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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



10496
Strabo, Geography, 8.1.3


nanEphorus says that, if one begins with the western parts, Acarnania is the beginning of Greece; for, he adds, Acarnania is the first to border on the tribes of the Epeirotes. But just as Ephorus, using the seacoast as his measuring-line, begins with Acarnania (for he decides in favor of the sea as a kind of guide in his description of places, because otherwise he might have represented parts that border on the land of the Macedonians and the Thessalians as the beginning), so it is proper that I too, following the natural character of the regions, should make the sea my counsellor. Now this sea, issuing forth out of the Sicilian Sea, on one side stretches to the Corinthian Gulf, and on the other forms a large peninsula, the Peloponnesus, which is closed by a narrow isthmus. Thus Greece consists of two very large bodies of land, the part inside the Isthmus, and the part outside, which extends through Pylae as far as the outlet of the Peneius (this latter is the Thessalian part of Greece); but the part inside the Isthmus is both larger and more famous. I might almost say that the Peloponnesus is the acropolis of Greece as a whole; for, apart from the splendor and power of the tribes that have lived in it, the very topography of Greece, diversified as it is by gulfs, many capes, and, what are the most significant, large peninsulas that follow one another in succession, suggests such hegemony for it. The first of the peninsulas is the Peloponnesus which is closed by an isthmus forty stadia in width. The second includes the first; and its isthmus extends in width from Pagae in Megaris to Nisaea, the naval station of the Megarians, the distance across being one hundred and twenty stadia from sea to sea. The third likewise includes the second; and its isthmus extends in width from the recess of the Crisaean Gulf as far as Thermopylae — the imaginary straight line, about five hundred and eight stadia in length, enclosing within the peninsula the whole of Boeotia and cutting obliquely Phocis and the country of the Epicnemidians. The fourth is the peninsula whose isthmus extends from the Ambracian Gulf through Oita and Trachinia to the Maliac Gulf and Thermopylae — the isthmus being about eight hundred stadia in width. But there is another isthmus, more than one thousand stadia in width, extending from the same Ambracian Gulf through the countries of the Thessalians and the Macedonians to the recess of the Thermaean Gulf. So then, the succession of the peninsulas suggests a kind of order, and not a bad one, for me to follow in my description; and I should begin with the smallest, but most famous, of them.


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1. Philo of Alexandria, On The Life of Moses, 2.35 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

2.35. The island of Pharos lies in front of Alexandria, the neck of which runs out like a sort of tongue towards the city, being surrounded with water of no great depth, but chiefly with shoals and shallow water, so that the great noise and roaring from the beating of the waves is kept at a considerable distance, and so mitigated.
2. Strabo, Geography, 1.1.16, 1.2.10, 2.1.1, 2.1.3, 2.1.22, 2.1.31, 3.1.3, 3.3.1, 3.4.20, 4.1.1, 4.1.11, 4.6.6, 4.6.9-4.6.10, 5.1.2-5.1.3, 5.1.7, 5.2.5-5.2.6, 5.2.8-5.2.9, 5.3.6-5.3.7, 5.3.9, 5.3.12, 7.1.5, 7.5.1, 9.1.16-9.1.17, 9.1.20, 9.3.5-9.3.6, 9.3.8-9.3.10, 11.1.1, 11.1.5, 12.3.42, 13.1.27, 13.1.54, 13.1.58, 13.4.1-13.4.2, 14.1.6, 14.1.21-14.1.24, 14.1.27-14.1.28, 14.1.39-14.1.41, 14.2.5-14.2.10, 14.2.13, 14.2.16, 14.5.12-14.5.15, 15.3.2, 16.1.5-16.1.6, 16.2.4-16.2.5, 16.2.13, 16.2.34-16.2.39, 17.1.6-17.1.13, 17.1.27-17.1.28, 17.3.1, 17.3.15 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

1.1.16. To the various subjects which it embraces let us add natural history, or the history of the animals, plants, and other different productions of the earth and sea, whether serviceable or useless, and my original statement will, I think, carry perfect conviction with it. That he who should undertake this work would be a benefactor to mankind, reason and the voice of antiquity agree. The poets feign that they were the wisest heroes who travelled and wandered most in foreign climes: and to be familiar with many countries, and the disposition of the inhabitants, is, according to them, of vast importance. Nestor prides himself on having associated with the Lapithae, to whom he went, having been invited thither from the Apian land afar. So does Menelaus: — Cyprus, Phoenicia, Sidon, and the shores of Egypt, roaming without hope I reach'd; In distant Ethiopia thence arrived, And Libya, where the lambs their foreheads show With budding horns defended soon as yean'd. [Od. iv. 83.] Adding as a peculiarity of the country, There thrice within the year the flocks produce. [Od. iv. 86.] And of Egypt: — Where the sustaining earth is most prolific. And Thebes, the city with an hundred gates, Whence twenty thousand chariots rush to war. Iliad ix. 383 Such information greatly enlarges our sphere of knowledge, by informing us of the nature of the country, its botanical and zoological peculiarities. To these should be added its marine history; for we are in a certain sense amphibious, not exclusively connected with the land, but with the sea as well. Hercules, on account of his vast experience and observation, was described as skilled in mighty works. All that we have previously stated is confirmed both by the testimony of antiquity and by reason. One consideration however appears to bear in a peculiar manner on the case in point; viz. the importance of geography in a political view. For the sea and the earth in which we dwell furnish theatres for action; limited, for limited actions; vast, for grander deeds; but that which contains them all, and is the scene of the greatest undertakings, constitutes what we term the habitable earth; and they are the greatest generals who, subduing nations and kingdoms under one sceptre, and one political administration, have acquired dominion over land and sea. It is clear then, that geography is essential to all the transactions of the statesman, informing us, as it does, of the position of the continents, seas, and oceans of the whole habitable earth. Information of especial interest to those who are concerned to know the exact truth of such particulars, and whether the places have been explored or not: for government will certainly be better administered where the size and position of the country, its own peculiarities, and those of the surrounding districts, are understood. Forasmuch as there are many sovereigns who rule in different regions, and some stretch their dominion over others' territories, and undertake the government of different nations and kingdoms, and thus enlarge the extent of their dominion, it is not possible that either themselves, nor yet writers on geography, should be equally acquainted with the whole, but to both there is a great deal more or less known. Indeed, were the whole earth under one government and one administration, it is hardly possible that we should be informed of every locality in an equal degree; for even then we should be most acquainted with the places nearest us: and after all, it is better that we should have a more perfect description of these, since, on account of their proximity, there is greater reed for it. We see there is no reason to be surprised that there should be one chorographer for the Indians, another for the Ethiopians, and a third for the Greeks and Romans. What use would it be to the Indians if a geographer should thus describe Boeotia to them, in the words of Homer: — The dwellers on the rocks of Aulis follow'd, with the hardy clans of Hyria, Schoenus, Scolus. Iliad ii. 496. To us this is of value, while to be acquainted with the Indies and their various territorial divisions would be useless, as it could lead to no advantage, which is the only criterion of the worth of such knowledge. 1.2.10. Being acquainted with Colchis, and the voyage of Jason to Aea, and also with the historical and fabulous relations concerning Circe and Medea, their enchantments and their various other points of resemblance, he feigns there was a relationship between them, notwithstanding the vast distance by which they were separated, the one dwelling in an inland creek of the Euxine, and the other in Italy, and both of them beyond the ocean. It is possible that Jason himself wandered as far as Italy, for traces of the Argonautic expedition are pointed out near the Ceraunian mountains, by the Adriatic, at the Posidonian Gulf, and the isles adjacent to Tyrrhenia. The Cyaneae, called by some the Symplegades, or Jostling Rocks, which render the passage through the Strait of Constantinople so difficult, also afforded matter to our poet. The actual existence of a place named Aea, stamped credibility upon his Aeaea; so did the Symplegades upon the Planctae, (the Jostling Rocks upon the Wandering Rocks) and the passage of Jason through the midst of them; in the same way Scylla and Charybdis accredited the passage [of Ulysses] past those rocks. In his time people absolutely regarded the Euxine as a kind of second ocean, and placed those who had crossed it in the same list with navigators who had passed the Pillars. It was looked upon as the largest of our seas, and was therefore par excellence styled the Sea, in the same way as Homer [is called] the Poet. In order therefore to be well received, it is probable he transferred the scenes from the Euxine to the ocean, so as not to stagger the general belief. And in my opinion those Solymi who possess the highest ridges of Taurus, lying between Lycia and Pisidia, and those who in their southern heights stand out most conspicuously to the dwellers on this side Taurus, and the inhabitants of the Euxine by a figure of speech, he describes as being beyond the ocean. For narrating the voyage of Ulysses in his ship, he says, But Neptune, traversing in his return From Ethiopia's sons, the mountain heights of Solyme, descried him from afar. [Od. v. 282.] It is probable he took his account of the one-eyed Cyclopae from Scythian history, for the Arimaspi, whom Aristaeus of Proconnesus describes in his Tales of the Arimaspi, are said to be distinguished by this peculiarity. 2.1.1. IN the Third Book of his Geography Eratosthenes furnishes us with a chart of the habitable earth. This he divides into two portions, by a line running from east to west parallel to the equator. He makes the Pillars of Hercules the boundary of this line to the west, and to the east the farthest ridges of those mountains which bound India on the north. From the Pillars he draws the line through the Strait of Sicily, and the southern extremities of Peloponnesus and Attica, to Rhodes and the Gulf of Issos. He says, Through the whole of this distance the line mentioned is drawn across the sea and adjacent continents; the whole length of the Mediterranean as far as Cilicia extending in that direction. Thence it runs nearly in a straight line along the whole chain of the Taurus to India. The Taurus continuing in a straight line from the Pillars divides Asia through its whole length into two halves, north and south. So that both the Taurus and the sea from the Pillars hither lie under the parallel of Athens. 2.1.3. But there is another method (says Eratosthenes) of proving this. The distance from the Gulf of Issos to the Euxine, proceeding in a northerly direction towards Amisus and Sinope, is about 3000 stadia, which is as much as the supposed extent of the mountains [of the Taurus]. The traveller who directs his course from Amisus due east, arrives first at Colchis, then at the high lands by the Hyrcanian Sea, afterwards at the road leading to Bactra, and beyond to the Scythians; having the mountains always on the right. The same line drawn through Amisus westward, crosses the Propontis and Hellespont. From Meroe to the Hellespont there are not more than 18,000 stadia. The distance is just the same from the southern extremity of India to the land of Bactria, if we add to the 15,000 stadia of that country the 3000 which its mountains occupy in breadth. 