over the entire kingdom he built for the god in Memphis the east propylon and the enclosure about the temple, supporting it with colossi twelve cubits high in place of pillars; and among the mercenaries he distributed notable gifts over and above their promised pay, gave them the region called The Camps to dwell in, and apportioned to them much land in the region lying a little up the river from the Pelusiac mouth; they being subsequently removed thence by Amasis, who reigned many years later, and settled by him in Memphis.,2.  And since Psammetichus had established his rule with the aid of the mercenaries, he henceforth entrusted these before others with the administration of his empire and regularly maintained large mercenary forces.,3.  Once in connection with a campaign in Syria, when he was giving the mercenaries a more honourable place in his order of battle by putting them on the right wing and showing the native troops less honour by assigning them the position on the left wing of the phalanx, the Egyptians, angered by this slight and being over two hundred thousand strong, revolted and set out for Ethiopia, having determined to win for themselves a country of their own.,4.  The king at first sent some of his generals to make excuse for the dishonour done to them, but since no heed was paid to these he set out in person after them by boat, accompanied by his friends.,5.  And when they still continued their march along the Nile and were about to cross the boundary of Egypt, he besought them to change their purpose and reminded them of their temples, their homeland, and of their wives and children.,6.  But they, all crying aloud and striking their spears against their shields, declared that so long as they had weapons in their hands they would easily find homelands; and lifting their garments and pointing to their genitals they said that so long as they had those they would never be in want either of wives or of children.,7.  After such a display of high courage and of utter disdain for what among other men is regarded as of the greatest consequence, they seized the best part of Ethiopia, and after apportioning much land among themselves they made their home there.,8.  Although Psammetichus was greatly grieved over these things, he put in order the affairs of Egypt, looked after the royal revenues, and then formed alliances with both Athens and certain other Greek states.,9.  He also regularly treated with kindness any foreigners who sojourned in Egypt of their own free will, and was so great an admirer of the Hellenes that he gave his sons a Greek education; and, speaking generally, he was the first Egyptian king to open to other nations the trading-places throughout the rest of Egypt and to offer a large measure of security to strangers from across the seas.,10.  For his predecessors in power had consistently closed Egypt to strangers, either killing or enslaving any who touched its shores.,11.  Indeed, it was because of the objection to strangers on the part of the people that the impiety of Busiris became a byword among the Greeks, although this impiety was not actually such as it was described, but was made into a fictitious myth because of the exceptional disrespect of the Egyptians for ordinary customs.,1.  Four generations after Psammetichus, Apries was king for twenty-two years. He made a campaign with strong land and sea forces against Cyprus and Phoenicia, took Sidon by storm, and so terrified the other cities of Phoenicia that he secured their submission; he also defeated the Phoenicians and Cyprians in a great sea-battle and returned to Egypt with much booty.,2.  After this he sent a strong native force against Cyrenê and Barcê and, when the larger part of it was lost, the survivors became estranged from him; for they felt that he had organized the expedition with a view to its destruction in order that his rule over the rest of the Egyptians might be more secure, and so they revolted.,3.  The man sent by the king to treat with them, one Amasis, a prominent Egyptian, paid no attention to the orders given him to effect a reconciliation, but, on the contrary, increased their estrangement, joined their revolt, and was himself chosen king.,4.  When a little later all the rest of the native Egyptians also went over to Amasis, the king was in such straits that he was forced to flee for safety to the mercenaries, who numbered some thirty thousand men.,5.  A pitched battle accordingly took place near the village of Maria and the Egyptians prevailed in the struggle; Apries fell alive into the hands of the enemy and was strangled to death, and Amasis, arranging the affairs of the kingdom in whatever manner seemed to him best, ruled over the Egyptians in accordance with the laws and was held in great favour.,6.  He also reduced the cities of Cyprus and adorned many temples with noteworthy votive offerings. After a reign of fifty-five years he ended his days at the time when Cambyses, the king of the Persians, attacked Egypt, in the third year of the Sixty-third Olympiad, that in which Parmenides of Camarina won the "stadion.",1.  Now that we have discussed sufficiently the deeds of the kings of Egypt from the very earliest times down to the death of Amasis, we shall record the other events in their proper chronological setting;,2.  but at this point we shall give a summary account of the customs of Egypt, both those which are especially strange and those which can be of most value to our readers. For many of the customs obtained in ancient days among the Egyptians have not only been accepted by the present inhabitants but have aroused no little admiration among the Greeks;,3.  and for that reason those men who have won the greatest repute in intellectual things have been eager to visit Egypt in order to acquaint themselves with its laws and institutions, which they considered to be worthy of note.,4.  For despite the fact that for the reasons mentioned above strangers found it difficult in early times to enter the country, it was nevertheless eagerly visited by Orpheus and the poet Homer in the earliest times and in later times by many others, such as Pythagoras of Samos and Solon the lawgiver.,5.  Now it is maintained by the Egyptians that it was they who first discovered writing and the observation of the stars, who also discovered the basic principles of geometry and most of the arts, and established the best laws.,6.  And the best proof of all this, they say, lies in the fact that Egypt for more than four thousand seven hundred years was ruled over by kings of whom the majority were native Egyptians, and that the land was the most prosperous of the whole inhabited world; for these things could never have been true of any people which did not enjoy most excellent customs and laws and the institutions which promote culture of every kind.,7.  Now as for the stories invented by Herodotus and certain writers on Egyptian affairs, who deliberately preferred to the truth the telling of marvellous tales and the invention of myths for the delectation of their readers, these we shall omit, and we shall set forth only what appears in the written records of the priests of Egypt and has passed our careful scrutiny.,1.  When in the beginning, as their account runs, the universe was being formed, both heaven and earth were indistinguishable in appearance, since their elements were intermingled: then, when their bodies separated from one another, the universe took on in all its parts the ordered form in which it is now seen; the air set up a continual motion, and the fiery element in it gathered into the highest regions, since anything of such a nature moves upward by reason of its lightness (and it is for this reason that the sun and the multitude of other stars became involved in the universal whirl); while all that was mud-like and thick and contained an admixture of moisture sank because of its weight into one place;,2.  and as this continually turned about upon itself and became compressed, out of the wet it formed the sea, and out of what was firmer, the land, which was like potter's clay and entirely soft.,3.  But as the sun's fire shone upon the land, it first of all became firm, and then, since its surface was in a ferment because of the warmth, portions of the wet swelled up in masses in many places, and in these pustules covered with delicate membranes made their appearance. Such a phenomenon can be seen even yet in swamps and marshy places whenever, the ground having become cold, the air suddenly and without any gradual change becomes intensely warm.,4.  And while the wet was being impregnated with life by reason of the warmth in the manner described, by night the living things forthwith received their nourishment from the mist that fell from the enveloping air, and by day were made solid by the intense heat; and finally, when the embryos had attained their full development and the membranes had been thoroughly heated and broken open, there was produced every form of animal life.,5.  Of these, such as had partaken of the most warmth set off to the higher regions, having become winged, and such as retained an earthy consistency came to be numbered in the class of creeping things and of the other land animals, while those whose composition partook the most of the wet element gathered into the region congenial to them, receiving the name of water animals.,6.  And since the earth constantly grew more solid through the action of the sun's fire and of the winds, it was finally no longer able to generate any of the larger animals, but each kind of living creatures was now begotten by breeding with one another.,7.  And apparently Euripides also, who was a pupil of Anaxagoras the natural philosopher, is not opposed to this account of the nature of the universe, for in his Melanippe he writes as follows: 'Tis thus that the heav'n and earth were once one form; But since the two were sundered each from each, They now beget and bring to life all things, The trees and birds, the beasts, the spawn of sea, And race of mortals. ,1.  In the first place, then, the life which the kings of the Egyptians lived was not like that of other men who enjoy autocratic power and do in all matters exactly as they please without being held to account, but all their acts were regulated by prescriptions set forth in laws, not only their administrative acts, but also those that had to do with the way in which they spent their time from day to day, and with the food which they ate.,2.  In the matter of their servants, for instance, not one was a slave, such as had been acquired by purchase or born in the home, but all were sons of the most distinguished priests, over twenty years old and the best educated of their fellow-countrymen, in order that the king, by virtue of his having the noblest men to care for his person and to attend him throughout both day and night, might follow no low practices; for no ruler advances far along the road of evil until he has those about him who will minister to his passions.,3.  And the hours of both the day and night were laid out according to a plan, and at the specified hours it was absolutely required of the king that he should do what the laws stipulated and not what he thought best.,4.  For instance, in the morning, as soon as he was awake, he first of all had to receive the letters which had been sent from all sides, the purpose being that he might be able to despatch all administrative business and perform every act properly, being thus accurately informed about everything that was being done throughout his kingdom. Then, after he had bathed and bedecked his body with rich garments and the insignia of his office, he had to sacrifice to the gods.,5.  When the victims had been brought to the altar it was the custom for the high priest to stand near the king, with the common people of Egypt gathered around, and pray in a loud voice that health and all the other good things of life be given the king if he maintains justice towards his subjects.,6.  And an open confession had also to be made of each and every virtue of the king, the priest saying that towards the gods he was piously disposed and towards men most kindly; for he was self-controlled and just and magnanimous, truthful, and generous with his possessions, and, in a word, superior to every desire, and that he punished crimes less severely than they deserved and rendered to his benefactors a gratitude exceeding the benefaction.,7.  And after reciting much more in a similar vein he concluded his prayer with a curse concerning things done in error, exempting the king from all blame therefor and asking that both the evil consequences and the punishment should fall upon those who served him and had taught him evil things.,8.  All this he would do, partly to lead the king to fear the gods and live a life pleasing to them, and partly to accustom him to a proper manner of conduct, not by sharp admonitions, but through praises that were agreeable and most conductive to virtue.,9.  After this, when the king had performed the divination from the entrails of a calf and had found the omens good, the sacred scribe read before the assemblage from out of the sacred books some of the edifying counsels and deeds of their most distinguished men, in order that he who held the supreme leadership should first contemplate in his mind the most excellent general principles and then turn to the prescribed administration of the several functions.,10.  For there was a set time not only for his holding audiences or rendering judgments, but even for his taking a walk, bathing, and sleeping with his wife, and, in a word, for every act of his life.,11.  And it was the custom for the kings to partake of delicate food, eating no other meat than veal and duck, and drinking only a prescribed amount of wine, which was not enough to make them unreasonably surfeited or drunken.,12.  And, speaking generally, their whole diet was ordered with such continence that it had the appearance of having been drawn up, not by a lawgiver, but by the most skilled of their physicians, with only their health in view.,1.  Strange as it may appear that the king did not have the entire control of his daily fare, far more remarkable still was the fact that kings were not allowed to render any legal decision or transact any business at random or to punish anyone through malice or in anger or for any other unjust reason, but only in accordance with the established laws relative to each offence.,2.  And in following the dictates of custom in these matters, so far were they from being indignant or taking offence in their souls, that, on the contrary, they actually held that they led a most happy life;,3.  for they believed that all other men, in thoughtlessly following their natural passions, commit many acts which bring them injuries and perils, and that oftentimes some who realize that they are about to commit a sin nevertheless do base acts when overpowered by love or hatred or some other passion, while they, on the other hand, by virtue of their having cultivated a manner of life which had been chosen before all others by the most prudent of all men, fell into the fewest mistakes.,4.  And since the kings followed so righteous a course in dealing with their subjects, the people manifested a goodwill towards their rulers which surpassed even the affection they had for their own kinsmen; for not only the order of the priests but, in short, all the inhabitants of Egypt were less concerned for their wives and children and their other cherished possessions than for the safety of their kings.,5.  Consequently, during most of the time covered by the reigns of the kings of whom we have a record, they maintained an orderly civil government and continued to enjoy a most felicitous life, so long as the system of laws described was in force; and, more than that, they conquered more nations and achieved greater wealth than any other people, and adorned their lands with monuments and buildings never to be surpassed, and their cities with costly dedications of every description.,1.  Again, the Egyptian ceremonies which followed upon the death of a king afforded no small proof of the goodwill of the people towards their rulers; for the fact that the honour which they paid was to one who was insensible of it constituted an authentic testimony to its sincerity.,2.  For when any king died all the inhabitants of Egypt united in mourning for him, rending their garments, closing the temples, stopping the sacrifices, and celebrating no festivals for seventy-two days; and plastering their heads with mud and wrapping strips of linen cloth below their breasts, women as well as men went about in groups of two or three hundred, and twice each day, reciting the dirge in a rhythmic chant, they sang the praises of the deceased, recalling his virtues; nor would they eat the flesh of any living thing or food prepared from wheat, and they abstained from wine and luxury of any sort.,3.  And no one would ever have seen fit to make use of baths or unguents or soft bedding, nay more, would not even have dared to indulge in sexual pleasures, but every Egyptian grieved and mourned during those seventy-two days as if it were his own beloved child that had died.,4.  But during this interval they had made splendid preparations for the burial, and on the last day, placing the coffin containing the body before the entrance to the tomb, they set up, as custom prescribed, a tribunal to sit in judgment upon the deeds done by the deceased during his life.,5.  And when permission had been given to anyone who so wished to lay complaint against him, the priests praised all his noble deeds one after another, and the common people who had gathered in myriads to the funeral, listening to them, shouted their approval if the king had led a worthy life,,6.  but if he had not, they raised a clamour of protest. And in fact many kings have been deprived of the public burial customarily accorded them because of the opposition of the people; the result was, consequently, that the successive kings practised justice, not merely for the reasons just mentioned, but also because of their fear of the despite which would be shown their body after death and of eternal obloquy. Of the customs, then, touching the early kings these are the most important.,1.  And since Egypt as a whole is divided into several parts which in Greek are called nomes, over each of these a nomarch is appointed who is charged with both the oversight and care of all its affairs.,2.  Furthermore, the entire country is divided into three parts, the first of which is held by the order of the priests, which is accorded the greatest veneration by the inhabitants both because these men have charge of the worship of the gods and because by virtue of their education they bring to bear a higher intelligence than others.,3.  With the income from these holdings of land they perform all the sacrifices throughout Egypt, maintain their assistants, and minister to their own needs; for it has always been held that the honours paid to the gods should never be changed, but should ever be performed by the same men and in the same manner, and that those who deliberate on behalf of all should not lack the necessities of life.,4.  For, speaking generally, the priests are the first to deliberate upon the most important matters and are always at the king's side, sometimes as his assistants, sometimes to propose measures and give instructions, and they also, by their knowledge of astrology and of divination, forecast future events, and read to the king, out of the record of acts preserved in their sacred books, those which can be of assistance.,5.  For it is not the case with the Egyptians as it is with the Greeks, that a single man or a single woman takes over the priesthood, but many are engaged in the sacrifices and honours paid the gods and pass on to their descendants the same rule of life. They also pay no taxes of any kind, and in repute and in power are second after the king.,6.  The second part of the country has been taken over by the kings for their revenues, out of which they pay the cost of their wars, support the splendour of their court, and reward with fitting gifts any who have distinguished themselves; and they do not swamp the private citizens by taxation, since their income from these revenues gives them a great plenty.,7.  The last part is held by the warriors, as they are called, who are subject to call for all military duties, the purpose being that those who hazard their lives may be most loyal to the country because of such allotment of land and thus may eagerly face the perils of war.,8.  For it would be absurd to entrust the safety of the entire nation to these men and yet have them possess in the country no property to fight for valuable enough to arouse their ardour. But the most important consideration is the fact that, if they are well-to‑do, they will readily beget children and thus so increase the population that the country will not need to call in any mercenary troops.,9.  And since their calling, like that of the priests, is hereditary, the warriors are incited to bravery by the distinguished records of their fathers and, inasmuch as they become zealous students of warfare from their boyhood up, they turn out to be invincible by reason of their daring and skill.,1.  There are three other classes of free citizens, namely, the herdsmen, the husbandmen, and the artisans. Now the husbandmen rent on moderate terms the arable land held by the king and the priests and the warriors, and spend their entire time in tilling the soil; and since from very infancy they are brought up in connection with the various tasks of farming, they are far more experienced in such matters than the husbandmen of any other nation;,2.  for of all mankind they acquire the most exact knowledge of the nature of the soil, the use of water in irrigation, the times of sowing and reaping, and the harvesting of crops in general, some details of which they have learned from the observations of their ancestors and others in the school of their own experience.,3.  And what has been said applies equally well to the herdsmen, who receive the care of animals from their fathers as if by a law of inheritance, and follow a pastoral life all the days of their existence.,4.  They have received, it is true, much from their ancestors relative to the best care and feeding of grazing animals, but to this they add not a little by reason of their own interest in such matters; and the most astonishing fact is that, by reason of their unusual application to such matters, the men who have charge of poultry and geese, in addition to producing them in the natural way known to all mankind, raise them by their own hands, by virtue of a skill peculiar to them, in numbers beyond telling;,5.  for they do not use the birds for hatching the eggs, but, in effecting this themselves artificially by their own wit and skill in an astounding manner, they are not surpassed by the operations of nature.,6.  Furthermore, one may see that the crafts also among the Egyptians are very diligently cultivated and brought to their proper development; for they are the only people where all the craftsmen are forbidden to follow any other occupation or belong to any other class of citizens than those stipulated by the laws and handed down to them from their parents, the result being that neither ill-will towards a teacher nor political distractions nor any other thing interferes with their interest in their work.,7.  For whereas among all other peoples it can be observed that the artisans are distracted in mind by many things, and through the desire to advance themselves do not stick exclusively to their own occupation; for some try their hands at agriculture, some dabble in trade, and some cling to two or three crafts, and in states having a democratic form of government vast numbers of them, trooping to the meetings of the Assembly, ruin the work of the government, while they make a profit for themselves at the expense of others who pay them their wage, yet among the Egyptians if any artisan should take part in public affairs or pursue several crafts he is severely punished.,8.  Such, then, were the divisions of the citizens, maintained by the early inhabitants of Egypt, and their devotion to their own class which they inherited from their ancestors.,1.  In their administration of justice the Egyptians also showed no merely casual interest, holding that the decisions of the courts exercise the greatest influence upon community life, and this in each of their two aspects.,2.  For it was evident to them that if the offenders against the law should be punished and the injured parties should be afforded succour there would be an ideal correction of wrongdoing; but if, on the other hand, the fear which wrongdoers have of the judgments of the courts should be brought to naught by bribery or favour, they saw that the break-up of community life would follow.,3.  Consequently, by appointing the best men from the most important cities as judges over the whole land they did not fall short of the end which they had in mind. For from Heliopolis and Thebes and Memphis they used to choose ten judges from each, and this court was regarded as in no way inferior to that composed of the Areopagites at Athens or of the Elders at Sparta.,4.  And when the thirty assembled they chose the best one of their number and made him chief justice, and in his stead the city sent another judge. Allowances to provide for their needs were supplied by the king, to the judges sufficient for their maintenance, and many times as much to the chief justice.,5.  The latter regularly wore suspended from his neck by a golden chain a small image made of precious stones, which they called Truth; the hearings of the pleas commenced whenever the chief justice put on the image of Truth.,6.  The entire body of the laws was written down in eight volumes which lay before the judges, and the custom was that the accuser should present in writing the particulars of his complaint, namely, the charge, how the thing happened, and the amount of injury or damage done, whereupon the defendant would take the document submitted by his opponents in the suit and reply in writing to each charge, to the effect either that he did not commit the deed, or, if he did, that he was not guilty of wrongdoing, or, if he was guilty of wrongdoing, that he should receive a lighter penalty.,7.  After that, the law required that the accuser should reply to this in writing and that the defendant should offer a rebuttal. And after both parties had twice presented their statements in writing to the judges, it was the duty of the thirty at once to declare their opinions among themselves and of the chief justice to place the image of Truth upon one or the other of the two pleas which had been presented.,1.  This was the manner, as their account goes, in which the Egyptians conducted all court proceedings, since they believed that if the advocates were allowed to speak they would greatly becloud the justice of a case; for they knew that the clever devices of orators, the cunning witchery of their delivery, and the tears of the accused would influence many to overlook the severity of the laws and the strictness of truth;,2.  at any rate they were aware that men who are highly respected as judges are often carried away by the eloquence of the advocates, either because they are deceived, or because they are won over by the speaker's charm, or because the emotion of pity has been aroused in them; but by having the parties to a suit present their pleas in writing, it was their opinion that the judgments would be strict, only the bare facts being taken into account.,3.  For in that case there would be the least chance that gifted speakers would have an advantage over the slower, or the well-practised over the inexperienced, or the audacious liars over those who were truth-loving and restrained in character, but all would get their just dues on an equal footing, since by the provision of the laws ample time is taken, on the one hand by the disputants for the examination of the arguments of the other side, and, on the other hand, by the judges for the comparison of the allegations of both parties.,1.  Since we have spoken of their legislation, we feel that it will not be foreign to the plan of our history to present such laws of the Egyptians as were especially old or took on an extraordinary form, or, in general, can be of help to lovers of reading.,2.  Now in the first place, their penalty for perjurers was death, on the ground that such men are guilty of the two greatest transgressions — being impious towards the gods and overthrowing the mightiest pledge known among men.,3.  Again, if a man, walking on a road in Egypt, saw a person being killed or, in a word, suffering any kind of violence and did not come to his aid if able to do so, he had to die; and if he was truly prevented from aiding the person because of inability, he was in any case required to lodge information against the bandits and to bring an act against their lawless act; and in case he failed to do this as the law required, it was required that he be scourged with a fixed number of stripes and be deprived of every kind of food for three days.,4.  Those who brought false accusations against others had to suffer the penalty that would have been meted out to the accused persons had they been adjudged guilty.,5.  All Egyptians were also severally required to submit to the magistrates a written declaration of the sources of their livelihood, and any man making a false declaration or gaining an unlawful means of livelihood had to pay the death penalty. And it is said that Solon, after his visit to Egypt, brought this law to Athens.,6.  If anyone intentionally killed a free man or a slave the laws enjoined that he be put to death; for they, in the first place, wished that it should not be through the accidental differences in men's condition in life but through the principles governing their actions that all men should be restrained from evil deeds, and, on the other hand, they sought to accustom mankind, through such consideration for slaves, to refrain all the more from committing any offence whatever against freemen.,7.  In the case of parents who had slain their children, though the laws did not prescribe death, yet the offenders had to hold the dead body in their arms for three successive days and nights, under the surveillance of a state guard; for it was not considered just to deprive of life those who had given life to their children, but rather by a warning which brought with it pain and repentance to turn them from such deeds.,8.  But for children who had killed their parents they reserved an extraordinary punishment; for it was required that those found guilty of this crime should have pieces of flesh about the size of a finger cut out of their bodies with sharp reeds and then be put on a bed of thorns and burned alive; for they held that to take by violence the life of those who had given them life was the greatest crime possible to man.,9.  Pregnant women who had been condemned to death were not executed until they had been delivered. The same law has also been enacted by many Greek states, since they held it entirely unjust that the innocent should suffer the same punishment as the guilty, that a penalty should be exacted of two for only one transgression, and, further, that, since the crime had been actuated by an evil intention, a being as yet without intelligence should receive the same correction, and, what is the most important consideration, that in view of the fact that the guilty had been laid at the door of the pregnant mother it was by no means proper that the child, who belongs to the father as well as to the mother, should be despatched;,10.  for a man may properly consider judges who spare the life of a murderer to be no worse than other judges who destroy that which is guilty of no crime whatsoever.,11.  Now of the laws dealing with murder these are those which are thought to have been the most successful. ,1.  Among their other laws one, which concerned military affairs, made the punishment of deserters or of any who disobeyed the command of their leaders, not death, but the uttermost disgrace;,2.  but if later on such men wiped out their disgrace by a display of manly courage, they were restored to their former freedom of speech. Thus the lawgiver at the same time made disgrace a more terrible punishment than death, in order to accustom all the people to consider dishonour the greatest of evils, and he also believed that, while dead men would never be of value to society, men who had been disgraced would do many a good deed through their desire to regain freedom of speech.<,3.  In the case of those who had disclosed military secrets to the enemy the law prescribed that their tongues should be cut out, while in the case of counterfeiters or falsifiers of measures and weights or imitators of seals, and of official scribes who made false entries or erased items, and of any who adduced false documents, it ordered that both their hands should be cut off, to the end that the offender, being punished in respect of those members of his body that were the instruments of his wrongdoing, should himself keep until death his irreparable misfortune, and at the same time, by serving as a warning example to others, should turn them from the commission of similar offences.,4.  Severe also were their laws touching women. For if a man had violated a free married woman, they stipulated that he be emasculated, considering that such a person by a single unlawful act had been guilty of the three greatest crimes, assault, abduction, and confusion of offspring;,5.  but if a man committed adultery with the woman's consent, the laws ordered that the man should receive a thousand blows with the rod, and that the woman should have her nose cut off, on the ground that a woman who tricks herself out with an eye to forbidden licence should be deprived of that which contributes most to a woman's comeliness.,1.  Their laws governing contracts they attribute to Bocchoris. These prescribe that men who had borrowed money without signing a bond, if they denied the indebtedness, might take an oath to that effect and be cleared of the obligation. The purpose, was, in the first place, that men might stand in awe of the gods by attributing great importance to oaths,,2.  for, since it is manifest that the man who has repeatedly taken such an oath will in the end lose the confidence which others had in him, everyone will consider it a matter of the utmost concern not to have recourse to the oath lest he forfeit his credit. In the second place, the lawgiver assumed that by basing confidence entirely upon a man's sense of honour he would incite all men to be virtuous in character, in order that they might not be talked about as being unworthy of confidence; and, furthermore, he held it to be unjust that men who had been trusted with a loan without an oath should not be trusted when they gave their oath regarding the same transaction. And whoever lent money along with a written bond was forbidden to do more than double the principal from interest.,3.  In the case of debtors the lawgiver ruled that the repayment of loans could be exacted only from a man's estate, and under no condition did he allow the debtor's person to be subject to seizure, holding that whereas property should belong to those who had amassed it or had received it from some earlier holder by way of a gift, the bodies of citizens should belong to the state, to the end that the state might avail itself of the services which its citizens owed it, in times of both war and peace. For it would be absurd, he felt, that a soldier, at the moment perhaps when he was setting forth to fight for his fatherland, should be haled to prison by his creditor for an unpaid loan, and that the greed of private citizens should in this way endanger the safety of all.,4.  And it appears that Solon took this law also to Athens, calling it a "disburdenment," when he absolved all the citizens of the loans, secured by their persons, which they owed.,5.  But certain individuals find fault, and not without reason, with the majority of the Greek lawgivers, who forbade the taking of weapons and ploughs and other quite indispensable things as security for loans, but nevertheless allowed the men who would use these implements to be subject to imprisonments.,1.  Concerning the first generation of the universe this is the account which we have received. But the first men to be born, he says, led an undisciplined and bestial life, setting out one by one to secure their sustenance and taking for their food both the tenderest herbs and the fruits of wild trees. Then,,2.  since they were attacked by the wild beasts, they came to each other's aid, being instructed by expediency, and when gathered together in this way by reason of their fear, they gradually came to recognize their mutual characteristics.,3.  And though the sounds which they made were at first unintelligible and indistinct, yet gradually they came to give articulation to their speech, and by agreeing with one another upon symbols for each thing which presented itself to them, made known among themselves the significance which was to be attached to each term.,4.  But since groups of this kind arose over every part of the inhabited world, not all men had the same language, inasmuch as every group organized the elements of its speech by mere chance. This is the explanation of the present existence of every conceivable kind of language, and, furthermore, out of these first groups to be formed came all the original nations of the world.,5.  Now the first men, since none of the things useful for life had yet been discovered, led a wretched existence, having no clothing to cover them, knowing not the use of dwelling and fire, and also being totally ignorant of cultivated food.,6.  For since they also even neglected the harvesting of the wild food, they laid by no store of its fruits against their needs; consequently large numbers of them perished in the winters because of the cold and the lack of food.,7.  Little by little, however, experience taught them both to take to the caves in winter and to store such fruits as could be preserved.,8.  And when they had become acquainted with fire and other useful things, the arts also and whatever else is capable of furthering man's social life were gradually discovered.,9.  Indeed, speaking generally, in all things it was necessity itself that became man's teacher, supplying in appropriate fashion instruction in every matter to a creature which was well endowed by nature and had, as its assistants for every purpose, hands and speech and sagacity of mind.,10.  And as regards the first origin of men and their earliest manner of life we shall be satisfied with what has been said, since we would keep due proportion in our account.  But as regards all the events which have been handed down to memory and took place in the known regions of the inhabited world, we shall now undertake to give a full account of them.,1.  The Egyptian law dealing with thieves was also a very peculiar one. For it bade any who chose to follow this occupation to enter their names with the Chief of the Thieves and by agreement to bring to him immediately the stolen articles, while any who had been robbed filed with him in like manner a list of all the missing articles, stating the place, the day, and the hour of the loss.,2.  And since by this method all lost articles were readily found, the owner who had lost anything had only to pay one-fourth of its value in order to recover just what belonged to him. For as it was impossible to keep all mankind from stealing, the lawgiver devised a scheme whereby every article lost would be recovered upon payment of a small ransom.,3.  In accordance with the marriage-customs of the Egyptians the priests have but one wife, but any other man takes as many as he may determine; and the Egyptians are required to raise all their children in order to increase the population, on the ground that large numbers are the greatest factor in increasing the prosperity of both country and cities. Nor do they hold any child a bastard, even though he was born of a slave mother;,4.  for they have taken the general position that the father is the sole author of procreation and that the mother only supplies the fetus with nourishment and a place to live, and they call the trees which bear fruit "male" and those which do not "female," exactly opposite to the Greek usage.,5.  They feed their children in a sort of happy-go‑lucky fashion that in its inexpensiveness quite surpasses belief; for they serve them with stews made of any stuff that is ready to hand and cheap, and give them such stalks of the byblos plant as can be roasted in the coals, and the roots and stems of marsh plants, either raw or boiled or baked.,6.  And since most of the children are reared without shoes or clothing because of the mildness of the climate of the country, the entire expense incurred by the parents of a child until it comes to maturity is not more than twenty drachmas. These are the leading reasons why Egypt has such an extraordinarily large population, and it is because of this fact that she possesses a vast number of great monuments.,1.  In the education of their sons the priests teach them two kinds of writing, that which is called "sacred" and that which is used in the more general instruction. Geometry and arithmetic are given special attention.,2.  For the river, by changing the face of the country each year in manifold ways, gives rise to many and varied disputes between neighbours over their boundary lines, and these disputes cannot be easily tested out with any exactness unless a geometer works out the truth scientifically by the application of his experience.,3.  And arithmetic is serviceable with reference to the business affairs connected with making a living and also in applying the principles of geometry, and likewise is of no small assistance to students of astrology as well.,4.  For the positions and arrangements of the stars as well as their motions have always been the subject of careful observation among the Egyptians, if anywhere in the world; they have preserved to this day the records concerning each of these stars over an incredible number of years, this subject of study having been zealously preserved among them from ancient times, and they have also observed with the utmost avidity the motions and orbits and stoppings of the planets, as well as the influences of each one on the generation of all living things — the good or the evil effects, namely, of which they are the cause.,5.  And while they are often successful in predicting to men the events which are going to befall them in the course of their lives, not infrequently they foretell destructions of the crops or, on the other hand, abundant yields, and pestilences that are to attack men or beasts, and as a result of their long observations they have prior knowledge of earthquakes and floods, of the risings of the comets, and of all things which the ordinary man looks upon as beyond all finding out.,6.  And according to them the Chaldaeans of Babylon, being colonists from Egypt, enjoy the fame which they have for their astrology because they learned that science from the priests of Egypt.,7.  As to the general mass of the Egyptians, they are instructed from their childhood by their fathers or kinsmen in the practices proper to each manner of life as previously described by us; but as for reading and writing, the Egyptians at large give their children only a superficial instruction in them, and not all do this, but for the most part only those who are engaged in the crafts. In wrestling and music, however, it is not customary among them to receive any instruction at all; for they hold that from the daily exercises in wrestling their young men will gain, not health, but a vigour that is only temporary and in fact quite dangerous, while they consider music to be not only useless but even harmful, since it makes the spirits of the listeners effeminate.,1.  In order to prevent sicknesses they look after the health of their bodies by means of drenches, fastings, and emetics, sometimes every day and sometimes at intervals of three or four days.,2.  For they say that the larger part of the food taken into the body is superfluous and that it is from this superfluous part that diseases are engendered; consequently the treatment just mentioned, by removing the beginnings of disease, would be most likely to produce health.,3.  On their military campaigns and their journeys in the country they all receive treatment without the payment of any private fee; for the physicians draw their support from public funds and administer their treatments in accordance with a written law which was composed in ancient times by many famous physicians. If they follow the rules of this law as they read them in the sacred book and yet are unable to save their patient, they are absolved from any charge and go unpunished; but if they go contrary to the law's prescriptions in any respect, they must submit to a trial with death as the penalty, the lawgiver holding that but few physicians would ever show themselves wiser than the mode of treatment which had been closely followed for a long period and had been originally prescribed by the ablest practitioners.,1.  As regards the consecration of animals in Egypt, the practice naturally appears to many to be extraordinary and worthy of investigation. For the Egyptian venerate certain animals exceedingly, not only during their lifetime but even after their death, such as cats, ichneumons and dogs, and, again, hawks and the birds which they call "ibis," as well as wolves and crocodiles and a number of other animals of that kind, and the reasons for such worship we shall undertake to set forth, after we have first spoken briefly about the animals themselves.,2.  In the first place, for each kind of animal that is accorded this worship there has been consecrated a portion of land which returns a revenue sufficient for their care and sustenance; moreover, the Egyptians make vows to certain gods on behalf of their children who have been delivered from an illness, in which case they shave off their hair and weigh it against silver or gold, and then give the money to the attendants of the animals mentioned.,3.  These cut up flesh for the hawks and calling them with a loud cry toss it up to them, as they swoop by, until they catch it, while for the cats and ichneumons they break up bread into milk and calling them with a clucking sound set it before them, or else they cut up fish caught in the Nile and feed the flesh to them raw; and in like manner each of the other kinds of animals is provided with the appropriate food.,4.  And as for the various services which these animals require, the Egyptians not only do not try to avoid them or feel ashamed to be seen by the crowds as they perform them, but on the contrary, in the belief that they are engaged in the most serious rites of divine worship, they assume airs of importance, and wearing special insignia make the rounds of the cities and the countryside. And since it can be seen from afar in the service of what animals they engaged, all who meet them fall down before them and render them honour.,5.  When one of these animals dies they wrap it in fine linen and then, wailing and beating their breasts, carry it off to be embalmed; and after it has been treated with cedar oil and such spices as have the quality of imparting a pleasant odour and of preserving the body for a long time, they lay it away in a consecrated tomb.,6.  And whoever intentionally kills one of these animals is put to death, unless it be a cat or an ibis that he kills; but if he kills one of these, whether intentionally or unintentionally, he is certainly put to death, for the common people gather in crowds and deal with the perpetrator most cruelly, sometimes doing this without waiting for a trial.,7.  And because of their fear of such a punishment any who have caught sight of one of these animals lying dead withdraw to a great distance and shout with lamentations and protestations that they found the animal already dead.,8.  So deeply implanted also in the hearts of the common people is their superstitious regard for these animals and so unalterable are the emotions cherished by every man regarding the honour due to them that once, at the time when Ptolemy their king had not as yet been given by the Romans the appellation of "friend" and the people were exercising all zeal in courting the favour of the embassy from Italy which was then visiting Egypt and, in their fear, were intent upon giving no cause for complaint or war, when one of the Romans killed a cat and the multitude rushed in a crowd to his house, neither the officials sent by the king to beg the man off nor the fear of Rome which all the people felt were enough to save the man from punishment, even though his act had been an accident.,9.  And this incident we relate, not from hearsay, but we saw it with our own eyes on the occasion of the visit we made to Egypt.,1.  But if what has been said seems to many incredible and like a fanciful tale, what is to follow will appear far more extraordinary. Once, they say, when the inhabitants of Egypt were being hard pressed by a famine, many in their need laid hands upon their fellows, yet not a single man was even accused of having partaken of the sacred animals.,2.  Furthermore, whenever a dog is found dead in any house, every inmate of it shaves his entire body and goes into mourning, and what is more astonishing than this, if any wine or grain or any other thing necessary to life happens to be stored in the building where one of these animals has expired, they would never think of using it thereafter for any purpose.,3.  And if they happen to be making a military expedition in another country, they ransom the captive cats and hawks and bring them back to Egypt, and this they do sometimes even when their supply of money for the journey is running short.,4.  As for ceremonies connected with the Apis of Memphis, the Mnevis of Heliopolis and the goat of Mendes, as well as with the crocodile of the Lake of Moeris, the lion kept in the City of Lions (Leontopolis), as it is called, and many other ceremonies like them, they could easily be described, but the writer would scarcely be believed by any who had not actually witnessed them.,5.  For these animals are kept in sacred enclosures and cared for by many men of distinction who offer them the most expensive fare; for they provide, with unfailing regularity, the finest wheaten flour or wheat-groats seethed in milk, every kind of sweetmeat made with honey, and the meat of ducks, either boiled or baked, while for the carnivorous animals birds are caught and thrown to them in abundance, and, in general, great care is given that they have an expensive fare.,6.  They are continually bathing the animals in warm water, anointing them with the most precious ointments, and burning before them every kind of fragrant incense; they furnish them with the most expensive coverlets and with splendid jewellery, and exercise the greatest care that they shall enjoy sexual intercourse according to the demands of nature; furthermore, with every animal they keep the most beautiful females of the same genus, which they call his concubines and attend to at the cost of heavy expense and assiduous service.,7.  When any animal dies they mourn for it as deeply as do those who have lost a beloved child, and bury it in a manner not in keeping with their ability but going far beyond the value of their estates.,8.  For instance, after the death of Alexander and just subsequently to the taking over of Egypt by Ptolemy the son of Lagus, it happened that the Apis in Memphis died of old age; and the man who was charged with the care of him spent on his burial not only the whole of the very large sum which had been provided for the animal's maintenance, but also borrowed in addition fifty talents of silver from Ptolemy. And even in our own day some of the keepers of these animals have spent on their burial not less than one hundred talents.,1.  There should be added to what has been said what still remains to be told concerning the ceremonies connected with the sacred bull called Apis. After he has died and has received a magnificent burial, the priests who are charged with this duty seek out a young bull which has on its body markings similar to those of its predecessor;,2.  and when it has been found the people cease their mourning and the priests who have the care of it first take the young bull to Nilopolis, where it is kept forty days, and then, putting it on a state barge fitted out with a gilded cabin, conduct it as a god to the sanctuary of Hephaestus at Memphis.,3.  During these forty days only women may look at it; these stand facing it and pulling up their garments show their genitals, but henceforth they are forever prevented from coming into the presence of this god.,4.  Some explain the origin of the honour accorded this bull in this way, saying that at the death of Osiris his soul passed into this animal, and therefore up to this day has always passed into its successors at the times of the manifestation of Osiris;,5.  but some say that when Osiris died at the hands of Typhon Isis collected the members of his body and put them in an ox (bous), made of wood covered over with fine linen, and because of this the city was called Bousiris. Many other stories are told about the Apis, but we feel that it would be a long task to recount all the details regarding them.,1.  Since all the practices of the Egyptians in their worship of animals are astonishing and beyond belief, they occasion much difficulty for those who would seek out their origins and causes.,2.  Now their priests have on this subject a teaching which may not be divulged, as we have already stated in connection with their accounts of the gods, but the majority of the Egyptians give the following three causes, the first of which belongs entirely to the realm of fable and is in keeping with the simplicity of primitive times.,3.  They say, namely, that the gods who came into existence in the beginning, being few in number and overpowered by the multitude and the lawlessness of earth-born men, took on the forms of certain animals, and in this way saved themselves from the savagery and violence of mankind; but afterwards, when they had established their power over all things in the universe, out of gratitude to the animals which had been responsible for their salvation at the outset, they made sacred those kinds whose form they had assumed, and instructed mankind to maintain them in a costly fashion while living and to bury them at death.,4.  The second cause which they give is this — that the early Egyptians, after having been defeated by their neighbours in many battles because of the lack of order in their army, conceived the idea of carrying standards before the several divisions.,5.  Consequently, they say, the commanders fashioned figures of the animals which they now worship and carried them fixed on lances, and by this device every man knew where his place was in the array. And since the good order resulting therefrom greatly contributed to victory, they thought that the animals had been responsible for their deliverance; and so the people, wishing to show their gratitude to them, established the custom of not killing any one of the animals whose likeness had been fashioned at that time, but of rendering to them, as objects of worship, the care and honour which we have previously described.,1.  The third cause which they adduce in connection with the dispute in question is the service which each one of these animals renders for the benefit of community life and of mankind.,2.  The cow, for example, bears workers and ploughs the lighter soil; the sheep lamb twice in the year and provide by their wool both protection for the body and its decorous covering, while by their milk and cheese they furnish food that is both appetizing and abundant. Again, the dog is useful both for the hunt and for man's protection, and this is why they represent the god whom they call Anubis with a dog's head, showing in this way that he was the bodyguard of Osiris and Isis.,3.  There are some, however, who explain that dogs guided Isis during her search for Osiris and protected her from wild beasts and wayfarers, and that they helped her in her search, because of the affection they bore for her, by baying; and this is the reason why at the Festival of Isis the procession is led by dogs, those who introduced the rite showing forth in this way the kindly service rendered by this animal of old.,4.  The cat is likewise useful against asps with their deadly bite and the other reptiles that sting, while the ichneumon keeps a look-out for the newly-laid seed of the crocodile and crushes the eggs left by the female, doing this carefully and zealously even though it receives no benefit from the act.,5.  Were this not done, the river would have become impassable because of the multitude of beasts that would be born. And the crocodiles themselves are also killed by this animal in an astonishing and quite incredible manner; for the ichneumons roll themselves over and over in the mud, and when the crocodiles go to sleep on the land with their mouths open they jump down their mouths into the centre of their body; then, rapidly gnawing through the bowels, they get out unscathed themselves and at the same time kill their victims instantly.,6.  And of the sacred birds the ibis is useful as a protector against the snakes, the locusts, and the caterpillars, and the hawk against the scorpions, horned serpents, and the small animals of noxious bite which cause the greatest destruction of men.,7.  But some maintain that the hawk is honoured because it is used as a bird of omen by the soothsayers in predicting to the Egyptians events which are to come.,8.  Others, however, say that in primitive times a hawk brought to the priests in Thebes a book wrapped about with a purple band, which contained written directions concerning the worship of gods and the honours due to them; and it is for this reason, they add, that the sacred scribes wear on their heads a purple band and the wing of a hawk.,9.  The eagle also is honoured by the Thebans because it is believed to be a royal animal and worthy of Zeus. ,1.  They have deified the goat, just as the Greeks are said to have honoured Priapus, because of the generative member; for this animal has a very great propensity for copulation, and it is fitting that honour be shown to that member of the body which is the cause of generation, being, as it were, the primal author of all animal life.,2.  And, in general, not only the Egyptians but not a few other peoples as well have in the rites they observe treated the male member as sacred, on the ground that it is the cause of the generation of all creatures; and the priests in Egypt who have inherited their priestly offices from their fathers are initiated first into the mysteries of this god.,3.  And both the Pans and the Satyrs, they say, are worshipped by men for the same reason; and this is why most peoples set up in their sacred places statues of them showing the phallus erect and resembling a goat's in nature, since according to tradition this animal is most efficient in copulation; consequently, by representing these creatures in such fashion, the dedicants are returning thanks to them for their own numerous offspring.,4.  