2.1.22. Again, Hipparchus, ever anxious to defend the [accuracy of the] ancient charts, instead of fairly stating the words of Eratosthenes concerning his third section of the habitable earth, wilfully makes him the author of an assertion easy of disproof. For Eratosthenes, following the opinion we before mentioned, that a line drawn from the Pillars of Hercules across the Mediterranean, and the length of the Taurus, would run due west and east, divides, by means of this line, the habitable earth into two portions, which he calls the northern and southern divisions; each of these he again essays to subdivide into as many smaller partitions as practicable, which he denominates sections. He makes India the first section of the southern part, and Ariana the second; these two countries possessing a good outline, he has been able not only to give us an accurate statement of their length and breadth, but an almost geometrically exact description of their figure. He tells us that the form of India is rhomboidal, being washed on two of its sides by the southern and eastern oceans [respectively], which do not deeply indent its shores, The two remaining sides are contained by its mountains and the river [Indus], so that it presents a kind of rectilinear figure. As to Ariana, he considered three of its sides well fitted to form a parallelogram; but of the western side he could give no regular definition, as it was inhabited by various nations; nevertheless he attempts an idea of it by a line drawn from the Caspian Gates to the limits of Carmania, which border on the Persian Gulf. This side he calls western, and that next the Indus eastern, but he does not tell us they are parallel to each other; neither does he say this of the other sides, one bounded by the mountains, and the other by the sea; he simply calls them north and south. 2.1.31. [In the system of Eratosthenes], the habitable earth has been admirably divided into two parts by the Taurus and the Mediterranean Sea, which reaches to the Pillars. On the southern side, the limits of India have been described by a variety of methods; by its mountains, its river, its seas, and its name, which seems to indicate that it is inhabited only by one people. It is with justice too that he attributes to it the form of a quadrilateral or rhomboid. Ariana is not so accurately described, on account of its western side being interwoven with the adjacent land. Still it is pretty well distinguished by its three other sides, which are formed by three nearly straight lines, and also by its name, which shows it to be only one nation. As to the Third Section of Eratosthenes, it cannot be considered to be defined or circumscribed at all; for that side of it which is common to Ariana is but ill defined, as before remarked. The southern side, too, is most negligently taken: it is, in fact, no boundary to the section at all, for it passes right through its centre, leaving entirely outside of it many of the southern portions. Nor yet does it represent the greatest length of the section, for the northern side is the longest. Nor, lastly, can the Euphrates be its western boundary, not even if it flowed in a right line, since its two extremes do not lie under the same meridian. How then is it the western rather than the southern boundary? Apart from this, the distance to the Seas of Cilicia and Syria is so inconsiderable, that there can be no reason why he should not have enlarged the third section, so as to include the kingdoms of Semiramis and Ninus, who are both of them known as Syrian monarchs; the first built Babylon, which he made his royal residence; the second Ninus, the capital of Syria; and the same dialect still exists on both sides of the Euphrates. The idea of thus dismembering so renowned a nation, and allotting its portions to strange nations with which it had no connexion, is as peculiarly unfortunate. Eratosthenes cannot plead that he was compelled to do this on account of its size, for had it extended as far as the sea and the frontiers of Arabia Felix and Egypt, even then it would not have been as large as India, or even Ariana. It would have therefore been much better to have enlarged the third section, making it comprehend the whole space as far as the Sea of Syria; but if this were done, the southern side would not be as he represents it, nor yet in a straight line, but starting from Carmania would follow the right side of the sea-shore from the Persian Gulf to the mouth of the Euphrates; it would then approach the limits of Mesene and Babylon, where the isthmus commences which separates Arabia Felix from the rest of the continent. Traversing the isthmus, it would continue its course to the recess of the Arabian Gulf and Pelusium, thence to the mouth of the Nile at Canopus. Such would be the southern side. The west would be traced by the sea-shore from the [river's] mouth at Canopus to Cilicia. 3.1.3. In shape it resembles a hide stretched out in length from west to east, the forepart towards the east, its breadth being from north to south. Its length is about 6000 stadia; the greatest breadth is 5000; while there are parts considerably less than 3000, particularly in the vicinity of the Pyrenees, which form the eastern side. This chain of mountains stretches without interruption from north to south, and divides Keltica from Iberia. The breadth both of Keltica and Iberia is irregular, the narrowest part in both of them from the Mediterranean to the [Atlantic] Ocean being near the Pyrenees, particularly on either side of that chain; this gives rise to gulfs both on the side of the Ocean, and also of the Mediterranean; the largest of these are denominated the Keltic or Galatic Gulfs, and they render the [Keltic] isthmus narrower than that of Iberia. The Pyrenees form the eastern side of Iberia, and the Mediterranean the southern from the Pyrenees to the Pillars of Hercules, thence the exterior [ocean] as far as the Sacred Promontory. The third or western side runs nearly parallel to the Pyrenees from the Sacred Promontory to the promontory of the Artabri, called [Cape] Nerium. The fourth side extends hence to the northern extremity of the Pyrenees. 3.4.20. At the present time some of the provinces having been assigned to the people and senate of the Romans, and the others to the emperor, Baetica appertains to the people, and a praetor has been sent into the country, having under him a quaestor and a lieutet. Its eastern boundary has been fixed near to Castlon. The remainder belongs to the emperor, who deputes two lieutets, a praetor, and a consul. The praetor with a lieutet administers justice amongst the Lusitanians, who are situated next Baetica, and extend as far as the outlets of the river Douro, for at the present time this district is called Lusitania by the inhabitants. Here is [the city of] Augusta Emerita. What remains, which is [indeed] the greater part of Iberia, is governed by the consul, who has under him a respectable force, consisting of about three legions, with three lieutets, one of whom with two legions guards the whole country north of the Douro, the inhabitants of which formerly were styled Lusitanians, but are now called Gallicians. The northern mountains, together with the Asturian and Cantabrian, border on these. The river Melsus flows through the country of the Asturians, and at a little distance is the city of Nougat, close to an estuary formed by the ocean, which separates the Asturians from the Cantabrians. The second lieutet with the remaining legion governs the adjoining district as far as the Pyrenees. The third oversees the midland district, and governs the cities inhabited by the togati, whom we have before alluded to as inclined to peace, and who have adopted the refined manners and mode of life of the Italians, together with the toga. These are the Keltiberians, and those who dwell on either side of the Ebro, as far as the sea-coast. The consul passes the winter in the maritime districts, mostly administering justice either in [the city of] Carthage, or Tarraco. During the summer he travels through the country, observing whatever may need reform. There are also the procurators of the emperor, men of the equestrian rank, who distribute the pay to the soldiers for their maintece. 4.1.1. NEXT in order [after Iberia] comes Keltica beyond the Alps, the configuration and size of which has been already mentioned in a general manner; we are now to describe it more particularly. Some divide it into the three nations of the Aquitani, Belge, and Kelte. of these the Aquitani differ completely from the other nations, not only in their language but in their figure, which resembles more that of the Iberians than the Galatae. The others are Galatae in countece, although they do not all speak the same language, but some make a slight difference in their speech; neither is their polity and mode of life exactly the same. These writers give the name of Aquitani and Keltae to the dwellers near the Pyrenees, which are bounded by the Cevennes. For it has been stated that this Keltica is bounded on the west by the mountains of the Pyrenees, which extend to either sea, both the Mediterranean and the ocean; on the east by the Rhine, which is parallel to the Pyrenees; on the north by the ocean, from the northern extremities of the Pyrenees to the mouths of the Rhine; on the south by the sea of Marseilles, and Narbonne, and by the Alps from Liguria to the sources of the Rhine. The Cevennes lie at right angles to the Pyrenees, and traverse the plains for about 2000 stadia, terminating in the middle near Lugdunum. They call those people Aquitani who inhabit the northern portions of the Pyrenees, and the Cevennes extending as far as the ocean, and bounded by the river Garonne; and Keltae, those who dwell on the other side of the Garonne, towards the sea of Marseilles and Narbonne, and touching a portion of the Alpine chain. This is the division adopted by divus Caesar in his Commentaries. But Augustus Caesar, when dividing the country into four parts, united the Keltae to the Narbonnaise; the Aquitani he preserved the same as Julius Caesar, but added thereto fourteen other nations of those who dwelt between the Garonne and the river Loire, and dividing the rest into two parts, the one extending to the upper districts of the Rhine he made dependent upon Lugdunum, the other [he assigned] to the Belgae. However, it is the duty of the Geographer to describe the physical divisions of each country, and those which result from diversity of nations, when they seem worthy of notice; as to the limits which princes, induced by a policy which circumstances dictate, have variously imposed, it will be sufficient for him to notice them summarily, leaving others to furnish particular details. 4.6.6. On the opposite side of the mountains, sloping towards Italy, dwell the Taurini, a Ligurian nation, together with certain other Ligurians. What is called the land of Ideonnus and Cottius belongs to these Ligurians. Beyond them and the Padus are the Salassi; above whom in the summits [of the Alps] are the Kentrones, the Catoriges, the Veragri, the Nantuatae, Lake Lemmanus, traversed by the Rhone, and the sources of that river. Not far from these are the sources of the Rhine, and Mount Adulas, from whence the Rhine flows towards the north; likewise the Adda, which flows in an opposite direction, and discharges itself into Lake Larius, near to Como. Lying above Como, which is situated at the roots of the Alps, on one side are the Rhaeti and Vennones towards the east, and on the other the Lepontii, the Tridentini, the Stoni, and numerous other small nations, poor and addicted to robbery, who in former times possessed Italy. At the present time some of them have been destroyed, and the others at length civilized, so that the passes over the mountains through their territories, which were formerly few and difficult, now run in every direction, secure from any danger of these people, and as accessible as art can make them. For Augustus Caesar not only destroyed the robbers, but improved the character of the roads as far as practicable, although he could not every where overcome nature, on account of the rocks and immense precipices; some of which tower above the road, while others yawn beneath; so that departing ever so little [from the path], the traveller is in inevitable danger of falling down bottomless chasms. In some places the road is so narrow as to make both the foot traveller and his beasts of burden, who are unaccustomed to it, dizzy; but the animals of the district will carry their burdens quite securely. These things however are beyond remedy, as well as the violent descent of vast masses of congealed snow from above, capable of overwhelming a whole company at a time, and sweeping them into the chasms beneath. Numerous masses lie one upon the other, one hill of congealed snow being formed upon another, so that the uppermost mass is easily detached at any time from that below it, before being perfectly melted by the sun. 5.1.2. It is not easy to describe the whole of Italy under any one geometrical figure; although some say that it is a promontory of triangular form, extending towards the south and winter rising, with its apex towards the Strait of Sicily, and its base formed by the Alps. . . . . . [No one can allow this definition either for the base or one of the sides, ] although it is correct for the other side which terminates at the Strait, and is washed by the Tyrrhenian sea. But a triangle, properly so called, is a rectilinear figure, whereas in this instance both the base and the sides are curved. So that, if I agree, I must add that the base and the sides are of a curved figure, and it must be conceded to me that the eastern side deviates, as well; otherwise they have not been sufficiently exact in describing as one side that which extends from the head of the Adriatic to the Strait [of Sicily ]. For we designate as a side a line without any angle; now a line without any angle is one which does not incline to either side, or but very little; whereas the line from Ariminum to the Iapygian promontory, and that from the Strait [of Sicily ] to the same promontory, incline very considerably. The same I consider to be the case with regard to the lines drawn from the head of the Adriatic and Iapygia, for meeting about the neighbourhood of Ariminum and Ravenna, they form an angle, or if not an angle, at least a strongly defined curve. Consequently, if the coast from the head [of the Adriatic] to Iapygia be considered as one side, it cannot be described as a right line; neither can the remainder of the line from hence to the Strait [of Sicily ], though it may be considered another side, be said to form a right line. Thus the figure [of Italy] may be said to be rather quadrilateral than trilateral, and can never without impropriety be called a triangle. It is better to confess that you cannot define exactly ungeometrical figures. 5.1.3. [Italy], however, may be described in the following manner. The roots of the Alps are curved, and in the form of a gulf, the head turned towards Italy; the middle of the gulf in the country of the Salassi, and its extremities turned, the one towards Ocra and the head of the Adriatic, the other towards the coast of Liguria as far as Genoa, a mercantile city of the Ligurians, where the Apennines fall in with the Alps. Immediately under [the Alps] there is a considerable plain, of about an equal extent of 2100 stadia both in breadth and length; its southern side is closed by the coast of the Heneti and the Apennines, which extend to Ariminum and Ancona; for these mountains, commencing at Liguria, enter Tyrrhenia, leaving but a narrow sea-coast; they afterwards retire by degrees into the interior, and having reached the territory of Pisa, turn towards the east in the direction of the Adriatic as far as the country about Ariminum and Ancona, where they approach the sea-coast of the Heneti at right angles. Cisalpine Keltica is enclosed within these limits, and the length of the coast joined to that of the mountains is 6300 stadia; its breadth rather less than 2000. The remainder of Italy is long and narrow, and terminates in two promontories, one extending to the Strait of Sicily, the other to Iapygia. It is embraced on one side by the Adriatic, on the other by the Tyrrhenian sea. The form and size of the Adriatic resembles that portion of Italy bounded by the Apennines and the two seas, and extending as far as Iapygia and the isthmus which separates the Gulf of Taranto from that of Posidonium. The greatest breadth of both is about 1300 stadia, and the length not much less than 6000. The remainder of the country is possessed by the Bruttii, and certain of the Leucani. Polybius tells us, that traversing the sea-coast on foot from Iapygia to the Strait [of Sicily ] there are 3000 stadia, the coast being washed by the Sea of Sicily; but that going by water it is 500 stadia less. The Apennines, after approaching the country about Ariminum and Ancona, and determining the breadth of Italy at this point from sea to sea, change their direction and divide the whole country throughout its length. As far as the Peucetii and Leucani they do not recede much from the Adriatic, but on arriving at the Leucani they decline considerably towards the other sea, and traversing the remainder of the distance through the Leucani and Bruttii, terminate at Leucopetra, in Reggio. Such is a general description of the whole of present Italy. We will now endeavour to undertake a description of its various parts. And, first, of those situated below the Alps. 5.1.7. These cities are situated high above the marshes; near to them is Patavium, the finest of all the cities in this district, and which at the time of the late census was said to contain 500 equites. Anciently it could muster an army of 120,000 men. The population and skill of this city is evinced by the vast amount of manufactured goods it sends to the Roman market, especially clothing of all kinds. It communicates with the sea by a river navigable from a large harbour [at its mouth], the river runs across the marshes for a distance of 250 stadia. This harbour, as well as the river, is named Medoacus. Situated in the marshes is the great [city of] Ravenna, built entirely on piles, and traversed by canals, which you cross by bridges or ferry-boats. At the full tides it is washed by a considerable quantity of sea-water, as well as by the river, and thus the sewage is carried off, and the air purified; in fact, the district is considered so salubrious that the [Roman] governors have selected it as a spot to bring up and exercise the gladiators in. It is a remarkable peculiarity of this place, that, though situated in the midst of a marsh, the air is perfectly innocuous; the same is the case with respect to Alexandria in Egypt, where the malignity of the lake during summer is entirely removed by the rising of the river which covers over the mud. Another remarkable peculiarity is that of its vines, which, though growing in the marshes, make very quickly and yield a large amount of fruit, but perish in four or five years. Altinum stands likewise in the marshes, its situation being very similar to that of Ravenna. Between them is Butrium, a small city of Ravenna, and Spina, which is now a village, but was anciently a celebrated Grecian city. In fact, the treasures of the Spinitae are shown at Delphi, and it is, besides, reported in history that they had dominion over the sea. They say that it formerly stood on the sea; now, however, the district is inland about 90 stadia from the sea. Ravenna is reported to have been founded by Thessalians, who not being able to sustain the violence of the Tyrrheni, welcomed into their city some of the Ombrici, who still possess it, while they themselves returned home. These cities for the most part are surrounded, and, as it were, washed by the marshes. 5.2.8. Along the whole coast between Poplonium and Pisa these islands are clearly visible; they are oblong, and all three nearly parallel, running towards the south and Libya. Aethalia is by far smaller than either of the other two. The chorographer says that the shortest passage from Libya to Sardinia is 300 miles. After Poplonium is the city of Cossae, situated at a short distance from the sea: there is at the head of the bay a high hill upon which it is built; below it lies the port of Hercules, and near to it a marsh formed by the sea. At the summit of the cape which commands the gulf is a lookout for thunnies; for the tunny pursues his course along the coast, from the Atlantic Ocean as far as Sicily, in search not only of acorns, but also of the fish which furnishes the purple dye. As one sails along the coast from Cossae to Ostia there are the towns of Gravisci, Pyrgi, Alsium, and Fregena. [From Cossae] to Gravisci is a distance of 300 stadia, and between them is the place named Regis-Villa. This is said to have been the royal residence of Maleos the Pelasgian; they report that after he had reigned here for some time, he departed with his Pelasgians to Athens. These were of the same tribe as those who occupied Agylla. From Gravisci to Pyrgi is a little less than 180 stadia, and the sea-port town of the Caeretani is 30 stadia farther. [Pyrgi] contains a sanctuary of Ilethyia founded by the Pelasgi, and which was formerly rich, but it was plundered by Dionysius the tyrant of the Sicilians, at the time of his voyage to Cyrnus. From Pyrgi to Ostia is 260 stadia; between the two are Alsium and Fregena. Such is our account of the coast of Tyrrhenia. 5.2.9. In the interior of the country, besides the cities already mentioned, there are Arretium, Perusia, Volsinii, Sutrium; and in addition to these are numerous small cities, as Blera, Ferentinum, Falerium, Faliscum, Nepita, Statonia, and many others; some of which exist in their original state, others have been colonized by the Romans, or partially ruined by them in their wars, viz. those they frequently waged against the Veii and the Fidenae. Some say that the inhabitants of Falerium are not Tyrrhenians, but Falisci, a distinct nation; others state further, that the Falisci speak a language peculiar to themselves; some again would make it Aequum-Faliscum on the Via Flaminia, lying between Ocricli and Rome. Below Mount Soracte is the city of Feronia, having the same name as a certain goddess of the country, highly reverenced by the surrounding people: here is her sanctuary, in which a remarkable ceremony is performed, for those possessed by the divinity pass over a large bed of burning coal and ashes barefoot, unhurt. A great concourse of people assemble to assist at the festival, which is celebrated yearly, and to see the said spectacle. Arretium, near the mountains, is the most inland city: it is distant from Rome 1200 stadia: from Clusium [to Rome ] is 800 stadia. Near to these [two cities] is Perusia. The large and numerous lakes add to the fertility of this country, they are navigable, and stocked with fish and aquatic birds. Large quantities of typha, papyrus, and anthela are transported to Rome, up the rivers which flow from these lakes to the Tiber. Among these are the lake Ciminius, and those near the Volsinii, and Clusium, and Sabatus, which is nearest to Rome and the sea, and the farthest Trasumennus, near Arretium. Along this is the pass by which armies can proceed from [Cisalpine] Keltica into Tyrrhenia; this is the one followed by Hannibal. There are two; the other leads towards Ariminum across Ombrica, and is preferable as the mountains are considerably lower; however, as this was carefully guarded, Hannibal was compelled to take the more difficult, which he succeeded in forcing after having vanquished Flaminius in a decisive engagement. There are likewise in Tyrrhenia numerous hot springs, which on account of their proximity to Rome, are not less frequented than those of Baiae, which are the most famous of all. 5.3.6. At 290 stadia from Antium is Mount Circaion, insulated by the sea and marshes. They say that it contains numerous roots, but this perhaps is only to harmonize with the myth relating to Circe. It has a small city, together with a sanctuary to Circe and an altar to Minerva; they likewise say that a cup is shown which belonged to Ulysses. Between [Antium and Circaion] is the river Stura, which has a station for ships: the rest of the coast is exposed to the southwest wind, with the exception of this small harbour of Circaion. Above this, in the interior, is the Pomentine plain: the region next to this was formerly inhabited by the Ausonians, who likewise possessed Campania: next after these the Osci, who also held part of Campania; now, however, as we have remarked, the whole, as far as Sinuessa, belongs to the Latini. A peculiar fate has attended the Osci and Ausonians; for although the Osci have ceased to exist as a distinct tribe, their dialect is extant among the Romans, dramatic and burlesque pieces composed in it being still represented at certain games which were instituted in ancient times. And as for the Ausonians, although they never have dwelt by the sea of Sicily, it is named the Ausonian Sea. At 100 stadia from Circaion is Tarracina, formerly named Trachina, on account of its ruggedness; before it is a great marsh, formed by two rivers, the larger of which is called the Aufidus. This