The sacred bulls — I refer to the Apis and the Mnevis — are honoured like the gods, as Osiris commanded, both because of their use in farming and also because the fame of those who discovered the fruits of the earth is handed down by the labours of these animals to succeeding generations for all time. Red oxen, however, may be sacrificed, because it is thought that this was the colour of Typhon, who plotted against Osiris and was then punished by Isis for the death of her husband.,5.  Men also, if they were of the same colour as Typhon, were sacrificed, they say, in ancient times by the kings at the tomb of Osiris; however, only a few Egyptians are now found red in colour, and but the majority of such are non-Egyptians, and this is why the story spread among the Greeks of the slaying of foreigners by Busiris, although Busiris was not the name of the king but of the tomb of Osiris, which is called that in the language of the land.,6.  The wolves are honoured, they say, because their nature is so much like that of dogs, for the natures of these two animals are little different from each other and hence offspring is produced by their interbreeding. But the Egyptians offer another explanation for the honour accorded this animal, although it pertains more to the realm of myth; for they say that in early times when Isis, aided by her son Horus, was about to commence her struggle with Typhon, Osiris came from Hades to help his son and his wife, having taken on the guise of wolf; and so, upon the death of Typhon, his conquerors commanded men to honour the animal upon whose appearance victory followed.,7.  But some say that once, when the Ethiopians had marched against Egypt, a great number of bands of wolves (lykoi) gathered together and drove the invaders out of the country, pursuing them beyond the city named Elephantine; and therefore that nome was given the name Lycopolite and these animals were granted the honour in question.,1.  It remains for us to speak of the deification of crocodiles, a subject regarding which most men are entirely at a loss to explain how, when these beasts eat the flesh of men, it ever became the law to honour like the gods creatures of the most revolting habits.,2.  Their reply is, that the security of the country is ensured, not only by the river, but to a much greater degree by the crocodiles in it; that for this reason the robbers that infest both Arabia and Libya do not dare to swim across the Nile, because they fear the beasts, whose number is very great; and that this would never have been the case if war were continually being waged against the animals and they had been utterly destroyed by hunters dragging the river with nets.,3.  But still another account is given of these beasts. For some say that once one of the early kings whose name was Menas, being pursued by his own dogs, came in his flight to the Lake of Moeris, as it is called, where, strange as it may seem, a crocodile took him on his back and carried him to the other side. Wishing to show his gratitude to the beast for saving him, he founded a city near the place and named it City of the Crocodiles; and he commanded the natives of the region to worship these animals as gods and dedicated the lake to them for their sustenance; and in that place he also constructed his own tomb, erecting a pyramid with four sides, and built the Labyrinth which is admired by many.,4.  A similar diversity of customs exists, according to their accounts, with regard to everything else, but it would be a long task to set forth the details concerning them. That they have adopted these customs for themselves because of the advantage accruing therefrom to their life is clear to all from the fact that there are those among them who will not touch many particular kinds of food. Some, for instance, abstain entirely from lentils, others from beans, and some from cheese or onions or certain other foods, there being many kinds of food in Egypt, showing in this way that men must be taught to deny themselves things that are useful, and that if all ate of everything the supply of no article of consumption would hold out.,5.  But some adduce other causes and say that, since under the early kings the multitude were often revolting and conspiring against their rulers, one of the kings who was especially wise divided the land into a number of parts and commanded the inhabitants of each to revere a certain animal or else not to eat a certain food, his thought being that, with each group of people revering what was honoured among themselves but despising what was sacred to all the rest, all the inhabitants of Egypt would never be able to be of one mind.,6.  And this purpose, they declare, is clear from the results; for every group of people is at odds with its neighbours, being offended at their violations of the customs mentioned above.,2.  Now as to who were the first kings we are in no position to speak on our own authority, nor do we give assent to those historians who profess to know; for it is impossible that the discovery of writing was of so early a date as to have been contemporary with the first kings. But if a man should concede even this last point, it still seems evident that writers of history are as a class a quite recent appearance in the life of mankind.,3.  Again, with respect to the antiquity of the human race, not only do Greeks put forth their claims but many of the barbarians as well, all holding that it is they who were autochthonous and the first of all men to discover the things which are of use in life, and that it was the events in their own history which were the earliest to have been held worthy of record.,4.  So far as we are concerned, however, we shall not make the attempt to determine with precision the antiquity of each nation or what is the race whose nations are prior in point of time to the rest and by how many years, but we shall record summarily, keeping due proportion in our account, what each nation has to say concerning its antiquity and the early events in its history.,5.  The first peoples which we shall discuss will be the barbarians, not that we consider them to be earlier than the Greeks, as Ephorus has said, but because we wish to set forth most of the facts about them at the outset, in order that we may not, by beginning with the various accounts given by the Greeks, have to interpolate in the different narrations of their early history any event connected with another people.,6.  And since Egypt is the country where mythology places the origin of the gods, where the earliest observations of the stars are said to have been made, and where, furthermore, many noteworthy deeds of great men are recorded, we shall begin our history with the events connected with Egypt.,1.  Some advance some such reason as the following for their deification of the animals. When men, they say, first ceased living like the beasts and gathered into groups, at the outset they kept devouring each other and warring among themselves, the more powerful ever prevailing over the weaker; but later those who were deficient in strength, taught by expediency, grouped together and took for the device upon their standard one of the animals which was later made sacred; then, when those who were from time to time in fear flocked to this symbol, an organized body was formed which was not to be despised by any who attacked it.,2.  And when everybody else did the same thing, the whole people came to be divided into organized bodies, and in the case of each the animal which had been responsible for its safety was accorded honours like those belonging to the gods, as having rendered to them the greatest service possible; and this is why to this day the several groups of the Egyptians differ from each other in that each group honours the animals which it originally made sacred. In general, they say, the Egyptians surpass all other peoples in showing gratitude for every benefaction, since they hold that the return of gratitude to benefactors is a very great resource in life; for it is clear that all men will want to bestow their benefactions preferably upon those who they see will most honourably treasure up the favours they bestow.,3.  And it is apparently on these grounds that the Egyptians prostrate themselves before their kings and honour them as being in truth very gods, holding, on the one hand, that it was not without the influence of some divine providence that these men have attained to the supreme power, and feeling, also, that such as have the will and the strength to confer the greatest benefactions share in the divine nature.,4.  Now if we have dwelt over-long on the topic of the sacred animals, we have at least thoroughly considered those customs of the Egyptians that men most marvel at.,1.  But not least will a man marvel at the peculiarity of the customs of the Egyptians when he learns of their usages with respect to the dead. For whenever anyone dies among them, all his relatives and friends, plastering their heads with mud, roam about the city lamenting, until the body receives burial. Nay more, during that time they indulge in neither baths, nor wine, nor in any other food worth mentioning, nor do they put on bright clothing.,2.  There are three classes of burial, the most expensive, the medium, and the most humble. And if the first is used the cost, they say, is a talent of silver, if the second, twenty minae, and if the last, the expense is, they say, very little indeed.,3.  Now the men who treat the bodies are skilled artisans who have received this professional knowledge as a family tradition; and these lay before the relatives of the deceased a price-list of every item connected with the burial, and ask them in what manner they wish the body to be treated.,4.  When an agreement has been reached on every detail and they have taken the body, they turn it over to men who have been assigned to the service and have become inured to it. The first is the scribe, as he is called, who, when the body has been laid on the ground, circumscribes on the left flank the extent of the incision; then the one called the slitter cuts the flesh, as the law commands, with an Ethiopian stone and at once takes to flight on the run, while those present set out after him, pelting him with stones, heaping curses on him, and trying, as it were, to turn the profanation on his head; for in their eyes everyone is an object of general hatred who applies violence to the body of a man of the same tribe or wounds him or, in general, does him any harm.,5.  The men called embalmers, however, are considered worthy of every honour and consideration, associating with the priests and even coming and going in the temples without hindrance, as being undefiled. When they have gathered to treat the body after it has been slit open, one of them thrusts his hand through the opening in the corpse into the trunk and extracts everything but the kidneys and heart, and another one cleanses each of the viscera, washing them in palm wine and spices.,6.  And in general, they carefully dress the whole body for over thirty days, first with cedar oil and certain other preparations, and then with myrrh, cinnamon, and such spices as have the faculty not only of preserving it for a long time but also of giving it a fragrant odour. And after treating the body they return it to the relatives of the deceased, every member of it having been so preserved intact that even the hair on the eyelids and brows remains, the entire appearance of the body is unchanged, and the cast of its shape is recognizable.,7.  This explains why many Egyptians keep the bodies of their ancestors in costly chambers and gaze face to face upon those who died many generations before their own birth, so that, as they look upon the stature and proportions and the features of the countenance of each, they experience a strange enjoyment, as though they had lived with those on whom they gaze. When the body is ready to be buried the family announces the day of interment to the judges and to the relatives and friends of the deceased, and solemnly affirms that he who has just passed away — giving his name — "is about to cross the lake.",2.  Then, when the judges, forty-two in number, have assembled and have taken seats in a hemicycle which has been built across the lake, the baris is launched, which has been prepared in advance by men especially engaged in that service, and which is in the charge of the boatman whom the Egyptians in their language call charon.,3.  For this reason they insist that Orpheus, having visited Egypt in ancient times and witnessed this custom, merely invented his account of Hades, in part reproducing this practice and in part inventing on his own account; but this point we shall discuss more fully a little later.,4.  At any rate, after the baris has been launched into the lake but before the coffin containing the body is set in it, the law gives permission to anyone who wishes to arraign the dead person. Now if anyone presents himself and makes a charge, and shows that the dead man had led an evil life, the judges announce the decision to all and the body is denied the customary burial; but if it shall appear that the accuser has made an unjust charge he is severely punished.,5.  When no accuser appears or the one who presents himself is discovered to be a slanderer, the relatives put their mourning aside and laud the deceased. And of his ancestry, indeed, they say nothing, as the Greeks do, since they hold that all Egyptians are equally well born, but after recounting his training and education from childhood, they describe his righteousness and justice after he attained to manhood, also his self-control and his other virtues, and call upon the gods of the lower world to receive him into the company of the righteous; and the multitude shouts its assent and extorts the glory of the deceased, as of one who is about to spend eternity in Hades among the righteous.,6.  Those who have private sepulchres lay the body in a vault reserved for it, but those who possess none construct a new chamber in their own home, and stand the coffin upright against the firmest wall. Any also who are forbidden burial because of the accusations brought against them or because their bodies have been made security for a loan they lay away in their own homes; and it sometimes happens that their sons's sons, when they have become prosperous and paid off the debt or cleared them of the charges, give them later a magnificent funeral.,1.  It is a most sacred duty, in the eyes of the Egyptians, that they should be seen to honour their parents or ancestors all the more after they have passed to their eternal home. Another custom of theirs is to put up the bodies of their deceased parents as security for a loan; and failure to repay such debts is attended with the deepest disgrace as well as with deprivation of burial at death.,2.  And a person may well admire the men who established these customs, because they strove to inculcate in the inhabitants, as far as was possible, virtuousness and excellence of character, by means not only of their converse with the living but also of their burial and affectionate care of the dead.,3.  For the Greeks have handed down their beliefs in such matters — in the honour paid to the righteous and the punishment of the wicked — by means of fanciful tales and discredited legends; consequently these accounts not only cannot avail to spur their people on to the best life, but, on the contrary, being scoffed at by worthless men, are received with contempt.,4.  But among the Egyptians, since these matters do not belong to the realm of myth but men see with their own eyes that punishment is meted out to the wicked and honour to the good, every day of their lives both the wicked and the good are reminded of their obligations and in this way the greatest and most profitable amendment of men's characters is effected. And the best laws, in my opinion, must be held to be, not those by which men become most prosperous, but those by which they become most virtuous in character and best fitted for citizenship.,1.  We must speak also of the lawgivers who have arisen in Egypt and who instituted customs unusual and strange. After the establishment of settled life in Egypt in early times, which took place, according to the mythical account, in the period of the gods and heroes, the first, they say, to persuade the multitudes to use written laws was Mneves, a man not only great of soul but also in his life the most public-spirited of all lawgivers whose names are recorded. According to the tradition he claimed that Hermes had given the laws to him, with the assurance that they would be the cause of great blessings, just as among the Greeks, they say, Minos did in Crete and Lycurgus among the Lacedaemonians, the former saying that he received his laws from Zeus and the latter his from Apollo.,2.  Also among several other peoples tradition says that this kind of a device was used and was the cause of much good to such as believed it. Thus it is recorded that among the Arians Zathraustes claimed that the Good Spirit gave him his laws, among the people known as the Getae who represent themselves to be immortal Zalmoxis asserted the same of their common goddess Hestia, and among the Jews Moyses referred his laws to the god who is invoked as Iao. They all did this either because they believed that a conception which would help humanity was marvellous and wholly divine, or because they held that the common crowd would be more likely to obey the laws if their gaze were directed towards the majesty and power of those to whom their laws were ascribed.,3.  A second lawgiver, according to the Egyptians, was Sasychis, a man of unusual understanding. He made sundry additions to the existing laws and, in particular, laid down with the greatest precision the rites to be used in honouring the gods, and he was the inventor of geometry and taught his countrymen both to speculate about the stars and to observe them.,4.  A third one, they tell us, was the king Sesoösis, who not only performed the most renowned deeds in war of any king of Egypt but also organized the rules governing the warrior class and, in conformity with these, set in order all the regulations that have to do with military campaigns.,5.  A fourth lawgiver, they say, was the king Bocchoris, a wise sort of a man and conspicuous for his craftiness. He drew up all the regulations which governed the kings and gave precision to the laws on contracts; and so wise was he in his judicial decisions as well, that many of his judgments are remembered for their excellence even to our day. And they add that he was very weak in body, and that by disposition he was the most avaricious of all their kings.,1.  After Bocchoris, they say, their king Amasis gave attention to the laws, who, according to their accounts, drew up the rules governing the nomarchs and the entire administration of Egypt. And tradition describes him as exceedingly wise and in disposition virtuous and just, for which reasons the Egyptians invested him with the kingship, although he was not of the royal line.,2.  They say also that the citizens of Elis, when they were giving their attention to the Olympic Games, sent an embassy to him to ask how they could be conducted with the greatest fairness, and that he replied, "Provided no man of Elis participates.",3.  And though Polycrates, the ruler of the Samians, had been on terms of friendship with him, when he began oppressing both citizens and such foreigners as put in at Samos, it is said that Amasis at first sent an embassy to him and urged him to moderation; and when no attention was paid to this, he wrote a letter in which he broke up the relations of friendship and hospitality that had existed between them; for he did not wish, as he said, to be plunged into grief in a short while, knowing right well as he did that misfortune is near at hand for the ruler who maintains a tyranny in such fashion. And he was admired, they say, among the Greeks both because of his virtuous character and because his words to Polycrates were speedily fulfilled.,4.  A sixth man to concern himself with the laws of the Egyptians, it is said, was Darius the father of Xerxes; for he was incensed at the lawlessness which his predecessor, Cambyses, had shown in the treatment of the sanctuaries of Egypt, and aspired to live a life of virtue and of piety towards the gods.,5.  Indeed he associated with the priests of Egypt themselves, and took part with them in the study of theology and of the events recorded in their sacred books; and when he learned from these books about the greatness of soul of the ancient kings and about their goodwill towards their subjects he imitated their manner of life. For this reason he was the object of such great honour that he alone of all the kings was addressed as a god by the Egyptians in his lifetime, while at his death he was accorded equal honours with the ancient kings of Egypt who had ruled in strictest accord with the laws.,6.  The system, then, of law used throughout the land was the work, they say, of the men just named, and gained a renown that spread among other peoples everywhere; but in later times, they say, many institutions which were regarded as good were changed, after the Macedonians had conquered and destroyed once and for all the kingship of the native line.,1.  But now that we have examined these matters, we must enumerate what Greeks, who have won fame for their wisdom and learning, visited Egypt in ancient times, in order to become acquainted with its customs and learning.,2.  For the priests of Egypt recount from the records of their sacred books that they were visited in early times by Orpheus, Musaeus, Melampus, and Daedalus, also by the poet Homer and Lycurgus of Sparta, later by Solon of Athens and the philosopher Plato, and that there also came Pythagoras of Samos and the mathematician Eudoxus, as well as Democritus of Abdera and Oenopides of Chios.,3.  As evidence for the visits of all these men they point in some cases to their statues and in others to places or buildings which bear their names, and they offer proofs from the branch of learning which each one of these men pursued, arguing that all the things for which they were admired among the Greeks were transferred from Egypt.,4.  Orpheus, for instance, brought from Egypt most of his mystic ceremonies, the orgiastic rites that accompanied his wanderings, and his fabulous account of his experiences in Hades.,5.  For the rite of Osiris is the same as that of Dionysus and that of Isis very similar to that of Demeter, the names alone having been interchanged; and the punishments in Hades of the unrighteous, the Fields of the Righteous, and the fantastic conceptions, current among the many, which are figments of the imagination — all these were introduced by Orpheus in imitation of the Egyptian funeral customs.,6.  Hermes, for instance, the Conductor of Souls, according to the ancient Egyptian custom, brings up the body of the Apis to a certain point and then gives it over to one who wears the mask of Cerberus. And after Orpheus had introduced this notion among the Greeks, Homer followed it when he wrote: Cyllenian Hermes then did summon forth The suitors's souls, holding his wand in hand. And again a little further on he says: They passed Oceanus' streams, the Gleaming Rock, The Portals of the Sun, the Land of Dreams; And now they reached the Meadow of Asphodel, Where dwell the Souls, the shades of men outworn.,7.  Now he calls the river "Oceanus" because in their language the Egyptians speak of the Nile as Oceanus; the "Portals of the Sun" (Heliopulai) is his name for the city of Heliopolis; and "Meadows," the mythical dwelling of the dead, is his term for the place near the lake which is called Acherousia, which is near Memphis, and around it are fairest meadows, of a marsh-land and lotus and reeds. The same explanation also serves for the statement that the dwelling of the dead is in these regions, since the most and the largest tombs of the Egyptians are situated there, the dead being ferried across both the river and Lake Acherousia and their bodies laid in the vaults situated there.,8.  The other myths about Hades, current among the Greeks, also agree with the customs which are practised even now in Egypt. For the boat which receives the bodies is called baris, and the passenger's fee is given to the boatman, who in the Egyptian tongue is called charon.,9.  And near these regions, they say, are also the "Shades," which is a temple of Hecate, and "portals" of Cocytus and Lethe, which are covered at intervals with bands of bronze. There are, moreover, other portals, namely, those of Truth, and near them stands a headless statue of Justice.,1.  Many other things as well, of which mythology tells, are still to be found among the Egyptians, the name being still preserved and the customs actually being practised.,2.  In the city of Acanthi, for instance, across the Nile in the direction of Libya one hundred and twenty stades from Memphis, there is a perforated jar to which three hundred and sixty priests, one each day, bring water from the Nile;,3.  and not far from there the actual performance of the myth of Ocnus is to be seen in one of their festivals, where a single man is weaving at one end of a long rope and many others beyond him are unravelling it.,4.  Melampus also, they say, brought from Egypt the rites which the Greeks celebrate in the name of Dionysus, the myths about Cronus and the War with the Titans, and, in a word, the account of the things which happened to the gods.,5.  Daedalus, they relate, copied the maze of the Labyrinth which stands to our day and was built, according to some, by Mendes, but according to others, by king Marrus, many years before the reign of Minos.,6.  And the proportions of the ancient statues of Egypt are the same as in those made by Daedalus among the Greeks. The very beautiful propylon of the temple of Hephaestus in Memphis was also built by Daedalus, who became an object of admiration and was granted a statue of himself in wood, which was made by his own hands and set up in this temple; furthermore, he was accorded great fame because of his genius and, after making many discoveries, was granted divine honours; for on one of the islands off Memphis there stands even to this day a temple of Daedalus, which is honoured by the people of that region.,7.  And as proof of the presence of Homer in Egypt they adduce various pieces of evidence, and especially the healing drink which brings forgetfulness of all past evils, which was given by Helen to Telemachus in the home of Menelaüs. For it is manifest that the poet had acquired exact knowledge of the "nepenthic" drug which he says Helen brought from Egyptian Thebes, given her by Polydamna the wife of Thon; for, they allege, even to this day the women of this city use this powerful remedy, and in ancient times, they say, a drug to cure anger and sorrow was discovered exclusively among the women of Diospolis; but Thebes and Diospolis, they add, are the same city.,8.  Again, Aphroditê is called "golden" by the natives in accordance with an old tradition, and near the city which is called Momemphis there is a plain "of golden Aphroditê.",9.  Likewise, the myths which are related about the dalliance of Zeus and Hera and of their journey to Ethiopia he also got from Egypt; for each year among the Egyptians the shrine of Zeus is carried across the river into Libya and then brought back some days later, as if the god were arriving from Ethiopia; and as for the dalliance of these deities, in their festal gatherings the priests carry the shrines of both to an elevation that has been strewn with flowers of every description.,1.  Lycurgus also and Plato and Solon, they say, incorporated many Egyptian customs into their own legislation.,2.  And Pythagoras learned from Egyptians his teachings about the gods, his geometrical propositions and theory of numbers, as well as the transmigration of the soul into every living thing.,3.  Democritus also, as they assert, spent five years among them and was instructed in many matters relating to astrology. Oenopides likewise passed some time with the priests and astrologers and learned among other things about the orbit of the sun, that it has an oblique course and moves in a direction opposite to that of the other stars.,4.  Like the others, Eudoxus studied astrology with them and acquired a notable fame for the great amount of useful knowledge which he disseminated among the Greeks.,5.  Also of the ancient sculptors the most renowned sojourned among them, namely, Telecles and Theodorus, the sons of Rhoecus, who executed for the people of Samos the wooden statue of the Pythian Apollo.,6.  For one half of the statue, as the account is given, was worked by Telecles in Samos, and the other half was finished by his brother Theodorus at Ephesus; and when the two parts were brought together they fitted so perfectly that the whole work had the appearance of having been done by one man. This method of working is practised nowhere among the Greeks, but is followed generally among the Egyptians.,7.  For with them the symmetrical proportions of the statues are not fixed in accordance with the appearance they present to the artist's eye, as is done among the Greeks, but as soon as they lay out the stones and, after apportioning them, are ready to work on them, at that stage they take the proportions, from the smallest parts to the largest;,8.  for, dividing the structure of the entire body into twenty-one parts and one-fourth in addition, they express in this way the complete figure in its symmetrical proportions. Consequently, so soon as the artisans agree as to the size of the statue, they separate and proceed to turn out the various sizes assigned to them, in the same way that they correspond, and they do it so accurately that the peculiarity of their system excites amazement.,9.  And the wooden statue in Samos, in conformity with the ingenious method of the Egyptians, was cut into two parts from the top of the head down to the private parts and the statue was divided in the middle, each part exactly matching the other at every point. And they say that this statue is for the most part rather similar to those of Egypt, as having the arms stretched stiffly down the sides and the legs separated in a stride.,10.  Now regarding Egypt, the events which history records and the things that deserve to be mentioned, this account is sufficient; and we shall present in the next Book, in keeping with our profession at the beginning of this Book, the events and legendary accounts next in order, beginning with the part played by the Assyrians in Asia.


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nan1.  The preceding Book, being the first of the whole work, embraces the facts which concern Egypt, among which are included both the myths related by the Egyptians about their gods and about the nature of the Nile, and the other marvels which are told about this river, as well as a description of the land of Egypt and the acts of each of their ancient kings. Next in order came the structures known as the pyramids, which are listed among the seven wonders of the world.,2.  After that we discussed such matters connected with the laws and the courts of law, and also with the animals which are considered sacred among the Egyptians, as excite admiration and wonder, also their customs with respect to the dead, and then named such Greeks as were noted for their learning, who, upon visiting Egypt and being instructed in many useful things, thereupon transferred them to Greece.,3.  And in this present Book we shall set forth the events which took place in Asia in the ancient period, beginning with the time when the Assyrians were the dominant power.,4.  In the earliest age, then, the kings of Asia were native-born, and in connection with them no memory is preserved of either a notable deed or a personal name. The first to be handed down by tradition to history and memory for us as one who achieved great deeds is Ninus, king of the Assyrians, and of him we shall now endeavour to give a detailed account. For being by nature a warlike man and emulous of valour, he supplied the strongest of the young men with arms, and by training them for a considerable time he accustomed them to every hardship and all the dangers of war.,5.  And when now he had collected a notable army, he formed an alliance with Ariaeus, the king of Arabia, a country which in those times seems to have abounded in brave men. Now, in general, this nation is one which loves freedom and under no circumstances submits to a foreign ruler; consequently neither the kings of the Persians at a later time nor those of the Macedonians, though the most powerful of their day, were ever able to enslave this nation.,6.  For Arabia is, in general, a difficult country for a foreign army to campaign in, part of it being desert and part of it waterless and supplied at intervals with wells which are hidden and known only to the natives.,7.  Ninus, however, the king of the Assyrians, taking along the ruler of the Arabians as an ally, made a campaign with a great army against the Babylonians whose country bordered upon his — in those times the present city of Babylon had not yet been founded, but there were other notable cities in Babylonia — and after easily subduing the inhabitants of that region because of their inexperience in the dangers of war, he laid upon them the yearly payment of fixed tributes, but the king of the conquered, whom he took captive along with his children, he put to death.,8.  Then, invading Armenia in great force and laying waste some of its cities, he struck terror into the inhabitants; consequently their king Barzanes, realizing that he was no match for him in battle, met him with many presents and announced that he would obey his every command.,9.  But Ninus treated him with great magnanimity, and agreed that he should not only continue to rule over Armenia but should also, as his friend, furnish a contingent and supplies for the Assyrian army. And as his power continually increased, he made a campaign against Media.,10.  And the king of this country, Pharnus, meeting him in battle with a formidable force, was defeated, and he both lost the larger part of his soldiers, and himself, being taken captive along with his seven sons and wife, was crucified.,1.  There was also, because the acropolis, the Hanging Garden, as it is called, which was built, not by Semiramis, but by a later Syrian king to please one of his concubines; for she, they say, being a Persian by race and longing for the meadows of her mountains, asked the king to imitate, through the artifice of a planted garden, the distinctive landscape of Persia.,2.  The park extended four plethra on each side, and since the approach to the garden sloped like a hillside and the several parts of the structure rose from one another tier on tier, the appearance of the whole resembled that of a theatre.,3.  When the ascending terraces had been built, there had been constructed beneath them galleries which carried the entire weight of the planted garden and rose little by little one above the other along the approach; and the uppermost gallery, which was fifty cubits high, bore the highest surface of the park, which was made level with the circuit wall of the battlements of the city.,4.  Furthermore, the walls, which had been constructed at great expense, were twenty-two feet thick, while the passage-way between each two walls was ten feet wide. The roofs of the galleries were covered over with beams of stone sixteen feet long, inclusive of the overlap, and four feet wide.,5.  The roof above these beams had first a layer of reeds laid in great quantities of bitumen, over this two courses of baked brick bonded by cement, and as a third layer a covering of lead, to the end that the moisture from the soil might not penetrate beneath. On all this again earth had been piled to a depth sufficient for the roots of the largest trees; and the ground, which was levelled off, was thickly planted with trees of every kind that, by their great size or any other charm, could give pleasure to beholder.,6.  And since the galleries, each projecting beyond another, all received the light, they contained many royal lodgings of every description; and there was one gallery which contained openings leading from the topmost surface and machines for supplying the garden with water, the machines raising the water in great abundance from the river, although no one outside could see it being done. Now this park, as I have said, was a later construction.,1.  Semiramis founded other cities also along the Euphrates and Tigris rivers, in which she established trading-places for the merchants who brought goods from Media, Paraetacenê, and all the neighbouring region. For the Euphrates and Tigris, the most notable, one may say, of all the rivers of Asia after the Nile and Ganges, have their sources in the mountains of Armenia and are two thousand five hundred stades apart at their origin,,2.  and after flowing through Media and Paraetacenê they enter Mesopotamia, which they enclose between them, thus giving this name to the country. After this they pass through Babylonia and empty into the Red Sea.,3.  Moreover, since they are great streams and traverse a spacious territory they offer many advantages to men who follow a merchant trade; and it is due to this fact that the regions along their banks are filled with prosperous trading-places which contribute greatly to the fame of Babylonia.,4.  Semiramis quarried out a stone from the mountains of Armenia which was one hundred and thirty feet long and twenty-five feet wide and thick;,5.  and this she hauled by means of many multitudes of yokes of mules and oxen to the river and there loaded it on a raft, on which she brought it down the stream to Babylonia; she then set it up beside the most famous street, an astonishing sight to all who passed by. And this stone is called by some an obelisk from its shape, and they number it among the seven wonders of the world.,1.  Although the sights to be seen in Babylonia are many and singular, not the least wonderful is the enormous amount of bitumen which the country produces; so great is the supply of this that it not only suffices for their buildings, which are numerous and large, but the common people also, gathering at the place, draw it out without any restriction, and drying it burn it in place of wood.,2.  And countless as is the multitude of men who draw it out, the amount remains undiminished, as if derived from some immense source. Moreover, near this source there is a vent-hole, of no great size but of remarkable potency. For it emits a heavy sulphurous vapour which brings death to all living creatures that approach it, and they meet with an end swift and strange; for after being subjected for a time to the retention of the breath they are killed, as though the expulsion of the breath were being prevented by the force which has attacked the processes of respiration; and immediately the body swells and blows up, particularly in the region about the lungs.,3.  And there is also across the river a lake whose edge offers solid footing, and if any man, unacquainted with it, enters it he swims for a short time, but as he advances towards the centre he is dragged down as though by a certain force; and when he begins to help himself and makes up his mind to turn back to shore again, though he struggles to extricate himself, it appears as if he were being hauled back by something else; and he becomes benumbed, first in his feet, then in his legs as far as the groin, and finally, overcome by numbness in his whole body, he is carried to the bottom, and a little later is cast up dead. Now concerning the wonders of Babylonia let what has been said suffice.,1.  After Semiramis had made an end of her building operations she set forth in the direction of Media with a great force. And when she had arrived at the mountain known as Bagistanus, she encamped near it and laid out a park, which had a circumference of twelve stades and, being situated in the plain, contained a great spring by means of which her plantings could be irrigated.,2.  The Bagistanus mountain is sacred to Zeus and on the side facing the park has sheer cliffs which rise to a height of seventeen stades. The lowest part of these she smoothed off and engraved thereon a likeness of herself with a hundred spearmen at her side. And she also put this inscription on the cliff in Syrian letters: "Semiramis, with the pack-saddles of the beasts of burden in her army, built up a mound from the plain and thereby climbed this precipice, even to this very ridge.",3.  Setting forth from that place and arriving at the city of Chauon in Media, she noticed on a certain high plateau a rock both of striking height and mass. Accordingly, she laid out there another park of great size, putting the rock in the middle of it, and on the rock she erected, to satisfy her taste for luxury, some very costly buildings from which she used to look down both upon her plantings in the park and on the whole army encamped on the plain.,4.  In this place she passed a long time and enjoyed to the full every device that contributed to luxury; she was unwilling, however, to contract a lawful marriage, being afraid that she might be deprived of her supreme position, but choosing out the most handsome of the soldiers she consorted with them and then made away with all who had lain with her.,5.  After this she advanced in the direction of Ecbatana and arrived at the mountain called Zarcaeus; and since this extended many stades and was full of cliffs and chasms it rendered the journey round a long one. And so she became ambitious both to leave an immortal monument of herself and at the same time to shorten her way; consequently she cut through the cliffs, filled up the low places, and thus at great expense built a short road, which to this day is called the road of Semiramis.,6.  Upon arriving at Ecbatana, a city which lies in the plain, she built in it an expensive palace and in every other way gave rather exceptional attention to the region. For since the city had no water supply and there was no spring in its vicinity, she made the whole of it well watered by bringing to it with much hardship and expense an abundance of the purest water.,7.  For at a distance from Ecbatana of about twelve stades is a mountain, which is called Orontes and is unusual for its ruggedness and enormous height, since the ascent, straight to its summit, is twenty-five stades. And since a great lake, which emptied into a river, lay on the other side, she made a cutting through the base of this mountain.,8.  The tunnel was fifteen feet wide and forty feet high; and through it she brought in the river which flowed from the lake, and filled the city with water. Now this is what she did in Media.,1.  After this she visited Persis and every other country over which she ruled throughout Asia. Everywhere she cut through the mountains and the precipitous cliffs and constructed expensive roads, while on the plains she made mounds, sometimes constructing them as tombs for those of her generals who died, and sometimes founding cities on their tops.,2.  And it was also her custom, whenever she made camp, to build little mounds, upon which setting her tent she could look down upon all the encampment. As a consequence many of the works she built throughout Asia remain to this day and are called Works of Semiramis.,3.  After this she visited all Egypt, and after subduing most of Libya she went also to the oracle of Ammon to inquire of the god regarding her own end. And the account runs that the answer was given her that she would disappear from among men and receive undying honour among some of the peoples of Asia, and that this would take place when her son Ninyas should conspire against her.,4.  Then upon her return from these regions she visited most of Ethiopia, subduing it as she went and inspecting the wonders of the land. For in that country, they say, there is a lake, square in form, with a perimeter of some hundred and sixty feet, and its water is like cinnabar in colour and the odour of it is exceedingly sweet, not unlike that of old wine; moreover, it has a remarkable power; for whoever has drunk of it, they say, falls into a frenzy and accuses himself of every sin which he had formerly committed in secret. However, a man may not readily agree with those who tell such things.,1.  In the burial of their dead the inhabitants of Ethiopia follow customs peculiar to themselves; for after they have embalmed the body and have poured a heavy coat of glass over it they stand it on a pillar, so that the body of the dead man is visible through the glass to those who pass by. This is the statement of Herodotus.,2.  But Ctesias of Cnidus, declaring that Herodotus is inventing a tale, gives for his part this account. The body is indeed embalmed, but glass is not poured about the naked bodies, for they would be burned and so completely disfigured that they could no longer preserve their likeness.,3.  For this reason they fashion a hollow statue of gold and when the corpse has been put into this they pour the glass over the statue, and the figure, prepared in this way, is then placed at the tomb, and the gold, fashioned as it is to resemble the deceased, is seen through the glass.,4.  Now the rich among them are buried in this wise, he says, but those who leave a smaller estate receive a silver statue, and the poor one made of earthenware; as for the glass, there is enough of it for everyone, since it occurs in great abundance in Ethiopia and is quite current among the inhabitants.,5.  With regard to the custom prevailing among the Ethiopians and the other features of their country we shall a little later set forth those that are the most important and deserving of record, at which time we shall also recount their early deeds and their mythology.,1.  But after Semiramis had put in order the affairs of Ethiopia and Egypt she returned with her force to Bactra in Asia. And since she had great forces and had been at peace for some time she became eager to achieve some brilliant exploit in war.,2.  And when she was informed that the Indian nation was the largest one in the world and likewise possessed both the most extensive and the fairest country, she purposed to make a campaign into India. Stabrobates at that time was king of the country and had a multitude of soldiers without number; and many elephants were also at his disposal, fitted out in an exceedingly splendid fashion with such things as would strike terror in war.,3.  For India is a land of unusual beauty, and since it is traversed by many rivers it is supplied with water over its whole area and yields two harvests each year; consequently it has such an abundance of the necessities of life that at all times it favours its inhabitants with a bounteous enjoyment of them. And it is said that because of the favourable climate in those parts the country has never experienced a famine or a destruction of crops.,4.  It also has an unbelievable number of elephants, which both in courage and in strength of body far surpass those of Libya, and likewise gold, silver, iron, and copper; furthermore, within its borders are to be found great quantities of precious stones of every kind and of practically all other things which contribute to luxury and wealth. When Semiramis had received a detailed account of these facts she was led to begin her war against the Indians, although she had been done no injury by them.,5.  And realizing that she needed an exceedingly great force in addition to what she had she despatched messengers to all the satrapies, commanding the governors to enrol the bravest of the young men and setting their quota in accordance with the size of each nation; and she further ordered them all to make new suits of armour and to be at hand, brilliantly equipped in every other respect, at Bactra on the third year thereafter.,6.  She also summoned shipwrights from Phoenicia, Syria, Cyprus, and the rest of the lands along the sea, and shipping thither an abundance of timber she ordered them to build river boats which could be taken to pieces.,7.  For the Indus river, by reason of its being the largest in that region and the boundary of her kingdom, required many boats, some for the passage across and others from which to defend the former from the Indians; and since there was no timber near the river the boats had to be brought from Bactriana by land.,8.  Observing that she was greatly inferior because of her lack of elephants, Semiramis conceived the plan of making dummies like these animals, in the hope that the Indians would be struck with terror because of their belief that no elephants ever existed at all apart from those found in India.,9.  Accordingly she chose out three hundred thousand black oxen and distributed their meat among her artisans and the men who had been assigned to the task of making the figures, but the hides she sewed together and stuffed with straw, and thus made dummies, copying in every detail the natural appearance of these animals. Each dummy had within it a man to take care of it and a camel and, when it was moved by the latter, to those who saw it from a distance it looked like an actual animal.,10.  And the artisans who were engaged in making these dummies for her worked at their task in a certain court which had been surrounded by a wall and had gates which were carefully guarded, so that no worker within could pass out no one from outside could come in to them. This she did in order that no one from the outside might see what was taking place and that no report about the dummies might escape to the Indians.,1.  When the boats and the beasts had been prepared in the two allotted years, on the third she summoned her forces from everywhere to Bactriana. And the multitude of the army which was assembled, as Ctesias of Cnidus has recorded, was three million foot-soldiers, two hundred thousand cavalry, and one hundred thousand chariots.,2.  There were also men mounted on camels, carrying swords four cubits long, as many in number as the chariots. And river boats which could be taken apart she built to the number of two thousand, and she had collected camels to carry the vessels overland. Camels also bore the dummies of the elephants, as has been mentioned; and the soldiers, by bringing their horses up to these camels, accustomed them not to fear the savage nature of the beasts.,3.  A similar thing was also done many years later by Perseus, the king of the Macedonians, before his decisive conflict with the Romans who had elephants from Libya. But neither in his case did it turn out that the zeal and ingenuity displayed in such matters had any effect on the conflict, nor in that of Semiramis, as will be shown more precisely in our further account.,4.  When Stabrobates, the king of the Indians, heard of the immensity of the forces mentioned and of the exceedingly great preparations which had been made for the war, he was anxious to surpass Semiramis in every respect.,5.  First of all, then, he made four thousand river boats out of reeds; for along its rivers and marshy places India produces a great abundance of reeds, so large in diameter that a man cannot easily put his arms about them; and it is said, furthermore, that ships built of these are exceedingly serviceable, since this wood does not rot.,6.  Moreover, he gave great care to the preparation of his arms and by visiting all India gathered a far greater force than that which had been collected by Semiramis.,7.  Furthermore, holding a hunt of the wild elephants and multiplying many times the number already at his disposal, he fitted them all out splendidly with such things as would strike terror in war;,8.  and the consequence was that when they advanced to the attack the multitude of them as well as the towers upon their backs made them appear like a thing beyond the power of human nature to understand. ,1.  When he had made all his preparations for the war he despatched messengers to Semiramis, who was already on the road, accusing her of being the aggressor in the war although she had been injured in no respect; then, in the course of his letter, after saying many slanderous things against her as being a strumpet and calling upon the gods as witnesses, he threatened her with crucifixion when he had defeated her.,2.  Semiramis, however, on reading his letter dismissed his statements with laughter and remarked, "It will be in deeds that the Indian will make trial of my valour." And when her advance brought her with her force to the Indus river she found the boats of the enemy ready for battle.,3.  Consequently she on her side, hastily putting together her boats and manning them with her best marines, joined battle on the river, while the foot-soldiers which were drawn up along the banks also participated eagerly in the contest.,4.  The struggle raged for a long time and both sides fought spiritedly, but finally Semiramis was victorious and destroyed about a thousand of the boats, taking also not a few men prisoners.,5.  Elated now by her victory, she reduced to slavery the islands in the river and the cities on them and gathered in more than one hundred thousand captives. After these events the king of the Indians withdrew his force from the river, giving the appearance of retreating in fear but actually with the intention of enticing the enemy to cross the river.,6.  Thereupon Semiramis, now that her undertakings were prosperous as she wished, spanned the river with a costly and large bridge, by means of which she got all her forces across; and then she left sixty thousand men to guard the pontoon bridge, while with the rest of her army she advanced in pursuit of the Indians, the dummy elephants leading the way in order that the king's spies might report to the king the multitude of these animals in her army.,7.  Nor was she deceived in this hope; on the contrary, when those who had been despatched to spy her out reported to the Indians the multitude of elephants among the enemy, they were all at a loss to discover from where such a multitude of beasts as accompanied her could have come.,8.  However, the deception did not remain a secret for long; for some of Semiramis' troops were caught neglecting their night watches in the camp, and these, in fear of the consequent punishment, deserted to the enemy and pointed out to them their mistake regarding the nature of the elephants. Encouraged by this information, the king of the Indians, after informing his army about the dummies, set his forces in array and turned about to face the Assyrians.,1.  Semiramis likewise marshalled her forces, and as the two armies neared each other Stabrobates, the king of the Indians, despatched his cavalry and chariots far in advance of the main body.,2.  But the queen stoutly withstood the attack of the cavalry, and since the elephants which she had fabricated had been stationed at equal intervals in front of the main body of troops, it came about that the horses of the Indians shied at them.,3.  For whereas at a distance the dummies looked like the actual animals with which the horses of the Indians were acquainted and therefore charged upon them boldly enough, yet on nearer contact the odour which reached the horses was unfamiliar, and then the other differences, which taken all together were very great, threw them into utter confusion. Consequently some of the Indians were thrown to the ground, while others, whence their horses would not obey the rein, were carried with their mounts pell-mell into the midst of the enemy.,4.  Then Semiramis, who was in the battle with a select band of soldiers, made skilful use of her advantage and put the Indians to flight. But although these fled towards the battle-line, King Stabrobates, undismayed, advanced the ranks of his foot-soldiers, keeping the elephants in front, while he himself, taking his position on the right wing and fighting from the most powerful of the beasts, charged in terrifying fashion upon the queen, whom chance had placed opposite him.,5.  And since the rest of the elephants followed his example, the army of Semiramis withstood but a short time the attack of the beasts; for the animals, by virtue of their extraordinary courage and the confidence which they felt in their power, easily destroyed everyone who tried to withstand them,6.  Consequently there was a great slaughter, which was effected in various ways, some being trampled beneath their feet, others ripped up by their tusks, and a number tossed into the air by their trunks. And since a great multitude of corpses lay piled one upon the other and the danger aroused terrible consternation and fear in those who witnessed the sight, not a man had the courage to hold his position any longer.,7.  Now when the entire multitude turned in flight the king of the Indians pressed his attack upon Semiramis herself. And first he let fly an arrow and struck her on the arm, and then with his javelin he pierced the back of the queen, but only with a glancing blow; and since for this reason Semiramis was not seriously injured she rode swiftly away, the pursuing beast being much inferior in speed.,8.  But since all were fleeing to the pontoon bridge and so great a multitude was forcing its way into a single narrow space, some of the queen's soldiers perished by being trampled upon by one another and by cavalry and foot-soldiers being thrown together in unnatural confusion, and when the Indians pressed hard upon them a violent crowding took place on the bridge because their terror, so that many were pushed to either side of the bridge and fell into the river.,9.  As for Semiramis, when the largest part of the survivors of the battle had found safety by putting the river behind them, she cut the fastenings which held the bridge together; and when these were loosened the pontoon bridge, having been broken apart at many points and bearing great numbers of pursuing Indians, was carried down in haphazard fashion by the violence of the current and caused the death of many of the Indians, but for Semiramis it was the means of complete safety, the enemy now being prevented from crossing over against her.,10.  After these events the king of the Indians remained inactive, since heavenly omens appeared to him which his seers interpreted to mean that he must not cross the river, and Semiramis, after exchanging prisoners, made her way back to Bactra with the loss of two-thirds of her force.,1.  Since the undertakings of Ninus were prospering in this way, he was seized with a powerful desire to subdue all of Asia that lies between the Tanaïs and the Nile; for, as a general thing, when men enjoy good fortune, the steady current of their success prompts in them the desire for more. Consequently he made one of his friends satrap of Media, while he himself set about the task of subduing the nations of Asia, and within a period of seventeen years he became master of them all except the Indians and Bactrians.,2.  Now no historian has recorded the battles with each nation or the number of all the peoples conquered, but we shall undertake to run over briefly the most important nations, as given in the account of Ctesias of Cnidus.,3.  Of the lands which lie on the sea and of the others which border on these, Ninus subdued Egypt and Phoenicia, then Coele-Syria, Cilicia, Pamphylia, and Lycia, and also Caria, Phrygia, and Lydia; moreover, he brought under his sway the Troad, Phrygia on the Hellespont, Propontis, Bithynia, Cappadocia, and all the barbarian nations who inhabit the shores of the Pontus as far as the Tanaïs; he also made himself lord of the lands of the Cadusii, Tapyri, Hyrcanii, Drangi, of the Derbici, Carmanii, Choromnaei, and of the Borcanii, and Parthyaei; and he invaded both Persis and Susiana and Caspiana, as it is called, which is entered by exceedingly narrow passes, known for that reason as the Caspian Gates.,4.  