is the first place where the Via Appia approaches the sea. This road is paved from Rome to Brundusium, and has great traffic. of the maritime cities, these alone are situated on it; Tarracina, beyond it Formiae, Minturnae, Sinuessa, and towards its extremity Tarentum and Brundusium. Near to Tarracina, advancing in the direction of Rome, a canal runs by the side of the Via Appia, which is supplied at intervals by water from the marshes and rivers. Travellers generally sail up it by night, embarking in the evening, and landing in the morning to travel the rest of their journey by the way; however, during the day the passage boat is towed by mules. Beyond is Formiae, founded by the Lacedemonians, and formerly called Hormiae, on account of its excellent port. Between these [two cities], is a gulf which they have named Caiata, in fact all gulfs are called by the Lacedemonians Caietae: some, however, say that the gulf received this appellation from [Caieta], the nurse of Aeneas. From Tarracina to the promontory of Caiata is a length of 100 stadia. Here are opened vast caverns, which contain large and sumptuous mansions. From hence to Formiae is a distance of 40 stadia. Between this city and Sinuessa, at a distance of about 80 stadia from each, is Minturnae. The river Liris, formerly named the Clanis, flows through it. It descends from the Apennines, passes through the country of the Vescini, and by the village of Fregellae, (formerly a famous city,) and so into a sacred grove situated below the city, and held in great veneration by the people of Minturnae. There are two islands, named Pandataria and Pontia, lying in the high sea, and clearly discernible from the caverns. Although small, they are well inhabited, are not at any great distance from each other, and at 250 stadia from the mainland. Caecubum is situated on the gulf of Caiata, and next to it Fundi, a city on the Via Appia. All these places produce excellent wines; but those of Caecubum, Fundi, and Setia are most in repute, and so are the Falernian, Alban, and Statanian wines. Sinuessa is situated in a gulf from which it takes its name, sinus signifying [in Latin] a gulf. Near to it are some fine hot-baths, good for the cure of various maladies. Such are the maritime cities of Latium. 5.3.7. In the interior, the first city above Ostia is Rome; it is the only city built on the Tiber. It has been remarked above, that its position was fixed, not by choice, but necessity; to this must be added, that those who afterwards enlarged it, were not at liberty to select a better site, being prevented by what was already built. The first [kings] fortified the Capitol, the Palatium, and the Collis Quirinalis, which was so easy of access, that when Titus Tatius came to avenge the rape of the [Sabine] virgins, he took it on the first assault. Ancus Marcius, who added Mount Caelius and the Aventine Mount with the intermediate plain, separated as these places were both from each other and from what had been formerly fortified, was compelled to do this of necessity; since he did not consider it proper to leave outside his walls, heights so well protected by nature, to whomsoever might have a mind to fortify themselves upon them, while at the same time he was not capable of enclosing the whole as far as Mount Quirinus. Servius perceived this defect, and added the Esquiline and Viminal hills. As these were both of easy access from without, a deep trench was dug outside them and the earth thrown up on the inside, thus forming a terrace of 6 stadia in length along the inner side of the trench. This terrace he surmounted with a wall flanked with towers, and extending from the Colline to the Esquiline gate. Midway along the terrace is a third gate, named after the Viminal hill. Such is the Roman rampart, which seems to stand in need of other ramparts itself. But it seems to me that the first [founders] were of opinion, both in regard to themselves and their successors, that Romans had to depend not on fortifications, but on arms and their individual valour, both for safety and for wealth, and that walls were not a defence to men, but men were a defence to walls. At the period of its commencement, when the large and fertile districts surrounding the city belonged to others, and while it lay easily open to assault, there was nothing in its position which could be looked upon as favourable; but when by valour and labour these districts became its own, there succeeded a tide of prosperity surpassing the advantages of every other place. Thus, notwithstanding the prodigious increase of the city, there has been plenty of food, and also of wood and stone for ceaseless building, rendered necessary by the falling down of houses, and on account of conflagrations, and of the sales, which seem never to cease. These sales are a kind of voluntary falling down of houses, each owner knocking down and rebuilding one part or another, according to his individual taste. For these purposes the numerous quarries, the forests, and the rivers which convey the materials, offer wonderful facilities. of these rivers, the first is the Teverone, which flows from Alba, a city of the Latins near to the country of the Marsi, and from thence through the plain below this [city], till it unites with the Tiber. After this come the Nera (Nar) and the Timia, which passing through Ombrica fall into the Tiber, and the Chiana, which flows through Tyrrhenia and the territory of Clusiumn. Augustus Caesar endeavoured to avert from the city damages of the kind alluded to, and instituted a company of freedmen, who should be ready to lend their assistance in cases of conflagration; whilst, as a preventive against the falling of houses, he decreed that all new buildings should not be carried so high as formerly, and that those erected along the public ways should not exceed seventy feet in height. But these improvements must have ceased only for the facilities afforded by the quarries, the forests, and the ease of transport. 5.3.9. of the other cities of Latium, some are distinguished by a variety of remarkable objects, others by the celebrated roads which intersect Latium, being situated either upon, or near to, or between these roads, the most celebrated of which are the Via Appia, the Via Latina, and the Via Valeria. The former of these bounds the maritime portion of Latium, as far as Sinuessa, the latter extends along Sabina as far as the Marsi, whilst between these is the Via Latina, which falls in with the Via Appia near to Casilinum, a city distant from Capua 19 stadia. The Via Latina commences from the Via Appia, branching from it towards the left, near to Rome. It passes over the Tusculan mountain, between the city of Tusculum and Mount Albanus; it then descends to the little city of Algidum, and the Pictae tavern; afterwards the Via Lavicana joins it, which commences, like the Via Praenestina, from the Esquiline gate. This road, as well as the Esquiline plain, the Via Lavicana leaves on the left; it then proceeds a distance of 120 stadia, or more, when it approaches Lavicum, an ancient city now in ruins, situated on an eminence; this and Tusculum it leaves on the right, and terminates near to Pictae in the Via Latina. This place is 210 stadia distant from Rome. Proceeding thence along the Via Latina there are noble residences, and the cities Ferentinum, Frusino, by which the river Cosa flows, Fabrateria, by which flows the river Sacco, Aquinum, a large city, by which flows the great river Melfa, Interamnium, situated at the confluence of two rivers, the Liris and another, Casinum, also an important city, and the last of those belonging to Latium. For Teanum, called Sidicinum, which lies next in order, shows by its name that it belongs to the nation of the Sidicini. These people are Osci, a surviving nation of the Campani, so that this city, which is the largest of those situated upon the Via Latina, may be said to be Campanian; as well as that of Cales, another considerable city which lies beyond, and is contiguous to Casilinum. 5.3.12. But within-side the chain of mountains, [where these cities are situated, ] there is another ridge, leaving a valley between it and Mount Algidus; it is lofty, and extends as far as Mount Albanus. It is on this ridge that Tusculum is situated, a city which is not wanting in adornment, being entirely surrounded by ornamental plantations and edifices, particularly that part of it which looks towards Rome. For on this side Tusculum presents a fertile hill, well irrigated, and with numerous gentle slopes embellished with majestic palaces. Contiguous are the undulating slopes of Mount Albanus, which are equally fertile and ornamented. Beyond are plains which extend some of them to Rome and its environs, others to the sea; these latter are unhealthy, but the others are salubrious and well cultivated. Next after Albanum is the city Aricia, on the Appian Way. It is 160 stadia from Rome. This place is situated in a hollow, and has a strong citadel. Beyond it on one side of the way is Lanuvium, a Roman city on the right of the Via Appia, and from which both the sea and Antium may be viewed. On the other side is the Artemisium, which is called Nemus, on the left side of the way, leading from Aricia to the sanctuary. They say that it is consecrated to Diana Taurica, and certainly the rites performed in this sanctuary are something barbarous and Scythic. They appoint as priest a fugitive who has murdered the preceding priest with his own hand. Apprehensive of an attack upon himself, the priest is always armed with a sword, ready for resistance. The sanctuary is in a grove, and before it is a lake of considerable size. The sanctuary and water are surrounded by abrupt and lofty precipices, so that they seem to be situated in a deep and hollow ravine. The springs by which the lake is filled are visible. One of these is denominated Egeria, after the name of a certain divinity; however, their course on leaving the lake is subterraneous, but they may be observed at some distance, when they rise to the surface of the ground. 7.1.5. The Hercynian Forest is not only rather dense, but also has large trees, and comprises a large circuit within regions that are fortified by nature; in the center of it, however, lies a country (of which I have already spoken) that is capable of affording an excellent livelihood. And near it are the sources of both the Ister and the Rhenus, as also the lake between the two sources, and the marshes into which the Rhenus spreads. The perimeter of the lake is more than three hundred stadia, while the passage across it is nearly two hundred. There is also an island in it which Tiberius used as a base of operations in his naval battle with the Vindelici. This lake is south of the sources of the Ister, as is also the Hercynian Forest, so that necessarily, in going from Celtica to the Hercynian Forest, one first crosses the lake and then the Ister, and from there on advances through more passable regions — plateaus — to the forest. Tiberius had proceeded only a day's journey from the lake when he saw the sources of the Ister. The country of the Rhaeti adjoins the lake for only a short distance, whereas that of the Helvetii and the Vindelici, and also the desert of the Boii, adjoin the greater part of it. All the peoples as far as the Pannonii, but more especially the Helvetii and the Vindelici, inhabit plateaus. But the countries of the Rhaeti and the Norici extend as far as the passes over the Alps and verge toward Italy, a part thereof bordering on the country of the Insubri and a part on that of the Carni and the legions about Aquileia. And there is also another large forest, Gabreta; it is on this side of the territory of the Suevi, whereas the Hercynian Forest, which is also held by them, is on the far side. 7.5.1. The remainder of Europe consists of the country which is between the Ister and the encircling sea, beginning at the recess of the Adriatic and extending as far as the Sacred Mouth of the Ister. In this country are Greece and the tribes of the Macedonians and of the Epeirotes, and all those tribes above them whose countries reach to the Ister and to the seas on either side, both the Adriatic and the Pontic — to the Adriatic, the Illyrian tribes, and to the other sea as far as the Propontis and the Hellespont, the Thracian tribes and whatever Scythian or Celtic tribes are intermingled with them. But I must make my beginning at the Ister, speaking of the parts that come next in order after the regions which I have already encompassed in my description. These are the parts that border on Italy, on the Alps, and on the counties of the Germans, Dacians, and Getans. This country also might be divided into two parts, for, in a way, the Illyrian, Paeonian, and Thracian mountains are parallel to the Ister, thus completing what is almost a straight line that reaches from the Adrias as far as the Pontus; and to the north of this line are the parts that are between the Ister and the mountains, whereas to the south are Greece and the barbarian country which borders thereon and extends as far as the mountainous country. Now the mountain called Haemus is near the Pontus; it is the largest and highest of all mountains in that part of the world, and cleaves Thrace almost in the center. Polybius says that both seas are visible from the mountain, but this is untrue, for the distance to the Adrias is great and the things that obscure the view are many. On the other hand, almost the whole of Ardia is near the Adrias. But Paeonia is in the middle, and the whole of it too is high country. Paeonia is bounded on either side, first, towards the Thracian parts, by Rhodope, a mountain next in height to the Haemus, and secondly, on the other side, towards the north, by the Illyrian parts, both the country of the Autariatae and that of the Dardanians. So then, let me speak first of the Illyrian parts, which join the Ister and that part of the Alps which lies between Italy and Germany and begins at the lake which is near the country of the Vindelici, Rhaeti, and Toenii. 