Many other lesser nations he also brought under his rule, about whom it would be a long task to speak. But since Bactriana was difficult to invade and contained multitudes of warlike men, after much toil and labour in vain he deferred to a later time the war against the Bactriani, and leading his forces back into Assyria selected a place excellently situated for the founding of a great city.,1.  Some time later her son Ninyas conspired against her through the agency of a certain eunuch; and remembering the prophecy given her by Ammon, she did not punish the conspirator, but, on the contrary, after turning the kingdom over to him and commanding the governors to obey him, she at once disappeared, as if she were going to be translated to the gods as the oracle had predicted.,2.  Some, making a myth of it, say that she turned into a dove and flew off in the company of many birds which alighted on her dwelling, and this, they say, is the reason why the Assyrians worship the dove as a god, thus deifying Semiramis. Be that as it may, this woman, after having been queen over all Asia with the exception of India, passed away in the manner mentioned above, having lived sixty-two years and having reigned forty-two.,3.  Such, then, is the account that Ctesias of Cnidus has given about Semiramis; but Athenaeus and certain other historians say that she was a comely courtesan and because of her beauty was loved by the king of the Assyrians.,4.  Now at first she was accorded only a moderate acceptance in the palace, but later, when she had been proclaimed a lawful wife, she persuaded the king to yield the royal prerogatives to her for a period of five days.,5.  And Semiramis, upon receiving the sceptre and the regal garb, on the first day held high festival and gave a magnificent banquet, at which she persuaded the commanders of the military forces and all the greatest dignitaries to co‑operate with her; and on the second day, while the people and the most notable citizens were paying her their respects as queen, she arrested her husband and put him in prison; and since she was by nature a woman of great designs and bold as well, she seized the throne and remaining queen until old age accomplished many great things. Such, then, are the conflicting accounts which may be found in the historians regarding the career of Semiramis.,1.  After her death Ninyas, the son of Ninus and Semiramis, succeeded to the throne and had a peaceful reign, since he in no wise emulated his mother's fondness for war and her adventurous spirit.,2.  For in the first place, he spent all his time in the palace, seen by no one but his concubines and the eunuchs who attended him, and devoted his life to luxury and idleness and the consistent avoidance of any suffering or anxiety, holding the end and aim of a happy reign to be the enjoyment of every kind of pleasure without restraint.,3.  Moreover, having in view the safety of his crown and the fear he felt with reference to his subjects, he used to summon each year a fixed number of soldiers and a general from each nation and to keep the army,,4.  which had been gathered in this way from all his subject peoples, outside his capital, appointing as commander of each nation one of the most trustworthy men in his service; and at the end of the year he would summon from his peoples a second equal number of soldiers and dismiss the former to their countries.,5.  The result of this device was that all those subject to his rule were filled with awe, seeing at all times a great host encamped in the open and punishment ready to fall on any who rebelled or would not yield obedience.,6.  This annual change of the soldiers was devised by him in order that, before the generals and all the other commanders of the army should become well acquainted with each other, every man of them would have been separated from the rest and have gone back to his own country; for long service in the field both gives the commanders experience in the arts of war and fills them with arrogance, and, above all, it offers great opportunities for rebellion and for plotting against their rulers.,7.  And the fact that he was seen by no one outside the palace made everyone ignorant of the luxury of his manner of life, and through their fear of him, as of an unseen god, each man dared not show disrespect of him even in word. So by appointing generals, satraps, financial officers, and judges for each nation and arranging all other matters as he felt at any time to be to his advantage, he remained for his lifetime in the city of Ninus.,8.  The rest of the kings also followed his example, son succeeding father upon the throne, and reigned for thirty generations down to Sardanapallus; for it was under this ruler that the Empire of the Assyrians fell to the Medes, after it had lasted more than thirteen hundred years, as Ctesias of Cnidus says in his Second Book.,1.  There is no special need of giving all the names of the kings and the number of years which each of them reigned because nothing was done by them which merits mentioning. For the only event which has been recorded is the despatch by the Assyrians to the Trojans of an allied force, which was under the command of Memnon the son of Tithonus.,2.  For when Teutamus, they say, was ruler of Asia, being the twentieth in succession from Ninyas the son of Semiramis, the Greeks made an expedition against Troy with Agamemnon, at a time when the Assyrians had controlled Asia for more than a thousand years. And Priam, who was king of the Troad and a vassal of the king of the Assyrians, being hard pressed by the war, sent an embassy to the king requesting aid; and Teutamus despatched ten thousand Ethiopians and a like number of the men of Susiana along with two hundred chariots, having appointed as general Memnon the son of Tithonus.,3.  Now Tithonus, who was at that time general of Persis, was the most highly esteemed of the governors at the king's court, and Memnon, who was in the bloom of manhood, was distinguished both for his bravery and for his nobility of spirit. He also built the palace in the upper city of Susa which stood until the time of the Persian Empire and was called after him Memnonian; moreover, he constructed through the country a public highway which bears the name Memnonian to this time.,4.  But the Ethiopians who border upon Egypt dispute this, maintaining that this man was a native of their country, and they point out an ancient palace which to this day, they say, bears the name Memnonian.,5.  At any rate, the account runs that Memnon went to the aid of the Trojans with twenty thousand foot-soldiers and two hundred chariots; and he was admired for his bravery and slew many Greeks in the fighting, but was finally ambushed by the Thessalians and slain; whereupon the Ethiopians recovered his body, burned the corpse, and took the bones back to Tithonus. Such is the account concerning Memnon that is given in the royal records, according to what the barbarians say.,1.  Sardanapallus, the thirtieth in succession from Ninus, who founded the empire, and the last king of the Assyrians, outdid all his predecessors in luxury and sluggishness. For not to mention the fact that he was not seen by any man residing outside the palace, he lived the life of a woman, and spending his days in the company of his concubines and spinning purple garments and working the softest of wool, he had assumed the feminine garb and so covered his face and indeed his entire body with whitening cosmetics and the other unguents used by courtesans, that he rendered it more delicate than that of any luxury-loving woman.,2.  He also took care to make even his voice to be like a woman's, and at his carousals not only to indulge regularly in those drinks and viands which could offer the greatest pleasure, but also to pursue the delights of love with men as well as women; for he practised sexual indulgence of both kinds without restraint, showing not the least concern for the disgrace attending such conduct.,3.  To such an excess did he go of luxury and of the most shameless sensual pleasure and in temperance, that he composed a funeral dirge for himself and commanded his successors upon the throne to inscribe it upon his tomb after his death; it was composed by him in a foreign language but was afterwards translated by a Greek as follows: Knowing full well that thou wert mortal born, Thy heart lift up, take thy delight in feast; When dead no pleasure more is thine. Thus I, Who once o'er mighty Ninus ruled, am naught But dust. Yet these are mine which gave me joy In life — the food I ate, my wantonness, And love's delights. But all those other things Men deem felicities are left behind.,4.  Because he was a man of this character, not only did he end his own life in a disgraceful manner, but he caused the total destruction of the Assyrian Empire, which had endured longer than any other known to history.,1.  The facts are these: A certain Arbaces, a Mede by race, and conspicuous for his bravery and nobility of spirit, was the general of the contingent of Medes which was sent each year to Ninus. And having made the acquaintance during this service of the general of the Babylonians, he was urged by him to overthrow the empire of the Assyrians.,2.  Now this man's name was Belesys, and he was the most distinguished of those priests whom the Babylonians call Chaldaeans. And since as a consequence he had the fullest experience of astrology and divination, he was wont to foretell the future unerringly to the people in general; therefore, being greatly admired for this gift, he also predicted to the general of the Medes, who was his friend, that it was certainly fated for him to be king over all the territory which was then held by Sardanapallus.,3.  Arbaces, commending the man, promised to give him the satrapy of Babylonia when the affair should be consummated, and for his part, like a man elated by a message from some god, both entered into a league with the commanders of the other nations and assiduously invited them all to banquets and social gatherings, establishing thereby a friendship with each of them.,4.  He was resolved also to see the king face to face and to observe his whole manner of life. Consequently he gave one of the eunuchs a golden bowl as a present and gained admittance to Sardanapallus; and when he had observed at close hand both his luxuriousness and his love of effeminate pursuits and practices, he despised the king as worthy of no consideration and was led all the more to cling to the hopes which had been held out to him by the Chaldaean.,5.  And the conclusion of the matter was that he formed a conspiracy with Belesys, whereby he should himself move the Medes and Persians to revolt while the latter should persuade the Babylonians to join the undertaking and should secure the help of the commander of the Arabs, who was his friend, for the attempt to secure the supreme control.,6.  When the year's time of their service in the king's army had passed and, another force having arrived to replace them, the relieved men had been dismissed as usual to their homes, thereupon Arbaces persuaded the Medes to attack the Assyrian kingdom and the Persians to join in the conspiracy, on the condition of receiving their freedom. Belesys too in similar fashion both persuaded the Babylonians to strike for their freedom, and sending an embassy to Arabia, won over the commander of the people of that country, a friend of his who exchanged hospitality with him, to join in the attack.,7.  And after a year's time all these leaders gathered a multitude of soldiers and came with all their forces to Ninus, ostensibly bringing up replacements, as was the custom, but in fact with the intention of destroying the empire of the Assyrians.,8.  Now when these four nations had gathered into one place the whole number of them amounted to four hundred thousand men, and when they had assembled into one camp they took counsel together concerning the best plan to pursue.,1.  As for Sardanapallus, so soon as he became aware of the revolt, he led forth against the rebels the contingents which had come from the rest of the nations. And at first, when battle was joined on the plain, those who were making the revolt were defeated, and after heavy losses were pursued to a mountain which was seventy stades distant from Ninus;,2.  but afterwards, when they came down again into the plain and were preparing for battle, Sardanapallus marshalled his army against them and despatched heralds to the camp of the enemy to make this proclamation: "Sardanapallus will give two hundred talents of gold to anyone who slays Arbaces the Mede, and will make a present of twice that amount to anyone who delivers him up alive and will also appoint him governor over Media.",3.  Likewise he promised to reward any who would either slay Belesys the Babylonian or take him alive. But since no man paid any attention to the proclamation, he joined battle, slew many of the rebels, and pursued the remainder of the multitude into their encampment in the mountains.,4.  Arbaces, having lost heart because of these defeats, now convened a meeting of his friends and called upon them to consider what should be done.,5.  Now the majority said that they should retire to their respective countries, seize strong positions, and so far as possible prepare there whatever else would be useful for the war; but Belesys the Babylonian, by maintaining that the gods were promising them by signs that with labours and hardship they would bring their enterprise to a successful end, and encouraging them in every other way as much as he could, persuaded them all to remain to face further perils.,6.  So there was a third battle, and again the king was victorious, captured the camp of the rebels, and pursued the defeated foe as far as the boundaries of Babylonia; and it also happened that Arbaces himself, who had fought most brilliantly and had slain many Assyrians, was wounded.,7.  And now that the rebels had suffered defeats so decisive following one upon the other, their commanders, abandoning all hope of victory, were preparing to disperse each to his own country.,8.  But Belesys, who had passed a sleepless night in the open and had devoted himself to the observation of the stars, said to those who had lost hope in their cause, "If you will wait five days help will come of its own accord, and there will be a mighty change to the opposite in the whole situation; for from my long study of the stars I see the gods foretelling this to us." And he appealed to them to wait that many days and test his own skill and the good will of the gods.,1.  So after they had all been called back and had waited the stipulated time, there came a messenger with the news that a force which had been despatched from Bactriana to the king was near at hand, advancing with all speed.,2.  Arbaces, accordingly, decided to go to meet their generals by the shortest route, taking along the best and most agile of his troops, so that, in case they should be unable to persuade the Bactrians by arguments to join in the revolt, they might resort to arms to force them to share with them in the same hopes.,3.  But the outcome was that the new-comers gladly listened to the call to freedom, first the commanders and then the entire force, and they all encamped in the same place.,4.  It happened at this very time that the king of the Assyrians, who was unaware of the defection of the Bactrians and had become elated over his past successes, turned to indulgence and divided among his soldiers for a feast animals and great quantities of both wine and all other provisions. Consequently, since the whole army was carousing, Arbaces, learning from some deserters of the relaxation and drunkenness in the camp of the enemy, made his attack upon it unexpectedly in the night.,5.  And as it was an assault of organized men upon disorganized and of ready men upon unprepared, they won possession of the camp, and after slaying many of the soldiers pursued the rest of them as far as the city.,6.  After this the king named for the chief command Galaemenes, his wife's brother, and gave his own attention to the affairs within the city. But the rebels, drawing up their forces in the plain before the city, overcame the Assyrians in two battles, and they not only slew Galaemenes, but of the opposing forces they cut down some in their flight, while others, who had been shut out from entering the city and forced to leap into the Euphrates river, they destroyed almost to a man.,7.  So great was the multitude of the slain that the water of the stream, mingled with the blood, was changed in colour over a considerable distance. Furthermore, now that the king was shut up in the city and besieged there, many of the nations revolted, going over in each case to the side of liberty.,8.  Sardanapallus, realizing that his entire kingdom was in the greatest danger, sent his three sons and two daughters together with much of his treasure to Paphlagonia to the governor Cotta, who was the most loyal of his subjects, while he himself, despatching letter-carriers to all his subjects, summoned forces and made preparations for the siege.,9.  Now there was a prophecy which had come down to him from his ancestors: "No enemy will ever take Ninus by storm unless the river shall first become the city's enemy." Assuming, therefore, that this would never be, he held out in hope, his thought being to endure the siege and await the troops which would be sent from his subjects.,1.  The rebels, elated at their successes, pressed the siege, but because of the strength of the walls they were unable to do any harm to the men in the city; for neither engines for throwing stones, nor shelters for sappers, nor battering-rams devised to overthrow walls had as yet been invented at that time. Moreover, the inhabitants of the city had a great abundance of all provisions, since the king had taken thought on that score. Consequently the siege dragged on, and for two years they pressed their attack, making assaults on the walls and preventing inhabitants of the city from going out into the country; but in the third year, after there had been heavy and continuous rains, it came to pass that the Euphrates, running very full, both inundated a portion of the city and broke down the walls for a distance of twenty stades.,2.  At this the king, believing that the oracle had been fulfilled and that the river had plainly become the city's enemy, abandoned hope of saving himself. And in order that he might not fall into the hands of the enemy, he built an enormous pyre in his palace, heaped upon it all his gold and silver as well as every article of the royal wardrobe, and then, shutting his concubines and eunuchs in the room which had been built in the middle of the pyre, he consigned both them and himself and his palace to the flames.,3.  The rebels, on learning of the death of Sardanapallus, took the city by forcing an entrance where the wall had fallen, and clothing Arbaces in the royal garb saluted him as king and put in his hands the supreme authority.,1.  Thereupon, after the new king had distributed among the generals who had aided him in the struggle gifts corresponding to their several deserts, and as he was appointing satraps over the nations, Belesys the Babylonian, who had foretold to Arbaces that he would be king of Asia, coming to him, reminded him of his good services, and asked that he be given the governorship of Babylonia, as had been promised at the outset.,2.  He also explained that when their cause was endangered he had made a vow to Belus that, if Sardanapallus were defeated and his palace went up in flames, he would bring its ashes to Babylon, and depositing them near the river and the sacred precinct of the god he would construct a mound which, for all who sailed down the Euphrates, would stand as an eternal memorial of the man who had overthrown the rule of the Assyrians.,3.  This request he made because he had learned from a certain eunuch, who had made his escape and come to Belesys and was kept hidden by him, of the facts regarding the silver and gold.,4.  Now since Arbaces knew nothing of this, by reason of the fact that all the inmates of the palace had been burned along with the king, he allowed him both to carry the ashes away and to hold be able without the payment of tribute. Thereupon Belesys procured boats and at once sent off to Babylon along with the ashes practically all the silver and gold; and the king, having been informed of the act which Belesys had been caught perpetrating, appointed as judges the generals who had served with him in the war.,5.  And when the accused acknowledged his guilt, the court sentenced him to death, but the king, being a magnanimous man and wishing to make his rule at the outset known for clemency, both freed Belesys from the danger threatening him and allowed him to keep the silver and gold which he had carried off; likewise, he did not even take from him the governorship over Babylon which had originally been given to him, saying that his former services were greater than his subsequent misdeeds.,6.  When this act of clemency was noised about, he won no ordinary loyalty on the part of his subjects as well as renown among the nations, all judging that a man who had conducted himself in this wise towards wrongdoers was worthy of the kingship.,7.  Arbaces, however, showing clemency towards the inhabitants of the city, settled them in villages and returned to each man his personal possessions, but the city he levelled to the ground. Then the silver and gold, amounting to many talents, which had been left in the pyre, he collected and took off to Ecbatana in Media.,8.  So the empire of the Assyrians, which had endured from the time of Ninus through thirty generations, for more than one thousand three hundred years, was destroyed by the Medes in the manner described above.,1.  But to us it seems not inappropriate to speak briefly of the Chaldaeans of Babylon and of their antiquity, that we may omit nothing which is worthy of record.,2.  Now the Chaldaeans, belonging as they do to the most ancient inhabitants of Babylonia, have about the same position among the divisions of the state as that occupied by the priests of Egypt; for being assigned to the service of the gods they spend their entire life in study, their greatest renown being in the field of astrology. But they occupy themselves largely with soothsaying as well, making predictions about future events, and in some cases by purifications, in others by sacrifices, and in others by some other charms they attempt to effect the averting of evil things and the fulfilment of the good.,3.  They are also skilled in soothsaying by the flight of birds, and they give out interpretations of both dreams and portents. They also show marked ability in making divinations from the observation of the entrails of animals, deeming that in this branch they are eminently successful. The training which they receive in all these matters is not the same as that of the Greeks who follow such practices.,4.  For among the Chaldaeans the scientific study of these subjects is passed down in the family, and son takes it over from father, being relieved of all other services in the state. Since, therefore, they have their parents for teachers, they not only are taught everything ungrudgingly but also at the same time they give heed to the precepts of their teachers with a most unwavering trust. Furthermore, since they are bred in these teachings from childhood up, they attain a great skill in them, both because of the ease with which youth is taught and because of the great amount of time which is devoted to this study.,5.  Among the Greeks, on the contrary, the student who takes up a large number of subjects without preparation turns to the higher studies only quite late, and then, after labouring upon them to some extent, gives them up, being distracted by the necessity of earning a livelihood; and but a few here and there really strip for the higher studies and continue in the pursuit of them as profit-making business, and these are always trying to make innovations in connection with the most important doctrines instead of following in the path of their predecessors.,6.  The result of this is that the barbarians, by sticking to the same things always, keep a firm hold on every detail, while the Greeks, on the other hand, aiming at the profit to be made out of the business, keep founding new schools and, wrangling with each other over the most important matters of speculation, bring it about that their pupils hold conflicting views, and that their minds, vacillating throughout their lives and unable to believe at all with firm conviction, simply wander in confusion. It is at any rate true that, if a man were to examine carefully the most famous schools of the philosophers, he would find them differing from one another to the uttermost degree and maintaining opposite opinions regarding the most fundamental tenets.,1.  For having accomplished deeds more notable than those of any king before him, he was eager to found a city of such magnitude, that not only would it be the largest of any which then existed in the whole inhabited world, but also that no other ruler of a later time should, if he undertook such a task, find it easy to surpass him.,2.  Accordingly, after honouring the king of the Arabians with gifts and rich spoils from his wars, he dismissed him and his contingent to return to their own country and then, gathering his forces from every quarter and all the necessary material, he founded on the Euphrates river a city which was well fortified with walls, giving it the form of a rectangle. The longer sides of the city were each one hundred and fifty stades in length, and the shorter ninety.,3.  And so, since the total circuit comprised four hundred and eighty stades, he was not disappointed in his hope, since a city its equal, in respect to either the length of its circuit or the magnificence of its walls, was never founded by any man after his time. For the wall had a height of one hundred feet and its width was sufficient for three chariots abreast to drive upon; and the sum total of its towers was one thousand five hundred, and their height was two hundred feet.,4.  He settled in it both Assyrians, who constituted the majority of the population and had the greatest power, and any who wished to come from all other nations. And to the city he gave his own name, Ninus, and he included within the territory of its colonists a large part of the neighbouring country.,1.  Now, as the Chaldaeans say, the world is by its nature eternal, and neither had a first beginning nor will at a later time suffer destruction; furthermore, both the disposition and the orderly arrangement of the universe have come about by virtue of a divine providence, and to‑day whatever takes place in the heavens is in every instance brought to pass, not at haphazard nor by virtue of any spontaneous action, but by some fixed and firmly determined divine decision.,2.  And since they have observed the stars over a long period of time and have noted both the movements and the influences of each of them with greater precision than any other men, they foretell to mankind many things that will take place in the future.,3.  But above all in importance, they say, is the study of the influence of the five stars known as planets, which they call "Interpreters" when speaking of them as a group, but if referring to them singly, the one named Cronus by the Greeks, which is the most conspicuous and presages more events and such as are of greater importance than the others, they call the star of Helius, whereas the other four they designate as the stars of Ares, Aphrodite, Hermes, and Zeus, as do our astrologers.,4.  The reason why they call them "Interpreters" is that whereas all the other stars are fixed and follow a singular circuit in a regular course, these alone, by virtue of following each its own course, point out future events, thus interpreting to mankind the design of the gods. For sometimes by their risings, sometimes by their settings, and again by their colour, the Chaldaeans say, they give signs of coming events to such as are willing to observe them closely;,5.  for at one time they show forth mighty storms of winds, at another excessive rains or heat, at times the appearance of comets, also eclipses of both sun and moon, and earthquakes, and in a word all the conditions which owe their origin to the atmosphere and work both benefits and harm, not only to whole peoples or regions, but also to kings and to persons of private station.,6.  Under the course in which these planets move are situated, according to them, thirty stars, which they designate as "counselling gods"; of these one half oversee the regions above the earth and the other half those beneath the earth, having under their purview the affairs of mankind and likewise those of the heavens; and every ten days one of the stars above is sent as a messenger, so to speak, to the stars below, and again in like manner one of the stars below the earth to those above, and this movement of theirs is fixed and determined by means of an orbit which is unchanging for ever.,7.  Twelve of these gods, they say, hold chief authority, and to each of these the Chaldaeans assign a month and one of the signs of the zodiac, as they are called. And through the midst of these signs, they say, both the sun and moon and the five planets make their course, the sun completing his cycle in a year and the moon traversing her circuit in a month.,1.  Each of the planets, according to them, has its own particular course, and its velocities and periods of time are subject to change and variation. These stars it is which exert the greatest influence for both good and evil upon the nativity of men; and it is chiefly from the nature of these planets and the study of them that they know what is in store for mankind.,2.  And they have made predictions, they say, not only to numerous other kings, but also to Alexander, who defeated Darius, and to Antigonus and Seleucus Nicator who afterwards became kings, and in all their prophecies they are thought to have hit the truth. But of these things we shall write in detail on a more appropriate occasion.,3.  Moreover, they also foretell to men in private station what will befall them, and with such accuracy that those who have made trial of them marvel at the feat and believe that it transcends the power of man.,4.  Beyond the circle of the zodiac they designate twenty-four other stars, of which one half, they say, are situated in the northern parts and one half in the southern, and of these those which are visible they assign to the world of the living, allow those which are invisible they regard as being adjacent to the dead, and so they call them "Judges of the Universe.",5.  And under all the stars hitherto mentioned the moon, according to them, takes her way, being nearest the earth because of her weight and completing her course in a very brief period of time, not by reason of her great velocity, but because her orbit is so short.,6.  They also agree with the Greeks in saying that her light is reflected and that her eclipses are due to the shadow of the earth. Regarding the eclipse of the sun, however, they offer the weakest kind of explanation, and do not presume to predict it or to define the times of its occurrence with any precision.,7.  Again, in connection with the earth they make assertions entirely peculiar to themselves, saying that it is shaped like a boat and hollow, and they offer many plausible arguments about both the earth and all other bodies in the firmament, a full discussion of which we feel would be alien to our history.,8.  This point, however, a man may fittingly maintain, that the Chaldaeans have of all men the greatest grasp of astrology, and that they bestowed the greatest diligence upon the study of it.,9.  But as to the number of years which, according to their statements, the order of the Chaldaeans has spent on the study of the bodies of the universe, a man can scarcely believe them; for they reckon that, down to Alexander's crossing over into Asia, it has been four hundred and seventy-three thousand years, since they began in early times to make their observations of the stars.,10.  So far as the Chaldaeans are concerned we shall be satisfied with what has been said, that we may not wander too far from the matter proper to our history; and now that we have given an account of the destruction of the kingdom of the Assyrians by the Medes we shall return to the point at which we digressed.,1.  Since the earliest writers of history are at variance concerning the mighty empire of the Medes, we feel that it is incumbent upon those who would write the history of events with a love for truth to set forth side by side the different accounts of the historians.,2.  Now Herodotus, who lived in the time of Xerxes, gives this account: After the Assyrians had ruled Asia for five hundred years they were conquered by the Medes, and thereafter no king arose for many generations to lay claim to supreme power, but the city-states, enjoying a regimen of their own, were administered in a democratic fashion; finally, however, after many years a man distinguished for his justice, named Cyaxares, was chosen king among the Medes.,3.  He was the first to try to attach to himself the neighbouring peoples and became for the Medes the founder of their universal empire; and after him his descendants extended the kingdom by continually adding a great deal of the adjoining country, until the reign of Astyages worth was conquered by Cyrus and the Persians. We have for the present given only the most important of these events in summary and shall later give a detailed account of them one by one when we come to the periods in which they fall; for it was in the second year of the Seventeenth Olympiad, according to Herodotus, that Cyaxares was chosen king by the Medes.,4.  Ctesias of Cnidus, on the other hand, lived during the time when Cyrus made his expedition against Artaxerxes his brother, and having been made prisoner and then retained by Artaxerxes because of his medical knowledge, he enjoyed a position of honour with him for seventeen years. Now Ctesias says that from the royal records, in which the Persians in accordance with a certain law of theirs kept an account of their ancient affairs, he carefully investigated the facts about each king, and when he had composed his history he published it to the Greeks.,5.  This, then, is his account: After the destruction of the Assyrian Empire the Medes were the chief power in Asia under their king Arbaces, who conquered Sardanapallus, as has been told before.,6.  And when he had reigned twenty-eight years his son Maudaces succeeded to the throne and reigned over Asia fifty years. After him Sosarmus ruled for thirty years, Artycas for fifty, the king known as Arbianes for twenty-two, and Artaeus for forty years.,1.  During the reign of Artaeus a great war broke out between the Medes and the Cadusii, for the following reasons. Parsondes, a Persian, a man renowned for his valour and intelligence and every other virtue, was both a friend of the king's and the most influential of the members of the royal council.,2.  Feeling himself aggrieved by the king in a certain decision, he fled with three thousand foot-soldiers and a thousand horsemen to the Cadusii, to one of whom, the most influential man in those parts, he had given his sister in marriage.,3.  And now that he had become a rebel, he persuaded the entire people to vindicate their freedom and was chosen general because of his Severus. Then, learning that a great force was being gathered against him, he armed the whole nation of the Cadusii and pitched his camp before the passes leading into the country, having a force of no less than two hundred thousand men all told.,4.  And although the king Artaeus advanced against him with eight hundred thousand soldiers, Parsondes defeated him in battle and slew more than fifty thousand of his followers, and drove the rest of the army out of the country of the Cadusii. And for this exploit he was so admired by the people of the land that he was chosen king, and he plundered Media without ceasing and laid waste every district of the country.,5.  And after he had attained great fame and was about to die of old age, he called to his side his successor to the throne and required of him an oath that the Cadusii should never put an end to their enmity towards the Medes, adding that, if peace were ever made with them, it meant the destruction of his line and of the whole race of the Cadusii.,6.  These, then, were the reasons why the Cadusii were always inveterate enemies of the Medes, and had never been subjected to the Median kings up to the time when Cyrus transferred the Empire of the Medes to the Persians.,1.  After the death of Artaeus, Ctesias continues, Artynes ruled over the Medes for twenty-two years, and Astibaras for forty. During the reign of the latter the Parthians revolted from the Medes and entrusted both their country and their city to the hands of the Sacae.,2.  This led to a war between the Sacae and the Medes, which lasted many years, and after no small number of battles and the loss of many lives on both sides, they finally agreed to peace on the following terms, that the Parthians should be subject to the Medes, but that both peoples should retain their former possessions and be friends and allies for ever.,3.  At that time the Sacae were ruled by a woman named Zarina, who was devoted to warfare and was in daring and efficiency by far the foremost of the women of the Sacae. Now this people, in general, have courageous women who share with their husbands the dangers of war, but she, it is said, was the most conspicuous of them all for her beauty and remarkable as well in respect to both her designs and whatever she undertook.,4.  For she subdued such of the neighbouring barbarian peoples as had become proud because of their boldness and were trying to enslave the people of the Sacae, and into much of her own realm she introduced civilized life, founded not a few cities, and, in a word, made the life of her people happier.,5.  Consequently her countrymen after her death, in gratitude for her benefactions and in remembrance of her virtues, built her a tomb which was far the largest of any in their land; for they erected a triangular pyramid, making the length of each side three stades and the height one stade, and bringing it to a point at the top; and on the tomb they also placed a colossal gilded statue of her and accorded her the honours belonging to heroes, and all the other honours they bestowed upon her were more magnificent than those which had fallen to the lot of her ancestors.,6.  When, Ctesias continues, Astibaras, the king of the Medes, died of old age in Ecbatana, his son Aspandas, whom the Greeks call Astyages, succeeded to the throne. And when he had been defeated by Cyrus the Persian, the kingdom passed to the Persians. Of them we shall give a detailed and exact account at the proper time.,7.  Concerning the kingdoms of the Assyrians and of the Medes, and concerning the disagreement in the accounts of the historians, we consider that enough has been said; now we shall discuss India and then, in turn, recount the legends of that land.,1.  Now India is four-sided in shape and the side which faces east and that which faces south are embraced by the Great Sea, while that which faces north is separated by the Emodus range of mountains from that part of Scythia which is inhabited by the Scythians known as the Sacae; and the fourth side, which is turned towards the west, is marked off by the river known as the Indus, which is the largest of all streams after the Nile.,2.  As for its magnitude, India as a whole, they say, extends from east to west twenty-eight thousand stades, and from north to south thirty-two thousand. And because it is of such magnitude, it is believed to take in a great extent of the sun's course in summer than any other part of the world, and in many places at the Cape of India the gnomons of sundials may be seen which do not cast a shadow, while at night the Bears are not visible; in the most southerly parts not even Arcturus can be seen, and indeed in that region, they say, the shadows fall towards the south.,3.  Now India has many lofty mountains that abound in fruit trees of every variety, and many large and fertile plains, which are remarkable for their beauty and are supplied with water by a multitude of rivers. The larger part of the country is well watered and for this reason yields two crops each year; and it abounds in all kinds of animals, remarkable for their great size and strength, land animals as well as birds.,4.  It also breeds elephants both in the greatest numbers and of the largest size, providing them with sustenance in abundance, and it is because of this food that the elephants of this land are much more powerful than those produced in Libya; consequently large numbers of them are made captive by the Indians and trained for warfare, and it is found that they play a great part in turning the scale to victory.,1.  The same is true of the inhabitants also, the abundant supply of food making them of unusual height and bulk of body; and another result is that they are skilled in the arts, since they breathe a pure air and drink water of the finest quality.,2.  And the earth, in addition to producing every fruit which admits of cultivation, also contains rich underground veins of every kind of ore; for there are found in it much silver and gold, not a little copper and iron, and tin also and whatever else is suitable for adornment, necessity, and the trappings of war.,3.  In addition to the grain of Demeter there grows throughout India much millet, which is irrigated by the abundance of running water supplied by the rivers, pulse in large quantities and of superior quality, rice also and the plant called bosporos, and in addition to these many more plants which are useful for food; and most of these are native to the country. It also yields not a few other edible fruits, that are able to sustain animal life, but to write about them would be a long task.,4.  This is the reason, they say, why a famine has never visited India or, in general, any scarcity of what is suitable for gentle fare. For since there are two rainy seasons in the country each year, during the winter rains the sowing is made of the wheat crop as among other peoples, while in the second, which comes at the summer solstice, it is the general practice to plant the rice and bosporos, as well as sesame and millet; and in most years the Indians are successful in both crops, and they never lose everything, since the fruit of one or the other sowing comes to maturity.,5.  The fruits also which flourish wild and the roots which grow in the marshy places, by reason of their remarkable sweetness, provide the people with a great abundance of food. For practically all the plains of India enjoy the sweet moisture from the rivers and from the rains which come with astonishing regularity, in a kind of fixed cycle, every year in the summer, since warm showers fall in abundance from the enveloping atmosphere and the heat ripens the roots in the marshes, especially those of the tall reeds.,6.  Furthermore, the customs of the Indians contribute towards there never being any lack of food among them; for whereas in the case of all the rest of mankind their enemies ravage the land and cause it to remain uncultivated, yet among the Indians the workers of the soil are let alone as sacred and inviolable, and such of them as labour near the battle-lines have no feeling of the dangers.,7.  For although both parties to the war kill one another in their hostilities, yet they leave uninjured those who are engaged in tilling the soil, considering that they are the common benefactors of all, nor do they burn the lands of their opponents or cut down their orchards.,1.  The land of the Indians has also many large navigable rivers which have their sources in the mountains lying to the north and then flow through the level country; and not a few of these unite and empty into the river known as the Ganges.,2.  This river, which is thirty stades in width, flows from north to south and empties into the ocean, forming the boundary towards the east of the tribe of the Gandaridae, which possesses the greatest number of elephants and the largest in size.,3.  Consequently no foreign king has ever subdued this country, all alien nations being fearful of both the multitude and the strength of the beasts. In fact even Alexander of Macedon, although he had subdued all Asia, refrained from making war upon the Gandaridae alone of all peoples; for when he had arrived at the Ganges river with his entire army, after his conquest of the rest of the Indians, upon learning that the Gandaridae had four thousand elephants equipped for war he gave up his campaign against them.,4.  The river which is nearly the equal of the Ganges and is called the Indus rises like the Ganges in the north, but as it empties into the ocean forms a boundary of India; and in its course through an expanse of level plain it receives not a few navigable rivers, the most notable being the Hypanis, Hydaspes, and Acesinus.,5.  And in addition to these three rivers a vast number of others of every description traverse the country and bring it about that the land is planted in many gardens and crops of every description. Now for the multitude of rivers and the exceptional supply of water the philosophers and students of nature among them advance the following cause:,6.  The countries which surround India, they say, such as Scythia, Bactria, and Ariana, are higher than India, and so it is reasonable to assume that the waters which come together from every side into the country lying below them, gradually cause the regions to become soaked and to generate a multitude of rivers.,7.  And a peculiar thing happens in the case of one of the rivers of India, known as the Silla, which flows from a spring of the same name; for it is the only river in the world possessing the characteristic that nothing cast into it floats, but that everything, strange to say, sinks to the bottom.,1.  Now India as a whole, being of a vast extent, is inhabited, as we are told, by many other peoples of every description, and not one of them had its first origin in a foreign land, but all of them are thought to be autochthonous; it never receives any colony from abroad nor has it ever sent one to any other people.,2.  According to their myths the earliest human beings used for food the fruits of the earth which grew wild, and for clothing the skins of the native animals, as was done by the Greeks. Similarly too the discovery of the several arts and of all other things which are useful for life was made gradually, necessity itself showing the way to a creature which was well endowed by nature and had, as its assistants for every purpose, hands and speech and sagacity of mind.,3.  The most learned men among the Indians recount a myth which it may be appropriate to set forth in brief form. This, then, is what they say: In the earliest times, when the inhabitants of their land were still dwelling in scattered clan-villages, Dionysus came to them from the regions to the west of them with a notable army; and he traversed all India, since there was as yet no notable city which would have been able to oppose him.,4.  But when an oppressive heat came and the soldiers of Dionysus were being consumed by a pestilential sickness, this leader, who was conspicuous for his wisdom, led his army out of the plains into the hill-country; here, where cool breezes blew and the spring waters flowed pure at their very sources, the army got rid of its sickness. The name of this region of the hill-country, where Dionysus relieved his forces of the sickness, is Meros; and it is because of this fact that the Greeks have handed down to posterity in their account of this god the story that Dionysus was nourished in a thigh (meros).,5.  After this he took in hand the storing of the fruits and shared this knowledge with the Indians, and he communicated to them the discovery of wine and of all the other things useful for life. Furthermore, he became the founder of notable cities by gathering the villages together in well-situated regions, and he both taught them to honour the deity and introduced laws and courts; and, in brief, since he had been the introducer of many good works he was regarded as a god and received immortal honours.,6.  They also recount that he carried along with his army a great number of women, and that when he joined battle in his wars he used the sounds of drums and cymbals, since the trumpet had not yet been discovered. And after he had reigned over all India for fifty-two years he died of old age. His sons, who succeeded to the sovereignty, passed the rule on successively to their descendants; but finally, many generations later, their sovereignty was dissolved and the cities received a democratic form of government.,1.  As for Dionysus, then, and his descendants, such is the myth as it is related by the inhabitants of the hill-country of India. And with regard to Heracles they say that he was born among them and they assign to him, in common with the Greeks, both the club and the lion's skin.,2.  Moreover, as their account tells us, he was far superior to all other men in strength of body and in courage, and cleared both land and sea of their wild beasts. And marrying several wives, he begot many sons, but only one daughter; and when his sons attained to manhood, dividing all India into as many parts as he had male children, he appointed all his sons kings, and rearing his single daughter he appointed her also a queen.,3.  Likewise, he became the founder of not a few cities, the most renowned and largest of which he called Palibothra. In this city he also constructed a costly palace and settled a multitude of inhabitants, and he fortified it with remarkable ditches which were filled with water from the river.,4.  And when Heracles passed from among men he received immortal honour, but his descendants, though they held the kingship during many generations and accomplished notable deeds, made no campaign beyond their own frontiers and despatched no colony to any other people. But many years later most of the cities had received a democratic form of government, although among certain tribes the kingship endured until the time when Alexander crossed over into Asia.,5.  As for the customs of the Indians which are peculiar to them, a man may consider one which was drawn up by their ancient wise men to be the most worthy of admiration; for the law has ordained that under no circumstances shall anyone among them be a slave, but that all shall be free and respect the principle of equality in all persons. For those, they think, who have learned neither to domineer over others nor to subject themselves to others will enjoy a manner of life best suited to all circumstances; since it is silly to make laws on the basis of equality for all persons, and yet to establish inequalities in social intercourse.,1.  Since after the founding of this city Ninus made a campaign against Bactriana, where he married Semiramis, the most renowned of all women of whom we have any record, it is necessary first of all to tell how she rose from a lowly fortune to such fame.,2.  Now there is in Syria a city known as Ascalon, and not far from it a large and deep lake, full of fish. On its shore is a precinct of a famous goddess whom the Syrians call Derceto; and this goddess has the head of a woman but all the rest of her body is that of a fish, the reason being something like this.,3.  The story as given by the most learned of the inhabitants of the region is as follows: Aphrodite, being offended with this goddess, inspired in her a violent passion for a certain handsome youth among her votaries; and Derceto gave herself to the Syrian and bore a daughter, but then, filled with shame of her sinful deed, she killed the youth and exposed the child in a rocky desert region, while as for herself, from shame and grief she threw herself into the lake and was changed as to the form of her body into a fish; and it is for this reason that the Syrians to this day abstain from this animal and honour their fish as gods.,4.  But about the region where the babe was exposed a great multitude of doves had their nests, and by them the child was nurtured in an astounding and miraculous manner; for some of the doves kept the body of the babe warm on all sides by covering it with their wings, while others, when they observed that the cowherds and other keepers were absent from the nearby steadings, brought milk therefrom in their beaks and fed the babe by putting it drop by drop between its lips.,5.  And when the child was a year old and in need of more solid nourishment, the doves, pecking off bits from the cheeses, supplied it with sufficient nourishment. Now when the keepers returned and saw that the cheeses had been nibbled about the edges, they were astonished at the strange happening; they accordingly kept a look-out, and on discovering the cause found the infant, which was of surpassing beauty.,6.  At once, then, bringing it to their steadings they turned it over to the keeper of the royal herds, whose name was Simmas; and Simmas, being childless, gave every care to the rearing of the girl, as his own daughter, and called her Semiramis, a name slightly altered from the word which, in the language of the Syrians, means "doves," birds which since that time all the inhabitants of Syria have continued to honour as goddesses.,1.  The whole multitude of the Indians is divided into seven castes, the first of which is formed of the order of the philosophers, which in number is smaller than the rest of the castes, but in dignity ranks first. For being exempt from any service to the state the philosophers are neither the masters nor the servants of the others.,2.  But they are called upon by the private citizens both to offer the sacrifices which are required in their lifetime and to perform the rites for the dead, as having proved themselves to be most dear to the gods and as being especially experienced in the matters that relate to the underworld, and for this service they receive both notable gifts and honours. Moreover, they furnish great services to the whole body of the Indians, since they are invited at the beginning of the year to the Great Synod and foretell to the multitude droughts and rains, as well as the favourable blowing of winds, and epidemics, and whatever else can be of aid to their auditors.,3.  For both the common folk and the king, by learning in advance what is going to take place, store up from time to time that of which there will be a shortage and prepare beforehand from time to time anything that will be needed. And the philosopher who has erred in his predictions is subjected to no other punishment than obloquy and keeps silence for the remainder of his life.,4.  The second caste is that of the farmers, who, it would appear, are far more numerous than the rest. These, being exempt from war duties and every other service to the state, devote their entire time to labour in the fields; and no enemy, coming upon a farmer in the country, would think of doing him injury, but they look upon the farmers as common benefactors and therefore refrain from every injury to them.,5.  Consequently the land, remaining as it does unravaged and being laden with fruits, provides the inhabitants with a great supply of provisions. And the farmers spend their lives upon the land with their children and wives and refrain entirely from coming down into the city. For the land they pay rent to the kind, since all India is royal land and no man of private station is permitted to possess any ground; and apart from the rental they pay a fourth part into the royal treasury.,6.  The third division is that of the neatherds and shepherds, and, in general, of all the herdsmen who do not dwell in a city or village but spend their lives in tents; and these men are also hunters and rid the country of both birds and wild beasts. And since they are practised in this calling and follow it with zest they are bringing India under cultivation, although it still abounds in many wild beasts and birds of every kind, which eat up the seeds sown by the farmers.,1.  The fourth caste is that of the artisans; of these some are armourers and some fabricate for the farmers or certain others the things useful for the services they perform. And they are not only exempt from paying taxes but they even receive rations from the royal treasury.,2.  The fifth caste is that of the military, which is at hand in case of war; they are second in point of number and indulge to the fullest in relaxation and pastimes in the periods of peace. And the maintenance of the whole multitude of the soldiers and of the horses and elephants for use in war is met out of the royal treasury.,3.  The sixth caste is that of the inspectors. These men inquire into and inspect everything that is going on throughout India, and report back to the kings or, in case the state to which they are attached has no king, to the magistrates.,4.  The seventh caste is that of the deliberators and chancellors, whose concern is with the decisions which affect the common welfare. In point of number this group is the smallest, but in nobility of birth and wisdom the most worthy of admiration; for from their body are drawn the advisers for the kings and the administrators of the affairs of state and the judges of disputes, and, speaking generally, they take their leaders and magistrates from among these men.,5.  Such in general terms are the groups into which the body politic of the Indians is divided. Furthermore, no one is allowed to marry a person of another caste or to follow another calling or trade, as, for instance, that one who is a soldier should become a farmer, or an artisan should become a philosopher.,1.  The country of the Indians also possesses a vast number of enormous elephants, which far surpass all others both in strength and size. Nor does this animal cover the female in a peculiar manner, as some say, but in the same way as horses and all other four-footed beasts; and their period of gestation is in some cases sixteen months at the least and in other cases eighteen months at the most.,2.  They bring forth, like horses, but one young for the most part, and the females suckle their young for six years. The span of life for most of them is about that of men who attain the greatest age, though some which have reached the highest age have lived two hundred years.,3.  There are among the Indians also magistrates appointed for foreigners who take care that no foreigner shall be wronged; moreover, should any foreigner fall sick they bring him a physician and care for him in every other way, and if he dies they bury him and even turn over such property as he has to his relatives.,4.  Again, their judges examine accurately matters of dispute and proceed rigorously against such as are guilty of wrongdoing. As for India, then, and its antiquities we shall be satisfied with what has been said.,1.  