9.1.16. The city itself is a rock situated in a plain and surrounded by dwellings. On the rock is the sacred precinct of Athena, comprising both the old temple of Athena Polias, in which is the lamp that is never quenched, and the Parthenon built by Ictinus, in which is the work in ivory by Pheidias, the Athena. However, if I once began to describe the multitude of things in this city that are lauded and proclaimed far and wide, I fear that I should go too far, and that my work would depart from the purpose I have in view. For the words of Hegesias occur to me: I see the Acropolis, and the mark of the huge trident there. I see Eleusis, and I have become an initiate into its sacred mysteries; yonder is the Leocorium, here is the Theseium; I am unable to point them all out one by one; for Attica is the possession of the gods, who seized it as a sanctuary for themselves, and of the ancestral heroes. So this writer mentioned only one of the significant things on the Acropolis; but Polemon the Periegete wrote four books on the dedicatory offerings on the Acropolis alone. Hegesias is proportionately brief in referring to the other parts of the city and to the country; and though he mentions Eleusis, one of the one hundred and seventy demes (or one hundred and seventy-four, as the number is given), he names none of the others. 9.1.17. Most of the demes, if not all, have numerous stories of a character both mythical and historical connected with them; Aphidna, for example, has the rape of Helen by Theseus, the sacking of the place by the Dioscuri and their recovery of their sister; Marathon has the Persian battle; Rhamnus has the statue of Nemesis, which by some is called the work of Diodotus and by others of Agoracritus the Parian, a work which both in grandeur and in beauty is a great success and rivals the works of Pheidias; and so with Deceleia, the base of operations of the Peloponnesians in the Deceleian War; and Phyle, whence Thrasybulus brought the popular party back to the Peiraeus and then to the city. And so, also, in the case of several other demes there are many historical incidents to tell; and, further, the Leocorium and the Theseium have myths connected with them, and so has the Lyceium, and the Olympicum (the Olympium is the same thing), which the king who dedicated it left half finished at his death. And in like manner also the Academy, and the gardens of the philosophers, and the Odeium, and the colonnade called Poecile, and the sanctuaries in the city containing very many marvellous works of different artists. 9.1.20. It suffices, then, to add thus much: According to Philochorus, when the country was being devastated, both from the sea by the Carians, and from the land by the Boeotians, who were called Aonians, Cecrops first settled the multitude in twelve cities, the names of which were Cecropia, Tetrapolis, Epacria, Deceleia, Eleusis, Aphidna (also called Aphidnae, in the plural), Thoricus, Brauron, Cytherus, Sphettus, Cephisia. And at a later time Theseus is said to have united the twelve into one city, that of today. Now in earlier times the Athenians were ruled by kings; and then they changed to a democracy; but tyrants assailed them, Peisistratus and his sons; and later an oligarchy arose, not only that of the four hundred, but also that of the thirty tyrants, who were set over them by the Lacedemonians; of these they easily rid themselves, and preserved the democracy until the Roman conquest. For even though they were molested for a short time by the Macedonian kings, and were even forced to obey them, they at least kept the general type of their government the same. And some say that they were actually best governed at that time, during the ten years when Cassander reigned over the Macedonians. For although this man is reputed to have been rather tyrannical in his dealings with all others, yet he was kindly disposed towards the Athenians, once he had reduced the city to subjection; for he placed over the citizens Demetrius of Phalerum, one of the disciples of Theophrastus the philosopher, who not only did not destroy the democracy but even improved it, as is made clear in the Memoirs which Demetrius wrote concerning this government. But the envy and hatred felt for oligarchy was so strong that, after the death of Cassander, Demetrius was forced to flee to Egypt; and the statues of him, more than three hundred, were pulled down by the insurgents and melted, and some writers go on to say that they were made into chamber pots. Be that as it may, the Romans, seeing that the Athenians had a democratic government when they took them over, preserved their autonomy and liberty. But when the Mithridatic War came on, tyrants were placed over them, whomever the king wished. The most powerful of these, Aristion, who violently oppressed the city, was punished by Sulla the Roman commander when he took this city by siege, though he pardoned the city itself; and to this day it is free and held in honor among the Romans. 9.3.5. They say that the seat of the oracle is a cave that is hollowed out deep down in the earth, with a rather narrow mouth, from which arises breath that inspires a divine frenzy; and that over the mouth is placed a high tripod, mounting which the Pythian priestess receives the breath and then utters oracles in both verse and prose, though the latter too are put into verse by poets who are in the service of the sanctuary. They say that the first to become Pythian priestess was Phemonoe; and that both the prophetess and the city were so called from the word pythesthai, though the first syllable was lengthened, as in athanatos, akamatos, and diakonos. Now the following is the idea which leads to the founding of cities and to the holding of common sanctuaries in high esteem: men came together by cities and by tribes, because they naturally tend to hold things in common, and at the same time because of their need of one another; and they met at the sacred places that were common to them for the same reasons, holding festivals and general assemblies; for everything of this kind tends to friendship, beginning with eating at the same table, drinking libations together, and lodging under the same roof; and the greater the number of the sojourners and the greater the number of the places whence they came, the greater was thought to be the use of their coming together. 9.3.6. Now although the greatest share of honor was paid to this sanctuary because of its oracle, since of all oracles in the world it had the repute of being the most truthful, yet the position of the place added something. For it is almost in the center of Greece taken as a whole, between the country inside the Isthmus and that outside it; and it was also believed to be in the center of the inhabited world, and people called it the navel of the earth, in addition fabricating a myth, which is told by Pindar, that the two eagles (some say crows) which had been set free by Zeus met there, one coming from the west and the other from the east. There is also a kind of navel to be seen in the sanctuary; it is draped with fillets, and on it are the two likenesses of the birds of the myth. 9.3.8. But wealth inspires envy, and is therefore difficult to guard, even if it is sacred. At present, certainly, the sanctuary at Delphi is very poor, at least so far as money is concerned; but as for the votive offerings, although some of them have been carried off, most of them still remain. In earlier times the sanctuary was very wealthy, as Homer states: nor yet all the things which the stone threshold of the archer Phoebus Apollo enclosed in rocky Pytho. The treasure houses clearly indicate its wealth, and also the plundering done by the Phocians, which kindled the Phocian War, or Sacred War, as it is called. Now this plundering took place in the time of Philip, the son of Amyntas, although writers have a notion of another and earlier plundering, in ancient times, in which the wealth mentioned by Homer was carried out of the sanctuary. For, they add, not so much as a trace of it was saved down to those later times in which Onomarchus and his army, and Phayllus and his army, robbed the sanctuary; but the wealth then carried away was more recent than that mentioned by Homer; for there were deposited in treasure houses offerings dedicated from spoils of war, preserving inscriptions on which were included the names of those who dedicated them; for instance, Gyges, Croesus, the Sybarites, and the Spinetae who lived near the Adriatic, and so with the rest. And it would not be reasonable to suppose that the treasures of olden times were mixed up with these, as indeed is clearly indicated by other places that were ransacked by these men. Some, however, taking aphetor to mean treasure-house, and threshold of the aphetor to mean underground repository of the treasure-house, say that that wealth was buried in the sanctuary, and that Onomarchus and his army attempted to dig it up by night, but since great earthquakes took place they fled outside the sanctuary and stopped their digging, and that their experience inspired all others with fear of making a similar attempt. 9.3.9. of the temples, the one with wings must be placed among the myths; the second is said to be the work of Trophonius and Agamedes; and the present temple was built by the Amphictyons. In the sacred precinct is to be seen the tomb of Neoptolemus, which was made in accordance with an oracle, Machaereus, a Delphian, having slain him because, according to the myth, he was asking the god for redress for the murder of his father; but according to all probability it was because he had attacked the sanctuary. Branchus, who presided over the sanctuary at Didyma, is called a descendant of Machaereus. 9.3.10. As for the contests at Delphi, there was one in early times between citharoedes, who sang a paean in honor of the god; it was instituted by the Delphians. But after the Crisaean war, in the time of Eurylochus, the Amphictyons instituted equestrian and gymnastic contests in which the prize was a crown, and called them Pythian Games. And to the citharoedes they added both fluteplayers and citharists who played without singing, who were to render a certain melody which is called the Pythian Nome. There are five parts of it: angkrousis, ampeira, katakeleusmos, iambi and dactyli, and syringes. Now the melody was composed by Timosthenes, the admiral of the second Ptolemy, who also compiled The Harbours, a work in ten books; and through this melody he means to celebrate the contest between Apollo and the dragon, setting forth the prelude as anakrousis, the first onset of the contest as ampeira, the contest itself as katakeleusmos, the triumph following the victory as iambus and dactylus, the rhythms being in two measures, one of which, the dactyl, is appropriate to hymns of praise, whereas the other, the iamb, is suited to reproaches (compare the word iambize), and the expiration of the dragon as syrinxes, since with syrinx players imitated the dragon as breathing its last in hissings. 11.1.1. Overview of AsiaAsia is adjacent to Europe, bordering thereon along the Tanais River. I must therefore describe this country next, first dividing it, for the sake of clearness, by means of certain natural boundaries. That is, I must do for Asia precisely what Eratosthenes did for the inhabited world as a whole. 11.1.5. As we pass from Europe to Asia in our geography, the northern division is the first of the two divisions to which we come; and therefore we must begin with this. of this division the first portion is that in the region of the Tanais River, which I have taken as the boundary between Europe and Asia. This portion forms, in a way, a peninsula, for it is surrounded on the west by the Tanais River and Lake Maeotis as far as the Bosporus and that part of the coast of the Euxine Sea which terminates at Colchis; and then on the north by the Ocean as far as the mouth of the Caspian Sea; and then on the east by this same sea as far as the boundary between Albania and Armenia, where empty the rivers Cyrus and Araxes, the Araxes flowing through Armenia and the Cyrus through Iberia and Albania; and lastly, on the south by the tract of country which extends from the outlet of the Cyrus River to Colchis, which is about three thousand stadia from sea to sea, across the territory of the Albanians and the Iberians, and therefore is described as an isthmus. But those writers who have reduced the width of the isthmus as much as Cleitarchus has, who says that it is subject to inundation from either sea, should not be considered even worthy of mention. Poseidonius states that the isthmus is fifteen hundred stadia across, as wide as the isthmus from Pelusium to the Red Sea. And in my opinion, he says, the isthmus from Lake Maeotis to the Ocean does not differ much therefrom. 12.3.42. Eudoxus mentions fish that are dug up in Paphlagonia in dry places, but he does not distinguish the place; and he says that they are dug up in moist places round the Ascanian Lake below Cius, without saying anything clear on the subject. Since I am describing the part of Paphlagonia which borders on Pontus and since the Bithynians border on the Paphlagonians towards the west, I shall try to go over this region also; and then, taking a new beginning from the countries of these people and the Paphlagonians, I shall interweave my description of their regions with that of the regions which follow these in order towards the south as far as the Taurus — the regions that ran parallel to Pontus and Paphlagonia; for some such order and division is suggested by the nature of the regions. 13.1.27. Also the Ilium of today was a kind of village-city when the Romans first set foot on Asia and expelled Antiochus the Great from the country this side of Taurus. At any rate, Demetrius of Scepsis says that, when as a lad he visited the city about that time, he found the settlement so neglected that the buildings did not so much as have tiled roofs. And Hegesianax says that when the Galatae crossed over from Europe they needed a stronghold and went up into the city for that reason, but left it at once because of its lack of walls. But later it was greatly improved. And then it was ruined again by the Romans under Fimbria, who took it by siege in the course of the Mithridatic war. Fimbria had been sent as quaestor with Valerius Flaccus the consul when the latter was appointed to the command against Mithridates; but Fimbria raised a mutiny and slew the consul in the neighborhood of Bithynia, and was himself set up as lord of the army; and when he advanced to Ilium, the Ilians would not admit him, as being a brigand, and therefore he applied force and captured the place on the eleventh day. And when he boasted that he himself had overpowered on the eleventh day the city which Agamemnon had only with difficulty captured in the tenth year, although the latter had with him on his expedition the fleet of a thousand vessels and the whole of Greece, one of the Ilians said: Yes, for the city's champion was no Hector. Now Sulla came over and overthrew Fimbria, and on terms of agreement sent Mithridates away to his homeland, but he also consoled the Ilians by numerous improvements. In my time, however, the deified Caesar was far more thoughtful of them, at the same time also emulating the example of Alexander; for Alexander set out to provide for them on the basis of a renewal of ancient kinship, and also because at the same time he was fond of Homer; at any rate, we are told of a recension of the poetry of Homer, the Recension of the Casket, as it is called, which Alexander, along with Callisthenes and Anaxarchus, perused and to a certain extent annotated, and then deposited in a richly wrought casket which he had found amongst the Persian treasures. Accordingly, it was due both to his zeal for the poet and to his descent from the Aeacidae who reigned as kings of the Molossians — where, as we are also told, Andromache, who had been the wife of Hector, reigned as queen — that Alexander was kindly disposed towards the Ilians. But Caesar, not only being fond of Alexander, but also having better known evidences of kinship with the Ilians, felt encouraged to bestow kindness upon them with all the zest of youth: better known evidences, first, because he was a Roman, and because the Romans believe Aeneias to have been their original founder; and secondly, because the name Iulius was derived from that of a certain Iulus who was one of his ancestors, and this Iulus got his appellation from the Iulus who was one of the descendants of Aeneas. Caesar therefore allotted territory to them end also helped them to preserve their freedom and their immunity from taxation; and to this day they remain in possession of these favors. But that this is not the site of the ancient Ilium, if one considers the matter in accordance with Homer's account, is inferred from the following considerations. But first I must give a general description of the region in question, beginning at that point on the coast where I left off. 13.1.54. From Scepsis came the Socratic philosophers Erastus and Coriscus and Neleus the son of Coriscus, this last a man who not only was a pupil of Aristotle and Theophrastus, but also inherited the library of Theophrastus, which included that of Aristotle. At any rate, Aristotle bequeathed his own library to Theophrastus, to whom he also left his school; and he is the first man, so far as I know, to have collected books and to have taught the kings in Egypt how to arrange a library. Theophrastus bequeathed it to Neleus; and Neleus took it to Scepsis and bequeathed it to his heirs, ordinary people, who kept the books locked up and not even carefully stored. But when they heard bow zealously the Attalic kings to whom the city was subject were searching for books to build up the library in Pergamum, they hid their books underground in a kind of trench. But much later, when the books had been damaged by moisture and moths, their descendants sold them to Apellicon of Teos for a large sum of money, both the books of Aristotle and those of Theophrastus. But Apellicon was a bibliophile rather than a philosopher; and therefore, seeking a restoration of the parts that had been eaten through, he made new copies of the text, filling up the gaps incorrectly, and published the books full of errors. The result was that the earlier school of Peripatetics who came after Theophrastus had no books at all, with the exception of only a few, mostly exoteric works, and were therefore able to philosophize about nothing in a practical way, but only to talk bombast about commonplace propositions, whereas the later school, from the time the books in question appeared, though better able to philosophise and Aristotelise, were forced to call most of their statements probabilities, because of the large number of errors. Rome also contributed much to this; for, immediately after the death of Apellicon, Sulla, who had captured Athens, carried off Apellicon's library to Rome, where Tyrannion the grammarian, who was fond of Aristotle, got it in his hands by paying court to the librarian, as did also certain booksellers who used bad copyists and would not collate the texts — a thing that also takes place in the case of the other books that are copied for selling, both here and at Alexandria. However, this is enough about these men. 13.1.58. Myrsilus says that Assus was founded by the Methymnaeans; and Hellanicus too calls it an Aeolian city, just as also Gargara and Lamponia belonged to the Aeolians. For Gargara was founded by the Assians; but it was not well peopled, for the kings brought into it colonists from Miletopolis when they devastated that city, so that instead of Aeolians, according to Demetrius of Scepsis, the inhabitants of Gargara became semi-barbarians. According to Homer, however, all these places belonged to the Leleges, who by some are represented to be Carians, although by Homer they are mentioned apart: Towards the sea are the Carians and the Paeonians of the curved bow and the Leleges and the Cauconians. They were therefore a different people from the Carians; and they lived between the people subject to Aeneias and the people whom the poet called Cilicians, but when they were pillaged by Achilles they migrated to Caria and took possession of the district round the present Halicarnassus. 13.4.1. Pergamum A kind of hegemony is held over these places by Pergamum, which is a famous city and for a long time prospered along with the Attalic kings; indeed I must begin my next description here, and first I must show briefly the origin of the kings and the end to which they came. Now Pergamum was a treasure-hold of Lysimachus, the son of Agathocles, who was one of the successors of Alexander, and its people are settled on the very summit of the mountain; the mountain is cone-like and ends in a sharp peak. The custody of this stronghold and the treasure, which amounted to nine thousand talents, was entrusted to Philetaerus of Tieium, who was a eunuch from boyhood; for it came to pass at a certain burial, when a spectacle was being given at which many people were present, that the nurse who was carrying Philetaerus, still an infant, was caught in the crowd and pressed so hard that the child was incapacitated. He was a eunuch, therefore, but he was well trained and proved worthy of this trust. Now for a time he continued loyal to Lysimachus, but he had differences with Arsinoe, the wife of Lysimachus, who slandered him, and so he caused Pergamum to revolt, and governed it to suit the occasion, since he saw that it was ripe for a change; for Lysimachus, beset with domestic troubles, was forced to slay his son Agathocles, and Seleucus Nicator invaded his country and overthrew him, and then he himself was overthrown and treacherously murdered by Ptolemy Ceraunus. During these disorders the eunuch continued to be in charge of the fortress and to manage things through promises and courtesies in general, always catering to any man who was powerful or near at hand. At any rate, he continued lord of the stronghold and the treasure for twenty years. 13.4.2. He had two brothers, the elder of whom was Eumenes, the younger Attalus. Eumenes had a son of the same name, who succeeded to the rule of Pergamum, and was by this time sovereign of the places round about, so that he even joined battle with Antiochus the son of Seleucus near Sardeis and conquered him. He died after a reign of twenty-two years. Attalus, the son of Attalus and Antiochis, daughter of Achaeus, succeeded to the throne and was the first to be proclaimed king, after conquering the Galatians in a great battle. Attalus not only became a friend of the Romans but also fought on their side against Philip along with the fleet of the Rhodians. He died in old age, having reigned as king forty-three years; and he left four sons by Apollonis, a woman from Cyzicus, Eumenes, Attalus, Philetaerus, and Athenaeus. Now the two younger sons remained private citizens, but Eumenes, the elder of the other two, reigned as king. Eumenes fought on the side of the Romans against Antiochus the Great and against Perseus, and he received from the Romans all the country this side the Taurus that had been subject to Antiochus. But before that time the territory of Pergamum did not include many places that extended as far as the sea at the Elaitic and Adramyttene Gulfs. He built up the city and planted Nicephorium with a grove, and the other elder brother, from love of splendor, added sacred buildings and libraries and raised the settlement of Pergamum to what it now is. After a reign of forty-nine years Eumenes left his empire to Attalus, his son by Stratonice, the daughter of Ariathres, king of the Cappadocians. He appointed his brother Attalus as guardian both of his son, who was extremely young, and of the empire. After a reign of twenty-one years, his brother died an old man, having won success in many undertakings; for example, he helped Demetrius, the son of Seleucus, to defeat in war Alexander, the son of Antiochus, and he fought on the side of the Romans against the Pseudo-Philip, and in an expedition against Thrace he defeated Diegylis the king of the Caeni, and he slew Prusias, having incited his son Nicomedes against him, and he left his empire, under a guardian, to Attalus. Attalus, surnamed Philometor, reigned five years, died of disease, and left the Romans his heirs. The Romans proclaimed the country a province, calling it Asia, by the same name as the continent. The Caicus flows past Pergamum, through the Caicus Plain, as it is called, traversing land that is very fertile and about the best in Mysia. 