But now, in turn, we shall discuss the Scythians who inhabit the country bordering upon India. This people originally possessed little territory, but later, as they gradually increased in power, they seized much territory by reason of their deeds of might and their bravery and advanced their nation to great leadership and renown.,2.  At first, then, they dwelt on the Araxes river, altogether few in number and despised because of their lack of renown; but since one of their early kings was warlike and of unusual skill as a general they acquired territory, in the mountains as far as the Caucasus, and in the steppes along the ocean and Lake Maeotis and the rest of that country as far as the Tanaïs river.,3.  At a later time, as the Scythians recount the myth, there was born among them a maiden sprung from the earth; the upper parts of her body as far as her waist were those of a woman, but the lower parts were those of a snake. With her Zeus lay begat a son whose name was Scythes. This son became more famous than any who had preceded him and called the folk Scythians after his own name. Now among the descendants of this king there were two brothers who were distinguished for their valour, the one named Palus and the other Napes.,4.  And since these two performed renowned deeds and divided the kingship between them, some of the people were called Pali after one of them and some Napae after the other. But some time later the descendants of these kings, because of their unusual valour and skill as generals, subdued much of the territory beyond the Tanaïs river as far as Thrace, and advancing with their armies to the other side they extended their power as far as the Nile in Egypt.,5.  And after enslaving many great peoples which lay between the Thracians and the Egyptians they advanced the empire of the Scythians on the one side as far as the ocean to the east, and on the other side to the Caspian Sea and Lake Maeotis; for this people increased to great strength and had notable kings, one of whom gave his name to the Sacae, another to the Massagetae, another to the Arimaspi, and several other tribes received their names in like manner.,6.  It was by these kings that many of the conquered peoples were removed to other homes, and two of these became very great colonies: the one was composed of Assyrians and was removed to the land between Paphlagonia and Pontus, and the other was drawn from Media and planted along the Tanaïs, its people receiving the name Sauromatae.,7.  Many years later this people became powerful and ravaged a large part of Scythia, and destroying utterly all whom they subdued they turned most of the land into a desert.,1.  After these events there came in Scythia a period of revolutions, in which the sovereigns were women endowed with exceptional valour. For among these peoples the women train for war just as do the men and in acts of manly valour are in no wise inferior to the men. Consequently distinguished women have been the authors of many great deeds, not in Scythia alone, but also in the territory bordering upon it.,2.  For instance, when Cyrus the king of the Persians, the mightiest ruler of his day, made a campaign with a vast army into Scythia, the queen of the Scythians not only cut the army of the Persians to pieces but she even took Cyrus prisoner and crucified him; and the nation of the Amazons, after it was once organized, was so distinguished for its manly prowess that it not only overran much of the neighbouring territory but even subdued a large part of Europe and Asia.,3.  But for our part, since we have mentioned the Amazons, we feel that it is not foreign to our purpose to discuss them, even though what we shall say will be so marvellous that it will resemble a tale from mythology.,1.  Now in the country along the Thermodon river, as the account goes, the sovereignty was in the hands of a people among whom the women held the supreme power, and its women performed the services of war just as did the men. Of these women one, who possessed the royal authority, was remarkable for her prowess in war and her bodily strength, and gathering together an army of women she drilled it in the use of arms and subdued in war some of the neighbouring peoples.,2.  And since her valour and fame increased, she made war upon people after people of neighbouring lands, and as the tide of her fortune continued favourable, she was so filled with pride that she gave herself the appellation of Daughter of Ares; but to the men she assigned the spinning of wool and such other domestic duties as belong to women. Laws were also established by her, by virtue of which she led forth the women to the contests of war, but upon the men she fastened humiliation and slavery.,3.  And as for their children, they mutilated both the legs and the arms of the males, incapacitating them in this way for the demands of war, and in the case of the females they seared the right breast that it might not project when their bodies matured and be in the way; and it is for this reason that the nation of the Amazons received the appellation it bears.,4.  In general, this queen was remarkable for her intelligence and ability as a general, and she founded a great city named Themiscyra at the mouth of the Thermodon river and built there a famous palace; furthermore, in her campaigns she devoted much attention to military discipline and at the outset subdued all her neighbours as far as the Tanaïs river.,5.  And this queen, they say, accomplished the deeds which have been mentioned, and fighting brilliantly in a certain battle she ended her life heroically.,1.  The daughter of this queen, the account continues, on succeeding to the throne emulated the excellence of her mother, and even surpassed her in some particular deeds. For instance, she exercised in the chase the maidens from their earliest girlhood and drilled them daily in the arts of war, and she also established magnificent festivals both to Ares and to the Artemis who is called Tauropolus.,2.  Then she campaigned against the territory lying beyond the Tanaïs and subdued all the peoples one after another as far as Thrace; and returning to her native land with much booty she built magnificent shrines to the deities mentioned above, and by reason of her kindly rule over her subjects received from them the greatest approbation. She also campaigned on the other side and subdued a large part of Asia and extended her power as far as Syria.,3.  After the death of this queen, as their account continues, women of her family, succeeding to the queenship from time to time, ruled with distinction and advanced the nation of the Amazons in both power and fame. And many generations after these events, when the excellence of these women had been noised abroad through the whole inhabited world, they say that Heracles, the son of Alcmenê and Zeus, was assigned by Eurystheus the Labour of securing the girdle of Hippolytê the Amazon.,4.  Consequently he embarked on this campaign, and coming off victorious in a great battle he not only cut to pieces the army of the Amazons but also, after taking captive Hippolytê together with her girdle, completely crushed this nation. Consequently the neighbouring barbarians, despising the weakness of this people and remembering against them their past injuries, waged continuous wars against the nation to such a degree that they left in existence not even the name of the race of the Amazons.,5.  For a few years after the campaign of Heracles against them, they say, during the time of the Trojan War, Penthesileia, the queen of the surviving Amazons, who was a daughter of Ares and had slain one of her kindred, fled from her native land because of the sacrilege. And fighting as an ally of the Trojans after the death of Hector she slew many of the Greeks, and after gaining distinction in the struggle she ended her life heroically at the hands of Achilles.,6.  Now they say that Penthesileia was the last of the Amazons to win distinction for bravery and that for the future the race diminished more and more and then lost all its strength; consequently in later times, whenever any writers recount their prowess, men consider the ancient stories about the Amazons to be fictitious tales.,1.  Now for our part, since we have seen fit to make mention of the regions of Asia which lie to the north, we feel that it will not be foreign to our purpose to discuss the legendary accounts of the Hyperboreans. Of those who have written about the ancient myths, Hecataeus and certain others say that in the regions beyond the land of the Celts there lies in the ocean an island no smaller than Sicily. This island, the account continues, is situated in the north and is inhabited by the Hyperboreans, who are called by that name because their home is beyond the point whence the north wind (Boreas) blows; and the island is both fertile and productive of every crop, and since it has an unusually temperate climate it produces two harvests each year.,2.  Moreover, the following legend is told concerning it: Leto was born on this island, and for that reason Apollo is honoured among them above all other gods; and the inhabitants are looked upon as priests of Apollo, after a manner, since daily they praise this god continuously in song and honour him exceedingly. And there is also on the island both a magnificent sacred precinct of Apollo and a notable temple which is adorned with many votive offerings and is spherical in shape.,3.  Furthermore, a city is there which is sacred to this god, and the majority of its inhabitants are players on the cithara; and these continually play on this instrument in the temple and sing hymns of praise to the god, glorifying his deeds.,4.  The Hyperboreans also have a language, we informed, which is peculiar to them, and are most friendly disposed towards the Greeks, and especially towards the Athenians and the Delians, who have inherited this good-will from most ancient times. The myth also relates that certain Greeks visited the Hyperboreans and left behind them there costly votive offerings bearing inscriptions in Greek letters.,5.  And in the same way Abaris, a Hyperborean, came to Greece in ancient times and renewed the good-will and kinship of his people to the Delians. They say also that the moon, as viewed from this island, appears to be but a little distance from the earth and to have upon it prominences, like those of the earth, which are visible to the eye.,6.  The account is also given that the god visits the island every nineteen years, the period in which the return of the stars to the same place in the heavens is accomplished; and for this reason the nineteen-year period is called by the Greeks the "year of Meton." At the time of this appearance of the god he both plays on the cithara and dances continuously the night through from the vernal equinox until the rising of the Pleiades, expressing in this manner his delight in his successes. And the kings of this city and the supervisors of the sacred precinct are called Boreadae, since they are descendants of Boreas, and the succession to these positions is always kept in their family.,1.  But now that we have examined these matters we shall turn our account to the other parts of Asia which have not yet been described, and more especially to Arabia. This land is situated between Syria and Egypt, and is divided among many peoples of diverse characteristics. Now the eastern parts are inhabited by Arabs, who bear the name of Nabataeans and range over a country which is partly desert and partly waterless, though a small section of it is fruitful.,2.  And they lead a life of brigandage, and overrunning a large part of the neighbouring territory they pillage it, being difficult to overcome in war. For in the waterless region, as it is called, they have dug wells at convenient intervals and have kept the knowledge of them hidden from the peoples of all other nations, and so they retreat in a body into this region out of danger.,3.  For since they themselves know about the places of hidden water and open them up, they have for their use drinking water in abundance; but such other peoples as pursue them, being in want of a watering-place by reason of their ignorance of the wells, in some cases perish because of the lack of water and in other cases regain their native land in safety only with difficulty and after suffering many ills.,4.  Consequently the Arabs who inhabit this country, being difficult to overcome in war, remain always unenslaved; furthermore, they never at any time accept a man of another country as their over-lord and continuous to maintain their liberty unimpaired.,5.  Consequently neither the Assyrians of old, nor the kings of the Medes and Persians, nor yet those of the Macedonians have been able to enslave them, and although they led many great forces against them, they never brought their attempts to a successful conclusion.,6.  There is also in the land of the Nabataeans a rock, which is exceedingly strong since it has but one approach, and using this ascent they mount it a few at a time and thus store their possessions in safety. And a large lake is also there which produces asphalt in abundance, and from it they derive not a little revenue.,7.  It has a length of about five hundred stades and a width of about sixty, and its water is so ill-smelling and so very bitter that it cannot support fish or any of the other animals which commonly live in water. And although great rivers of remarkable sweetness empty into it, the lake gets the better of them by reason of its evil smell, and from its centre it spouts forth once a year a great mass of asphalt, which sometimes extends for more than three plethra, and sometimes for only two; and when this occurs the barbarians who live about the lake usually call the larger flow a "bull" and to the smaller one they give the name "calf.",8.  Since the asphalt floats on the surface of the lake, to those who view it from a distance it takes the appearance of an island. And the fact is that the emission of the asphalt is made known to the natives twenty days before it takes place; for to a distance of many stades around the lake the odour, borne on the wind, assails them, and every piece of silver and gold and brass in the locality loses it characteristic lustre. But this returns again as soon as all the asphalt has been spouted forth; and the region round about, by reason of its being exposed to fire and to the evil odours, renders the bodies of the inhabitants susceptible to disease and makes the people very short-lived.,9.  Yet the land is good for the growing of palms, wherever it happens to be traversed by rivers with usable water or to be supplied with springs which can irrigate it. And there is also found in these regions in a certain valley the balsam tree, as it is called, from which they receive a substantial revenue, since this tree is found nowhere else in the inhabited world and the use of it for medicinal purposes is most highly valued by physicians. •  That part of Arabia which borders upon the waterless and desert country is so different from it that, because both of the multitude of fruits which grow therein and of its other good things, it has been called Arabia Felix.,2.  For the reed and the rush and every other growth that has a spicy scent are produced in great abundance, as is also, speaking generally, every kind of fragrant substance which is derived from leaves, and the land is distinguished in its several parts by the varied odours of the gums which drip from them; for myrrh and that frankincense which is most dear to the gods and is exported throughout the entire inhabited world are produced in the farthest parts of this land.,3.  And kostos and cassia and cinnamon and all other plants of this nature grow there in fields and thickets of such depth that what all other peoples sparingly place upon the altars of the gods is actually used by them as fuel under their pots, and what is found among all other peoples in small specimens there supplies material for the mattresses of the servants in their homes. Moreover, the cinnamon, as it is called, which is exceptionally useful, and resin of the pine, and the terebinth, are produced in these regions in great abundance and of sweet odour.,4.  And in the mountains grow not only silver fir and pine in abundance, but also cedar and the Phoenician cedar in abundance and boraton, as it is called. There are also many other kinds of fruit-bearing plants of sweet odour, which yield sap and fragrances most pleasing to such as approach them. Indeed the very earth itself is by its nature full of a vapour which is like sweet incense.,5.  Consequently, in certain regions of Arabia, when the earth is dug up, there are discovered veins of sweet odour, in the working of which quarries of extraordinary magnitude are formed; and from these they gather stones and build their houses. And as for their houses, whenever rain drops from the enveloping atmosphere, that part which is melted down by the moisture flows into the joints of the stones and hardening there makes the walls solid throughout.,1.  Such, then, is in substance the story that is told about the birth of Semiramis. And when she had already come to the age of marriage and far surpassed all the other maidens in beauty, an officer was sent from the king's court to inspect the royal herds; his name was Onnes, and he stood first among the members of the king's council and had been appointed governor over all Syria. He stopped with Simmas, and on seeing Semiramis was captivated by her beauty; consequently he earnestly entreated Simmas to give him the maiden in lawful marriage and took her off to Ninus, where he married her and begat two sons, Hyapates and Hydaspes.,2.  And since the other qualities of Semiramis were in keeping with the beauty of her countenance, it turned out that her husband became completely enslaved by her, and since he would do nothing without her advice he prospered in everything.,3.  It was at just this time that the king, now that he had completed the founding of the city which bore his name, undertook his campaign against the Bactrians. And since he was well aware of the great number and the valour of these men, and realized that the country had many places which because of their strength could not be approached by an enemy, he enrolled a great host of soldiers from all the negotiations under his sway; for as he had come off badly in his earlier campaign, he was resolved on appearing before Bactriana with a force many times as large as theirs.,4.  Accordingly, after the army had been assembled from every source, it numbered, as Ctesias has stated in his history, one million seven hundred thousand foot-soldiers, two hundred and ten thousand cavalry, and slightly less than ten thousand six hundred scythe-bearing chariots.,5.  Now at first hearing the great size of the army is incredible, but it will not seem at all impossible to any who consider the great extent of Asia and the vast numbers of the peoples who inhabit it. For if a man, disregarding the campaign of Darius against the Scythians with eight hundred thousand men and the crossing made by Xerxes against Greece with a host beyond number, should consider the events which have taken place in Europe only yesterday or the day before, he would the more quickly come to regard the statement as credible.,6.  In Sicily, for instance, Dionysius led forth on his campaigns from the single city of the Syracusans one hundred and twenty thousand foot-soldiers and twelve thousand cavalry, and from a single harbour four hundred warships, some of which were quadriremes and quinqueremes;,7.  and the Romans, a little before the time of Hannibal, foreseeing the magnitude of the war, enrolled all the men in Italy who were fit for military service, both citizens and allies, and the total sum of them fell only a little short of one million; and yet as regards the number of inhabitants a man would not compare all Italy with a single one of the nations of Asia. Let these facts, then, be a sufficient reply on our part to those who try to estimate the populations of the nations of Asia in ancient times on the strength of inferences drawn from the desolation which at the present time prevails in its cities.,1.  There is also mined in Arabia the gold called "fireless," which is not smelted from ores, as is done among all other peoples, but is dug out directly from the earth; it is found in nuggets about the size of chestnuts, and is so fiery-red in colour that when it is used by artisans as a setting for the most precious gems it makes the fairest of adornments.,2.  There is also in the land such a multitude of herds that many tribes which have chosen a nomad life are able to fare right well, experiencing no want of grain but being provided for in abundance by their herds. That part of the country which borders upon Syria breeds a multitude of fierce wild beasts; for the lions and leopards there are far more numerous and larger and superior in ferocity as compared with those of Libya, and in addition to these there are the Babylonian tigers, as they are called.,3.  And it produces animals which are of double form and mingled in their natures, to which belong the struthocameli, which, as their name implies, embrace in their form the compound of a bird and of a camel. For in size they are like a newly-born camel, but their heads bristle with fine hair, and their eyes are large and black, indistinguishable in general appearance and colour from those of the camel.,4.  It is also long-necked and has a beak which is very short and contracted to a sharp point. And since it his wings with feathers which are covered with a fine hair, and is supported upon two legs and on feet with cloven hoofs, it has the appearance of a land animal as well as of a bird.,5.  But being unable by reason of its weight to raise itself in the air and to fly, it swiftly skims over the land, and when pursued by hunters on horseback with its feet it hurls stones as from a sling upon its pursuers, and with such force that they often receive severe wounds.,6.  And whenever it is overtaken and surrounded, it hides its head in a bush or some such shelter, not, as some men suppose, because of its folly and stupidity of spirit, as if it thought that since it could not see the others it could not itself be seen by others either, but because its head is the weakest part of its body it seeks a shelter for it in order to save its life;,7.  for Nature is an excellent instructor of all animals for the preservation not only of their own lives but also of their offspring, since by planting in them an innate love of life she leads successive generations into an eternal cycle of continued existence.,1.  The camelopards, as they are called, represent the mixing of the two animals which are included in the name given to it. For in size they are smaller than the camel and have shorter necks, but in the head and the arrangement of the eyes they are formed very much like a leopard; and although they have a hump on the back like the camel, yet with respect to colour and hair they are like leopards; likewise in the possession of a long tail they imitate the nature of this wild beast.,2.  There are also bred tragelaphoi (goat-stags) and bubali and many other varieties of animals which are of double form and combine in one body the natures of creatures most widely different, about all of which it would be a long task to write in detail.,3.  For it would seem that the land which lies to the south breathes in a great deal of the sun's strength, which is the greatest source of life, and that, for that reason, it generates breeds of beautiful animals in great number and of varied colour;,4.  and that for the same reason there are produced in Egypt both the crocodiles and the river-horses, in Ethiopia and in the desert of Libya a multitude of elephants and of reptiles of every variety and of all other wild beasts and of serpents, which differ from one another in size and ferocity, and likewise in India the elephants of exceptional bulk and number and ferocity.,1.  In these countries are generated not only animals which differ from one another in form because of the helpful influence and strength of the sun, but also outcroppings of every kind of precious stone which are unusual in colour and resplendent in brilliancy.,2.  For the rock-crystals, so we are informed, are composed of pure water which has been hardened, not by the action of cold, but by the influence of a divine fire, and for this reason they are never subject to corruption and take on many hues when they are breathed upon.,3.  For instance smaragdi and beryllia, as they are called, which are found in the shafts of the copper mines, receive their colour by having been dipped and bound together in a bath of sulphur, and the chrysoliths, they say, which are produced by a smoky exhalation due to the heat of the sun, thereby get the colour they have.,4.  For this reason what is called "false gold," we are told, is fabricated by mortal fire, made by man, by dipping the rock crystals into it. And as for the natural qualities of the dark-red stones, it is the influence of the light, as it is compressed to a greater or less degree in them when they are hardening, which, they say, accounts for their differences.,5.  In like manner, it is reported, the different kinds of birds get their colouring, some kinds appearing to the eye as pure red, other kinds marked with colours of every variety one after the other; for some birds are flaming red in appearance, others saffron yellow, some emerald green, and many of the colour of gold when they turn towards the light, and, in brief, hues are produced in great variety and difficult to describe; and this same thing can be seen taking place in the case of the rainbow in the heavens by reason of the light of the sun.,6.  And it is from these facts that the students of nature draw their arguments when they affirm that the variety of colouring that is put forth by the things which we have mentioned above was caused by the heat coincident with their creation which dyed them, the sun, which is the source of life, assisting in the production of each several kind.,7.  And it is generally true, they continue, that of the differences in the hues of the flowers and of the varied colours of the earth the sun is the cause and creator; and the arts of mortal men, imitating the working of the sun in the physical world, impart colouring and varied hues to every object, having been instructed in this by nature.,8.  For the colours, they continue, are produced by the light, and likewise the odours of the fruits and the distinctive quality of their juices, the different sizes of the animals and their several forms, and the peculiarities which the earth shows, all are generated by the heat of the sun which imparts its warmth to a fertile land and to water endowed with the generative power and thus becomes the creator of each separate thing as it is.,9.  Consequently, neither white marble of Paros nor any other stone which men admire can be compared with the precious stones of Arabia, since their whiteness is most brilliant, their weight the heaviest, and their smoothness leaves no room for other stones to surpass them. And the cause of the peculiar nature of the several parts of the country is, as I have told, the influence of the sun, which has hardened it by its heat, compressed it by its dryness, and made it resplendent by its light.,1.  Hence it is that the race of birds also, having received the most warmth, became flying creatures because of their lightness, and of varied colour because of the influence of the sun, this being especially true in the lands which lie close to the sun.,2.  Babylonia, for instance, produces a multitude of peacocks which have blossomed out with colours of every kind, and the farthest parts of Syria produce parrots and purple coots and guinea-fowls and other kinds of animals of distinctive colouring and of every combination of hues.,3.  And the same reasoning applies also to all the other countries of the earth which lie in a similar climate, such as India and the Red Sea and Ethiopia and certain parts of Libya.,4.  But the eastern part, being more fertile, breeds nobler and larger animals; and as for the rest of Libya, each animal is produced in form and characteristics corresponding to the quality of the soil.,5.  Likewise as regards trees, the palms of Libya bear dry and small fruit, but in Coele-Syria dates called caryoti are produced which excel as to both sweetness and size and also as to their juices.,6.  But dates much larger than these can be seen growing in Arabia and Babylonia, six fingers in size and in colour either yellow like the quince, or dark red, or in some cases tending to purple, so that at the same time they both delight the eye and gratify the taste.,7.  The trunk of the palm stretches high in the air and its surface is smooth all over as far as its crown. But though they all have a tuft of foliage at the top, yet the arrangement of the foliage varies; for in some cases the fronds spread out in a complete circle and from the centre the trunk sends up, as if from out its broken bark, the fruit in a cluster like grapes, in other cases the foliage at the crown droops down on only one side so that it produces the appearance of a lamp from which the flame flares out, and occasionally they have their fronds bent down on both sides and by this double arrangement of the branches show a crown of foliage all about the trunk, thus presenting a picturesque appearance.,1.  That part of Arabia as a whole which lies to the south is called Felix, but the interior part is ranged over by a multitude of Arabians who are nomads and have chosen a tent life. These raise great flocks of animals and make their camps in plains of immeasurable extent.,2.  The region which lies between this part and Arabia Felix is desert and waterless, as has been stated; and the parts of Arabia which lie to the west are broken by sandy deserts spacious as the air in magnitude, through which those who journey must, even as voyagers upon the seas, direct their course by indications obtained from the Bears.,3.  The remaining part of Arabia, which lies towards Syria, contains a multitude of farmers and merchants of every kind, who by a seasonable exchange of merchandise make good the lack of certain wares in both countries by supplying useful things which they possess in abundance.,4.  That Arabia which lies along the ocean is situated above Arabia Felix, and since it is traversed by many great rivers, many regions in it are converted into stagnant pools and into vast stretches of great swamps.,5.  And with the water which is brought to them from the rivers and that which comes with the summer rains they irrigate a large part of the country and get two crops yearly. This region also breeds herds of elephants and other monstrous land animals, and animals of double shape which have developed peculiar forms; and in addition to these it abounds in domestic animals of every kind, especially in cattle and in the sheep with large and fat tails.,6.  This land also breeds camels in very great numbers and of most different kinds, both the hairless and the shaggy, and those which have two humps, one behind the other, along their spines and hence are called dituloi. Some of these provide milk and are eaten for meat, and so provide the inhabitants with a great abundance of this food, and others, which are trained to carry burdens on their backs, can carry some ten medimni of wheat and bear up five men lying outstretched upon a couch. Others which have short legs and are slender in build are dromedaries and can go at full stretch a day's journey of a very great distance, especially in the trips which they make through the waterless and desert region.,7.  And also in their wars the same animals carry into battle two bowmen who ride back to back to each other, one of them keeping off enemies who come on them from in front, the other those who pursue in the rear. With regard, then, to Arabia and the products of that land, even if we have written at too great length, we have at any rate reported many things to delight lovers of reading.,1.  But with regard to the island which has been discovered in the ocean to the south and the marvellous tales told concerning it, we shall now endeavour to give a brief account, after we have first set forth accurately the causes which led to its discovery.,2.  There was a certain Iambulus who from his boyhood up had been devoted to the pursuit of education, and after the death of his father, who had been a merchant, he also gave himself to that calling; and while journeying inland to the spice-bearing region of Arabia he and his companions on the trip were taken captive by some robbers. Now at first he and one of his fellow-captives were appointed to be herdsmen, but later he and his companion were made captive by certain Ethiopians and led off to the coast of Ethiopia.,3.  They were kidnapped in order that, being of an alien people, they might effect the purification of the land. For among the Ethiopians who lived in that place there was a custom, which had been handed down from ancient times, and had been ratified by oracles of the gods, over a period of twenty generations or six hundred years, the generation being reckoned at thirty years; and at the time when the purification by means of the two men was to take place, a boat had been built for them sufficient in size and strong enough to withstand the storms at sea, one which could easily be manned by two men; and then loading it with food enough to maintain two men for six months and putting them on board they commanded them to set out to sea as the oracle had ordered.,4.  Furthermore, they commanded them to steer towards the south; for, they were told, they would come to a happy island and to men of honourable character, and among them they would lead a blessed existence. And in like manner, they stated, their own people, in case the men whom they sent forth should arrive safely at the island, would enjoy peace and a happy life in every respect throughout six hundred years; but if, dismayed at the extent of the sea, they should turn back on their course they would, as impious men and destroyers of the entire nation, suffer the severest penalties.,5.  Accordingly, the Ethiopians, they say, held a great festal assembly by the sea, and after offering costly sacrifices they crowned with flowers the men who were to seek out the island and effect the purification of the nation and then sent them forth.,6.  And these men, after having sailed over a vast sea and been tossed about four months by storms, were carried to the island about which they had been informed beforehand; it was round in shape and had a circumference of about five thousand stades.,1.  But when they were now drawing near to the island, the account proceeds, some of the natives met them and drew their boat to land; and the inhabitants of the island, thronging together, were astonished at the arrival of the strangers, but they treated them honourably and shared with them the necessities of life which their country afforded.,2.  The dwellers upon this island differ greatly both in the characteristics of their bodies and in their manners from the men in our part of the inhabited world; for they are all nearly alike in the shape of their bodies and are over four cubits in height, but the bones of the body have the ability to bend to a certain extent and then straighten out again, like the sinewy parts.,3.  They are also exceedingly tender in respect to their bodies and yet more vigorous than is the case among us; for when they have seized any object in their hands no man can extract it from the grasp of their fingers. There is absolutely no hair on any part of their bodies except on the head, eyebrows and eyelids, and on the chin, but the other parts of the body are so smooth that not even the least down can be seen on them.,4.  They are also remarkably beautiful and well-proportioned in the outline of the body. The openings of their ears are much more spacious than ours and growths have developed that serve as valves, so to speak, to close them.,5.  And they have a peculiarity in regard to the tongue, partly the work of nature and congenital with them and partly intentionally brought about by artifice; among them, namely, the tongue is double for a certain distance, but they divide the inner portions still further, with the result that it becomes a double tongue as far as the base.,6.  Consequently they are very versatile as to the sounds they can utter, since they imitate not only every articulate language used by man but also the varied chatterings of the birds, and, in general, they reproduce any peculiarity of sounds. And the most remarkable thing of all is that at one and the same time they can converse perfectly with two persons who fall in with them, both answering questions and discoursing pertinently on the circumstances of the moment; for with one division of the tongue they can converse with the one person, and likewise with the other talk with the second.,7.  Their climate is most temperate, we are told, considering that they live at the equator, and they suffer neither from heat nor from cold. Moreover, the fruits in their island ripen throughout the entire year, even as the poet writes, Here pear on pear grows old, and apple close On apple, yea, and clustered grapes on grapes, And fig on fig. And with them the day is always the same length as the night, and at midday no shadow is cast of any object because the sun is in the zenith.,1.  These islanders, they go on to say, live in groups which are based on kinship and on political organizations, no more than four hundred kinsmen being gathered together in this way; and the members spend their time in the meadows, the land supplying them with many things for sustenance; for by reason of the fertility of the island and the mildness of the climate, food-stuffs are produced of themselves in greater quantity than is sufficient for their needs.,2.  For instance, a reed grows there in abundance, and bears a fruit in great plenty that is very similar to the white vetch. Now when they have gathered this they steep it in warm water until it has become the size of a pigeon's egg; then after they have crushed it and rubbed it skilfully with their hands, they mould it into loaves, which are baked and eaten, and they are of surprising sweetness.,3.  There are also in the island, they say, abundant springs of water, the warm springs serving well for bathing and the relief of fatigue, the cold excelling in sweetness and possessing the power to contribute to good health. Moreover, the inhabitants give attention to every branch of learning and especially to astrology;,4.  and they use letters which, according to the value of the sounds they represent, are twenty-eight in number, but the characters are only seven, each one of which can be formed in four different ways. Nor do they write their lines horizontally, as we do, but from the top to the bottom perpendicularly. And the inhabitants, they tell us, are extremely long-lived, living even to the age of one hundred and fifty years, and experiencing for the most part no illness.,5.  Anyone also among them who has become crippled or suffers, in general, from any physical infirmity is forced by them, in accordance with an inexorable law, to remove himself from life. And there is also a law among them that they should live only for a stipulated number of years, and that at the completion of this period they should make away with themselves of their own accord, by a strange manner of death; for there grows among them a plant of a peculiar nature, and whenever a man lies down upon it, imperceptibly and gently he falls asleep and dies.,1.  They do not marry, we are told, but possess their children in common, and maintaining the children who are born as if they belonged to all, they love them equally; and while the children are infants those who suckle the babes often change them around in order that not even the mothers may know their own offspring. Consequently, since there is no rivalry among them, they never experience civil disorders and they never cease placing the highest value upon internal harmony.,2.  There are also animals among them, we are told, which are small in size but the object of wonder by reason of the nature of their bodies and the potency of their blood; for they are round in form and very similar to tortoises, but they are marked on the surface by two diagonal yellow stripes, at each end of which they have an eye and a mouth;,3.  consequently, though seeing with four eyes and using as many mouths, yet it gathers its food into one gullet, and down this its nourishment is swallowed and all flows together into one stomach; and in like manner its other organs and all its inner parts are single. It also has beneath it all around its body many feet, by means of which it can move in whatever direction it pleases.,4.  And the blood of this animal, they say, has a marvellous potency; for it immediately glues on to its place any living member that has been severed; even if a hand or the like should happen to have been cut off, by the use of this blood it is glued on again, provided that the cut is fresh, and the same thing is true of such other parts of the body as are not connected with the regions which are vital and sustain the person's life.,5.  Each group of the inhabitants also keeps a bird of great size and of a nature peculiar to itself, by means of which a test is made of the infant children to learn what their spiritual disposition is; for they place them upon the birds, and such of them as are able to endure the flight through the air as the birds take wing they rear, but such as become nauseated and filled with consternation they cast out, as not likely either to live many years and being, besides, of no account because of their dispositions.,6.  In each group the oldest man regularly exercises the leadership, just as if he were a kind of king, and is obeyed by all the members; and when the first such ruler makes an end of his life in accordance with the law upon the completion of his one hundred and fiftieth year, the next oldest succeeds to the leadership.,7.  The sea about the island has strong currents and is subject to great flooding and ebbing of the tides and is sweet in taste. And as for the stars of our heavens, the Bears and many more, we are informed, are not visible at all. The number of these islands was seven, and they are very much the same in size and at about equal distances from one another, and all follow the same customs and laws.,1.  Although all the inhabitants enjoy an abundant provision of everything from what grows of itself in these islands, yet they do not indulge in the enjoyment of this abundance without restraint, but they practise simplicity and take for their food only what suffices for their needs. Meat and whatever else is roasted or boiled in water are prepared by them, but all the other dishes ingeniously concocted by professional cooks, such as sauces and the various kinds of seasonings, they have no notion whatsoever.,2.  And they worship as gods that which encompasses all things and the sun, and, in general, all the heavenly bodies. Fishes of every kind in great numbers are caught by them by sundry devices and not a few birds.,3.  There is also found among them an abundance of fruit trees growing wild, and olive trees and vines grow there, from which they make both olive oil and wine in abundance. Snakes also, we are told, which are of immense size and yet do no harm to the inhabitants, have a meat which is edible and exceedingly sweet.,4.  And their clothing they make themselves from a certain reed which contains in the centre a downy substance that is bright to the eye and soft, which they gather and mingle with crushed sea-shells and thus make remarkable garments of a purple hue. As for the animals of the islands, their natures are peculiar and so amazing as to defy credence.,5.  All the details of their diet, we are told, follow a prescribed arrangement, since they do not all take their food at the same time nor is it always the same; but it has been ordained that on certain fixed days they shall eat at one time fish, at another time fowl, sometimes the flesh of land animals, and sometimes olives and the most simple side-dishes.,6.  They also take turns in ministering to the needs of one another, some of them fishing, others working at the crafts, others occupying themselves in other useful tasks, and still others, with the exception of those who have come to old age, performing the services of the group in a definite cycle.,7.  And at the festivals and feasts which are held among them, there are both pronounced and sung in honour of the gods hymns and spoken laudations, and especially in honour of the sun, after whom they name both the islands and themselves.,8.  They inter their dead at the time when the tide is at the ebb, burying them in the sand along the beach, the result being that at flood-tide the place has fresh sand heaped upon it. The reeds, they say, from which the fruit for their nourishment is derived, being a span in thickness increase at the times of full-moon and again decrease proportionately as it wanes.,9.  And the water of the warm springs, being sweet and health-giving, maintains its heat and never becomes cold, save when it is mixed with cold water or wine.,1.  Now Ninus in his campaign against Bactriana with so large a force was compelled, because access to the country was difficult and passes were narrow, to advance his army in divisions.,2.  For the country of Bactriana, though there were many large cities for the people to dwell in, had one which was the most famous, this being the city containing the royal palace; it was called Bactra, and in size and in the strength of its acropolis was by far the first of them all. The king of the country, Oxyartes, had enrolled all the men of military age, and they had been gathered to the number of four hundred thousand.,3.  So taking this force with him and meeting the enemy at the passes, he allowed a division of the army of Ninus to enter the country; and when he thought that a sufficient number of the enemy had debouched into the plain he drew out his own forces in battle-order. A fierce struggle then ensued in which the Bactrians put the Assyrians to flight, and pursuing them as far as the mountains which overlooked the field, killed about one hundred thousand of the enemy.,4.  But later, when the whole Assyrian force entered their country, the Bactrians, overpowered by the multitude of them, withdrew city by city, each group intending to defend its own homeland. And so Ninus easily subdued all the other cities, but Bactra, because of its strength and the equipment for war which it contained, he was unable to take by storm.,5.  But when the siege was proving a long affair the husband of Semiramis, who was enamoured of his wife and was making the campaign with the king, sent for the woman. And she, endowed as she was with understanding, daring, and all the other qualities which contribute to distinction, seized the opportunity to display her native ability.,6.  First of all, then, since she was about to set out upon a journey of many days, she devised a garb which made it impossible to distinguish whether the wearer of it was a man or a woman. This dress was well adapted to her needs, as regards both her travelling in the heat, for protecting the colour of her skin, and her convenience in doing whatever she might wish to do, since it was quite pliable and suitable to a young person, and, in a word was so attractive that in later times the Medes, who were then dominant in Asia, always wore the garb of Semiramis, as did the Persians after them.,7.  Now when Semiramis arrived in Bactriana and observed the progress of the siege, she noted that it was on the plains and at positions which were easily assailed that attacks were being made, but that no one ever assaulted the acropolis because of its strong position, and that its defender had left their posts there and were coming to aid of those who were hard pressed on the walls below.,8.  Consequently, taking with her such soldiers as were accustomed to clambering up rocky heights, and making her way with them up through a certain difficult ravine, she seized a part of the acropolis and gave a signal to those who were besieging the wall down in the plain. Thereupon the defenders of the city, struck with terror at the seizure of the height, left the walls and abandoned all hope of saving themselves.,9.  When the city had been taken in this way, the king, marvelling at the ability of the woman, at first honoured her with great gifts, and later, becoming infatuated with her because of her beauty, tried to persuade her husband to yield her to him of his own accord, offering in return for this favour to give him his own daughter Sosanê to wife.,10.  But when the man took his offer with ill grace, Ninus threatened to put out his eyes unless he at once accede to his commands. And Onnes, partly out of fear of the king's threats and partly out of his passion for his wife, fell into a kind of frenzy and madness, put a rope about his neck, and hanged himself. Such, then, were the circumstances whereby Semiramis attained the position of queen.,1.  After remaining among this people for seven years, the account continues, Iambulus and his companion were ejected against their will, as being malefactors and as having been educated to evil habits. Consequently, after they had again fitted out their little boat they were compelled to take their leave, and when they had stored up provisions in it they continued their voyage for more than four months. Then they were shipwrecked upon a sandy and marshy region of India;,2.  and his companion lost his life in the surf, but Iambulus, having found his way to a certain village, was then brought by the natives into the presence of the king at Palibothra, a city which was distant a journey of many days from the sea.,3.  And since the king was friendly to the Greeks and devoted to learning he considered Iambulus worthy of cordial welcome; and at length, upon receiving a permission of safe-conduct, he passed over first of all into Persia and later arrived safe in Greece. Now Iambulus felt that these matters deserved to be written down, and he added to his account not a few facts about India, facts of which all other men were ignorant at that time. But for our part, since we have fulfilled the promise made at the beginning of this Book, we shall bring it to a conclusion at this point.,1.  Ninus secured the treasures of Bactra, which contained a great amount of both gold and silver, and after settling the affairs of Bactriana disbanded his forces. After this he begat by Semiramis a son Ninyas, and then died, leaving his wife as queen. Semiramis buried Ninus in the precinct of the palace and erected over his tomb a very large mound, nine stades high and ten wide, as Ctesias says.,2.  Consequently, since the city lay on a plain along the Euphrates, the mound was visible for a distance of many stades, like an acropolis; and this mound stands, they say, even to this day, though Ninus was razed to the ground by the Medes when they destroyed the empire of the Assyrians. Semiramis, whose nature made her eager for great exploits and ambitious to surpass the fame of her predecessor on the throne, set her mind upon founding a city in Babylonia, and after securing the architects of all the world and skilled artisans and making all the other necessary preparations, she gathered together from her entire kingdom two million men to complete the work.,3.  Taking the Euphrates river into the centre she threw about the city a wall with great towers set at frequent intervals, the wall being three hundred and sixty stades in circumference, as Ctesias of Cnidus says, but according to the account of Cleitarchus and certain of those who at a later time crossed into Asia with Alexander, three hundred and sixty-five stades; and these latter add that it was her desire to make the number of stades the same as the days in the year.,4.  Making baked bricks fast in bitumen she built a wall with a height, as Ctesias says, of fifty fathoms, but, as some later writers have recorded, of fifty cubits, and wide enough for more than two chariots abreast to drive upon; and the towers numbered two hundred and fifty, their height and width corresponding to the massive scale of the wall.,5.  Now it need occasion no wonder that, considering the great length of the circuit wall, Semiramis constructed a small number of towers; for since over a long distance the city was surrounded by swamps, she decided not to build towers along that space, the swamps offering a sufficient natural defence. And all along between the dwellings and the walls a road was left two plethra wide.,1.  In order to expedite the building of these constructions she apportioned a stade to each of her friends, furnishing sufficient material for their task and directing them to complete their work within a year.,2.  And when they had finished these assignments with great speed she gratefully accepted their zeal, but she took for herself the construction of a bridge five stades long at the narrowest point of the river, skilfully sinking the piers, which stood twelve feet apart, into its bed. And the stones, which were set firmly together, she bonded with iron cramps, and the joints of the cramps she filled by pouring in lead. Again, before the piers on the side which would receive the current she constructed cutwaters whose sides were rounded to turn off the water and which gradually diminished to the width of the pier, in order that the sharp points of the cutwaters might divide the impetus of the stream, while the rounded sides, yielding to its force, might soften the violence of the river.,3.  This bridge, then, floored as it was with beams of cedar and cypress and with palm logs of exceptional size and having a width of thirty feet, is considered to have been inferior in technical skill to none of the works of Semiramis. And on each side of the river she built an expensive quay of about the same width as the walls and one hundred and sixty stades long. Semiramis also built two palaces on the very banks of the river, one at each end of the bridge, her intention being that from them she might be able both to look down over the entire city and to hold the keys, as it were, to its most important sections.,4.  And since the Euphrates river passed through the centre of Babylon and flowed in a southerly direction, one palace faced the rising and the other the setting sun, and both had been constructed on a lavish scale. For in the case of the one which faced west she made the length of its first or outer circuit wall sixty stades, fortifying it with lofty walls, which had been built at great cost and were of burned brick. And within this she built a second, circular in form, in the bricks of which, before they were baked, wild animals of every kind had been engraved, and by the ingenious use of colours these figures reproduced the actual appearance of the animals themselves;,5.  this circuit wall had a length of forty stades, a width of three hundred bricks, and a height, as Ctesias says, of fifty fathoms; the height of the towers, however, was seventy fathoms.,6.  And she built within these two yet a third circuit wall, which enclosed an acropolis whose circumference was twenty stades in length, but the height and width of the structure surpassed the dimensions of the middle circuit wall. On both the towers and the walls there were again animals of every kind, ingeniously executed by the use of colours as well as by the realistic imitation of the several types; and the whole had been made to represent a hunt, complete in every detail, of all sorts of wild animals, and their size was more than four cubits. Among the animals, moreover, Semiramis had also been portrayed, on horseback and in the act of hurling a javelin at a leopard, and nearby was her husband Ninus, in the act of thrusting his spear into a lion at close quarters.,7.  In this wall she also set triple gates, two of which were of bronze and were opened by a mechanical device. Now this palace far surpassed in both size and details of execution the one on the other bank of the river. For the circuit wall of the latter, made of burned brick, was only thirty stades long, and instead of the ingenious portrayal of animals it had bronze statues of Ninus and Semiramis and their officers, and one also of Zeus, whom the Babylonians call Belus; and on it were also portrayed both battle-scenes and hunts of every kind, which filled those who gazed thereon with varied emotions of pleasure.,1.  After this Semiramis picked out the lowest spot in Babylonia and built a square reservoir, which was three hundred stades long on each side; it was constructed of baked brick and bitumen, and had a depth of thirty-five feet.,2.  Then, diverting the river into it, she built an underground passage-way from one palace to the other; and making it of burned brick, she coated the vaulted chambers on both sides with hot bitumen until she had made the thickness of this coating four cubits. The side walls of the passage-way were twenty bricks thick and twelve feet high, exclusive of the barrel-vault, and the width of the passage-way was fifteen feet.,3.  And after this construction had been finished in only seven days she let the river back again into its old channel, and so, since the stream flowed above the passage-way, Semiramis was able to go across from one palace to the other without passing over the river. At each end of the passage-way she also set bronze gates which stood until the time of the Persian rule.,4.  After this she built in the centre of the city a temple of Zeus whom, as we have said, the Babylonians call Belus. Now since with regard to this temple the historians are at variance, and since time has caused the structure to fall into ruins, it is impossible to give the exact facts concerning it. But all agree that it was exceedingly high, and that in it the Chaldaeans made their observations of the stars, whose risings and settings could be accurately observed by reason of the height of the structure.,5.  Now the entire building was ingeniously constructed at great expense of bitumen and brick, and at the top of the ascent Semiramis set up three statues of hammered gold, of Zeus, Hera, and Rhea. Of these statues that of Zeus represented him erect and striding forward, and, being forty feet high, weighed a thousand Babylonian talents; that of Rhea showed her seated on a golden throne and was of the same weight as that of Zeus; and at her knees stood two lions, while near by were huge serpents of silver, each one weighing thirty talents.,6.  The statue of Hera was also standing, weighing eight hundred talents, and in her right hand she held a snake by the head and in her left a sceptre studded with precious stones.,7.  A table for all three statues, made of hammered gold, stood before them, forty feet long, fifteen wide, and weighing five hundred talents. Upon it rested two drinking-cups, weighing thirty talents.,8.  And there were censers as well, also two in number but weighing each three hundred talents, and also three gold mixing bowls, of which the one belonging to Zeus weighed twelve hundred Babylonian talents and the other two six hundred each.,9.  But all these were later carried off as spoil by the kings of the Persians, while as for the palaces and the other buildings, time has either entirely effaced them or left them in ruins; and in fact of Babylon itself but a small part is inhabited at this time, and most of the area within its walls is given over to agriculture.