14.1.6. Ephorus says: Miletus was first founded and fortified above the sea by the Cretans, where the Milatos of olden times is now situated, being settled by Sarpedon, who brought colonists from the Cretan Milatos and named the city after that Miletus, the place formerly being in the possession of the Leleges; but later Neleus and his followers fortified the present city. The present city has four harbors, one of which is large enough for a fleet. Many are the achievements of this city, but the greatest is the number of its colonizations; for the Euxine Pontus has been colonized everywhere by these people, as also the Propontis and several other regions. At any rate, Anaximenes of Lampsacus says that the Milesians colonized the islands Icaros and Leros; and, near the Hellespont, Limnae in the Chersonesus, as also Abydus and Arisba and Paesus in Asia; and Artace and Cyzicus in the island of the Cyziceni; and Scepsis in the interior of the Troad. I, however, in my detailed description speak of the other cities, which have been omitted by him. Both Milesians and Delians invoke an Apollo Ulius, that is, as god of health and healing, for the verb ulein means to be healthy; whence the noun ule and the salutation, Both health and great joy to thee; for Apollo is the god of healing. And Artemis has her name from the fact that she makes people Artemeas. And both Helius and Selene are closely associated with these, since they are the causes of the temperature of the air. And both pestilential diseases and sudden deaths are imputed to these gods. 14.1.21. The city of Ephesus was inhabited both by Carians and by Leleges, but Androclus drove them out and settled the most of those who had come with him round the Athenaion and the Hypelaeus, though he also included a part of the country situated on the slopes of Mt. Coressus. Now Ephesus was thus inhabited until the time of Croesus, but later the people came down from the mountainside and abode round the present sanctuary until the time of Alexander. Lysimachus built a wall round the present city, but the people were not agreeably disposed to change their abodes to it; and therefore he waited for a downpour of rain and himself took advantage of it and blocked the sewers so as to inundate the city; and the inhabitants were then glad to make the change. He named the city after his wife Arsinoe; the old name, however, prevailed. There was a senate, which was conscripted; and with these were associated the Epicleti, as they were called, who administered all the affairs of the city. 14.1.22. As for the temple of Artemis, its first architect was Chersiphron; and then another man made it larger. But when it was set on fire by a certain Herostratus, the citizens erected another and better one, having collected the ornaments of the women and their own individual belongings, and having sold also the pillars of the former temple. Testimony is borne to these facts by the decrees that were made at that time. Artemidorus says: Timaeus of Tauromenium, being ignorant of these decrees and being any way an envious and slanderous fellow (for which reason he was also called Epitimaeus), says that they exacted means for the restoration of the temple from the treasures deposited in their care by the Persians; but there were no treasures on deposit in their care at that time, and, even if there had been, they would have been burned along with the temple; and after the fire, when the roof was destroyed, who could have wished to keep deposits of treasure lying in a sacred enclosure that was open to the sky? Now Alexander, Artemidorus adds, promised the Ephesians to pay all expenses, both past and future, on condition that he should have the credit therefor on the inscription, but they were unwilling, just as they would have been far more unwilling to acquire glory by sacrilege and temple-plundering. And Artemidorus praises the Ephesian who said to the king that it was inappropriate for a god to dedicate offerings to gods. 14.1.23. After the completion of the temple of Artemis, which, he says, was the work of Cheirocrates (the same man who built Alexandreia and the same man who proposed to Alexander to fashion Mt. Athos into his likeness, representing him as pouring a libation from a kind of ewer into a broad bowl, and to make two cities, one on the right of the mountain and the other on the left, and a river flowing from one to the other) — after the completion of the temple, he says, the great number of dedications in general were secured by means of the high honor they paid their artists, but the whole of the altar was filled, one might say, with the works of Praxiteles. They showed me also some of the works of Thrason, who made the chapel of Hecate, the waxen image of Penelope, and the old woman Eurycleia. They had eunuchs as priests, whom they called Megabyzi. And they were always in quest of persons from other places who were worthy of this preferment, and they held them in great honor. And it was obligatory for maidens to serve as colleagues with them in their priestly office. But though at the present some of their usages are being preserved, yet others are not; but the sanctuary remains a place of refuge, the same as in earlier times, although the limits of the refuge have often been changed; for example, when Alexander extended them for a stadium, and when Mithridates shot an arrow from the corner of the roof and thought it went a little farther than a stadium, and when Antony doubled this distance and included within the refuge a part of the city. But this extension of the refuge proved harmful, and put the city in the power of criminals; and it was therefore nullified by Augustus Caesar. 14.1.24. Ephesus has both an arsenal and a harbor. The mouth of the harbor was made narrower by the engineers, but they, along with the king who ordered it, were deceived as to the result, I mean Attalus Philadelphus; for he thought that the entrance would be deep enough for large merchant vessels — as also the harbor itself, which formerly had shallow places because of the silt deposited by the Cayster River — if a mole were thrown up at the mouth, which was very wide, and therefore ordered that the mole should be built. But the result was the opposite, for the silt, thus hemmed in, made the whole of the harbor, as far as the mouth, more shallow. Before this time the ebb and flow of the tides would carry away the silt and draw it to the sea outside. Such, then, is the harbor; and the city, because of its advantageous situation in other respects, grows daily, and is the largest emporium in Asia this side the Taurus. 14.1.27. Then one comes to the mountain Gallesius, and to Colophon, an Ionian city, and to the sacred precinct of Apollo Clarius, where there was once an ancient oracle. The story is told that Calchas the prophet, with Amphilochus the son of Amphiaraus, went there on foot on his return from Troy, and that having met near Clarus a prophet superior to himself, Mopsus, the son of Manto, the daughter of Teiresias, he died of grief. Now Hesiod revises the myth as follows, making Calchas propound to Mopsus this question: I am amazed in my heart at all these figs on this wild fig tree, small though it is; can you tell me the number? And he makes Mopsus reply: They are ten thousand in number, and their measure is a medimnus; but there is one over, which you cannot put in the measure. Thus he spake, Hesiod adds,and the number the measure could hold proved true. And then the eyes of Calchas were closed by the sleep of death. But Pherecydes says that the question propounded by Calchas was in regard to a pregt sow, how many pigs she carried, and that Mopsus said, three, one of which is a female, and that when Mopsus proved to have spoken the truth, Calchas died of grief. Some say that Calchas propounded the question in regard to the sow, but that Mopsus propounded the question in regard to the wild fig tree, and that the latter spoke the truth but that the former did not, and died of grief, and in accordance with a certain oracle. Sophocles tells the oracle in his Reclaiming of Helen, that Calchas was destined to die when he met a prophet superior to himself, but he transfers the scene of the rivalry and of the death of Calchas to Cilicia. Such are the ancient stories. 14.1.28. The Colophonians once possessed notable naval and cavalry forces, in which latter they were so far superior to the others that wherever in wars that were hard to bring to an end, the cavalry of the Colophonians served as ally, the war came to an end; whence arose the proverb, he put Colophon to it, which is quoted when a sure end is put to any affair. Native Colophonians, among those of whom we have record, were: Mimnermus, who was both a flute-player and elegiac poet; Xenophanes, the natural philosopher, who composed the Silli in verse; and Pindar speaks also of a certain Polymnastus as one of the famous musicians: Thou knowest the voice, common to all, of Polymnastus the Colophonian. And some say that Homer was from there. On a straight voyage it is seventy stadia from Ephesus, but if one includes the sinuosities of the gulfs it is one hundred and twenty. 14.1.39. The first city one comes to after Ephesus is Magnesia, which is an Aeolian city and is called Magnesia on the Maeander, for it is situated near that river. But it is much nearer the Lethaeus River, which empties into the Maeander and has its beginning in Mt. Pactyes, the mountain in the territory of the Ephesians. There is another Lethaeus in Gortyna, and another near Tricce, where Asclepius is said to have been born, and still another in the country of the Western Libyans. And the city lies in the plain near the mountain called Thorax, on which Daphitas the grammarian is said to have been crucified, because he reviled the kings in a distich: Purpled with stripes, mere filings of the treasure of Lysimachus, ye rule the Lydians and Phrygia. It is said that an oracle was given out that Daphitas should be on his guard against Thorax. 14.1.41. Well-known natives of Magnesia are: Hegesias the orator, who, more than any other, initiated the Asiatic style, as it is called, whereby he corrupted the established Attic custom; and Simus the melic poet, he too a man who corrupted the style handed down by the earlier melic poets and introduced the Simoedia, just as that style was corrupted still more by the Lysioedi and the Magoedi, and by Cleomachus the pugilist, who, having fallen in love with a certain cinaedus and with a young female slave who was kept as a prostitute by the cinaedus, imitated the style of dialects and mannerisms that was in vogue among the cinaedi. Sotades was the first man to write the talk of the cinaedi; and then Alexander the Aitolian. But though these two men imitated that talk in mere speech, Lysis accompanied it with song; and so did Simus, who was still earlier than he. As for Anaxenor, the citharoede, the theatres exalted him, but Antony exalted him all he possibly could, since he even appointed him exactor of tribute from four cities, giving him a body.guard of soldiers. Further, his native land greatly increased his honors, having clad him in purple as consecrated to Zeus Sosipolis, as is plainly indicated in his painted image in the market-place. And there is also a bronze statue of him in the theatre, with the inscription,Surely this is a beautiful thing, to listen to a singer such as this man is, like unto the gods in voice. But the engraver, missing his guess, left out the last letter of the second verse, the base of the statue not being wide enough for its inclusion; so that he laid the city open to the charge of ignorance, Because of the ambiguity of the writing, as to whether the last word should be taken as in the nominative case or in the dative; for many write the dative case without the iota, and even reject the ordinary usage as being without natural cause. 