nan<,<,But now that we have described the lands which lie to the west and those which extend toward the north, and also the islands in the ocean, we shall in turn discuss the islands in the ocean to the south which lie off that portion of Arabia which extends to the east and borders upon the country known as Cedrosia.,<


nan1.  It should be the special care of historians, when they compose their works, to give attention to everything which may be of utility, and especially to the arrangement of the varied material they present. This eye to arrangement, for instance, is not only of great help to persons in the disposition of their private affairs if they would preserve and increase their property, but also, when men come to writing history, it offers them not a few advantages.,2.  Some historians indeed, although they are worthy objects of praise in the matter of style and in the breadth of experience derived from the events which they record, have nevertheless fallen short in respect of the way in which they have handled the matter of arrangement, with the result that, whereas the effort and care which they expended receive the approbation of their readers, yet the order which they gave to the material they have recorded is the object of just censure.,3.  Timaeus, for example, bestowed, it is true, the greatest attention upon the precision of his chronology and had due regard for the breadth of knowledge gained through experience, but he is criticized with good reason for his untimely and lengthy censures, and because of the excess to which he went in censuring he historian given by some men the name Epitimaeus or Censurer.,4.  Ephorus, on the other hand, in the universal history which he composed has achieved success, not alone in the style of his composition, but also as regards the arrangement of his work; for each one of his Books is so constructed as to embrace events which fall under a single topic. Consequently we also have given our preference to this method of handling our material, and, in so far as it is possible, are adhering to this general principle. And since we have given this Book the title "On the Islands," in accordance with this heading the first island we shall speak about will be Sicily, since it is both the richest of the islands and holds first place in respect of the great age of the myths related concerning it. The island in ancient times was called, after its shape, Trinacria, then Sicania after the Sicani who made their home there, and finally it has been given the name Sicily after the Siceli who crossed over in a body to it from Italy.,1.  It remains for us now, as regards the city of the Liparians, to give an explanation of the causes why in later times it grew to a position, not only of prosperity, but even of renown. These, then, are the reasons: The city is adorned by nature with excellent harbours and springs of warm water which are famed far and wide; for not only do the baths there contribute greatly to the healing of the sick, but they also, in keeping with the peculiar property of such warm springs, provide pleasure and enjoyment of no ordinary kind. Consequently many people throughout Sicily who are afflicted by illnesses of a peculiar nature come to the city and by taking the baths regain their health in a marvellous manner.,2.  And this island contains the far-famed mines of styptic earth, from which the Liparians and Romans derive great revenues. For since styptic earth is found nowhere else in the inhabited world and is of great usefulness, it stands to reason that, because they enjoy a monopoly of it and can raise the price, they should get an unbelievable amount of money; for on the island of Melos alone is there found a deposit of styptic earth, but a small one, which cannot suffice for many cities.,3.  The island of the Liparians is also small in extent but sufficiently fruitful and, so far as the wants of men are concerned, it supports even a high degree of luxury; for it supplies the inhabitants with a multitude of fish of every kind and contains those fruit trees which can offer the most pleasure when one enjoys them. But as regards Lipara and the rest of the islands of Aeolus, as they are called, we shall be satisfied with what has been said.,1.  Beyond Lipara, toward the west, lies an island in the open sea which is small in extent and uninhabited and bears the name Osteodes because of the following strange occurrence. During the time when the Carthaginians were waging many great wars with the Syracusans they were employing notable forces on both land and sea, and on the occasion in question they had many mercenaries who were gathered from every people; such troops are always trouble-makers and make it their practice to cause many and serious mutinies, especially on occasions when they do not get their pay promptly, and at the time of which we are speaking they practised their accustomed knavishness and audacity.,2.  For being in number about six thousand and not receiving their pay, they at first massed together and inveighed against the generals, and since the latter were without funds and time after time kept deferring payment, they threatened that they would take up arms and wreak vengeance upon the Carthaginians, and they even laid violent hands upon the commanders.,3.  Though the senate admonished them, the quarrel always blazed forth the more, whereupon the senate gave secret orders to the generals to do away with all the recalcitrants; and the generals then, acting upon the commands, embarked the mercenaries upon ships and sailed off as if upon some mission of war. And putting in at the island we have mentioned they disembarked all the mercenaries upon it and then sailed away, leaving the recalcitrants upon the island.,4.  The mercenaries, being in deep distress at the condition in which they found themselves and yet unable to wreak vengeance upon the Carthaginians, perished from hunger. And since it was a small island on which so many confined men died, it came to pass that the place, little as it was, was filled with their bones; and this is the reason why the island received the name it bears. In this way, then, did the mercenaries, who were guilty of crime in the manner we have described, suffer the greatest misfortune, perishing for lack of food.,1.  But for our part, since we have set forth the facts concerning the islands of the Aeolides, we shall consider it appropriate to make mention in turn of the islands which lie on the other side. For off the south of Sicily three islands lie out in the sea, and each of them possesses a city and harbours which can offer safety to ships which are in stress of weather.,2.  The first one is that called Melitê, which lies about eight hundred stades from Syracuse, and it possesses many harbours which offer exceptional advantages, and its inhabitants are blest in their possessions; for it has artisans skilled in every manner of craft, the most important being those who weave linen, which is remarkably sheer and soft, and the dwellings on the island are worthy of note, being ambitiously constructed with cornices and finished in stucco with unusual workmanship.,3.  This island is a colony planted by the Phoenicians, who, as they extended their trade to the western ocean, found in it a place of safe retreat, since it was well supplied with harbours and lay out in the open sea; and this is the reason why the inhabitants of this island, since they received assistance in many respects through the sea-merchants, shot up quickly in their manner of living and increased in renown.,4.  After this island there is a second which bears the name of Gaulus, lying out in the open sea and adorned with well-situated harbours, a Phoenician colony. Next comes Cercina, facing Libya, which has a modest city and most serviceable harbours which have accommodations not only for merchant vessels but even for ships of war. But now that we have spoken of the islands which are to the south of Sicily, we shall turn back to those which follow upon Lipara and lie in the sea which is known as the Tyrrhenian.,1.  Off the city of Tyrrhenia known as Poplonium there is an island which men call Aethaleia. It is about one hundred stades distant from the coast and received the name it bears from the smoke (aithalos) which lies so thick about it. For the island possesses a great amount of iron-rock, which they quarry in order to melt and cast and thus to secure the iron, and they possess a great abundance of this ore. For those who are engaged in the working of this ore crush the rock and burn the lumps which have thus been broken in certain ingenious furnaces; and in these they smelt the lumps by means of a great fire and form them into pieces of moderate size which are in their appearance like large sponges.,2.  These are purchased by merchants in exchange either for money or for goods and are then taken to Dicaearchia or the other trading-stations, where there are men who purchase such cargoes and who, with the aid of a multitude of artisans in metal whom they have collected, work it further and manufacture iron objects of every description. Some of these are worked into the shape of armour, and others are ingeniously fabricated into shapes well suited for two-pronged forks and sickles and other such tools; and these are then carried by merchants to every region and thus many parts of the inhabited world have a share in the usefulness which accrues from them.,3.  After Aethaleia there is an island, some three hundred stades distant, which is called Cyrnus by the Greeks, but Corsica by the Romans and those who dwell upon it. This island, being easy to land on, has a most excellent harbour which is called Syracosium. There are also on it two notable cities, the one being known as Calaris and the other as Nicaea.,4.  Calaris was founded by Phocaeans, who made their home there for a time and were then driven out of the island by Tyrrhenians; but Nicaea was founded by Tyrrhenians at the time they were masters of the sea and were taking possession of the islands lying off Tyrrhenia. They were lords of the cities of Cyrnus for a considerable period and exacted tribute of the inhabitants in the form of resin, wax, and honey, since these things were found in the island in abundance.,5.  Slaves from Cyrnus are reputed to be superior to all others for every service which the life of man demands, nature herself giving them this characteristic. And the entire island, which is of great extent, has mountainous land over much of its area, which is thickly covered with continuous forests and traversed by small rivers.,1.  The inhabitants of Cyrnus use for their food milk and honey and meat, the land providing all these in abundance, and among themselves they live lives of honour and justice, to a degree surpassing practically all other barbarians. Any honeycomb, for instance, which may be found in the trees on the mountainside belongs to the first man to find it, no one disputing his claim; their cattle are distinguished by brands, and even though no man may watch over them, they are still kept safe for their owners; and in their other ways of living one and all it is astonishing how they revere uprightness before everything else.,2.  But the most amazing thing which takes place among them is connected with the birth of their children; for when the wife is about to give birth she is the object of no concern as regards her delivery, but it is her husband who takes to his bed, as though sick, and he practises couvade for a specified number of days, feigning that his body is in pain.,3.  There also grows in this island box-wood in great abundance and of excellent quality, and it is due to it that the honey of the island is altogether bitter. And the island is inhabited by barbarians who have a language which is different from others and hard to understand, and they are in number more than thirty thousand.,1.  Adjoining Cyrnus is an island which is called Sardinia, and in size it is about the equal of Sicily and is inhabited by barbarians who bear the name of Iolaës and are thought to be descendants of the men who settled there along with Iolaüs and the Thespiadae. For at the time when Heracles was accomplishing his famous Labours he had many sons by the daughters of Thespius, and these Heracles dispatched to Sardinia, in accordance with a certain oracle, sending along with them a notable force composed of both Greeks and barbarians, in order to plant a colony.,2.  Iolaüs, the nephew of Heracles, was in charge of the undertaking, and taking possession of the island he founded in it notable cities, and when he had divided the land into allotments he called the folk of the colony Iolaës after himself; and he also constructed gymnasia and temples to the gods and everything else which contributes to making happy the life of man, memorials of this remaining even to this day; since the fairest plains there derive their name from him and are called "Iolaeia," and the whole body of the people preserve to the present the name which they took from Iolaüs.,3.  Now the oracle regarding the colony contained also the promise that the participants in this colony should maintain their freedom for all time, and it has indeed come to pass that the oracle, contrary to what one would expect, has preserved autonomy for the natives unshaken to this day.,4.  Thus the Carthaginians, though their power extended far and they subdued the island, were not able to enslave its former possessors, but the Iolaës fled for safety to the mountainous part of the island and built underground dwellings, and here they raised many flocks and herds which supplied them with food in abundance, so that they were able to maintain themselves on a diet of milk and cheese and meat; and since they had retired from the plain country, they avoided the hardship which accompanies labour, but ranged over the mountainous part of the island and led a life which had no share in hardship, in that they continued to use the foods mentioned above.,5.  And although the Carthaginians made war upon them many times with considerable armies, yet because of the rugged nature of the country and the difficulty of dealing with their dug-out dwellings the people remained unenslaved. Last of all, when the Romans conquered the island and oftentimes made war on them, they remained unsubdued by the troops of an enemy for the reasons we have mentioned.,6.  In the early period, however, Iolaüs, after helping to establish the affairs of the colony, returned to Greece, but the Thespiadae were the chief men of the island for many generations, until finally they were driven out into Italy, where they settled in the region of Cymê; the mass of the colonists who were left behind became barbarized, and choosing the best among the natives to be their chieftains, they have maintained their freedom down to our own day.,1.  But now that we have spoken about Sardinia at sufficient length we shall discuss the islands in the order in which they lie. After those we have mentioned there comes first an island called Pityussa, the name being due to the multitude of pine-trees (pityes) which grow throughout it. It lies out in the open sea and is distant from the Pillars of Heracles a voyage of three days and as many nights, from Libya a day and a night, and from Iberia one day; and in size it is about as large as Corcyra.,2.  The island is only moderately fertile, possessing little land that is suitable for the vine, but it has olive trees which are engrafted upon the wild olive. And of all the products of the island, they say that the softness of its wool stands first in excellence. The island is broken up at intervals by notable plains and highlands and has a city named Eresus, a colony of the Carthaginians.,3.  And it also possesses excellent harbours, huge walls, and a multitude of well-constructed houses. Its inhabitants consist of barbarians of every nationality, but Phoenicians preponderate. The date of the founding of the colony falls one hundred and sixty years after the settlement of Carthage.,1.  There are other islands lying opposite Iberia, which the Greeks call Gymnesiae because the inhabitants go naked (gymnoi) of clothing in the summer time, but which the inhabitants of the islands and the Romans call Baliarides because in the hurling (ballein) of large stones with slings the natives are the most skilful of all men. The larger of these is the largest of all islands after the seven, Sicily, Sardinia, Cyprus, Crete, Euboea, Cyrnus, and Lesbos, and it is a day's voyage distant from Iberia; the smaller lies more to the east and maintains great droves and flocks of every kind of animal, especially of mules, which stand very high and are exceptionally strong.,2.  Both islands have good land which produces fruits, and a multitude of inhabitants numbering more than thirty thousand, but as for their food products they raise no wine whatsoever; consequently the inhabitants are one and all exceedingly addicted to indulgence in wine because of the scarcity of it among them; and they are altogether lacking in olive-oil and therefore prepare an oil from the mastich-tree, which they mix with the fat from pigs, and with this they anoint their bodies.,3.  The Baliares are of all men the most fond of women and value them so highly above everything else that, when any of their women are seized by visiting pirates and carried off, they will give as ransom for a single woman three and even four men. Their dwellings they make under hollow rocks, or they dig out holes along the faces of sharp crags, in general putting many parts of them underground, and in these they pass their time, having an eye both to the shelter and to the safety which such homes afford.,4.  Silver and gold money is not used by them at all, and as a general practice its importation into the island is prevented, the reason they offer being that of old Heracles made an expedition against Geryones, who was the son of Chrysaor and possessed both silver and gold in abundance. Consequently, in order that their possessions should consist in that against which no one would have designs, they have made wealth in gold and silver alien from themselves. And so, in keeping this decision of theirs, when in early times they served once in the campaigns of the Carthaginians, they did not bring back their pay to their native land but spent it all upon the purchase of women and wine.,1.  The Baliares have also an amazing custom which they observe in connection with their marriages; for during their wedding festivities the relatives and friends lie with the bride in turn, the oldest first and then the next oldest and the rest in order, and the last one to enjoy this privilege is the bridegroom.,2.  Peculiar also and altogether strange is their practice regarding the burial of the dead; for they dismember the body with wooden knives, and then they place the pieces in a jar and pile upon it a heap of stones.,3.  Their equipment for fighting consists of three slings, and of these they keep one around the head, another around the belly, and the third in the hands. In the business of war they hurl much larger stones than do any other slingers, and with such force that the missile seems to have been shot, as it were, from a catapult; consequently, in their assaults upon walled cities, they strike the defenders on the battlements and disable them, and in pitched battles they crush both shields and helmets and every kind of protective armour.,4.  And they are so accurate in their aim that in the majority of cases they never miss the target before them. The reason for this is the continual practice which they get from childhood, in that their mothers compel them, while still young boys, to use the sling continually; for there is set up before them as a target a piece of bread fastened to a stake, and the novice is not permitted to eat until he has hit the bread, whereupon he takes it from his mother with her permission and devours it.,1.  But now that we have discussed what relates to the islands which lie within the Pillars of Heracles, we shall give an account of those which are in the ocean. For there lies out in the deep off Libya an island of considerable size, and situated as it is in the ocean it is distant from Libya a voyage of a number of days to the west. Its land is fruitful, much of it being mountainous and not a little being a level plain of surpassing beauty.,2.  Through it flow navigable rivers which are used for irrigation, and the island contains many parks planted with trees of every variety and gardens in great multitudes which are traversed by streams of sweet water; on it also are private villas of costly construction, and throughout the gardens banqueting houses have been constructed in a setting of flowers, and in them the inhabitants pass their time during the summer season, since the land supplies in abundance everything which contributes to enjoyment and luxury.,3.  The mountainous part of the island is covered with dense thickets of great extent and with fruit-trees of every variety, and, inviting men to life among the mountains, it has cozy glens and springs in great number. In a word, this island is well supplied with springs of sweet water which not only makes the use of it enjoyable for those who pass their life there but also contribute to the health and vigour of their bodies.,4.  There is also excellent hunting of every manner of beast and wild animal, and the inhabitants, being well supplied with this game at their feasts, lack of nothing which pertains to luxury and extravagance; for in fact the sea which washes the shore of the island contains a multitude of fish, since the character of the ocean is such that it abounds throughout its extent with fish of every variety.,5.  And, speaking generally, the climate of the island is so altogether mild that it produces in abundance the fruits of the trees and the other seasonal fruits for the larger part of the year, so that it would appear that the island, because of its exceptional felicity, were a dwelling-place of a race of gods and not of men.,2.  Its circumference is some four thousand three hundred and sixty stades; for of its three sides, that extending from Pelorias to Lilybaeum is one thousand seven hundred stades, that from Lilybaeum to Pachynus in the territory of Syracuse is a thousand five hundred, and the remaining side is one thousand one hundred and forty stades.,3.  The Siceliotae who dwell in the island have received the tradition from their ancestors, the report having ever been handed down successively from earliest time by one generation to the next, that the island is sacred to Demeter and Corê; although there are certain poets who recount the myth that at the marriage of Pluton and Persephonê Zeus gave this island as a wedding present to the bride.,4.  That the ancient inhabitants of Sicily, the Sicani, were indigenous, is stated by the best authorities among historians, also that the goddesses we have mentioned first made their appearance on this island, and that it was the first, because of the fertility of the soil, to bring forth the fruit of the corn, facts to which the most renowned of the poets also bears witness when he writes: But all these things grow there for them unsown And e'en untilled, both wheat and barley, yea, And vines, which yield such wine as fine grapes give, And rain of Zeus gives increase unto them. Indeed, in the plain of Leontini, we are told, and throughout many other parts of Sicily the wheat men call "wild" grows even to this day.,5.  And, speaking generally, before the corn was discovered, if one were to raise the question, what manner of land it was of the inhabited earth where the fruits we have mentioned appeared for the first time, the meed of honour may reasonably be accorded to the richest land; and in keeping with what we have stated, it is also to be observed that the goddesses who made this discovery are those who receive the highest honours among the Siceliotae.,1.  In ancient times this island remained undiscovered because of its distance from the entire inhabited world, but it was discovered at a later period for the following reason. The Phoenicians, who from ancient times on made voyages continually for purposes of trade, planted many colonies throughout Libya and not a few as well in the western parts of Europe. And since their ventures turned out according to their expectations, they amassed great wealth and essayed to voyage beyond the Pillars of Heracles into the sea which men call the ocean.,2.  And, first of all, upon the Strait itself by the Pillars they founded a city on the shores of Europe, and since the land formed a peninsula they called the city Gadeira; in the city they built many works appropriate to the nature of the region, and among them a costly temple of Heracles, and they instituted magnificent sacrifices which were conducted after the manner of the Phoenicians. And it has come to pass that this shrine has been held in an honour beyond the ordinary, both at the time of its building and in comparatively recent days down even to our own lifetime. Also many Romans, distinguished men who have performed great deeds, have offered vows to this god, and these vows they have performed after the completion of their successes.,3.  The Phoenicians, then, while exploring the coast outside the Pillars for the reasons we have stated and while sailing along the shore of Libya, were driven by strong winds a great distance out into the ocean. And after being storm-tossed for many days they were carried ashore on the island we mentioned above, and when they had observed its felicity and nature they caused it to be known to all men.,4.  Consequently the Tyrrhenians, at the time when they were masters of the sea, purposed to dispatch a colony to it; but the Carthaginians prevented their doing so, partly out of concern lest many inhabitants of Carthage should remove there because of the excellence of the island, and partly in order to have ready in it a place in which to seek refuge against an incalculable turn of fortune, in case some total disaster should overtake Carthage. For it was their thought that, since they were masters of the sea, they would thus be able to move, households and all, to an island which was unknown to their conquerors.,1.  But since we have set forth the facts concerning the ocean lying off Libya and its islands, we shall now turn our discussion to Europe. Opposite that part of Gaul which lies on the ocean and directly across from the Hercynian Forest, as it is called, which is the largest of any in Europe of which tradition tells us, there are many islands out in the ocean of which the largest is that known as Britain.,2.  In ancient times this island remained unvisited by foreign armies; for neither Dionysus, tradition tells us, nor Heracles, nor any other hero or leader made a campaign against it; in our day, however, Gaius Caesar, who has been called a god because of his deeds, was the first man of whom we have record to have conquered the island, and after subduing the Britons he compelled them to pay fixed tributes. But we shall give a detailed account of the events of this conquest in connection with the appropriate period of time, and at present we shall discuss the island and the tin which is found in it.,3.  Britain is triangular in shape, very much as is Sicily, but its sides are not equal. This island stretches obliquely along the coast of Europe, and the point where it is least distant from the mainland, we are told, is the promontory which men call Cantium, and this is about one hundred stades from the land, at the place where the sea has its outlet, whereas the second promontory, known as Belerium, is said to be a voyage of four days from the mainland, and the last, writers tell us, extends out into the open sea and is named Orca.,4.  Of the sides of Britain the shortest, which extends along Europe, is seven thousand five hundred stades, the second, from the Strait to the (northern) tip, is fifteen thousand stades, and the last is twenty thousand stades, so that the entire circuit of the island amounts to forty-two thousand five hundred stades.,5.  And Britain, we are told, is inhabited by tribes which are autochthonous and preserve in their ways of living the ancient manner of life. They use chariots, for instance, in their wars, even as tradition tells us the old Greek heroes did in the Trojan War, and their dwellings are humble, being built for the most part out of reeds or logs. The method they employ of harvesting their grain crops is to cut off no more than the heads and store them away in roofed granges, and then each day they pick out the ripened heads and grind them, getting in this way their food.,6.  As for their habits, they are simple and far removed from the shrewdness and vice which characterize the men of our day. Their way of living is modest, since they are well clear of the luxury which is begotten of wealth. The island is also thickly populated, and its climate is extremely cold, as one would expect, since it actually lies under the Great Bear. It is held by many kings and potentates, who for the most part live at peace among themselves.,1.  But we shall give a detailed account of the customs of Britain and of the other features which are peculiar to the island when we come to the campaign which Caesar undertook against it, and at this time we shall discuss the tin which the island produces. The inhabitants of Britain who dwell about the promontory known as Belerium are especially hospitable to strangers and have adopted a civilized manner of life because of their intercourse with merchants of other peoples. They it is who work the tin, treating the bed which bears it in an ingenious manner.,2.  This bed, being like rock, contains earthy seams and in them the workers quarry the ore, which they then melt down and cleanse of its impurities. Then they work the tin into pieces the size of knuckle-bones and convey it to an island which lies off Britain and is called Ictis; for at the time of ebb-tide the space between this island and the mainland becomes dry and they can take the tin in large quantities over to the island on their wagons.,3.  (And a peculiar thing happens in the case of the neighbouring islands which lie between Europe and Britain, for at flood-tide the passages between them and the mainland run full and they have the appearance of islands, but at ebb-tide the sea recedes and leaves dry a large space, and at that time they look like peninsulas.),4.  On the island of Ictis the merchants purchase the tin of the natives and carry it from there across the Strait to Galatia or Gaul; and finally, making their way on foot through Gaul for some thirty days, they bring their wares on horseback to the mouth of the river Rhone.,1.  But as regards the tin of Britain we shall rest content with what has been said, and we shall now discuss the electron, as it is called (amber). Directly opposite the part of Scythia which lies above Galatia there is an island out in the open sea which is called Basileia. On this island the waves of the sea cast up great quantities of what is known as amber, which is to be seen nowhere else in the inhabited world; and about it many of the ancient writers have composed fanciful tales, such as are altogether difficult to credit and have been refuted by later events.,2.  For many poets and historians give the story that Phaëthon, the son of Helius, while yet a youth, persuaded his father to retire in his favour from his four-horse chariot for a single day; and when Helius yielded to the request Phaëthon, as he drove the chariot, was unable to keep control of the reins, and the horses, making light of the youth, left their accustomed course; and first they turned aside to traverse the heavens, setting it afire and creating what is now called the Milky Way, and after that they brought the scorching rays to many parts of the inhabited earth and burned up not a little land.,3.  Consequently Zeus, being indignant because of what had happened, smote Phaëthon with a thunderbolt and brought back the sun to its accustomed course. And Phaëthon fell to the earth at the mouths of the river which is now known as the Padus (Po), but in ancient times was called the Eridanus, and his sisters vied with each other in bewailing his death and by reason of their exceeding grief underwent a metamorphosis of their nature, becoming poplar trees.,4.  And these poplars, at the same season each year, drip tears, and these, when they harden, form what men call amber, which in brilliance excells all else of the same nature and is commonly used in connection with the mourning attending the death of the young. But since the creators of this fictitious tale have one and all erred, and have been refuted by what has transpired at later times, we must give ear to the accounts which are truthful; for the fact is that amber is gathered on the island we have mentioned and is brought by the natives to the opposite continent, and that it is conveyed through the continent to the regions known to us, as we have stated.,1.  Since we have set forth the facts concerning the islands which lie in the western regions, we consider that it will not be foreign to our purpose to discuss briefly the tribes of Europe which lie near them and which we failed to mention in our former Books. Now Celtica was ruled in ancient times, so we are told, by a renowned man who had a daughter who was of unusual stature and far excelled in beauty all the other maidens. But she, because of her strength of body and marvellous comeliness, was so haughty that she kept refusing every man who wooed her in marriage, since she believed that no one of her wooers was worthy of her.,2.  Now in the course of his campaign against the Geryones, Heracles visited Celtica and founded there the city of Alesia, and the maiden, on seeing Heracles, wondered at his prowess and his bodily superiority and accepted his embraces with all eagerness, her parents having given their consent.,3.  From this union she bore to Heracles a son named Galates, who far surpassed all the youths of the tribe in quality of spirit and strength of body. And when he had attained to man's estate and had succeeded to the throne of his fathers, he subdued a large part of the neighbouring territory and accomplished great feats in war. Becoming renowned for his bravery, he called his subjects Galatae or Gauls after himself, and these in turn gave their name to all of Galatia or Gaul.,1.  Since we have explained the name by which the Gauls are known, we must go on to speak about their land. Gaul is inhabited by many tribes of different size; for the largest number some two hundred thousand men, and the smallest fifty thousand, one of the latter standing on terms of kinship and friendship with the Romans, a relationship which has endured from ancient times down to our own day.,2.  And the land, lying as it does for the most part under the Bears, has a wintry climate and is exceedingly cold. For during the winter season on cloudy days snow falls deep in place of rain, and on clear days ice and heavy frost are everywhere and in such abundance that the rivers are frozen over and are bridged by their own waters; for not only can chance travellers, proceeding a few at a time, make their way carry them on the ice, but even armies with their tens of thousands, together with their beasts of burden and heavily laden wagons, cross upon it in safety to the other side.,3.  And many large rivers flow through Gaul, and their streams cut this way and that through the level plain, some of them flowing from bottomless lakes and others having their sources and affluents in the mountains, and some of them empty into the ocean and others into our sea. The largest one of those which flow into our waters is the Rhone, which has its sources in the Alps and empties into the sea by five mouths.,4.  But of the rivers which flow into the ocean the largest are thought to be the Danube and the Rhine, the latter of which the Caesar who has been called a god spanned with a bridge in our own day with astonishing skill, and leading his army across on foot he subdued the Gauls who lived beyond it.,5.  There are also many other navigable rivers in Celtica, but it would be a long task to write about them. And almost all of them become frozen over by the cold and thus bridge their own streams, and since the natural smoothness of the ice makes the crossing slippery for those who pass over, they sprinkle chaff on it and thus have a crossing which is safe.,1.  A peculiar thing and unexpected takes place over the larger part of Gaul which we think we should not omit to mention. For from the direction of the sun's summer setting and from the north winds are wont to blow with such violence and force that they pick up from the ground rocks as large as can be held in the hand together with a dust composed of coarse gravel; and, generally speaking, when these winds rage violently they tear the weapons out of men's hands and the clothing off their backs and dismount riders from their horses.,2.  Furthermore, since temperateness of climate is destroyed by the excessive cold, the land produces neither wine nor oil, and as a consequence those Gauls who are deprived of these fruits make a drink out of barley which they call zythos or beer, and they also drink the water with which they cleanse their honeycombs.,3.  The Gauls are exceedingly addicted to the use of wine and fill themselves with the wine which is brought into their country by merchants, drinking it unmixed, and since they partake of this drink without moderation by reason of their craving for it, when they are drunken they fall into a stupor or a state of madness. Consequently many of the Italian traders, induced by the love of money which characterizes them, believe that the love of wine of these Gauls is their own godsend. For these transport the wine on the navigable rivers by means of boats and through the level plain on wagons, and receive for it an incredible price; for in exchange for a jar of wine they receive a slave, getting a servant in return for the drink.,1.  Throughout Gaul there is found practically no silver, but there is gold in great quantities, which Nature provides for the inhabitants without their having to mine for it or to undergo any hardship. For the rivers, as they course through the country, having as they do sharp bends which turn this way and that and dashing against the mountains which line their banks and bearing off great pieces of them, are full of gold-dust.,2.  This is collected by those who occupy themselves in this business, and these men grind or crush the lumps which hold the dust, and after washing out with water the earthy elements in it they give the gold-dust over to be melted in the furnaces.,3.  In this manner they amass a great amount of gold, which is used for ornament not only by the women but also by the men. For around their wrists and arms they wear bracelets, around their necks heavy necklaces of solid gold, and huge rings they wear as well, and even corselets of gold.,4.  And a peculiar and striking practice is found among the upper Celts, in connection with the sacred precincts of the gods; as for in the temples and precincts made consecrate in their land, a great amount of gold has been deposited as a dedication to the gods, and not a native of the country ever touches it because of religious scruple, although the Celts are an exceedingly covetous people.,1.  The Gauls are tall of body, with rippling muscles, and white of skin, and their hair is blond, and not only naturally so, but they also make it their practice by artificial means to increase the distinguishing colour which nature has given it.,2.  For they are always washing their hair in lime-water, and they pull it back from the forehead to the top of the head and back to the nape of the neck, with the result that their appearance is like that of Satyrs and Pans, since the treatment of their hair makes it so heavy and coarse that it differs in no respect from the mane of horses.,3.  Some of them shave the beard, but others let it grow a little; and the nobles shave their cheeks, but they let the moustache grow until it covers the mouth. Consequently, when they are eating, their moustaches become entangled in the food, and when they are drinking, the beverage passes, as it were, through a kind of a strainer.,4.  When they dine they all sit, not upon chairs, but upon the ground, using for cushions the skins of wolves or of dogs. The service at the meals is performed by the youngest children, both male and female, who are of suitable age; and near at hand are their fireplaces heaped with coals, and on them are caldrons and spits holding whole pieces of meat. Brave warriors they reward with the choicest portions of the meat, in the same manner as the poet introduces Ajax as honoured by the chiefs after he returned victorious from his single combat with Hector: To Ajax then were given of the chine Slices, full-length, unto his honour.,5.  They invite strangers to their feasts, and do not inquire until after the meal who they are and of what things they stand in need. And it is their custom, even during the course of the meal, to seize upon any trivial matter as an occasion for keen disputation and then to challenge one another to single combat, without any regard for their lives;,6.  for the belief of Pythagoras prevails among them, that the souls of men are immortal and that after a prescribed number of years they commence upon a new life, the soul entering into another body. Consequently, we are told, at the funerals of their dead some cast letters upon the pyre which they have written to their deceased kinsmen, as if the dead would be able to read these letters.,1.  In their journeyings and when they go into battle the Gauls use chariots drawn by two horses, which carry the charioteer and the warrior; and when they encounter cavalry in the fighting they first hurl their javelins at the enemy and then step down from their chariots and join battle with their swords.,2.  Certain of them despise death to such a degree that they enter the perils of battle without protective armour and with no more than a girdle about their loins. They bring along to war also their free men to serve them, choosing them out from among the poor, and these attendants they use in battle as charioteers and as shield-bearers. It is also their custom, when they are formed for battle, to step out in front of the line and to challenge the most valiant men from among their opponents to single combat, brandishing their weapons in front of them to terrify their adversaries.,3.  And when any man accepts the challenge to battle, they then break forth into a song in praise of the valiant deeds of their ancestors and in boast of their own high achievements, reviling all the while and belittling their opponent, and trying, in a word, by such talk to strip him of his bold spirit before the combat.,4.  When their enemies fall they cut off their heads and fasten them about the necks of their horses; and turning over to their attendants the arms of their opponents, all covered with blood, they carry them off as booty, singing a paean over them and striking up a song of victory, and these first-fruits of battle they fasten by nails upon their houses, just as men do, in certain kinds of hunting, with the heads of wild beasts they have mastered.,5.  The heads of their most distinguished enemies they embalm in cedar-oil and carefully preserve in a chest, and these they exhibit to strangers, gravely maintaining that in exchange for this head some one of their ancestors, or their father, or the man himself, refused the offer of a great sum of money. And some men among them, we are told, boast that they have not accepted an equal weight of gold for the head they show, displaying a barbarous sort of greatness of soul; for not to sell that which constitutes a witness and proof of one's valour is a noble thing, but to continue to fight against one of our own race, after he is dead, is to descend to the level of beasts.,1.  Again, the fact that the Rape of Corê took place in Sicily is, men say, proof most evident that the goddesses made this island their favourite retreat because it was cherished by them before all others.,2.  And the Rape of Corê, the myth relates, took place in the meadows in the territory of Enna. The spot lies near the city, a place of striking beauty for its violets and every other kind of flower and worthy of the goddess. And the story is told that, because of the sweet odour of the flowers growing there, trained hunting dogs are unable to hold the trail, because their natural sense of smell is balked. And the meadow we have mentioned is level in the centre and well watered throughout, but on its periphery it rises high and falls off with precipitous cliffs on every side. And it is conceived of as lying in the very centre of the island, which is the reason why certain writers call it the navel of Sicily.,3.  Near to it also are sacred groves, surrounded by marshy flats, and a huge grotto which contains a chasm which leads down into the earth and opens to the north, and through it, the myth relates, Pluton, coming out with his chariot, effected the Rape of Corê. And the violets, we are told, and the rest of the flowers which supply the sweet odour continue to bloom, to one's amazement, throughout the entire year, and so the whole aspect of the place is one of flowers and delight.,4.  And both Athena and Artemis, the myth goes on to say, who had made the same choice of maidenhood as had Corê and were reared together with her, joined with her in gathering the flowers, and all of them together wove the robe for their father Zeus. And because of the time they had spent together and their intimacy they all loved this island above any other, and each one of them received for her portion a territory, Athena receiving hers in the region of Himera, where the Nymphs, to please Athena, caused the springs of warm water to gush forth on the occasion of the visit of Heracles to the island, and the natives consecrated a city to her and a plot of ground which to this day is called Athena's.,5.  And Artemis received from the gods the island at Syracuse which was named after her, by both the oracles and men, Ortygia. On this island likewise these Nymphs, to please Artemis, caused a great fountain to gush forth to which was given the name Arethusa.,6.  And not only in ancient times did this fountain contain large fish in great numbers, but also in our own day we find these fish still there, considered to be holy and not to be touched by men; and on many occasions, when certain men have eaten them amid stress of war, the deity has shown a striking sign, and has visited with great sufferings such as dared to take them for food. Of these matters we shall give an exact account in connection with the appropriate period of time.,1.  The clothing they wear is striking — shirts which have been dyed and embroidered in varied colours, and breeches, which they call in their tongue bracae; and they wear striped coats, fastened by a buckle on the shoulder, heavy for winter wear and light for summer, in which are set checks, close together and of varied hues.,2.  For armour they use long shields, as high as a man, which are wrought in a manner peculiar to them, some of them even having the figures of animals embossed on them in bronze, and these are skilfully worked with an eye not only to beauty but also to protection. On their heads they put bronze helmets which have large embossed figures standing out from them and give an appearance of great size to those who wear them; for in some cases horns are attached to the helmet so as to form a single piece, in other cases images of the fore-parts of birds or four-footed animals.,3.  Their trumpets are of peculiar nature and such as barbarians use, for when they are blown upon they give forth a harsh sound, appropriate to the tumult of war. Some of them have iron cuirasses, chain-wrought, but others are satisfied with the armour which Nature has given them and go into battle naked. In place of the short sword they carry long broad-swords which are hung on chains of iron or bronze and are worn along the right flank. And some of them gather up their shirts with belts plated with gold or silver.,4.  The spears they brandish, which they call lanciae, have iron heads a cubit in length and even more, and a little under two palms in breadth; for their swords are not shorter than the javelins of other peoples, and the heads of their javelins are larger than the swords of others. Some of these javelins come from the forge straight, others twist in and out in spiral shapes for their entire length, the purpose being that the thrust may not only cut the flesh, but mangle it as well, and that the withdrawal of the spear may lacerate the wound.,1.  The Gauls are terrifying in aspect and their voices are deep and altogether harsh; when they meet together they converse with few words and in riddles, hinting darkly at things for the most part and using one word when they mean another; and they like to talk in superlatives, to the end that they may extol themselves and depreciate all other men. They are also boasters and threateners and are fond of pompous language, and yet they have sharp wits and are not without cleverness at learning.,2.  Among them are also to be found lyric poets whom they call Bards. These men sing to the accompaniment of instruments which are like lyres, and their songs may be either of praise or of obloquy. Philosophers, as we may call them, and men learned in religious affairs are unusually honoured among them and are called by them Druids.,3.  The Gauls likewise make use of diviners, accounting them worthy of high approbation, and these men foretell the future by means of the flight or cries of birds and of the slaughter of sacred animals, and they have all the multitude subservient to them. They also observe a custom which is especially astonishing and incredible, in case they are taking thought with respect to matters of great concern; for in such cases they devote to death a human being and plunge a dagger into him in the region above the diaphragm, and when the stricken victim has fallen they read the future from the manner of his fall and from the twitching of his limbs, as well as from the gushing of the blood, having learned to place confidence in an ancient and long-continued practice of observing such matters.,4.  And it is a custom of theirs that no one should perform a sacrifice without a "philosopher"; for thank-offerings should be rendered to the gods, they say, by the hands of men who are experienced in the nature of the divine, and who speak, as it were, the language of the gods, and it is also through the mediation of such men, they think, that blessings likewise should be sought.,5.  Nor is it only in the exigencies of peace, but in their wars as well, that they obey, before all others, these men and their chanting poets, and such obedience is observed not only by their friends but also by their enemies; many times, for instance, when two armies approach each other in battle with swords drawn and spears thrust forward, these men step forth between them and cause them to cease, as though having cast a spell over certain kinds of wild beasts. In this way, even among the wildest barbarians, does passion give place before wisdom, and Ares stands in awe of the Muses.,1.  And now it will be useful to draw a distinction which is unknown to many: The peoples who dwell in the interior above Massalia, those on the slopes of the Alps, and those on this side the Pyrenees mountains are called Celts, whereas the peoples who are established above this land of Celtica in the parts which stretch to the north, both along the ocean and along the Hercynian Mountain, and all the peoples who come after these, as far as Scythia, are known as Gauls; the Romans, however, include all these nations together under a single name, calling them one and all Gauls.,2.  The women of the Gauls are not only like the men in their great stature but they are a match for them in courage as well. Their children are usually born with grayish hair, but as they grow older the colour of their hair changes to that of their parents.,3.  The most savage peoples among them are those who dwell beneath the Bears and on the borders of Scythia, and some of these, we are told, eat human beings, even as the Britons do who dwell on Iris, as it is called.,4.  And since the valour of these peoples and their savage ways have been famed abroad, some men say that it was they who in ancient times overran all Asia and were called Cimmerians, time having slightly corrupted the word into the name of Cimbrians, as they are now called. For it has been their ambition from old to plunder, invading for this purpose the lands of others, and to regard all men with contempt.,5.  For they are the people who captured Rome, who plundered the sanctuary at Delphi, who levied tribute upon a large part of Europe and no small part of Asia, and settled themselves upon the lands of the peoples they had subdued in war, being called in time Greco-Gauls, because they became mixed with the Greeks, and who, as their last accomplishment, have destroyed many large Roman armies.,6.  And in pursuance of their savage ways they manifest an outlandish impiety also with respect to their sacrifices; for their criminals they keep prisoner for five years and then impale in honour of the gods, dedicating them together with many other offerings of first-fruits and constructing pyres of great size. Captives also are used by them as victims for their sacrifices in honour of the gods. Certain of them likewise slay, together with the human beings, such animals as are taken in war, or burn them or do away with them in some other vengeful fashion.,7.  Although their wives are comely, they have very little to do with them, but rage with lust, in outlandish fashion, for the embraces of males. It is their practice to sleep upon the ground on the skins of wild beasts and to tumble with a catamite on each side. And the most astonishing thing of all is that they feel no concern for their proper dignity, but prostitute to others without a qualm the flower of their bodies; nor do they consider this a disgraceful thing to do, but rather when anyone of them is thus approached and refuses the favour offered him, this they consider an act of dishonour.,1.  Now that we have spoken at sufficient length about the Celts we shall turn our history to the Celtiberians who are their neighbours. In ancient times these two peoples, namely, the Iberians and the Celts, kept warring among themselves over the land, but when later they arranged their differences and settled upon the land altogether, and when they went further and agreed to intermarriage with each other, because of such intermixture the two peoples received the appellation given above. And since it was two powerful nations that united and the land of theirs was fertile, it came to pass that the Celtiberians advanced far in fame and were subdued by the Romans with difficulty and only after they had faced them in battle over a long period.,2.  And this people, it would appear, provide for warfare not only excellent cavalry but also foot-soldiers who excel in prowess and endurance. They wear rough black cloaks, the wool of which resembles the hair of goats.,3.  As for their arms, certain of the Celtiberians, carry light shields like those of the Gauls, and certain carry circular wicker shields as large as an aspis, and about their shins and calves they wind greaves made of hair and on their heads they wear bronze helmets adorned with purple crests. The swords they wear are two-edged and wrought of excellent iron, and they also have dirks a span in length which they use in fighting at close quarters.,4.  And a peculiar practice is followed by them in the fashioning of their defensive weapons; for they bury plates of iron in the ground and leave them there until in the course of time the rust has eaten out what is weak in the iron and what is left is only the most unyielding, and of this they then fashion excellent swords and such other objects as pertain to war. The weapon which has been fashioned in the manner described cuts through anything which gets in its way, for no shield or helmet or bone can withstand a blow from it, because of the exceptional quality of the iron.,5.  Able as they are to fight in two styles, they first carry on the contest on horseback, and when they have defeated the cavalry they dismount, and assuming the rôle of foot-soldiers they put up marvellous battles. And a peculiar and strange custom obtains among them: Careful and cleanly as they are in their ways of living, they nevertheless observe one practice which is low and partakes of great uncleanness; for they consistently use urine to bathe the body and wash their teeth with it, thinking that in this practice is constituted the care and healing of the body.,1.  As for the customs they follow toward malefactors and enemies the Celtiberians are cruel, but toward strangers they are honourable and humane. Strangers, for instance, who come among them they one and all entreat to stop at their homes and they are rivals one of another in their hospitality, and any among them who are attended by strangers are spoken of with approval and regarded as beloved of the gods.,2.  For their food they use meats of every description, of which they enjoy an abundance, since the country supplies them with a great quantity of honey, although the wine they purchase from merchants who sail over the seas to them.,3.  Of the tribes neighbouring upon the Celtiberians the most advanced is the people of the Vaccaei, as they are called; for this people each year divides among its members the land which it tills and making the fruits the property of all they measure out his portion to each man, and for any cultivators who have appropriated some part for themselves they have set the penalty as death.,4.  The most valiant among the Iberians are those who are known as Lusitanians, who carry in war very small shields which are interwoven with cords of sinew and are able to protect the body unusually well, because they are so tough; and shifting this shield easily as they do in their fighting, now here, now there, they cleverly ward off from their person every blow which comes at them.,5.  They also use barbed javelins made entirely of iron, and wear helmets and swords very much like those of the Celtiberians. They hurl the javelin with good effect, even over a long distance, and, in fine, are doughty in dealing their blows. Since they are nimble and wear light arms, they are swift both in flight and in pursuit, but when it comes to enduring the hardships of a stiff fight they are far inferior to the Celtiberians. In time of peace they practise a kind of elfin dance which requires great nimbleness of limb, and in their wars they march into battle with even step and raise a battle-song as they charge upon the foe.,6.  And a peculiar ')" onMouseOut="nd();"practice obtains among the Iberians and particularly among the Lusitanians; for when their young men come to the bloom of their physical strength, those who are the very poorest among them in worldly goods and yet excel in vigour of body and daring equip themselves with no more than valour and arms and gather in the mountain fastnesses, where they form into bands of considerable size and then descend upon Iberia and collect wealth from their pillaging. And this brigandage they continually practise in a spirit of complete disdain; for using as they do light arms and being altogether nimble and swift, they are a most difficult people for other men to subdue.,7.  And, speaking generally, they consider the fastnesses and crags of the mountains to be their native land and to these places, which large and heavily equipped armies find hard to traverse, they flee for refuge. Consequently, although the Romans in their frequent campaigns against the Lusitanians rid them of their great spirit of disdain, they were nevertheless unable, often as they eagerly set about it, to put a complete end to their plundering.,1.  Since we have set forth the facts concerning the Iberians, we think that it will not be foreign to our purpose to discuss the silver mines of the land; for this land possesses, we may venture to say, the most abundant and most excellent known sources of silver, and to the workers of this silver it returns great revenues.,2.  Now in the preceding Books which told of the achievements of Heracles we have mentioned the mountains in Iberia which are known as the Pyrenees. Both in height and in size these mountains are found to excel all others; for they stretch from the southern sea practically as far as the northern ocean and extend for some three thousand stades, dividing Gaul from Iberia and Celtiberia.,3.  And since they contain many thick and deep forests, in ancient times, we are told, certain herdsmen left a fire and the whole area of the mountains was entirely consumed; and due to this fire, since it raged continuously day after day, the surface of the earth was also burned and the mountains, because of what had taken place, were called the Pyrenees; furthermore, the surface of the burned land ran with much silver and, since the elementary substance out of which the silver is worked was melted down, there were formed many streams of pure silver.,4.  Now the natives were ignorant of the use of the silver, and the Phoenicians, as they pursued their commercial enterprises and learned of what had taken place, purchased the silver in exchange for other wares of little if any worth. And this was the reason why the Phoenicians, as they transported this silver to Greece and Asia and to all other peoples, acquired great wealth. So far indeed did the merchants go in their greed that, in case their boats were fully laden and there still remained a great amount of silver, they would hammer the lead off the anchors and have the silver perform the service of the lead. And the result was that the Phoenicians, as in the course of many years they prospered greatly, thanks to commerce of this kind, sent forth many colonies, some to Sicily and its neighbouring islands, and others to Libya, Sardinia, and Iberia.,1.  But at a much later time the Iberians, having come to know the peculiar qualities possessed by silver, sunk notable mines, and as a consequence, by working the most excellent and, we may say, the most abundant silver to be found, they received great revenues. The manner, then, in which the Iberians mine and work the silver is in part as follows.,2.  The mines being marvellous in their deposits of copper and gold and silver, the workers of the copper mines recover from the earth they dig out a fourth part of pure copper, and among the unskilled workers in silver there are some who will take out a Euboic talent in three days; for all the ore is full of solid silver-dust which gleams forth from it. Consequently a man may well be filled with wonder both at the nature of the region and at the diligence displayed by the men who labour there.,3.  Now at first unskilled labourers, whoever might come, carried on the working of the mines, and these men took great wealth away with them, since the silver-bearing earth was convenient at hand and abundant; but at a later time, after the Romans had made themselves masters of Iberia, a multitude of Italians have swarmed to the mines and taken great wealth away with them, such was their greed.,4.  For they purchase a multitude of slaves whom they turn over to the overseers of the working of the mines; and these men, opening shafts in a number of places and digging deep into the ground, seek out the seams of earth which are rich in silver and gold; and not only do they go into the ground a great distance, but they also push their diggings many stades in depth and run galleries off at every angle, turning this way and that, in this manner bringing up from the depths the ore which gives them the profit they are seeking.,1.  Great also is the contrast these mines show when they are compared with those of Attica. The men, that is, who work the Attic mines, although they have expended large sums on the undertakings, yet "Now and then, what they hoped to get, they did not get, and what they had, they lost," so that it would appear that they met with misfortune in a kind of riddle;,2.  but the exploiters of the mines of Spain, in their hopes, amass great wealth from their undertakings. For their first labours are remunerative, thanks to the excellent quality of the earth for this sort of thing, and they are ever coming upon more splendid veins, rich in both silver and gold; for all the ground in that region is a tangled network of veins which wind in many ways.,3.  And now and then, as they go down deep, they come upon flowing subterranean rivers, but they overcome the might of these rivers by diverting the streams which flow in on them by means of channels leading off at an angle. For being urged on as they are by expectations of gain, which indeed do not deceive them, they push each separate undertaking to its conclusion, and what is the most surprising thing of all, they draw out the waters of the streams they encounter by means of what is called by men the Egyptian screw, which was invented by Archimedes of Syracuse at the time of his visit to Egypt; and by the use of such screws they carry the water in successive lifts as far as the entrance, drying up in this way the spot where they are digging and making it well suited to the furtherance of their operations.,4.  Since this machine is an exceptionally ingenious device, an enormous amount of water is thrown out, to one's astonishment, by means of a trifling amount of labour, and all the water from such rivers is brought up easily from the depths and poured out on the surface. And a man may well marvel at the inventiveness of the craftsman, in connection not only with this invention but with many other greater ones as well, the fame of which has encompassed the entire inhabited world and of which we shall give a detailed and precise account when we come to the period of Archimedes.,1.  But to continue with the mines, the slaves who are engaged in the working of them produce for their masters revenues in sums defying belief, but they themselves wear out their bodies both by day and by night in the diggings under the earth, dying in large numbers because of the exceptional hardships they endure. For no respite or pause is granted them in their labours, but compelled beneath blows of the overseers to endure the severity of their plight, they throw away their lives in this wretched manner, although certain of them who can endure it, by virtue of their bodily strength and their persevering souls, suffer such hardships over a long period; indeed death in their eyes is more to be desired than life, because of the magnitude of the hardships they must bear.,2.  And although many are the astounding features connected with the mining just described, a man may wonder not the least at the fact that not one of the mines has a recent beginning, but all of them were opened by the covetousness of the Carthaginians at the time when Iberia was among their possessions. It was from these mines, that is, that they drew their continued growth, hiring the ablest mercenaries to be found and winning with their aid many and great wars.,3.  For it is in general true that in their wars the Carthaginians never rested their confidence in soldiers from among their own citizens or gathered from their allies, but that when they subjected the Romans and the Sicilians and the inhabitants of Libya to the greatest perils it was by money, thanks to the abundance of it which they derived from their mines, that they conquered them in every instance. For the Phoenicians, it appears, were from ancient times clever men in making discoveries to their gain, and the Italians are equally clever in leaving no gain to anyone else.,4.  Tin also occurs in many regions of Iberia, not found, however, on the surface of the earth, as certain writers continually repeat in their histories, but dug out of the ground and smelted in the same manner as silver and gold. For there are many mines of tin in the country above Lusitania and on the islets which lie off Iberia out in the ocean and are called because of that fact the Cassiterides.,5.  And tin is brought in large quantities also from the island of Britain to the opposite Gaul, where it is taken by merchants on horses through the interior of Celtica both to the Massalians and to the city of Narbo, as it is called. This city is a colony of the Romans, and because of its convenient situation it possesses the finest market to be found in those regions.,1.  Since we have discussed the Gauls, the Celtiberians, and the Iberians, we shall pass on to the Ligurians. The Ligurians inhabit a land which is stony and altogether wretched, and the life they live is, by reason of the toils and the continuous hardships they endure in their labour, a grievous one and unfortunate.,2.  For the land being thickly wooded, some of them fell the wood the whole day long, equipped with efficient and heavy axes, and others, whose task it is to prepare the ground, do in fact for the larger part quarry out rocks by reason of the exceeding stoniness of the land; for their tools never dig up a clod without a stone. Since their labour entails such hardship as this, it is only by perseverance that they surmount Nature and that after many distresses they gather scanty harvests, and no more. By reason of their continued physical activity and minimum of nourishment the Ligurians are slender and vigorous of body. To aid them in their hardships they have their women, who have become accustomed to labour on an equal basis with the men.,3.  They are continually hunting, whereby they get abundant game and compensate in this way for the lack of the fruits of the field. Consequently, spending their lives as they do on snow-covered mountains, where they are used to traversing ')" onMouseOut="nd();"unbelievably rugged places, they become vigorous and muscular of body.,4.  Some of the Ligurians, because of the lack among them of the fruits of the earth, drink nothing but water, and they eat the flesh of both domestic and wild animals and fill themselves with the green things which grow in the land, the land they possess being untrodden by the most kindly of the gods, namely, Demeter and Dionysus.,5.  The nights the Ligurians spend in the fields, rarely in a kind of crude shanty or hut, more often in the hollows of rocks and natural caves which may offer them sufficient protection.,6.  In pursuance of these habits they have also other practices wherein they preserve the manner of life which is primitive and lacking in implements. Speaking generally, in these regions the women possess the vigour and might of men, and the men those of wild beasts. Indeed, they say that often times in campaigns the mightiest warrior among the Gauls has been challenged to single combat by a quite slender Ligurian and slain.,7.  The weapons of the Ligurians are lighter in their structure than those of the Romans; for their protection is a long shield, worked in the Gallic fashion, and a shirt gathered in with a belt, and about them they throw the skins of wild animals and carry a sword of moderate size; but some of them, now that they have been incorporated in the Roman state, have changed the type of their weapons, adapting themselves to their rulers.,8.  And they are venturesome and of noble spirit, not only in war, but in those circumstances of life which offer terrifying hardships or perils. As traders, for instance, they sail over the Sardinian and Libyan seas, readily casting themselves into dangers from which there is no succour; for although the vessels they use are more cheaply fashioned than make-shift boats and their equipment is the minimum of that usual on ships, yet to one's astonishment and terror they will face the most fearful conditions which storms create.,1.  Like the two goddesses whom we have mentioned Corê, we are told, received as her portion the meadows round about Enna; but a great fountain was made sacred to her in the territory of Syracuse and given the name Cyanê or "Azure Fount.",2.  For the myth relates that it was near Syracuse that Pluton effected the Rape of Corê and took her away in his chariot, and that after cleaving the earth asunder he himself descended into Hades, taking along with him the bride whom he had seized, and that he caused the fountain named Cyanê to gush forth, near which the Syracusans each year hold a notable festive gathering; and private individuals offer the lesser victims, but when the ceremony is on behalf of the community, bulls are plunged in the pool, this manner of sacrifice having been commanded by Heracles on the occasion when he made the circuit of all Sicily, while driving off the cattle of Geryones.,3.  After the Rape of Corê, the myth does on to recount, Demeter, being unable to find her daughter, kindled torches in the craters of Mt. Aetna and visited many parts of the inhabited world, and upon the men who received her with the greatest favour she conferred briefs, rewarding them with the gift of the fruit of the wheat.,4.  And since a more kindly welcome was extended the goddess by the Athenians than by any other people, they were the first after the Siceliotae to be given the fruit of the wheat; and in return for this gift the citizens of that city in assembly honoured the goddess above all others with the establishment both of most notable sacrifices and of the mysteries of Eleusis, which, by reason of their very great antiquity and sanctity, have come to be famous among all mankind. From the Athenians many peoples received a portion of the gracious gift of the corn, and they in turn, sharing the gift of the seed with their neighbours, in this way caused all the inhabited world to abound with it.,5.  And the inhabitants of Sicily, since by reason of the intimate relationship of Demeter and Corê with them they were the first to share in the corn after its discovery, instituted to each one of the goddesses sacrifices and festive gatherings, which they named after them, and by the time chosen for these made acknowledgement of the gifts which had been conferred upon them.,6.  In the case of Corê, for instance, they established the celebration of her return at about the time when the fruit of the corn was found to come to maturity, and they celebrate this sacrifice and festive gathering with such strictness of observance and such zeal as we should reasonably expect those men to show who are returning thanks for having been selected before all mankind for the greatest possible gift;,7.  but in the case of Demeter they preferred that time for the sacrifice when the sowing of the corn is first begun, and for a period of ten days they hold a festive gathering which bears the name of this goddess and is most magnificent by reason of the brilliance of their preparation for it, while in the observance of it they imitate the ancient manner of life. And it is their custom during these days to indulge in coarse language as they associate one with another, the reason being that by such coarseness the goddess, grieved though she was at the Rape of Corê, burst into laughter.,1.  It remains for us now to speak of the Tyrrhenians. This people, excelling as they did in manly vigour, in ancient times possessed great territory and founded many notable cities. Likewise, because they also availed themselves of powerful naval forces and were masters of the sea over a long period, they caused the sea along Italy to be named Tyrrhenian after them; and because they also perfected the organization of land forces, they were the inventors of the salpinx, as it is called, a discovery of the greatest usefulness for war and named after them the "Tyrrhenian trumpet." They were also the authors of that dignity which surrounds rulers, providing their rulers with lictors and an ivory stool and a toga with a purple band; and in connection with their houses they invented the peristyle, a useful device for avoiding the confusion connected with the attending throngs; and these things were adopted for the most part by the Romans, who added to their embellishment and transferred them to their own political institutions.,2.  Letters, and the teaching about Nature and the gods they also brought to greater perfection, and they elaborated the art of divination by thunder and lightning more than all other men; and it is for this reason that the people who rule practically the entire inhabited world show honour to these men even to this day and employ them as interpreters of the omens of Zeus as they appear in thunder and lightning.,3.  The land the Tyrrhenians inhabit bears every crop, and from the intensive cultivation of it they enjoy no lack of fruits, not only sufficient for their sustenance but contributing to abundant enjoyment and luxury. For example, twice each day they spread costly tables and upon them everything that is appropriate to excessive luxury, providing gay-coloured couches and having ready at hand a multitude of silver drinking-cups of every description and servants-in‑waiting in no small number; and these attendants are some of them of exceeding comeliness and others are arrayed in clothing more costly than befits the station of a slave.,4.  Their dwellings are of every description and of individuality, those not only of their magistrates but of the majority of the free men as well. And, speaking generally, they have now renounced the spirit which was emulated by their forebears from ancient times, and passing their lives as they do in drinking-bouts and unmanly amusements, it is easily understood how they have lost the glory in warfare which their fathers possessed.,5.  Not the least of the things which have contributed to their luxury is the fertility of the land; for since it bears every product of the soil and is altogether fertile, the Tyrrhenians lay up great stores of every kind of fruit. In general, indeed, Tyrrhenia, being altogether fertile, lies in extended open fields and is traversed at intervals by areas which rise up like hills and yet are fit for tillage; and it enjoys moderate rainfall not only in the winter season but in the summer as well.,2.  Arabia contains many villages and notable cities, which in some cases are situated upon great mounds and in other instances are built upon hillocks or in plains; and the largest cities have royal residences of costly construction, possessing a multitude of inhabitants and ample estates.,3.  And the entire land of the Arabians abounds with domestic animals of every description, and it bears fruits as well and provides no lack of pasturage for the fatted animals; and many rivers flow through the land and irrigate a great portion of it, thus contributing to the full maturing of the fruits. Consequently that part of Arabia which holds the chief place for its fertility has received a name appropriate to it, being called Arabia the Blest.,4.  On the farthest bounds of Arabia the Blest, where the ocean washes it, there lie opposite it a number of islands, of which there are three which merit a mention in history, one of them bearing the name Hiera or Sacred, on which it is not allowed to bury the dead, and another lying near it, seven stades distant, to which they take the bodies of the dead whom they see fit to inter. Now Hiera has no share in any other fruit, but it produces frankincense in such abundance as to suffice for the honours paid to the gods throughout the entire inhabited world; and it possesses also an exceptional quantity of myrrh and every variety of all the other kinds of incense of highly fragrant odour.,5.  The nature of frankincense and the preparing of it is like this: In size it is a small tree, and in appearance it resembles the white Egyptian Acacia, its leaves are like those of the willow, as it is called, the bloom it bears is in colour like gold, and the frankincense which comes from it oozes forth in drops like tears. But the myrrh-tree is like the mastich-tree, although its leaves are more slender and grow thicker.,6.  It oozes myrrh when the earth is dug away from the roots, and if it is planted in fertile soil this takes place twice a year, in spring and in summer; the myrrh of the spring is red, because of the dew, but that of the summer is white. They also gather the fruit of the Christ's thorn, which they use both for meat and for drink and as a drug for the cure of dysentery.,1.  The land of Hiera is divided among its inhabitants, and the king takes for himself the best land and likewise a tithe of the fruits which the island produces. The width of the island is reputed to be about two hundred stades.,2.  And the inhabitants of the island are known as Panchaeans, and these men take the frankincense and myrrh across to the mainland and sell it to Arab merchants, from whom others in turn purchase wares of this kind and convey them to Phoenician and Coelesyria and Egypt, and in the end merchants convey them from these countries throughout all the inhabited world.,4.  As for Panchaea itself, the island possesses many things which are deserving to be recorded by history. It is inhabited by men who were sprung from the soil itself, called Panchaeans, and the foreigners there are Oceanites and Indians and Scythians and Cretans.,5.  There is also a notable city on the island, called Panara, which enjoys unusual felicity; its citizens are called "suppliants of Zeus Triphylius," and they are the only inhabitants of the land of Panchaea who live under laws of their own making and have no king over them. Each year they elect three chief magistrates; these men have no authority over capital crimes, but render judgment in all any other matters; and the weightiest affairs they refer of their own accord to the priests.,6.  Some sixty stades distant from the city of Panara is the temple of Zeus Triphylius, which lies out on a level plain and is especially admired for its antiquity, the costliness of its construction, and its favourable situation. Thus, the plain lying around the temple is thickly covered with trees of every kind, not only such as bear fruit, but those also which possess the power of pleasing the eye; for the plain abounds with cypresses of enormous size and plane-trees and sweet-bay and myrtle, since the region is full of springs of water.,3.  And there is yet another large island, thirty stades distant from the one we have mentioned, lying out in the ocean to the east and many stades in length; for men say that from its promontory which extends toward the east one can descry India, misty because of its great distance.,2.  Indeed, close to the sacred precinct there bursts forth from the earth a spring of sweet water of such size that it gives rise to a river on which boats may sail. And since the water is led off from the river to many parts of the plain and irrigates them, throughout the entire area of the plain there grow continuous forests of lofty trees, wherein a multitude of men pass their time in the summer season and a multitude of birds make their nests, birds of every kind and of various hues, which greatly delight the ear by their song; therein also is every kind of garden and many meadows with varied plants and flowers, so that there is a divine majesty in the prospect which makes the place appear worthy of the gods of the country.,3.  And there were palm trees there with mighty trunks, conspicuous for the fruits they bore, and many varieties of nut-bearing trees, which provide the natives of the place with the most abundant subsistence. And in addition to what we have mentioned, grape-vines were found there in great number and of every variety, which were trained to climb high and were variously intertwined so that they presented a pleasing sight and provided an enjoyment of the season without further ado.,1.  The temple was a striking structure of white marble, two plethra in length and the width proportionate to the length; it was supported by large thick columns and decorated at intervals with reliefs of ingenious design; and there were also remarkable statues of the gods, exceptional in skill of execution and admired by men for their massiveness.,2.  Around about the temple the priests who served the gods had their dwellings, and the management of everything pertaining to the sacred precinct was in their hands. Leading from the temple an avenue had been constructed, four stades in length and a plethrum in width.,3.  On each side of the avenue are great bronze vessels which rest upon square bases, and at the end of the avenue the river we mentioned above has its sources, which pour forth in a turbulent stream. The water of the stream is exceedingly clear and sweet and the use of it is most conducive to the health of the body; and the river bears the name "Water of the Sun.",4.  The entire spring is surrounded by an expensive stone quay, which extends along each side of it four stades, and no man except the priests may set foot upon the place up to the edge of the quay.,5.  The plain lying below the temple has been made sacred to the gods, for a distance of two hundred stades, and the revenues which are derived from it are used to support the sacrifices. Beyond the above-mentioned plain there is a lofty mountain which has been made sacred to the gods and is called the "Throne of Uranus" and also "Triphylian Olympus.",6.  For the myth relates that in ancient times, when Uranus was king of the inhabited earth, he took pleasure in tarrying in that place and in surveying from its lofty top both the heavens and the stars therein, and that at a later time it came to be called Triphylian Olympus because the men who dwelt about it were composed of three peoples; these, namely, were known as Panchaeans, Oceanites, and Doians, who were expelled at a later time by Ammon.,7.  For Ammon, men say, not only drove this nation into exile but also totally destroyed their cities, razing to the ground both Doia and Asterusia. And once a year, we are told, the priests hold a sacrifice in this mountain with great solemnity.,1.  Beyond this mountain and throughout the rest of the land of Panchaeitis, the account continues, there is found a multitude of beasts of every description; for the land possesses many elephants and lions and leopards and gazelles and an unusual number of other wild animals which differ in their aspect and are of marvellous ferocity.,2.  This island also contains three notable cities, Hyracia, Dalis, and Oceanis. The whole country, moreover, is fruitful and possesses in particular a multitude of vines of every variety.,3.  The men are warlike and use chariots in battle after the ancient manner. The entire body politic of the Panchaeans is divided into three castes: The first caste among them is that of the priests, to whom are assigned the artisans, the second consists of the farmers, and the third is that of the soldiers, to whom are added the herdsmen.,4.  The priests served as the leaders in all things, rendering the decisions in legal disputes and possessing the final authority in all other affairs which concerned the community; and the farmers, who are engaged in the tilling of the soil, bring the fruits into the common store, and the man among them who is thought to have practised the best farming receives a special reward when the fruits are portioned out, the priests deciding who had been first, who second, and so in order to the tenth, this being done in order to spur on the rest.,5.  In the same manner the herdsmen also turn both the sacrificial animals and all others into the treasury of the state with all precision, some by number and some by weight. For, speaking generally, there is not a thing except a home and a garden which a man may possess for his own, but all the products and the revenues are taken over by the priests, who portion out with justice to each man his share, and to the priests alone is given two-fold.,6.  The clothing of the Panchaeans is soft, because the wool of the sheep of the land is distinguished above all other for its softness; and they wear ornaments of gold, not only the women but the men as well, with collars of twisted gold about their necks, bracelets on their wrists, and rings hanging from their ears after the manner of the Persians. The same kind of shoes are worn by both sexes, and they are worked in more varied colours than is usual.,1.  The soldiers receive a pay which is apportioned to them and in return protect the land by means of forts and posts fixed at intervals; for there is one section of the country which is infested with robber bands, composed of bold and lawless men who lie in wait for the farmer and war upon them.,2.  And as for the priests, they far excel the rest in luxury and in every other refinement and elegance of their manner of life; so, for instance, their robes are of linen and exceptionally sheer and soft, and at times they wear garments woven of the softest wool; furthermore, their headdress is interwoven with gold, their footgear consists of sandals which are of varied colours and ingeniously worked, and they wear the same gold ornaments as do the women, with the exception of the earrings. The first duties of the priests concerned with the services paid to the gods and with the hymns and praises which are accorded them, and in them they recite in song the achievements of the gods one after another and the benefactions they have bestowed upon mankind.,3.  According to the myth which the priests give, the gods had their origin in Crete, and were led by Zeus to Panchaea at the time when he sojourned among men and was king of the inhabited earth. In proof of this they cite their language, pointing out that most of the things they have about them still retain their Cretan names; and they add that the kinship which they have with the Cretans and the kindly regard they feel toward them are traditions they received from their ancestors, since this report is ever handed down from one generation to another. And it has been their practice, in corroboration of these claims, to point to inscriptions which, they said, were made by Zeus during the time he still sojourned among men and founded the temple.,4.  The land possesses rich mines of gold, silver, copper, tin, and iron, but none of these metals is allowed to be taken from the island; nor may the priests for any reason whatsoever set foot outside of the hallowed land, and if one of them does so, whoever meets him is authorized to slay him.,5.  There are many great dedications of gold and of silver which have been made to the gods, since time has amassed the multitude of such offerings.,6.  The doorways of the temple are objects of wonder in their construction, being worked in silver and gold and ivory and citrus-wood. And there is the couch of the god, which is six cubits long and four wide and is entirely of gold and skillfully constructed in every detail of its workmanship.,7.  Similar to it both in size and in costliness in general is the table of the god which stands near the couch. And on the centre of the couch stands a large gold stele which carries letters which the Egyptians call sacred, and the inscription recounts the deeds both of Uranus and of Zeus; and to them there were added by Hermes the deeds also of Artemis and of Apollo. As regards the islands, then, which lie in the ocean opposite Arabia, we shall rest content with what has been said.,1.  We shall now give an account of the islands which lie in the neighbourhood of Greece and in the Aegean Sea, beginning with Samothrace. This island, according to some, was called Samos in ancient times, but when the island now known as Samos came to be settled, because the names were the same, the ancient Samos came to be called Samothrace from the land of Thrace which lies opposite it.,2.  It was settled by men who were sprung from the soil itself; consequently no tradition has been handed down regarding who were the first men and leaders on the island. But some say that in ancient days it was called Saonnesus and that it received the name of Samothrace because of the settlers who emigrated to it from both Samos and Thrace.,3.  The first and original inhabitants used an ancient language which was peculiar to them and of which many words are preserved to this day in the ritual of their sacrifices. And the Samothracians have a story that, before the floods which befell their peoples, a great one took place among them, in the course of which the outlet at the Cyanean Rocks was first rent asunder and then the Hellespont.,4.  For the Pontus, which had at the time the form of a lake, was so swollen by the rivers which flow into it, that, because of the great flood which had poured into it, its waters burst forth violently into the Hellespont and flooded a large part of the coast of Asia and made no small amount of the level part of the land of Samothrace into a sea; and this is the reason, we are told, why in later times fishermen have now and then brought up in their nets the stone capitals of columns, since even cities were covered by the inundation.,5.  The inhabitants who had been caught by the flood, the account continues, ran up to the higher regions of the island; and when the sea kept rising higher and higher, they prayed to the native gods, and since their lives were spared, to commemorate their rescue they set up boundary stones about the entire circuit of the island and dedicated altars upon which they offer sacrifices even to the present day. For these reasons it is patent that they inhabited Samothrace before the flood.,1.  After the events we have described one of the inhabitants of the island, a certain Saon, who was a son, as some say, of Zeus and Nymphê, but, according to others, of Hermes and Rhenê, gathered into one body the peoples who were dwelling in scattered habitations and established laws for them; and he was given the name Saon after the island, but the multitude of the people he distributed among five tribes which he named after his sons.,2.  And while the Samothracians were living under a government of this kind, they say that there were born in that land to Zeus and Electra, who was one of the Atlantids, Dardanus and Iasion and Harmonia.,3.  Of these children Dardanus, who was a man who entertained great designs and was the first to make his way across to Asia in a make-shift boat, founded at the outset a city called Dardanus, organized the kingdom which lay about the city which was called Troy at a later time, and called the peoples Dardanians after himself. They say also that he ruled over many nations throughout Asia and that the Dardani who dwell beyond Thrace were colonists sent forth by him.,4.  But Zeus desired that the other of his two sons might also attain to honour, and so he instructed him in the initiatory rite of the mysteries, which had existed on the island since ancient times but was at that time, so to speak, put in his hands; it is not lawful, however, for any but the initiated to hear about the mysteries.,5.  And Iasion is reputed to have been the first to initiate strangers into them and by this means to bring the initiatory rite to high esteem. And after this Cadmus, the son of Agenor, came in the course of his quest for Europê to the Samothracians, and after participating in the initiation he married Harmonia, who was the sister of Iasion and not, as the Greeks recount in their mythologies, the daughter of Ares.,1.  This wedding of Cadmus and Harmonia was the first, we are told, for which the gods provided the marriage-feast, and Demeter, becoming enamoured of Iasion, presented him with the fruit of the corn, Hermes gave a lyre, Athena the renowned necklace and a robe and a flute, and Electra the sacred rites of the Great Mother of the Gods, as she is called, together with cymbals and kettledrums and the instruments of her ritual; and Apollo played upon the lyre and the Muses upon their flutes, and the rest of the gods spoke them fair and gave the pair their aid in the celebration of the wedding.,2.  After this Cadmus, they say, in accordance with the oracle he had received, founded Thebes in Boeotia, while Iasion married Cybelê and begat Corybas. And after Iasion had been removed into the circle of the gods, Dardanus and Cybelê and Corybas conveyed to Asia the sacred rites of the Mother of the Gods and removed with them to Phrygia.,3.  Thereupon Cybelê, joining herself to the first Olympus, begat Alcê and called the goddess Cybelê after herself; and Corybas gave the name of Corybantes to all who, in celebrating the rites of his mother, acted like men possessed, and married Thebê, the daughter of Cilix.,4.  In like manner he also transferred the flute from Samothrace to Phrygia and to Lyrnessus the lyre which Hermes gave and which at a later time Achilles took for himself when he sacked that city. To Iasion and Demeter, according to the story the myths relate, was born Plutus or Wealth, but the reference is, as a matter of fact, to the wealth of the corn, which was presented to Iasion because of Demeter's association with him at the time of the wedding of Harmonia.,5.  Now the details of the initiatory rite are guarded among the matters not to be divulged and are communicated to the initiates alone; but the fame has travelled wide of how these gods appear to mankind and bring unexpected aid to those initiates of theirs who call upon them in the midst of perils.,6.  The claim is also made that men who have taken part in the mysteries become both more pious and more just and better in every respect than they were before. And this is the reason, we are told, why the most famous both of the ancient heroes and of the demi-gods were eagerly desirous of taking part in the initiatory rite; and in fact Jason and the Dioscori, and Heracles and Orpheus as well, after their initiation attained success in all the campaigns they undertook, because these gods appeared to them.,1.  That the Rape of Corê took place in the manner we have described is attested by many ancient historians and poets. Carcinus the tragic poet, for instance, who often visited in Syracuse and witnessed the zeal which the inhabitants displayed in the sacrifices and festive gatherings for both Demeter and Corê, has the following verses in his writings: Demeter's daughter, her whom none may name, By secret schemings Pluton, men say, stole, And then he dropped into earth's depths, whose light Is darkness. Longing for the vanished girl Her mother searched and visited all lands In turn. And Sicily's land by Aetna's crags Was filled with streams of fire which no man could Approach, and groaned throughout its length; in grief Over the maiden now the folk, beloved Of Zeus, was perishing without the corn. Hence honour they these goddesses e'en now.,2.  But we should not omit to mention the very great benefaction which Demeter conferred upon mankind; for beside the fact that she was the discoverer of corn, she also taught mankind how to prepare it for food and introduced laws by obedience to which men became accustomed to the practice of justice, this being the reason, we are told, why she has been given the epithet Thesmophoros or Lawgiver.,3.  Surely a benefaction greater than these discoveries of hers one could not find; for they embrace both living and living honourably. However, as for the myths which are current among the Siceliotae, we shall be satisfied with what has been said.,1.  Since we have set forth the facts concerning Samothrace, we shall now, in accordance with our plan, discuss Naxos. This island was first called Strongylê and its first settlers were men from Thrace, the reasons for their coming being somewhat as follows.,2.  The myth relates that two sons, Butes and Lycurgus, were born to Boreas, but not by the same mother; and Butes, who was the younger, formed a plot against his brother, and on being discovered he received no punishment from Lycurgus beyond that he was ordered by Lycurgus to gather ships and, together with his accomplices in the plot, to seek out another land in which to make his home.,3.  Consequently Butes, together with the Thracians who were implicated with him, set forth, and making his way through the islands of the Cyclades he seized the island of Strongylê, where he made his home and proceeded to plunder many of those who sailed past the island. And since they had no women they sailed here and there and seized them from the land.,4.  Now some of the islands of the Cyclades had no inhabitants whatsoever and others were sparsely settled; consequently they sailed further, and having been repulsed once from Euboea, they sailed to Thessaly, where Butes and his companions, upon landing, came upon the female devotees of Dionysus as they were celebrating the orgies of the god near Drius, as it is called, in Achaea Phthiotis.,5.  As Butes and his companions rushed at the women, these threw away the sacred objects, and some of them fled for safety to the sea, and others to the mountain called Dius; but Coronis, the myth continues, was seized by Butes and forced to lie with him. And she, in anger at the seizure and at the insolent treatment she had received, called upon Dionysus to lend her his aid. And the god struck Butes with madness, because of which he lost his mind and, throwing himself into a well, met his death.,6.  But the rest of the Thracians seized some of the other women, the most renowned of whom were Iphimedeia, the wife of Aloeus, and Pancratis, her daughter, and taking these women along with them, they sailed off to Strongylê. And in place of Butes the Thracians made Agassamenus king of the island, and to him they united in marriage Pancratis, the daughter of Aloeus, who was a woman of surpassing beauty;,7.  for, before their choice fell on Agassamenus, the most renowned among their leaders, Sicelus and Hecetorus, had quarrelled over Pancratis and had slain each other. And Agassamenus appointed one of his friends his lieutenant and united Iphimedeia to him in marriage.,1.  Aloeus dispatched his sons Otus and Ephialtes in search of his wife and daughter, and they, sailing to Strongylê, defeated the Thracians in battle and reduced the city.,2.  Some time afterward Pancratis died, and Otus and Ephialtes essayed to take the island for their dwelling and to rule over the Thracians, and they changed the name of the island to Dia. But at a later time they quarrelled among themselves, and joining battle they slew many of the other combatants and then destroyed one another, and from that time on these two men have received at the hands of the natives the honours accorded to heroes.,3.  The Thracians dwelt on the island for more than two hundred years and then were driven out of it by a succession of droughts. And after that Carians removed to the island from Latmia, as it is now called, and made it their home; their king was Naxos, the son of Polemon, and he called the island Naxos after himself, in place of Dia. Naxos was an upright and famous man and left behind him a son Leucippus, whose son Smerdius became king of the island.,4.  And it was during the reign of Smerdius that Theseus, on his voyage back from Crete together with Ariadnê, was entertained as a guest by the inhabitants of the island; and Theseus, seeing in a dream Dionysus threatening him if he would not forsake Ariadnê in favour of the god, left her behind him there in his fear and sailed away. And Dionysus led Ariadnê away by night to the mountain which is known as Drius; and first of all the god disappeared, and later Ariadnê also was never seen again.,1.  The myth which the Naxians have to relate about Dionysus is like this: He was reared, they say, in their country, and for this reason the island has been most dear to him and is called by some Dionysias.,2.  For according to the myth which has been handed down to us, Zeus, on the occasion when Semelê had been slain by his lightning before the time for bearing the child, took the babe and sewed it up within his thigh, and when the appointed time came for its birth, wishing to keep the matter concealed from Hera, he took the babe from his thigh in what is now Naxos and gave it to the Nymphs of the island, Philia, Coronis, and Cleidê, to be reared. The reason Zeus slew Semelê with his lightning before she could give birth to her child was his desire that the babe should be born, not of a mortal woman but of two immortals, and thus should be immortal from its very birth.,3.  And because of the kindness which the inhabitants of Naxos had shown to Dionysus in connection with his rearing they received marks of his gratitude; for the island increased in prosperity and fitted out notable naval forces, and the Naxians were the first to withdraw from the naval forces of Xerxes and to aid in the defeat at sea which the barbarian suffered, and they participated with distinction in the battle of Plataeae. Also the wine of the island possesses an excellence which is peculiarly its own and offers proof of the friendship which the god entertains for the island.,1.  As for the island which is called Symê and was uninhabited in ancient times, its first settlers were men who came together with Triops, under the leadership of Chthonius, the son of Poseidon and Symê, from whom the island received the name it bears.,2.  At a later time its king was Nireus, the son of Charops and Aglaïa, an unusually handsome man who also took part with Agamemnon in the war against Troy both as ruler of the island and as lord of a part of Cnidia. But after the period of the Trojan War Carians seized the island, during the time when they were rulers of the sea. At a later time, however, when droughts came, the Carians fled the island and made their home in Uranium, as it is called. Thereupon Symê continued to be uninhabited, until the expedition which the Lacedaemonians and the Argives made came to these parts, and at that time the island became settled again in the following manner.,3.  One of the companions of Hippotes, a certain Nausus by name, was a member of the colony, and taking those who had come too late to share in the allotment of the land he settled Symê, which was uninhabited at that time, and later, when certain other men, under the leadership of Xuthus, put in at the island, he gave them a share in the citizenship and in the land, and all of them in common settled the island. And we are told that both Cnidians and Rhodians were members of this colony.,1.  Calydna and Nisyros were settled in ancient times by Carians, and after that Thettalus, the son of Heracles, took possession of both islands. And this explains why both Antiphus and Pheidippus, who were kings of the Coans, in the expedition against Troy led those who sailed from the two islands just mentioned.,2.  And on the return from Troy four of Agamemnon's ships were wrecked off Calydna, and the survivors mingled with the natives of the island and made their home there.,3.  The ancient inhabitants of Nisyros were destroyed by earthquakes, and at a later time the Coans settled the island, as they had done in the case of Calydna; and after that, when an epidemic had carried away the population of the island, the Rhodians dispatched colonists to it.,4.  As for Carpathos, its first inhabitants were certain men who joined with Minos in his campaigns at the time when he was the first of the Greeks to be master of the sea; and many generations later Iolcus, the son of Demoleon, an Argive by ancestry, in obedience to a certain oracle dispatched a colony to Carpathos.,1.  The island which is called Rhodes was first inhabited by the people who were known as Telchines; these were children of Thalatta, as the mythical tradition tells us, and the myth relates that they, together with Capheira, the daughter of Oceanus, nurtured Poseidon, whom Rhea had committed as a babe to their care.,2.  And we are told that they were also the discoverers of certain arts and that they introduced other things which are useful for the life of mankind. They were also the first, men say, to fashion statues of gods, and some of the ancient images of gods have been named after them; so, for example, among the Lindians there is an "Apollo Telchinius," as it is called, among the Ialysians a Hera and Nymphae, both called "Telchinian," and among the Cameirans a "Hera Telchinia.",3.  And men say that the Telchines were also wizards and could summon clouds and rain and hail at their will and likewise could even bring snow; these things, the accounts tell us, they could do even as could the Magi of Persia; and they could also change their natural shapes and were jealous of teaching their arts to others.,4.  Poseidon, the myth continues, when he had grown to manhood, became enamoured of Halia, the sister of the Telchines, and lying with her he begat six male children and one daughter, called Rhodos, after whom the island was named.,5.  And at this period in the eastern parts of the island there sprung up the Giants, as they were called; and at the time when Zeus is said to have subdued the Titans, he became enamoured of one of the nymphs, Himalia by name, and begat by her three sons, Spartaeus, Cronius, and Cytus.,6.  And while these were still young men, Aphroditê, they say, as she was journeying from Cytherae to Cyprus and dropped anchor near Rhodes, was prevented from stopping there by the sons of Poseidon, who were arrogant and insolent men; whereupon the goddess, in her wrath, brought a madness upon them, and they lay with their mother against her will and committed many acts of violence upon the natives.,7.  But when Poseidon learned of what had happened he buried his sons beneath the earth, because of their shameful deed, and men called them the "Eastern Demons"; and Halia cast herself into the sea, and she was afterwards given the name of Leucothea and attained to immortal honour in the eyes of the natives.,1.  At a later time, the myth continues, the Telchines, perceiving in advance the flood that was going to come, forsook the island and were scattered. Of their number Lycus went to Lycia and dedicated there beside the Xanthus river a temple of Apollo Lycius.,2.  And when the flood came the rest of the inhabitants perished, — and since the waters, because of the abundant rains, overflowed the island, its level parts were turned into stagnant pools — but a few fled for refuge to the upper regions of the island and were saved, the sons of Zeus being among their number.,3.  Helius, the myth tells us, becoming enamoured of Rhodos, named the island Rhodes after her and caused the water which had overflowed it to disappear. But the true explanation is that, while in the first forming of the world the island was still like mud and soft, the sun dried up the larger part of its wetness and filled the land with living creatures, and there came into being the Heliadae, who were named after him, seven in number, and other peoples who were, like them, sprung from the land itself.,4.  In consequence of these events the island was considered to be sacred to Helius, and the Rhodians of later times made it their practice to honour Helius above all the other gods, as the ancestor and founder from whom they were descended.,5.  His seven sons were Ochimus, Cercaphus, Macar, Actis, Tenages, Triopas, and Candalus, and there was one daughter, Electryonê, who quit this life while still a maiden and attained at the hands of the Rhodians to honours like those accorded to the heroes. And when the Heliadae attained to manhood they were told by Helius that the first people to offer sacrifices to Athena would ever enjoy the presence of the goddess; and the same thing, we are told, was disclosed by him to the inhabitants of Attica.,6.  Consequently, men say, the Heliadae, forgetting in their haste to put fire beneath the victims, nevertheless laid them on the altars at the time, whereas Cecrops, who was king at the time of the Athenians, performed the sacrifice over fire, but later than the Heliadae.,7.  This is the reason, men say, why the peculiar practice as regards the manner of sacrificing persists in Rhodes to this day, and why the goddess has her seat on the island. Such, then, is the account which certain writers of myths give about the antiquities of the Rhodians, one of them being Zenon, who has composed a history of the island.,1.  The Heliadae, besides having shown themselves superior to all other men, likewise surpassed them in learning and especially in astrology; and they introduced many new practices in seamanship and established the division of the day into hours.,2.  The most highly endowed of them by nature was Tenages, who was slain by his brothers because of their envy of him; but when their treacherous act became known, all who had had a hand in the murder took to flight. Of their number Macar came to Lesbos, and Candalus to Cos; and Actis, sailing off to Egypt, founded there the city men call Heliopolis, naming it after his father; and it was from him that the Egyptians learned the laws of astrology.,3.  But when at a later time there came a flood among the Greeks and the majority of mankind perished by reason of the abundance of rain, it came to pass that all written monuments were also destroyed in the same manner as mankind;,4.  and this is the reason why the Egyptians, seizing the favourable occasion, appropriated to themselves the knowledge of astrology, and why, since the Greeks, because of their ignorance, no longer laid any claim to writing, the belief prevailed that the Egyptians were the first men to effect the discovery of the stars.,5.  Likewise the Athenians, although they were the founders of the city in Egypt men call Saïs, suffered from the same ignorance because of the flood. And it was because of reasons such as these that many generations later men supposed that Cadmus, the son of Agenor, had been the first to bring the letters from Phoenicia to Greece; and after the time of Cadmus onwards the Greeks were believed to have kept making new discoveries in the science of writing, since a sort of general ignorance of the facts possessed the Greeks.,6.  Triopas sailed to Caria and seized a promontory which was called Triopium after him. But the rest of the sons of Helius, since they had had no hand in the murder, remained behind in Rhodes and made their homes in the territory of Ialysus, where they founded the city of Achaea.,7.  Ochimus, who was the oldest of them and their king, married Hegetoria, one of the Nymphs of that region, and begat by her a daughter Cydippê, whose name was afterwards changed to Cyrbia; and Cercaphus, another of the brothers, married Cyrbia and succeeded to the throne.,8.  Upon the death of Cercaphus his three sons, Lindus, Ialysus, and Cameirus, succeeded to the supreme power; and during their lifetime there came a great deluge and Cyrbê was buried beneath the flood and laid waste, whereupon the three divided the land among themselves, and each of them founded a city which bore his name.,1.  About this time Danaüs together with his daughters fled from Egypt, and when he put ashore at Lindus in Rhodes and received the kindly welcome of the inhabitants, he established there a temple of Athena and dedicated in it a statue of the goddess. Of the daughters of Danaüs three died during their stay in Lindus, but the rest sailed on to Argos together with their father Danaüs.,2.  And a little after this time Cadmus, the son of Agenor, having been dispatched by the king to seek out Europê, put ashore at Rhodes. He had been severely buffeted by tempests during the voyage and had taken a vow to found a temple to Poseidon, and so, since he had come through with his life, he founded in the island a sacred precinct to this god and left there certain of the Phoenicians to serve as its overseers. These men mingled with the Ialysians and continued to live as fellow-citizens with them, and from them, we are told, the priests were drawn who succeeded to the priestly office by heredity.,3.  Now Cadmus honoured likewise the Lindian Athena with votive offerings, one of which was a striking bronze cauldron worked after the ancient manner, and this carried an inscription in Phoenician letters, which, men say, were first brought from Phoenicia to Greece.,4.  Subsequent to these happenings, when the land of Rhodes brought forth huge serpents, it came to pass that the serpents caused the death of many of the natives; consequently the survivors dispatched men to Delos to inquire of the god how they might rid themselves of the evil.,5.  And Apollo commanded them to receive Phorbas and his companions and to colonize together with them the island of Rhodes — Phorbas was a son of Lapithes and was tarrying in Thessaly together with a considerable number of men, seeking a land in which he might make his home — and the Rhodians summoned him as the oracle had commanded and gave him a share in the land. And Phorbas destroyed the serpents, and after he had freed the island of its fear he made his home in Rhodes; furthermore, since in other respects he proved himself a great and good man, after his death he was accorded honours like those offered to heroes.,1.  At a later time than the events we have described Althaemenes, the son of Catreus the king of Crete, while inquiring of the oracle regarding certain other matters, received the reply that it was fated that he should slay his father by his own hand.,2.  So wishing to avoid such an abominable act, he fled of his own free will from Crete together with such as desired to sail away with him, these being a considerable company. Althaemenes, then, put ashore on Rhodes at Cameirus, and on Mount Atabyrus he founded a temple of Zeus who is called Zeus Atabyrius; and for this reason the temple is held in special honour even to this day, situated as it is upon a lofty peak from which one can descry Crete.,3.  So Althaemenes with his companions made his home in Cameirus, being held in honour by the natives; but his father Catreus, having no male children at home and dearly loving Althaemenes, sailed to Rhodes, being resolved upon finding his son and bringing him back to Crete. And now the fated destiny prevailed: Catreus disembarked by night upon the land of Rhodes with a few followers, and when there arose a hand-to‑hand conflict between them and the natives, Althaemenes, rushing out to aid them, hurled his spear, and struck in ignorance his father and killed him.,4.  And when he realized what he had done, Althaemenes, being unable to bear his great affliction, shunned all meetings and association with mankind, and betook himself to unfrequented places and wandered about alone, until the grief put an end to his life; and at a later time he received at the hands of the Rhodians, as a certain oracle had commanded, the honours which are accorded to heroes.,5.  Shortly before the Trojan War Tlepolemus, the son of Heracles, who was a fugitive because of the death of Licymnius, whom he had unwittingly slain, fled of his free will from Argos; and upon receiving an oracular response regarding where he should go to found a settlement, he put ashore at Rhodes together with a few people, and being kindly received by the inhabitants he made his home there.,6.  And becoming king of the whole island he portioned out the land in equal allotments and continued in other respects as well to rule equitably. And in the end, when he was on the point of taking part with Agamemnon in the war against Ilium, he put the rule of Rhodes in the hands of Butas, who had accompanied him in his flight from Argos, and he gained great fame for himself in the war and met his death in the Troad.,1.  We must now write briefly about the Sicani who were the first inhabitants of Sicily, in view of the fact that certain historians are not in agreement about this people. Philistus, for instance, says that they removed from Iberia and settled the island, having got the name they bore from a certain river in Iberia named Sicanus, but Timaeus adduces proof of the ignorance of this historian and correctly declares that they were indigenous; and inasmuch as the evidences he offers of the antiquity of this people are many, we think that there is no need for us to recount them.,2.  The Sicani, then, originally made their homes in villages, building their settlements upon the strongest hills because of the pirates; for they had not yet been brought under the single rule of a king, but in each settlement there was one man who was lord.,3.  And at first they made their home in every part of the island and secured their food by tilling the land; but at a later time, when Aetna sent up volcanic eruptions in an increasing number of places and a great torrent of lava was poured forth over the land, it came to pass that a great stretch of the country was ruined. And since the fire kept consuming a large area of the land during an increasing number of years, in fear they left the eastern parts of Sicily and removed to the western. And last of all, many generations later, the people of the Siceli crossed over in a body from Italy into Sicily and made their home in the land which had been abandoned by the Sicani.,4.  And since the Siceli steadily grew more avaricious and kept ravaging the land which bordered on theirs, frequent wars arose between them and the Sicani, until at last they struck covenants and set up boundaries, upon which they had agreed, for the territory. With regard to the Sicani we shall give a detailed account in connection with the appropriate period of time.,5.  The colonies of the Greeks — and notable ones they were — were the last to be made in Sicily, and their cities were founded on the sea. All the inhabitants mingled with one another, and since the Greeks came to the island in great numbers, the natives learned their speech, and then, having been brought up in the Greek ways of life, they lost in the end their barbarian speech as well as their name, all of them being called Siceliotae.,1.  Since the affairs of Rhodes, as it happened, became interwoven with certain events occurring in the Cherronesus which lies opposite the island, I think it will not be foreign to my purpose to discuss the latter. The Cherronesus, as some men say, received in ancient times the name it bears from the fact that the natural shape of the region is that of an isthmus, but others have written that the name Cherronesus is given it from the man who once ruled over those parts.,2.  The account runs like this: Not long after Cherronesus had ruled, five Curetes passed over to it from Crete, and these were descendants of those who had received Zeus from his mother Rhea and had nurtured him in the mountains of Idê in Crete.,3.  And sailing to the Cherronesus with a notable expedition they expelled the Carians who dwelt there, and settling down in the land themselves they divided it into five parts, each of them founding a city which he named after himself.,4.  Not long after this Inachus, the king of the Argives, since his daughter Io had disappeared, sent forth Cyrnus, one of his men in high command, fitting him out with a considerable fleet, and ordered him to hunt for Io in every region and not to return unless he had got possession of her.,5.  And Cyrnus, after having wandered over many parts of the inhabited world without being able to find her, put ashore in Caria on the Cherronesus we are discussing; and despairing of ever returning to his house, he made his home in the Cherronesus, where, partly by persuasive means and partly by the use of force, he became king of a part of the land and founded a city which bore his name Cyrnus. And by administering affairs in a popular fashion he enjoyed great favour among his fellow-citizens.,1.  After this, the account continues, Triopas, one of the sons of Helius and Rhodos, who was a fugitive because of the murder of his brother Tenages, came to the Cherronesus. And after he had been purified there of the murder by Elisseus the king, he sailed to Thessaly to give assistance as an ally to the sons of Deucalion, and with their aid he expelled from Thessaly the Pelasgians and took for his portion the plain which is called Dotium.,2.  There he cut down the sacred grove of Demeter and used the wood to build a palace; and for this reason he incurred the hatred of the natives, whereupon he fled from Thessaly and put ashore, together with the peoples who sailed with him, in the territory of Cnidus, where he founded Triopium, as it was called after him.,3.  And setting out from this place as his base he won for himself both the Cherronesus and a large part of neighboring Caria. But as regards the ancestry of Triopas there is disagreement among many of the historians and poets; for some have recorded that he was the son of Canachê, the daughter of Aeolus and Poseidon, but others that he was born of Lapithes, the son of Apollo, and Stilbê, the daughter of Peneius.,1.  In Castabus, on the Cherronesus, there is a temple which is sacred to Hemithea, and there is no reason why we should omit to mention the strange occurrence which befell this goddess. Now many and various accounts have been handed down regarding her, but we shall recount that which has prevailed and is in accord with what the natives relate. To Staphylus and Chrysothemis were born three daughters, Molpadia, Rhoeo, and Parthenos by name. Apollo lay with Rhoeo and brought her with child; and her father, believing that her seduction was due to a man, was angered, and in his anger he shut up his daughter in a chest and cast her into the sea.,2.  But the chest was washed up upon Delos, where she gave birth to a male child and called the babe Anius. And Rhoeo, who had been saved from death in this unexpected manner, laid the babe upon the altar of Apollo and prayed to the god to save its life if it was his child. Thereupon Apollo, the myth relates, concealed the child for the time, but afterwards he gave thought to its rearing, instructed it in divination, and conferred upon it certain great honours.,3.  And the other sisters of the maiden who had been seduced, namely, Molpadia and Parthenos, while watching their father's wine, a drink which had only recently been discovered among men, fell asleep; and while they were asleep some swine which they were keeping entered in and broke the jar which contained the wine and so destroyed the wine. And the maidens, when they learned what had happened, in fear of their father's severity fled to the edge of the sea and hurled themselves down from some lofty rocks.,4.  But Apollo, because of his affection for their sister, rescued the maidens and established them in the cities of the Cherronesus. The one named Parthenos, as the god brought it to pass, enjoyed honours and a sacred precinct in Bubastus of the Cherronesus, while Molpadia, who came to Castabus, was given the name Hemithea, because the god had appeared to men, and she was honoured by all who dwelt in the Cherronesus.,5.  And in sacrifices which are held in her honour a mixture of honey and milk is used in the libations, because of the experience which she had had in connection with the wine, while anyone who has touched a hog or eaten of its flesh is not permitted to draw near to the sacred precinct.,1.  In later times the temple of Hemithea enjoyed so great a development that not only was it held in special honour by the inhabitants of the place and of neighbouring regions, but even peoples from afar came to it in their devotion and honoured it with costly sacrifices and notable dedications. And most important of all, when the Persians were the dominant power in Asia and were plundering all the temples of the Greeks, the precinct of Hemithea was the sole shrine on which they did not lay hands, and the robbers who were pillaging everything they met left this shrine alone entirely unplundered, and this they did despite the fact that it was unwalled and the pillaging of it would have entailed no danger.,2.  And the reason which men advance for its continued development is the benefactions which the goddess confers upon all mankind alike; for she appears in visible shape in their sleep to those who are in suffering and gives them healing, and many who are in the grip of diseases for which no remedy is known are restored to health; furthermore, to women who are suffering in childbirth the goddess gives relief from the agony and perils of travail.,3.  Consequently, since many have been saved in these ways from most ancient times, the sacred precinct is filled with votive offerings, nor are these protected by guards or by a strong wall, but by the habitual reverence of the people.,1.  Now as regards Rhodes and the Cherronesus we shall rest content with what has been said, and we shall at this point discuss Crete. The inhabitants of Crete claim that the oldest people of the island were those who are known as Eteocretans, who were sprung from the soil itself, and that their king, who was called Cres, was responsible for the greatest number of the most important discoveries made in the island which contributed to the improvement of the social life of mankind.,2.  Also the greater number of the gods who, because of their benefactions to all men alike, have been accorded immortal honours, had their origin, so their myths relate, in their land; and of the tradition regarding these gods we shall now give a summary account, following the most reputable writers who have recorded the affairs of Crete.,3.  The first of these gods of whom tradition has left a record made their home in Crete about Mt. Idê and were called Idaean Dactyli. These, according to one tradition, were one hundred in number, but others say that there were only ten to receive this name, corresponding in number to the fingers (dactyli) of the hands.,4.  But some historians, and Ephorus is one of them, record that the Idaean Dactyli were in fact born on the Mt. Idê which is in Phrygia and passed over to Europe together with Mygdon; and since they were wizards, they practised charms and initiatory rites and mysteries and in the course of a sojourn in Samothrace they amazed the natives of that island not a little by their skill in such matters. And it was at this time, we are further told, that Orpheus, who was endowed with an exceptional gift of poesy and song, also became a pupil of theirs, and he was subsequently the first to introduce initiatory rites and mysteries to the Greeks.,5.  However this may be, the Idaean Dactyli of Crete, so tradition tell us, discovered both the use of fire and what the metals copper and iron are, as well as the means of working them, this being done in the territory of the city of Aptera at Berecynthus, as it is called;,6.  and since they were looked upon as the originators of great blessings for the race of men, they were accorded immortal honours. And writers tell us that one of them was named Heracles, and excelling as he did in fame, he established the Olympic Games, and that the men of a later period thought, because the name was the same, that it was the son of Alcmenê who had founded the institution of the Olympic Games.,7.  And evidences of this, they tell us, are found in the fact that many women even to this day take their incantations from this god and make amulets in his name, on the ground that he was a wizard and practised the arts of initiatory rites; but they add that these things were indeed very far removed from the habits of the Heracles who was born of Alcmenê.,1.  After the Idaean Dactyli, according to accounts we have, there were nine Curetes. Some writers of myths relate that these gods were born of the earth, but according to others, they were descended from the Idaean Dactyli. The home they made in mountainous places which were thickly wooded and full of ravines, and which, in a word, provided a natural shelter and coverage, since it had not yet been discovered how to build houses.,2.  And since these Curetes excelled in wisdom they discovered many things which are of use to men generally; so, for instance, they were the first to gather sheep into flocks, to domesticate the several other kinds of animals which men fatten, and to discover the making of honey.,3.  In the same manner they introduced the art of shooting with the bow and the ways of hunting animals, and they showed mankind how to live and associate together in a common life, and they were the originators of concord and, so to speak, of orderly behaviour.,4.  The Curetes also invented swords and helmets and the war-dance, by means of which they raised a great alarum and deceived Cronus. And we are told that, when Rhea, the mother of Zeus, entrusted him to them unbeknown to Cronus his father, they took him under their care and saw to his nurture; but since we purpose to set forth this affair in detail, we must take up the account at a little earlier point.,1.  The myth the Cretans relate runs like this: When the Curetes were young men, the Titans, as they are called, were still living. These Titans had their dwelling in the land about Cnosus, at the place where even to this day men point out foundations of a house of Rhea and a cypress grove, which has been consecrated to her from ancient times.,2.  The Titans numbered six men and five women, being born, as certain writers of myths relate, of Uranus and Gê, but according to others, of one of the Curetes and Titaea, from whom as their mother they derive the name they have.,3.  The males were Cronus, Hyperion, Coeus, Iapetus, Crius, and Oceanus, and their sisters were Rhea, Themis, Mnemosynê, Phoebê, and Tethys. Each one of them was the discoverer of things of benefit to mankind, and because of the benefaction they conferred upon all men they were accorded honours and everlasting fame.,4.  Cronus, since he was the eldest of the Titans, became king and caused all men who were his subjects to change from a rude way of living to a civilized life, and visited many regions of the inhabited earth. Among all he met he introduced justice and sincerity of soul, and this is why the tradition has come down to later generations that the men of Cronus' time were good-hearted, altogether guileless, and blest with felicity.,5.  His kingdom was strongest in the western regions, where indeed he enjoyed his greatest honour; consequently, down even to comparatively recent times, among the Romans and the Carthaginians, while their city still stood, and other neighbouring peoples, notable festivals and sacrifices were celebrated in honour of this god and many places bore his name.,6.  And because of the exceptional obedience to laws no injustice was committed by any one at any time and all the subjects of the rule of Cronus lived a life of blessedness, in the unhindered enjoyment of every pleasure. To this the poet Hesiod also bears witness in the following words: And they who were of Cronus' day, what time He reigned in heav'n, lived like the gods, no care In heart, remote and free from ills and toils Severe, from grievous sicknesses and cares; Old age lay not upon their limbs, but they, Equal in strength of leg and arm, enjoyed Endless delight of feasting far from ills, And when death came, they sank in it as in A sleep. And many other things were theirs: Grain-giving earth, unploughed, bore for them fruit Abundantly and without stint; and glad Of heart they dwelt upon their tilth throughout The earth, in midst of blessings manifold, Rich in their flocks, loved by the blessed gods. This, then, is what the myths have to say about Cronus.,1.  Of Hyperion we are told that he was the first to understand, by diligent attention and observation, the movement of both the sun and the moon and the other stars, and the seasons as well, in that they are caused by these bodies, and to make these facts known to others; and that for this reason he was called the father of these bodies, since he had begotten, so to speak, the speculation about them and their nature.,2.  To Coeus and Phoebê was born Leto, and to Iapetus was born Prometheus, of whom tradition tells us, as some writers of myths record, that he stole fire from the gods and gave it to mankind, though the truth is that he was the discoverer of those things which give forth fire and from which it may be kindled.,3.  Of the female Titans they say that Mnemosynê discovered the uses of the power of reason, and that she gave a designation to every object about us by means of the names which we use to express whatever we would and to hold conversation with another; though there are those who attribute these discoveries to Hermes. And to this goddess is also attributed the power to call things to memory and to remembrance (mnemê) which men possess, and it is this power which gave her the name she received.,4.  Themis, the myths tell us, was the first to introduce divinations and sacrifices and the ordinances which concern the gods, and to instruct men in the ways of obedience to laws and of peace. Consequently men who preserve what is holy with respect to the gods and the laws of men are called "law-guardians" (thesmophulakes) and "law-givers" (thesmothetai), and we say that Apollo, at the moment when he is to return the oracular responses, is "issuing laws and ordinances" (themisteuein), in view of the fact that Themis was the discoveress of oracular responses.,5.  And so these gods, by reason of the many benefactions which they conferred upon the life of man, were not only accorded immortal honours, but it was also believed that they were the first to make their home on Mount Olympus after they had been translated from among men.,1.  To Cronus and Rhea, we are told, were born Hestia, Demeter, and Hera, and Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades. Of these, they say, Hestia discovered how to build houses, and because of this benefaction of hers practically all men have established her shrine in every home, according her honours and sacrifices. And Demeter, since the corn still grew wild together with the other plants and was still unknown to men, was the first to gather it in, to devise how to prepare and preserve it, and to instruct mankind how to sow it.,2.  Now she had discovered the corn before she gave birth to her daughter Persephonê, but after the birth of her daughter and the rape of her by Pluton, she burned all the fruit of the corn, both because of her anger at Zeus and because of her grief over her daughter. After she had found Persephonê, however, she became reconciled with Zeus and gave Triptolemus the corn to sow, instructing him both to share the gift with men everywhere and to teach them everything concerned with the labour of sowing.,3.  And some men say that it was she also who introduced laws, by obedience to which men have become accustomed to deal justly with one another, and that mankind has called this goddess Thesmophoros after the laws which she gave them. And since Demeter has been responsible for the greatest blessings to mankind, she has been accorded the most notable honours and sacrifices, and magnificent feasts and festivals as well, not only by the Greeks, but also by almost all barbarians who have partaken of this kind of food.,1.  There is dispute about the discovery of the fruit of the corn on the part of many peoples, who claim that they were the first among whom the goddess was seen and to whom she made known both the nature and use of the corn. The Egyptians, for example, say that Demeter and Isis are the same, and that she was first to bring the seed to Egypt, since the river Nile waters the fields at the proper time and that land enjoys the most temperate seasons.,2.  Also the Athenians, though they assert that the discovery of this fruit took place in their country, are nevertheless witnesses to its having been brought to Attica from some other region; for the place which originally received this gift they call Eleusis, from the fact that the seed of the corn came from others and was conveyed to them.,3.  But the inhabitants of Sicily, dwelling as they do on an island which is sacred to Demeter and Corê, say that it is reasonable to believe that the gift of which we are speaking was made to them first, since the land they cultivate is the one the goddess holds most dear; for it would be strange indeed, they maintain, for the goddess to take for her own, so to speak, a land which is the most fertile known and yet to give it, the last of all, a share in her benefaction, as though it were nothing to her, especially since she has her dwelling there, all men agreeing that the Rape of Corê took place on this island. Moreover, this land is the best adapted for these fruits, even as the poet also says: But all these things grow there for them unsown And e'en untilled, both wheat and barley. This, then, is what the myths have to say about Demeter.,4.  As for the rest of the gods who were born to Cronus and Rhea, the Cretans say that Poseidon was the first to concern himself with sea-faring and to fit out fleets, Cronus having given him the lordship in such matters; and this is why the tradition has been passed along to succeeding generations that he controls whatever is done on the sea, and why mariners honour him by means of sacrifices. Men further bestow upon Poseidon the distinction of having been the first to tame horses and to introduce the knowledge of horsemanship (hippikê), because of which he is called "Hippius.",5.  And of Hades it is said that he laid down the rules which are concerned with burials and funerals and the honours which are paid to the dead, no concern having been given to the dead before this time; and this is why tradition tells us that Hades is lord of the dead, since there were assigned to him in ancient times the first offices in such matters and the concern for them.,1.  But since we have spoken about these matters at sufficient length we shall turn our discussion to the islands known as the Aeolides. These islands are seven in number and bear the following names: Strongylê, Euonymus, Didymê, Phoenicodes, Ericodes, Hiera Hephaestu, and Lipara, on which is situated a city of the same name.,2.  They lie between Sicily and Italy in a straight line from the Strait, extending from east to west. They are about one hundred and fifty stades distant from Sicily and are all of about the same size, and the largest one of them is about one hundred and fifty stades in circumference.,3.  All of them have experienced great volcanic eruptions, and the resulting craters and openings may be seen to this day. On Strongylê and Hiera even at the present time there are sent forth from the open mouths great exhalations accompanied by an enormous roaring, and sand and a multitude of red-hot stones are erupted, as may also be seen taking place on Aetna.,4.  The reason is, as some say, that passages lead under the earth from these islands to Aetna and are connected with the openings at both ends of them, and this is why the craters on these islands usually alternate in activity with those of Aetna.,5.  We are told that the islands of Aeolus were uninhabited in ancient times, but that later Liparus, as he was called, the son of Auson the king, was overcome by his brothers who rebelled against him, and securing some warships and soldiers he fled from Italy to the island, which received the name Lipara after him; on it he founded the city which bears his name and brought under cultivation the other islands mentioned before.,6.  And when Liparus had already come to old age, Aeolus, the son of Hippotes, came to Lipara with certain companions and married Cyanê, the daughter of Liparus; and after he had formed a government in which his followers and the natives shared equally he became king over the island. To Liparus, who had a longing for Italy, Aeolus gave his aid in securing for him the regions about Surrentum, where he became king and, after winning great esteem, ended his days; and after he had been accorded a magnificent funeral he received at the hands of the natives honours equal to those offered to the heroes.,7.  This is the Aeolus to whom, the myth relates, Odysseus came in the course of his wanderings. He was, they say, pious and just and kindly as well in his treatment of strangers; furthermore, he introduced sea-farers to the use of sails and had learned, by long observation of what the fire foretold, to predict with accuracy the local winds, this being the reason why the myth has referred to him as the "keeper of the winds"; and it was because of his very great piety that he was called a friend of the Gods.,1.  Regarding the birth of Zeus and the manner in which he came to be king, there is no agreement. Some say that he succeeded to the kingship after Cronus passed from among men into the company of the gods, not by overcoming his father with violence, but in the manner prescribed by custom and justly, having been judged worthy of that honour. But others recount a myth, which runs as follows: There was delivered to Cronus an oracle regarding the birth of Zeus which stated that the son who would be born to him would wrest the kingship from him by force.,2.  Consequently Cronus time and again did away with the children whom he begot; but Rhea, grieved as she was, and yet lacking the power to change her husband's purpose, when she had given birth to Zeus, concealed him in Idê, as it is called, and, without the knowledge of Cronus, entrusted the rearing of him to the Curetes who dwelt in the neighbourhood of Mount Idê. The Curetes bore him off to a certain cave where they gave him over to the Nymphs, with the command that they should minister to his every need.,3.  And the Nymphs nurtured the child on a mixture of honey and milk and gave him upbringing at the udder of the goat which was named Amaltheia. And many evidences of the birth and upbringing of this god remain to this day on the island.,4.  For instance, when he was being carried away, while still an infant, by the Curetes, they say that the umbilical cord (omphalos) fell from him near the river known as Triton, and that this spot has been made sacred and has been called Omphalus after that incident, while in like manner the plain about it is known as Omphaleium. And on Mount Idê, where the god was nurtured, both the cave in which he spent his days has been made sacred to him, and the meadows round about it, which lie upon the ridges of the mountain, have in like manner been consecrated to him.,5.  But the most astonishing of all that which the myth relates has to do with the bees, and we should not omit to mention it: The god, they say, wishing to preserve an immortal memorial of his close association with the bees, changed the colour of them, making it like copper with the gleam of gold, and since the region lay at a very great altitude, where fierce winds blew about it and heavy snows fell, he made the bees insensible to such things and unaffected by them, since they must range over the most wintry stretches.,6.  To the goat (aeg-) which suckled him Zeus also accorded certain honours, and in particular took from it a surname, being called Aegiochus. And when he had attained to manhood he founded first a city in Dicta, where indeed the myth states that he was born; in later times this city was abandoned, but some stone blocks of its foundations are still preserved.,1.  Now Zeus, the myth goes on to say, surpassed all others in manly spirit and wisdom and justice and in the other virtues one and all, and, as a consequence, when he took over the kingly power from Cronus, he conferred benefactions of the greatest number and importance upon the life of mankind. He was the first of all, for instance, to lay down rules regarding acts of injustice and to teach men to deal justly one with another, to refrain from deeds of violence, and to settle their differences by appeals to men and to courts of justice. In short, he contributed in abundance to the practices which are concerned with obedience to law and with peace, prevailing upon good men by persuasion and intimidating evil men by threat of punishment and by their fear.,2.  He also visited practically the entire inhabited earth, putting to death robbers and impious men and introducing equality and democracy; and it was in this connection, they say, that he slew the Giants and their followers, Mylinus in Crete and Typhon in Phrygia.,3.  Before the battle against the Giants in Crete, we are told, Zeus sacrificed a bull to Helius and to Uranus and to Gê; and in connection each of the rites there was revealed to him what was the will of the gods in the affair, the omens indicating the victory of the gods and a defection to them of the enemy. And the outcome of the war accorded with the omens; for Musaeus deserted to him from the enemy, for which he was accorded peculiar honours, and all who opposed them were cut down by the gods.,4.  Zeus also had other wars against the Giants, we are told, in Macedonia near Pallenê and in Italy on the plain which of old was named Phlegraean ("fiery") after the region about it which had been burned, but which in later times men called Cumaean.,5.  Now the Giants were punished by Zeus because they had treated the rest of mankind in a lawless fashion and, confiding in their bodily superiority and strength, had enslaved their neighbours, and because they were also disobeying the rules of justice which he was laying down and were raising up war against those whom all mankind considered to be gods because of the benefactions they were conferring upon men generally.,6.  Zeus, then, we are told, not only totally eradicated the impious and evil-doers from among mankind, but he also distributed honours as they were merited among the noblest of the gods and heroes and men. And because of the magnitude of his benefactions and his superior power all men accorded to him as with one voice both the everlasting kingship which he possesses and his dwelling upon Mount Olympus.,1.  And it was ordained, the myth continues, that sacrifices should be offered to Zeus surpassing those offered to all the other gods, and that, after he passed from earth into the heavens, a just belief should spring up in the souls of all who had received his benefactions that he is lord of all the phenomena of heaven, that is, both of rain and of thunder and of lightning and of everything else of that nature.,2.  It is for this reason also that names have been given him: Zên, because in the opinion of mankind he is the cause of life (zên), bringing as he does the fruits to maturity by tempering the atmosphere; Father, because of the concern and goodwill he manifests toward all mankind, as well as because he is considered to be the first cause of the race of men; Most High and King, because of the preëminence of his rule; Good Counsellor and All-wise, because of the sagacity he manifests in the giving of wise counsel.,3.  Athena, the myths relate, was likewise begotten of Zeus in Crete, at the sources of the river Triton, this being the reason why she has been given the name Tritogeneia. And there stands, even to this day, at these sources a temple which is sacred to this goddess, at the spot where the myth relates that her birth took place.,4.  Men say also that the marriage of Zeus and Hera was held in the territory of the Cnosians, at a place near the river Theren, where now a temple stands in which the natives of the place annually offer holy sacrifices and imitate the ceremony of the marriage, in the manner in which with tradition tells it was originally performed.,5.  To Zeus also were born, they say, the goddesses Aphroditê and the Graces, Eileithyia and her helper Artemis, the Hours, as they are called, Eunomia and Dikê and Eirenê, and Athena and the Muses, and the gods Hephaestus and Ares and Apollo, and Hermes and Dionysus and Heracles.,1.  To each one of the deities we have named, the myth goes on to relate, Zeus imparted the knowledge of the things which he had discovered and was perfecting, and likewise assigned to them the honour of their discovery, wishing in this way with to endow them with immortal fame among all mankind.,2.  To Aphroditê was entrusted the youth of maidens, the years in which they are expected to marry, and the supervision of such matters as are observed even yet in connection with weddings, together with the sacrifices and drink-offerings which men perform to this goddess. Nevertheless, all men make their first sacrifices to Zeus the Perfecter and Hera the Perfectress, because they are the originators and discoverers of all things, as we have stated above.,3.  To the Graces was given the adornment of personal appearance and the beautifying of each part of the body with an eye to making it more comely and pleasing to the gaze, and the further privilege of being the first to bestow benefactions and, on the other hand, of requiting with appropriate favours such men as have performed good acts.,4.  Eileithyia received the care of expectant mothers and the alleviation of the travail of childbirth; and for this reason women when they are in perils of this nature call first of all upon this goddess.,5.  And Artemis, we are told, discovered how to effect the healing of young children and the foods which are suitable to the nature of babes, this being the reason why she is also called Kourotrophos.,6.  And as for the Hours, as they are called, to each of them, according as her name indicates, was given the ordering and adornment of life, so as to serve to the greatest advantage of mankind; for there is nothing which is better able to build a life of felicity than obedience to law (Eunomia) and justice (Dikê) and peace (Eirenê).,7.  To Athena men ascribe the gift to mankind of the domestication and cultivation of the olive-tree, as well as the preparation of its fruit; for before the birth of this goddess this kind of tree was found only along with the other wild woody growths, and this goddess is the source of the care and the experience which men even to this day devote to these trees.,8.  Furthermore, Athena introduced among mankind the making of clothing and carpentry and many of the devices which are used in the other arts; and she also was the discoverer of the making of the pipes and of the music which they produce and, in a word, of many works of cunning device, from which she derives her name of Worker.,1.  To the Muses, we are further told, it was given by their father Zeus to discover the letters and to combine words in the way which is designated poetry. And in reply to those who say that the Syrians are the discoverers of the letters, the Phoenicians having learned them from the Syrians and then passed them on to the Greeks, and that these Phoenicians are those who sailed to Europe together with Cadmus and this is the reason why the Greeks call the letters "Phoenician," men tell us, on the other hand, that the Phoenicians were not the first to make this discovery, but that they did no more than to change the forms of the letters, whereupon the majority of mankind made use of the way of writing them as the Phoenicians devised it, and so the letters received the designation we have mentioned above.,2.  Hephaestus, we are told, was the discoverer of every manner of working iron and copper and gold and silver and everything else which requires fire for working, and he also discovered all the other uses to be made of fire and turned them over both to the workers in the crafts and to all other men as well.,3.  Consequently the workmen who are skilled in these crafts offer up prayers and sacrifices to this god before all others, and both they and all mankind as well call the fire "Hephaestus," handing down in this way to eternal remembrance and honour the benefaction which was bestowed in the beginning upon man's social life.,4.  Ares, the myths record, was the first to make a suit of armour, to fit out soldiers with arms, and to introduce the battle's fury of contest, slaying himself those who were disobedient to the gods.,5.  And of Apollo men recount that he was the discoverer of the lyre and of the music which is got from it; that he introduced the knowledge of healing, which is brought about through the faculty of prophecy, whereby it was the practice in ancient times that the sick were healed; and as the discoverer of the bow he taught the people of the land all about the use of the bow, this being the reason why the art of archery is especially cultivated by the Cretans and the bow is called "Cretan.",6.  To Apollo and Coronis was born Asclepius, who learned from his father many matters which pertain to the healing art, and then went on to discover the art of surgery and the preparations of drugs and the strength to be found in roots, and, speaking generally, he introduced such advances into the healing art that he is honoured as if he were its source and founder.,1.  To Hermes men ascribe the introduction of the sending of embassies to sue for peace, as they are used in wars, and negotiations and truces and also the herald's wand, as a token of such matters, which is customarily borne by those who are carrying on conversations touching affairs of this kind and who, by means of it, are accorded safe conduct by the enemy; and this is the reason why he has been given the name "Hermes Koinos" because the benefit is common (koinê) to both the parties when they exchange peace in time of war.,2.  They also say that he was the first to devise measures and weights and the profits to be gained through merchandising, and how also to appropriate the property of others all unknown to them. Tradition also says that he is the herald of the gods and their most trusted messenger, because of his ability to express clearly (hermêneuein) each command that has been given him; and this is the reason why he has received the name he bears, not because he was the discoverer of words and of speech, as some men say, but because he has perfected, to a higher degree than all others, the art of the precise and clear statement of a message.,3.  He also introduced wrestling-schools and invented the lyre out of a tortoise-shell after the contest in skill between Apollo and Marsyas, in which, we are told, Apollo was victorious and thereupon exacted an excessive punishment of his defeated adversary, but he afterwards repented of this and, tearing the strings from the lyre, for a time had nothing to do with its music.,4.  As for Dionysus, the myths state that he discovered the vine and its cultivation, and also how to make wine and to store away many of the autumn fruits and thus to provide mankind with the use of them as food over a long time. This god was born in Crete, men say, of Zeus and Persephonê, and Orpheus has handed down the tradition in the initiatory rites that he was torn in pieces by the Titans. And the fact is that there have been several who bore the name Dionysus, regarding whom we have given a detailed account at greater length in connection with the more appropriate period of time.,5.  The Cretans, however, undertake to advance evidences that the god was born in their country, stating that he formed two islands near Crete in the Twin Gulfs, as they are called, and called them after himself Dionysiadae, a thing which he has done, they say, nowhere else in the inhabited earth.,1.  Of Heracles the myths relate that he was sprung from Zeus many years before that Heracles who was born of Alcmenê. As for this son of Zeus, tradition has not given us the name of his mother, but only states that he far excelled all others in vigour of body, and that he visited the inhabited earth, inflicting punishment upon the unjust and destroying the wild beasts which were making the land uninhabitable; for men everywhere he won their freedom, while remaining himself unconquered and unwounded, and because of his good deeds he attained to immortal honour at the hands of mankind.,2.  The Heracles who was born of Alcmenê was very much later, and, since he emulated the plan of life of the ancient Heracles, for the same reasons he attained to immortality, and, as time were on, he was thought by men to be the same as the other Heracles because both bore the same name, and the deeds of the earlier Heracles were transferred to the later one, the majority of men being ignorant of the actual facts. And it is generally agreed that the most renowned deeds and honours which belong to the older god were concerned with Egypt, and that these, together with a city which he founded, are still known in that country.,3.  Britomartis, who is also called Dictynna, the myths relate, was born at Caeno in Crete of Zeus and Carmê, the daughter of Eubulus who was the son of Demeter; she invented the nets (dictya) which are used in hunting, whence she has been called Dictynna, and she passed her time in the company of Artemis, this being the reason why some men think Dictynna and Artemis are one and the same goddess; and the Cretans have instituted sacrifices and built temples in honour of this goddess.,4.  But those men who tell the tale that she has been named Dictynna because she fled into some fishermen's nets when she was pursued by Minos, who would have ravished her, have missed the truth; for it is not a probable story that the goddess should ever have got into so helpless a state that she would have required the aid that men can give, being as she is the daughter of the greatest one of the gods, nor is it right to ascribe such an impious deed to Minos, who tradition unanimously declares avowed just principles and strove to attain a manner of life which was approved by men.,1.  Plutus, we are told, was born in Cretan Tripolus to Demeter and Iasion, and there is a double account of his origin. For some men say that the earth, when it was sowed once by Iasion and given proper cultivation, brought forth such an abundance of fruits that those who saw this bestowed a special name upon the abundance of fruits when they appear and called it plutus (wealth); consequently it has become traditional among later generations to say that men who have acquired more than they actually need have plutus.,2.  But there are some who recount the myth that a son was born to Demeter and Iasion whom they named Plutus, and that he was the first to introduce diligence into the life of man and the acquisition and safeguarding of property, all men up to that time having been neglectful of amassing and guarding diligently any store of property.,3.  Such, then, are the myths which the Cretans recount of the gods who they claim were born in their land. They also assert that the honours accorded to the gods and their sacrifices and the initiatory rites observed in connection with the mysteries were handed down from Crete to the rest of men, and to support this they advance the following most weighty argument, as they conceive it: The initiatory rite which is celebrated by the Athenians in Eleusis, the most famous, one may venture, of them all, and that of Samothrace, and the one practised in Thrace among the Cicones, whence Orpheus came who introduced them — these are all handed down in the form of a mystery, whereas at Cnosus in Crete it has been the custom for ancient times that these initiatory rites should be handed down to all openly, and what is handed down among other peoples as not to be divulged, this the Cretans conceal from no one who may wish to inform himself upon such matters.,4.  Indeed, the majority of the gods, the Cretans say, had their beginning in Crete and set out from there to visit many regions of the inhabited world, conferring benefactions upon the races of men and distributing among each of them the advantage which resulted from the discoveries they had made. Demeter, for example, crossed over into Attica and then removed from there to Sicily and afterwards to Egypt; and in these lands her choicest gift was that of the fruit of the corn and instructions in the sowing of it, whereupon she received great honours at the hands of those whom she had benefited.,5.  Likewise Aphroditê made her seat in Sicily in the region of Eryx, among the islands near Cythera and in Paphos in Cyprus, and in Asia in Syria; because of the manifestation of the goddess in their country and her extended sojourn among them the inhabitants of the lands appropriated her to themselves, calling her, as the case might be, Erycinian Aphroditê, and Cytherian, and Paphian, and Syrian.,6.  And in the same manner Apollo revealed himself for the longest time in Delos and Lycia and Delphi, and Artemis in Ephesus and the Pontus and Persis and Crete;,7.  and the consequence has been that, either from the names of these regions or as a result of the deeds which they performed in each of them, Apollo has been called Delian and Lycian and Pythian, and Aphroditê has been called Ephesian and Cretan and Tauropolian and Persian, although both of them were born in Crete.,8.  And this goddess is held in special honour among the Persians, and the barbarians hold mysteries which are performed among other peoples even down to this day in honour of the Persian Artemis. And similar myths are also recounted by the Cretans regarding the other gods, but to draw up an account of them would be a long task for us, and it would not be easily grasped by our readers.,1.  Many generations after the birth of the gods, the Cretans go on to say, not a few heroes were to be found in Crete, the most renowned of whom were Minos and Rhadamanthys and Sarpedon. These men, their myth states, were born of Zeus and Europê, the daughter of Agenor, who, men say, was brought across to Crete upon the back of a bull by the design of the gods.,2.  Now Minos, by virtue of his being the eldest, became king of the island, and he founded on it not a few cities, the most renowned of which were the three, Cnosus in those parts of the island which look toward Asia, Phaestus on the sea-shore to the south, and Cydonia in the regions to the west facing the Peloponnesus.,3.  And Minos established not a few laws for the Cretans, claiming that he had received them from his father Zeus when conversing with him in a certain cave. Furthermore, he came to possess a great naval power, and he subdued the majority of the islands and was the first man among the Greeks to be master of the sea.,4.  And after he had gained great renown for his manly spirit and justice, he ended his life in Sicily in the course of his campaign against Cocalus, the details of which we have recounted in connection with our account of Daedalus, because of whom the campaign was made.,1.  Of Rhadamanthys the Cretans say that of all men he rendered the most just decisions and inflicted inexorable punishment upon robbers and impious men and all other malefactors. He came also to possess no small number of islands and a large part of the sea coast of Asia, all men delivering themselves into his hands of their free will because of his justice. Upon Erythrus, one of his sons, Rhadamanthys bestowed the kingship over the city which was named after him Erythrae, and to Oenopion, the son of Minos' daughter Ariadnê, he gave Chios, we are told, although some writers of myths state that Oenopion was a son of Dionysus and learned from his father the art of making wine.,2.  And to each one of his other generals, the Cretans say, he made a present of an island or a city, Lemnos to Thoas, Cyrnus to Enyeus, Peparethos to Staphylus, Maroneia to Euanthes, Paros to Alcaeus, Delos to Anion, and to Andreus the island which was named after him Andros. Moreover, because of his very great justice, the myth has sprung up that he was appointed to be judge in Hades, where his decisions separate the good from the wicked. And the same honour has also been attained by Minos, because he ruled wholly in accordance with law and paid the greatest heed to justice.,3.  The third brother, Sarpedon, we are told, crossed over into Asia with an army and subdued the regions about Lycia. Euandrus, his son, succeeded him in the kingship in Lycia, and marrying Deïdameia, the daughter of Bellerophon, he begat that Sarpedon who took part in the expedition against Troy, although some writers have called him a son of Zeus.,4.  Minos' sons, they say, were Deucalion and Molus, and to Deucalion was born Idomeneus and to Molus was born Meriones. These two joined with Agamemnon in the expedition against Ilium with ninety ships, when they had returned in safety to their fatherland they died and were accorded a notable burial and immortal honours. And the Cretans point out their tomb at Cnosus, which bears the following inscription: Behold Idomeneus the Cnosian's tomb, And by his side am I, Meriones, The son of Molus. These two the Cretans hold in special honour as heroes of renown, offering up sacrifices to them and calling upon them to come to their aid in the perils which arise in war.,1.  To Aeolus, we are told, sons were born to the number of six, Astyochus, Xuthus, and Androcles, and Pheraemon, Jocastus, and Agathyrnus, and they every one received great approbation both because of the fame of their father and because of their own high achievements. Of their number Jocastus held fast to Italy and was king of the coast as far as the regions about Rhegium, but Pheraemon and Androcles were lords over Sicily from the Strait as far as the regions about Lilybaeum. Of this country the parts to the east were inhabited by Siceli and those to the west by Sicani.,2.  These two peoples quarrelled with each other, but they rendered obedience of their own free will to the sons of Aeolus we have mentioned, both because of the piety of their father Aeolus, which was famed afar, and because of the fair-dealing of the sons themselves. Xuthus was king over the land in the neighbourhood of Leontini, which is known after him as Xuthia to this day. Agathyrnus, becoming king of the land now called Agathyrnitis, founded a city which was called after him Agathyrnus; and Astyochus secured the lordship over Lipara.,3.  All these men followed the example which their father had set for both piety and justice and hence were accorded great approbation. Their descendants succeeded to their thrones over many generations, but in the end the kings of the house of Aeolus were overthrown throughout Sicily.,1.  But now that we have examined these matters it remains for us to discuss the peoples who have become intermixed with the Cretans. That the first inhabitants of the island were known as Eteocretans and that they are considered to have sprung from the soil itself, we have stated before; and many generations after them Pelasgians, who were in movement by reason of their continuous expeditions and migrations, arrived at Crete and made their home in a part of the island.,2.  The third people to cross over to the island, we are told, were Dorians, under the leadership of Tectamus the son of Dorus; and the account states that the larger number of these Dorians was gathered from the regions about Olympus, but that a part of them consisted of Achaeans from Laconia, since Dorus had fixed the base of his expedition in the region about Cape Malea. A fourth people to come to Crete and to become intermixed with the Cretans, we are told, was a heterogeneous collection of barbarians who in the course of time adopted the language of the native Greeks.,3.  But after these events Minos and Rhadamanthys, when they had attained to power, gathered the peoples on the island into one union. And last of all, after the Return of the Heracleidae, Argives and Lacedaemonians sent forth colonies which they established on certain other islands and likewise took possession of Crete, and on these islands they colonized certain cities; with regard to these cities, however, we shall give a detailed account in connection with the period of time to which they belong.,4.  And since the greatest number of writers who have written about Crete disagree among themselves, there should be no occasion for surprise if what we report should not agree with every one of them; we have, indeed, followed as our authorities those who give the more probable account and are the most trustworthy, in some matters depending upon Epimenides who has written about the gods, in others upon Dosiades, Sosicrates, and Laosthenidas.,1.  Now that we have discussed the subject of Crete at sufficient length, we shall undertake at this point to speak about Lesbos. This island has been inhabited in ancient times by many peoples, since it has been the scene of many migrations. The first people to seize it, while it was still uninhabited, was the Pelasgians, and in the following manner:,2.  Xanthus, the son of Triopas, who was king of the Pelasgians of Argos, seized a portion of Lycia, and, making his home there, at the outset he became king over the Pelasgians who had accompanied him; but later he crossed over to Lesbos, which was uninhabited, and divided the land among the folk, and he named the island, which had formerly been called Issa, Pelasgia after the people who had settled it.,3.  And seven generations later, after the flood of Deucalion had taken place and much of mankind had perished, it came to pass that Lesbos was also laid desolate by the deluge of waters.,4.  And after these events Macareus came to the island, and, recognizing the beauty of the land, he made his home in it. This Macareus was the son of Crinacus, the son of Zeus, as Hesiod and certain any other poets state, and was a native of Olenus in what was then called Ias, but is now called Achaïa. The folk with him had been gathered from here and there, some being Ionians and the rest those who had streamed to him from every sort of people.,5.  Now at first Macareus made his home in Lesbos, but later, as his power kept steadily increasing because of the fertility of the island and also of his own fairness and sense of justice, he won for himself the neighbouring islands and portioned out the land, which was uninhabited.,6.  And it was during this time that Lesbos, the son of Lapithes, the son of Aeolus, the son of Hippotes, in obedience to an oracle of Pytho, sailed with colonists to the island we are discussing, and, marrying Methymna, the daughter of Macareus, he made his home there with her; and when he became a man of renown, he named the island Lesbos after himself and called the folk Lesbians.,7.  And there was born to Macareus, in addition to other daughters, Mytilenê and Methymna, from whom the cities in the island got their names. Moreover, Macareus, essaying to bring under his control the neighbouring islands, dispatched a colony to Chios first of all, entrusting the leadership of the colony to one of his own sons;,8.  and after this he dispatched another son, Cydrolaüs by name, to Samos, where he settled, and after portioning out the island in allotments to the colonists he became king over it. The third island he settled was Cos, and he appointed Neandrus to be its king; and then he dispatched Leucippus, together with a large body of colonists, to Rhodes, and the inhabitants of Rhodes received them gladly, because there was a lack of men among them, and they dwelt together as one people on the island.,1.  The mainland opposite the islands, we find, had suffered great and terrible misfortunes, in those times, because of the floods. Thus, since the fruits were destroyed over a long period by reason of the deluge, there was a dearth of the necessities of life and a pestilence prevailed among the cities because of the corruption of the air.,2.  The islands, on the other hand, since they were exposed to the breeze and supplied the inhabitants with wholesome air, and since they also enjoyed good crops, were filled with greater and greater abundance, and they quickly made the inhabitants objects of envy. Consequently they have been given the name Islands of the Blessed, the abundance they enjoy of good things constituting the reason for the epithet.,3.  But there are some who say that they were given the name Islands of the Blessed (macarioi) after Macareus, since his sons were the rulers over them. And, speaking generally, the islands we have mentioned have enjoyed a felicity far surpassing that of their neighbours, not only in ancient times but also in our own age;,4.  for being as they the finest of all in richness of soil, excellence of location, and mildness of climate, it is with good reason that they are called, what in truth they are, "blessed." As for Macareus himself, while he was king of Lesbos he issued a law which contributed much to the common good, and he called the law the "Lion," giving it this name after the strength and courage of that beast.,1.  When a considerable time had elapsed after the settlement of Lesbos, the island known as Tenedos came to be inhabited in somewhat the following manner. Tennes was a son of Cycnus, who had been king of Colonê in the Troad, and was a man who had gained renown because of his high achievements.,2.  Gathering together colonists and using as his base the mainland opposite to it, he seized an uninhabited island called Leucophrys; this island he portioned out in allotments among his followers, and he founded a city on it which he named Tenedos after himself.,3.  And since he governed uprightly and conferred many benefactions upon the inhabitants, during his lifetime he was in high favour, and upon his death he was granted immortal honours; for they built for him a sacred precinct and honoured him with sacrifices as though he were a god, and these sacrifices they have continued to perform down to modern times.,4.  But we must not omit to mention what the myths of the Tenedians have to tell about Tennes, the founder of the city. Cycnus his father, they say, giving credence to the unjust slanders of his wife, put his son Tennes in a chest and cast it into the sea; this chest was borne along by the waves and brought to shore on Tenedos, and since Tennes had been saved alive in this astonishing fashion by the providence of some one of the gods, he became king of the island, and becoming distinguished by reason of the justice he displayed and his other virtues, he was granted immortal honours. But it had happened, when his step-mother was slandering him, that a certain flute player had borne false witness against him, and so the Tenedians passed a law that no flute player should ever enter his sacred precinct.,5.  And when Tennes was slain by Achilles in the course of the Trojan War, on the occasion when the Greeks sacked Tenedos, the Tenedians passed a law that no man should ever pronounce the name of Achilles in the sacred precinct of the founder of their city. Such, then, is the account which the myths give regarding Tenedos and its ancient inhabitants.,1.  Since we have set forth the facts concerning the most notable islands, we shall now give an account of the smaller ones. While in ancient times the Cyclades were still uninhabited, Minos, the son of Zeus and Europê, who was king of Crete and possessed great forces both land and naval, was master of the sea and sent forth from Crete many colonies, and he settled the greater number of the Cyclades, portioning the islands out in allotments among the folk, and he seized no small part of the coast of Asia.,2.  And this circumstance explains why harbours on the islands as well as on the coast of Asia have the same designation as those of Crete, being called "Minoan." The power of Minos advanced to great heights; and having his brother Rhadamanthys as co‑ruler, he envied him because of his fame for righteousness, and wishing to get Rhadamanthys out of the way he sent him off to the farthest parts of his dominion.,3.  Rhadamanthys went to the islands which lie off Ionia and Caria, spending his time upon them, and caused Erythrus to found the city which bears his name in Asia, while he established Oenopion, the son of Minos' daughter Ariadnê, as lord of Chios.,4.  Now these events took place before the Trojan War; and after Troy was taken the Carians steadily increased their power and became masters of the sea; and taking possession of the Cyclades, some of the islands they appropriated to themselves, expelling the Cretans who had their homes on them, but in some islands they settled jointly with the Cretans who had been the first to dwell there. And at a later time, when the power of the Greeks increased, the major number of the Cyclades came to be inhabited by them, and the Carians, who were non-Greeks, were driven out of them. But of these matters we shall give a detailed account in connection with the appropriate period of time.,1.  After this the Siceli put the leadership in each case in the hands of the ablest man, but the Sicani quarrelled over the lordship and warred against each other during a long period of time. But many years later than these events, when the islands again were becoming steadily more destitute of inhabitants, certain men of Cnidus and Rhodes, being aggrieved at the harsh treatment they were receiving at the hands of the kings of Asia, resolved to send out a colony.,2.  Consequently, having chosen for their leader Pentathlus of Cnidus — who traced his ancestry back to Hippotes, who was a descendant of Heracles — in the course of the Fiftieth Olympiad, that in which Epitelidas of Sparta won the "stadion," these settlers, then, of the company of Pentathlus sailed to Sicily to the regions about Lilybaeum, where they found the inhabitants of Egesta and of Selinus at war with one another.,3.  And being persuaded by the men of Selinus to take their side in the war, they suffered heavy losses in the battle, Pentathlus himself being among those who fell. Consequently the survivors, since the men of Selinus had been defeated in the war, decided to return to their homes; and choosing for leaders Gorgus and Thestor and Epithersides, who were relatives of Pentathlus, they sailed off through the Tyrrhenian Sea.,4.  But when they put in at Lipara and received a kindly reception, they were prevailed upon to make common cause with the inhabitants of Lipara in forming a single community there, since of the colony of Aeolus there remained only about five hundred men. At a later time, because they were being harassed by the Tyrrheni who were carrying on piracy on the sea, they fitted out a fleet, and divided themselves into two bodies, one of which took over the cultivation of the islands which they had made the common property of the community, whereas the other was to fight the pirates; their possessions also they made common property, and living according to the public mess system, they passed their lives in this communistic fashion for some time.,5.  At a later time they apportioned among themselves the island of Lipara, where their city also lay, but cultivated the other islands in common. And in the final stage they divided all the islands among themselves for a period of twenty years, and then they cast lots for them again at every expiration of this period. After effecting this organization they defeated the Tyrrhenians in many sea-fights, and from their booty they often made notable dedications of a tenth part, which they sent to Delphi.


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nan1.  Orpheus was contemporary with Heracles, both of them living one hundred years before the period of the Trojan War; and as I read in the work of Orpheus On Stones, where he speaks about himself, he says that he lived just a little after Helenus, and that Homer was one generation after Helenus. And Homer, according to Dionysius the writer of cycles, is said to have lived at the time of two expeditions, that against Thebes and the one which the Greeks undertook on behalf of Helen. And Diodorus agrees with Dionysius, as do countless others.,1.  In the city of Cymê there was a tyrant by the name of Malacus. He established his domination by ingratiating himself with the masses and by constantly calumniating the most influential citizens, and he continually put to the sword the wealthiest citizens, seized their possessions and thus maintained mercenaries, and was a terror to the Cymeans. [And last of all, after the Return of the Heracleidae, Argives and Lacedaemonians sent forth colonies which they established on certain other islands and likewise took possession of Crete, and on these islands they took certain cities for their homes; but with regard to these cities we shall give a detailed account in connection with the period of time to which they belong. (Diod. 5.80.3)] [After Troy was taken the Carians steadily increased their power and became masters of the sea; and taking possession of the Cyclades, some of the islands they appropriated to themselves, expelling the Cretans who inhabited them, but in some islands they settled jointly with the Cretans, who had been the first to dwell there. And at a later time, when the power of the Greeks increased, the major number of the Cyclades came to be inhabited by them, and the Carians, who were non-Greeks, were driven out by them. But of these matters we shall give a detailed account in connection with the appropriate period of time. (Diod. 5.84.4)],1.  Eusebius, Chronicle The Periods when Certain Peoples were Masters of the Sea, Excerpted from the Writings of Diodorus. After the Trojan War the mastery of the sea was held by: 1. Lydians and Maeonians 92 years 2. Pelasgians 85"3. Thracians 79"4. Rhodians 23"5. Phrygians 25"6. Cyprians 33"7. Phoenicians 45"8. Egyptians —"9. Milesians —"10. ––––– —"11. Lesbians —"12. Phocians 44"13. Samians —"14. Lacedaemonians 2"15. Naxians 10"16. Eretrians 15"17. Aeginetans 10"down to the time when Xerxes crossed over to the other side.,1.  Such was the magnitude of the qualities of virtue possessed by Lycurgus that once, when he went to Delphi, the Pythian priestess delivered to him this utterance: Lycurgus, loved of Zeus and all whose homes Are on Olympius, thou art come upon My wealthy shrine. I wonder how I shall Reveal myself to thee, as god or man; Yet more a god, Lycurgus, hold I thee. Thou com'st in search of goodly laws; and such A system of fair laws shall I now give To thee as never city upon earth Shall e'er possess.,2.  The same Lycurgus inquired of the Pythian priestess what sort of customs he should establish for the Lacedaemonians whereby they might receive the greatest advantage. And when she replied that he should legislate in such a fashion that the one group should govern fairly and the other group should obey those in authority, he inquired of her again, what should be done by those who were to govern fairly and by those who were to be obedient to men in authority. Whereupon the priestess delivered the following oracle: Two paths there be which farthest parted are, One leading on to freedom's honoured halls, The other to the house of slavery which All mortals shun. The former path is trod By those of manly soul and concord sweet; And on this way I charge you lead the folk; The latter is the path of loathsome strife And weak delusion: This the way which thou Must guard against most carefully.,3.  The sum and substance of the oracle was that the greatest attention should be devoted to concord and manly spirit, since it is by these alone that freedom can be maintained, and unless a man possesses freedom nothing he has is of use to him, nor indeed any goods which the majority of mankind consider of value, seeing that he is the subject of other men. For all such things belong to those who hold authority, not to subjects; and so, if any man wishes to lay up the good things of life for himself, and for others, to use, he must first of all win freedom.,4.  And the oracle commanded that both possessions should be the concern of men, since neither one of them, without the other, can be of advantage to him who has won it; for there is no advantage to men to be brave, if they are at odds among themselves, or to be wholly of one mind, if they are cowards.,5.  The same Lycurgus received from Delphi an oracle with regard to covetousness, which is handed down to memory in the form of a proverb: Covetousness, and it alone, will work The ruin of Sparta.,6.  The Pythian priestess delivered to Lycurgus an oracle regarding a political constitution in these words: Thus Lord Apollo, he of silver bow, Far-darter, golden haired, has made response From out his wealthy shrine: Let kings, to whom Is honour 'mongst the gods, in whose hearts Is care for Sparta's lovely city, hold In Council the first place; and let old men, Of ancient worth, and after them from out The folk the warriors, all in turn yielding Obedience to straight rhetrae, speak fair and hold To justice in their ev'ry deed; nor let Them proffer crooked counsel to this state; And in the body of the folk let there Reside decision and the power. 'Tis thus That Phoebus hath appointed for the city.,7.  They who do not cherish piety toward the divinity show all the less concern to observe justice toward men.,8.  The Lacedaemonians, by observing the laws of Lycurgus, from a lowly people grew to be the most powerful among the Greeks and maintained the leadership among the Greek states for over four hundred years. But after that time, as they little by little began to relax each one of the institutions and to turn to luxury and indifference, and as they grew so corrupted as to use coined money and to amass wealth, they lost the leadership.,1.  Temenus, who obtained the territory of Argos as his portion, together with his army invaded the land of his enemies. And in the course of the war, which was a long one, he did not advance his sons to positions of command, but he assigned to Deïphontes, his daughter's husband whom he especially favoured, the undertakings which carried with them the most renown. For this reason his sons, Cissus and Phalces Cerynes, became wroth with him and formed a plot against their father by the hands of certain villains; and the latter, at the instigation of the sons, lay in wait for Temenus beside a certain river. But they did not succeed in slaying him, and took to flight after only wounding him.,2.  The Argives, since they had suffered serious reverses in the war which they together with their king had undertaken against the Lacedaemonians, and had been forced to hand over their ancestral homes to the Arcadians, laid the blame for this upon their king, on the ground that he had given over their land to the exiles and had not divided it in lots among them. And the mass of citizens rose up against him and in their despair laid violent hands upon him, whereupon he fled to Tegea, where he spent his days in the enjoyment of honours at the hands of those who had received his favours.,2.  And a little further on he writes on the same matters: Perdicas reigned forty-eight years and left the kingship to Argaeus. And after a reign of thirty-one years Argaeus was succeeded on the throne by Philip, who reigned thirty-three years and left the rule to Aeeropas. He ruled for twenty years, and then Alcetas succeeded to the throne and reigned eighteen years, leaving the kingship to Amintas. And after his rule of forty-nine years Alexander followed on the throne, which he held for twenty-two years, then Archelaüs for seventeen, and Aëorpus for six. After him Pausanias for one year, Ptolemaeus for three, then Perdicas for five, and Philip for twenty-four. And Alexander spent over twelve years warring with the Persians.,3.  By such a genealogy trustworthy historians trace the line of the kings of Macedonia back to Heracles. From Caranus, who was the first to unite the power of Macedon and to hold it, to Alexander, who subdued the land of Asia, there are reckoned twenty-four kings and four hundred and eighty years.,1.  The kingship among the Argives lasted for five hundred and forty-nine years, as the most learned Diodorus has stated in his history. Eusebius, Chronicle,1.  After the rule of the Assyrians came to an end with the death of their last king, Sardanapallus, there followed the period of the Macedonians. Caranus, who was covetous of possessions, before the first Olympiad gathered forces from the Argives and from the rest of the Peloponnesus, and with this army he advanced against the territory of the Macedonians. It happened that at the same time the king of the Orestae was at war with his neighbours, who were known as Eordaei. He asked Caranus to come to his assistance and promised to give him half of his land, when he had established peace among the Orestae. The king was as good as his word, and Caranus received the land and ruled as king over it for thirty years. He died in his old age and was succeeded on the throne by his son who was known as Coenus, who reigned twenty-eight years. After him Tirimmus reigned for forty-three years, and Perdicas for forty-eight years. Perdicas wished to enlarge his kingdom and so made inquiry of Delphi.,1.  Perdiccas, wishing to increase the strength of his kingdom, sent to Delphi to consult the oracle. And the Pythian priestess replied to him: Stands o'er wealthy land a might of kings Of Temenus' right noble line, Of Aegis-bearing Zeus. But swiftly go To Bottiaïs, rich in flocks; and then Where thou shalt see white-horned goats, with fleece Like snow, resting at dawn, make sacrifice Upon the blessed gods upon that spot And raise the chief city of a state. ,1.  The genealogy of Caranus is given in this wise, as Diodorus reports, as well as the majority of historians, one of whom is also Theopompus. Caranus was the son of Pheidon, the son of Aristodamis, the son of Merops, the son of Thestius, the son of Cissius, the son of Temenus, the son of Aristomachus, the son of Cleodaeus, the son of Hyllus, the son of Heracles. But there are some, he says, who adduce a different genealogy, saying that Caranus was the son of Poeas, the son of Croesus, the son of Cleodaeus, the son of Eurybiades, the son of Deballus, the son of Lachares, the son of Temenus, who likewise returned into the Peloponnesus.,1.  Diodorus states that Homer died before the Return of the Heracleidae. ,1.  Aegialeia, the wife of Diomedes, fell altogether from favour with her husband. And in her hatred she acted unjustly toward her husband and called upon her kinsmen to take vengeance upon him. And they, taking as their helper Aegisthus, who had lately possessed himself of the throne of Mycenae, passed judgment of death upon Diomedes, alleging that, although his father had been a foreigner, he was planning to banish the nobles from the state and to settle in their place some of his kinsmen from Aetolia. And since this false charge was generally believed, Diomedes became afraid and fled from Argos, together with any who wished to accompany him.,1.  When Troy was taken, Aeneas, together with some other Trojans, seized a part of the city and held off the attackers. And when the Greeks let them depart under a truce and agreed with them that each man might take with him as many of his possessions as he could, all the rest took silver or gold or some other costly article, whereas Aeneas lifted upon his shoulders his father, who was now grown quite old, and bore him away.,2.  For this deed he won the admiration of the Greeks and was again given permission to choose out what he would of his household possessions.,3.  And when he bore off the household gods, all the more was his virtue approved, receiving the plaudits even of his enemies;,4.  for the man showed that in the midst of the greatest perils his first concern was piety toward parents and reverence for the gods. And this was the reason, we are told, why he, together with the Trojans who still survived, was allowed to leave the Troad in complete safety and to go to whatever land he wished. Eusebius, Chronicle Let us now turn to another witness to the same affairs, namely, to Diodorus, who gathered in summary form all libraries into one and the same clearing-house of knowledge. For he writes of the history of the Romans in his seventh Book, in the following words:,1.  Certain historians have assumed, though in error, that the Romulus who was born of the daughter of Aeneas was the founder of Rome. But the truth is otherwise, since there were many kings in the period between Aeneas and Romulus, and the city was founded in the second year of the Seventh Olympiad, and the date of this founding falls after the Trojan War by four hundred and thirty-three years.,2.  For three years elapsed after the taking of Troy before Aeneas received the kingship over the Latins; this kingship he held for three years, and then he disappeared from among men and received immortal honours.,3.  His son Ascanius succeeded him on the throne and founded Alba Longa, as it is now called, naming it after the river which was then called Alba and now bears the name Tiber.,4.  As for the name of the city, however, Fabius, who wrote a history of the Romans, presents a different story. This is what he says: An oracle was given to Aeneas, stating that a four-footed animal would lead him to the place where he should found a city. And once, when he was in the act of sacrificing a sow, white in colour, which was pregnant, it escaped from his hands and was pursued to a certain hill, where it dropped a farrow of thirty pigs.,5.  Aeneas was astounded at this strange happening, and then, calling to mind the oracle, he made preparations to found a city on the spot. But in his sleep he saw a vision which strictly forbade him to do so and counselled him to found the city thirty years hence, corresponding to the number of the farrow of pigs, and so he gave up his design.,6.  Upon the death of Aeneas his son Ascanius ascended the throne, and after thirty years he founded a settlement on the hill and gave the city the name of Alba after the colour of the sow; for the Latins call what is white alba. Ascanius also added another name, Longa, which translated means "the long," since the city was narrow in width and of great length. And he (Diodorus) goes on to say,,7.  "Ascanius made Alba the capital of his kingdom and subdued no small number of the settlements round about; and he became a famous man and died after a reign of thirty-eight years.",8.  At the end of this period there arose a division among the people, because of two men who were contending with each other for the throne. For Iulius, since he was the son of Ascanius, maintained, "The rule which my father had belongs to me." And Silvius, the brother of Ascanius and, furthermore, a son of Aeneas by Lavinia, the daughter of Latinus, whereas Ascanius was a son of Aeneas by his first wife, who had been a woman of Ilium, maintained, "The rule belongs to me." Indeed, after Aeneas' death Ascanius had plotted against the life of Silvius; and it was while the latter as a child was being reared, because of this plot, by certain herdsmen on a mountain that he came to be called Silvius, after the name of the mountain, which the Latins called Silva. In this struggle of the two groups Silvius finally received the vote of the people and gained the throne. Iulius, however, though he lost the supreme power, was made pontifex maximus and became a kind of second king; and from him we are told, was sprung the Julian gens which exists in Rome even to this day.,9.  Silvius accomplished nothing of note during his reign and died after a rule of forty-nine years. He was followed in the kingship by his son Aeneas, who was given the surname of Silvius and reigned over thirty years. After him Latinus, who was also called Silvius, reigned for fifty years. He was a vigorous ruler both in internal administration and in war, laying waste the neighbouring territory and founding the eighteen ancient cities which were formerly known as the "Latin cities": Tibur, Praeneste, Gabii, Tusculum, Cora, Pometia, Lanuvium, Labici, Scaptia, Satricum, Aricia, Tellenae, Crustumerium, Caenina, Fregellae, Cameria, Medullia, and Boilum, which some men also write Bola.,10.  After Latinus died, his son Alba Silvius was chosen king, and he reigned for thirty-eight years; and after him Epitus Silva ruled for twenty-six years. At his death Capys replaced him in the kingship and reigned twenty-eight years. After him his son Calpetus reigned for thirteen years, and then Tiberius Silvius for eight years. The latter undertook a campaign against the Etruscans, but while leading his army across the Alba river he fell into the flood and met his death, whence the name of the river was made Tiber. And after his death Agrippa reigned over the Latins for forty-one years, and after him Aramulius Silvius for nineteen years.,11.  Of Aramulius the story is told that he carried himself haughtily during his entire life and opposed the might of Jupiter in obstinate strife. Indeed, when at harvest time there would come incessant peals of heavy thunder, he used to order his soldiers, at the word of command, with one accord to strike their shields with the swords; and he would claim that the noise made in this fashion surpassed that of thunder. But he paid the penalty of his arrogance toward the gods, since he was slain by a stroke of lightning and his entire house was submerged in the Alban lake. And to this day the Romans who dwell near the lake point to evidences of this event in the form of columns which stand up in the lake from the ruins of the royal palace lying in its depths.,12.  After Aramulius the next king to be chosen was Aventius, who ruled thirty-seven years. Once, when pressed back in a war with some neighbours, he withdrew for protection to the Aventine hill, and for this reason the hill received the name Aventine. Upon his death he was succeeded in the kingship by his son Proca Silvius, who reigned twenty-three years. At his death his younger son Amulius seized the kingship by violence, since Numitor, who as his elder brother and his full-brother as well, was away in a distant region. Amulius reigned a little more than forty-three years and was slain by Remus and Romulus, who were the founders of Rome.,1.  After the death of Aeneas a plot was formed by Ascanius against Silvius, who was still a child. He had been reared in the mountains by certain herdsmen and was given the name Silvius, because the Latins called the mountain Silva.,1.  Romulus Silvius was an arrogant man throughout his entire life and dared to contend with God. For example, when God would thunder he used to order his soldiers at a single signal to strike their shields with their blades, and he would then say that the noise they raised was greater than the thunder. [The third city he seized was Meschela, which was a very large place and had been settled in ancient times by Greek refugees from Troy, about whom we have already spoken in the third Book. (Diod. 20.57.6)] [Thessalus, they say, after this removed to Iolcus; and finding on his arrival that Acastus, the son of Pelias, had recently died, he took over the throne which had belonged to him by inheritance and called the people who were subject to him Thessalians after his own name. I am not unaware that this is not the only explanation given of the name the Thessalians bear, but the fact is that the other accounts which have been handed down to us are likewise at variance with one another, and concerning these we shall speak on a more appropriate occasion. (Diod. 4.55.2)] [The Heracleidae gave up, as they had promised, their effort to return and made their way back to Tricorythus. Some time later Licymnius and his sons and Tlepolemus, the son of Heracles, made their home in Argos, the Argives admitting them to citizenship of their own accord; but all the rest who had made their homes in Tricorythus, when the fifty-year period had expired, returned to the Peloponnesus. Their deeds we shall record when we have come to those times. (Diod. 4.58.4‑5)] Eusebius, Chronicle Kings of Lacedaemon from the Books of Diodorus,1.  Since it so happens that the interval is difficult to determine from the time of the events which gather around Troy to the first Olympiad, since there were no annual magistrates in this period either in Athens or in any other city, we shall use for our purpose the kings of Lacedaemon. From the Destruction of Troy to the First Olympiad, as Apollodorus of Athens says, is a period of four hundred and eight years. It was eighty years to the Return of the Heracleidae, and the remaining years were included in the reigns of the Lacedaemonian kings, Procles and Eurystheus, and their descendants; we shall now enumerate the individual kings by the two houses down to the First Olympiad.,2.  Eurystheus began to reign in the eightieth year after the events which gather around Troy, and he ruled forty-two years; after him Agis ruled one year; Echestratus thirty-one; Labotas thirty-seven; Doristhus twenty-nine; Agesilaüs, his successor, forty-four; Archelaüs sixty; Teleclus forty; and Alcamenes thirty-eight. In the tenth year of the last reign fell the beginning of the First Olympiad, that in which Curibus of Elea won the "stadion." Of the other house Procles was the first ruler and reigned forty-nine years; after him Pritanis reigned forty-nine years; Eunomius forty-five; after him Chariclus sixty; after him Nicandrus thirty-eight; and Theopompus forty-seven. And in the tenth year also of the last reign begins the First Olympiad. And the total length of time from the taking of Troy to the Return of the Heracleidae is eighty years.,1.  Now that we have examined into these matters, it remains for us to speak of Corinth and of Sicyon, and of the manner in which the territories of these cities were settled by the Dorians. For it came to pass that practically all the peoples throughout the Peloponnesus, except the Arcadians, were driven out on the occasion of the Return of the Heracleidae.,2.  Now when the Heracleidae divided up the land they made an exception of the territory of Corinth and the country lying about it, and sending word to Aletes they handed this territory over to him. Aletes, becoming a notable man, increased the city of Corinth in power and reigned as king over it thirty-eight years.,3.  After his death the kingship was assumed from time to time by the eldest son of his descendants, until the tyranny of Cypselus, which falls four hundred and forty-seven years after the return of the Heracleidae. The first of the Heracleidae to succeed to the kingship was Ixion, who reigned thirty-eight years;,4.  after him Agelas ruled for thirty-seven years, and then Prymnis for thirty-five. And Bacchis, who ruled for an equal number of years, became a more famous man than any of his predecessors, and this was the reason why the kings who followed him came to be called no longer Heracleidae, but Bacchidae. Agelas followed Bacchis and reigned for thirty years, Eudemus for twenty-five, and Aristomedes for thirty-five.,5.  At his death Aristomedes left a son Telestes, who was still a child in years, and Telestes was deprived of the kingship he had inherited by Agemon, his father's brother and his own guardian, who reigned sixteen years. After him Alexander held the royal power for twenty-five years. Alexander was slain by that Telestes who had been deprived of the ancestral rule, and he then reigned for twelve years;,6.  and Telestes was slain by his kinsmen and Automenes reigned for a year. And the Bacchidae, who were descendants of Heracles, were two hundred in number when they seized the rule, and they all maintained control over the state as a body; out of their own number they annually chose one man to be chief magistrate, who held the position of the king, this form of government continuing for ninety years until it was destroyed by the tyranny which Cypselus established.


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aristotle Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
aurum coronarium Ando, Imperial Ideology and Provincial Loyalty in the Roman Empire (2013) 182
character Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
consecration' Ando, Imperial Ideology and Provincial Loyalty in the Roman Empire (2013) 182
demetrius of phalerum Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
greek, literature/sources Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
hecataeus of abdera Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
israel Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
jerusalem Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
josephus Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
judaism Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
judea Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
law, jewish/of moses Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
manetho Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
middle way Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
pescennius niger Ando, Imperial Ideology and Provincial Loyalty in the Roman Empire (2013) 182
philosophy, pythagorean Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
philosophy peripatetic/aristotelean Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
philosophystoic Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
photius Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
ps.-aristeas Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
pseudo-hecataeus, on the jews Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
pseudo-hecataeus Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
severus, accession of Ando, Imperial Ideology and Provincial Loyalty in the Roman Empire (2013) 182
symposium/symposia Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
translators, jewish Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40
wealth Wright, The Letter of Aristeas: 'Aristeas to Philocrates' or 'On the Translation of the Law of the Jews' (2015) 40