14.2.5. The city of the Rhodians lies on the eastern promontory of Rhodes; and it is so far superior to all others in harbors and roads and walls and improvements in general that I am unable to speak of any other city as equal to it, or even as almost equal to it, much less superior to it. It is remarkable also for its good order, and for its careful attention to the administration of affairs of state in general; and in particular to that of naval affairs, whereby it held the mastery of the sea for a long time and overthrew the business of piracy, and became a friend to the Romans and to all kings who favoured both the Romans and the Greeks. Consequently it not only has remained autonomous. but also has been adorned with many votive offerings, which for the most part are to be found in the Dionysium and the gymnasium, but partly in other places. The best of these are, first, the Colossus of Helius, of which the author of the iambic verse says,seven times ten cubits in height, the work of Chares the Lindian; but it now lies on the ground, having been thrown down by an earthquake and broken at the knees. In accordance with a certain oracle, the people did not raise it again. This, then, is the most excellent of the votive offerings (at any rate, it is by common agreement one of the Seven Wonders); and there are also the paintings of Protogenes, his Ialysus and also his Satyr, the latter standing by a pillar, on top of which stood a male partridge. And at this partridge, as would be natural, the people were so agape when the picture had only recently been set up, that they would behold him with wonder but overlook the Satyr, although the latter was a very great success. But the partridge-breeders were still more amazed, bringing their tame partridges and placing them opposite the painted partridge; for their partridges would make their call to the painting and attract a mob of people. But when Protogenes saw that the main part of the work had become subordinate, he begged those who were in charge of the sacred precinct to permit him to go there and efface the partridge, and so he did. The Rhodians are concerned for the people in general, although their rule is not democratic; still, they wish to take care of their multitude of poor people. Accordingly, the people are supplied with provisions and the needy are supported by the well-to-do, by a certain ancestral custom; and there are certain liturgies that supply provisions, so that at the same time the poor man receives his sustece and the city does not run short of useful men, and in particular for the manning of the fleets. As for the roadsteads, some of them were kept hidden and forbidden to the people in general; and death was the penalty for any person who spied on them or passed inside them. And here too, as in Massalia and Cyzicus, everything relating to the architects, the manufacture of instruments of war, and the stores of arms and everything else are objects of exceptional care, and even more so than anywhere else. 14.2.6. The Rhodians, like the people of Halicarnassus and Cnidus and Cos, are Dorians; for of the Dorians who founded Megara after the death of Codrus, some remained there, others took part with Althaemenes the Argive in the colonization of Crete, and others were distributed to Rhodes and to the cities just now mentioned. But these events are later than those mentioned by Homer, for Cnidus and Halicarnassus were not yet in existence, although Rhodes and Cos were; but they were inhabited by Heracleidae. Now when Tlepolemus had grown to manhood,he forthwith slew his own father's dear uncle, Licymnius, who was then growing old; and straightway he built him ships, and when he had gathered together a great host he went in flight. The poet then adds,he came to Rhodes in his wanderings, where his people settled in three divisions by tribes; and he names the cities of that time,Lindus, Ialysus, and Cameirus white with chalk, the city of the Rhodians having not yet been founded. The poet, then, nowhere mentions Dorians by name here, but perhaps indicates Aeolians and Boeotians, if it be true that Heracles and Licymnius settled there. But if, as others say, Tlepolemus set forth from Argos and Tiryns, even so the colonization thence could not have been Dorian, for it must have taken place before the return of the Heracleidae. And of the Coans, also, Homer says, were led by Pheidippus and Antiphus, the two sons of lord Thessalus, son of Heracles and these names indicate the Aeolian stock of people rather than the Dorian. 14.2.7. In earlier times Rhodes was called Ophiussa and Stadia, and then Telchinis, after the Telchines, who took up their abode in the island. Some say that the Telchines are maligners and sorcerers, who pour the water of the Styx mixed with sulphur upon animals and plants in order to destroy them. But others, on the contrary, say that since they excelled in workmanship they were maligned by rival workmen and thus received their bad reputation; and that they first came from Crete to Cypros, and then to Rhodes; and that they were the first to work iron and brass, and in fact fabricated the scythe for Cronus. Now I have already described them before, but the number of the myths about them causes me to resume their description, filling up the gaps, if I have omitted anything. 14.2.8. After the Telchines, the Heliadae, according to the mythical story, took possession of the island; and to one of these, Cercaphus, and to his wife Cydippe, were born children who founded the cities that are named after them,Lindus, Ialysus, and Cameirus white with chalk. But some say that Tlepolemus founded them and gave them the same names as those of certain daughters of Danaus. 14.2.9. The present city was founded at the time of the Peloponnesian War by the same architect, as they say, who founded the Peiraeus. But the Peiraeus no longer endures, since it was badly damaged, first by the Lacedemonians, who tore down the two walls, and later by Sulla, the Roman commander. 14.2.10. It is also related of the Rhodians that they have been prosperous by sea, not merely since the time when they founded the present city, but that even many years before the establishment of the Olympian Games they used to sail far away from their homeland to insure the safety of their people. Since that time, also, they have sailed as far as Iberia; and there they founded Rhode, of which the Massaliotes later took possession; among the Opici they founded Parthenope; and among the Daunians they, along with the Coans, founded Elpiae. Some say that the islands called the Gymnesiae were founded by them after their departure from Troy; and the larger of these, according to Timaeus, is the largest of all islands after the seven — Sardinia, Sicily, Cypros, Crete, Euboea, Cyrnos, and Lesbos, but this is untrue, for there are others much larger. It is said that gymnetes are called balearides by the Phoenicians, and that on this account the Gymnesiae were called Balearides. Some of the Rhodians took up their abode round Sybaris in Chonia. The poet, too, seems to bear witness to the prosperity enjoyed by the Rhodians from ancient times, forthwith from the first founding of the three cities: and there his people settled in three divisions by tribes, and were loved of Zeus, who is lord over gods and men; and upon them, wondrous wealth was shed by the son of Cronus. Other writers refer these verses to a myth, and say that gold rained on the island at the time when Athena was born from the head of Zeus, as Pindar states. The island has a circuit of nine hundred and twenty stadia. 14.2.13. Many men worthy of mention were native Rhodians, both commanders and athletes, among whom were the ancestors of Panaetius the philosopher; and, among statesmen and rhetoricians and philosophers, Panaetius himself and Stratocles and Andronicus, one of the Peripatetics, and Leonides the Stoic; and also, before their time, Praxiphanes and Hieronymus and Eudemus. Poseidonius engaged in affairs of state in Rhodes and taught there, although he was a native of Apameia in Syria, as was also the case with Apollonius Malacus and Molon, for they were Alabandians, pupils of Menecles the orator. Apollonius Malacus began his sojourn there earlier than Molon, and when, much later, Molon came, the former said to him, you are a late 'molon,' instead of saying, late 'elthon.' And Peisander the poet, who wrote the Heracleia, was also a Rhodian; and so was Simmias the grammarian, as also Aristocles of my own time. And Dionysius the Thracian and the Apollonius who wrote the Argonauts, though Alexandrians, were called Rhodians. As for Rhodes, I have said enough about it. 14.2.16. Then to Halicarnassus, the royal residence of the dynasts of Caria, which was formerly called Zephyra. Here is the tomb of Mausolus, one of the Seven Wonders, a monument erected by Artemisia in honor of her husband; and here is the fountain called Salmacis, which has the slanderous repute, for what reason I do not know, of making effeminate all who drink from it. It seems that the effeminacy of man is laid to the charge of the air or of the water; yet it is not these, but rather riches and wanton living, that are the cause of effeminacy. Halicarnassus has an acropolis; and off the city lies Arconnesus. Its colonizers were, among others, Anthes and a number of Troezenians. Natives of Halicarnassus have been: Herodotus the historian, whom they later called a Thurian, because he took part in the colonization of Thurii; and Heracleitus the poet, the comrade of Callimachus; and, in my time, Dionysius the historian. 14.5.12. As for Tarsus, it lies in a plain; and it was founded by the Argives who wandered with Triptolemus in quest of Io; and it is intersected in the middle by the Cydnus River, which flows past the very gymnasium of the young men. Now inasmuch as the source of the river is not very far away and its stream passes through a deep ravine and then empties immediately into the city, its discharge is both cold and swift; and hence it is helpful both to men and to cattle that are suffering from swollen sinews, if they immerse themselves in its waters. 14.5.13. The people at Tarsus have devoted themselves so eagerly, not only to philosophy, but also to the whole round of education in general, that they have surpassed Athens, Alexandria, or any other place that can be named where there have been schools and lectures of philosophers. But it is so different from other cities that there the men who are fond of learning, are all natives, and foreigners are not inclined to sojourn there; neither do these natives stay there, but they complete their education abroad; and when they have completed it they are pleased to live abroad, and but few go back home. But the opposite is the case with the other cities which I have just mentioned except Alexandria; for many resort to them and pass time there with pleasure, but you would not see many of the natives either resorting to places outside their country through love of learning or eager about pursuing learning at home. With the Alexandrians, however, both things take place, for they admit many foreigners and also send not a few of their own citizens abroad. Further, the city of Tarsus has all kinds of schools of rhetoric; and in general it not only has a flourishing population but also is most powerful, thus keeping up the reputation of the mother-city. 14.5.14. The following men were natives of Tarsus: among the Stoics, Antipater and Archedemus and Nestor; and also the two Athenodoruses, one of whom, called Cordylion, lived with Marcus Cato and died at his house; and the other, the son of Sandon, called Caites after some village, was Caesar's teacher and was greatly honored by him; and when he returned to his native land, now an old man, he broke up the government there established, which was being badly conducted by Boethus, among others, who was a bad poet and a bad citizen, having prevailed there by currying the favour of the people. He had been raised to prominence by Antony, who at the outset received favorably the poem which he had written upon the victory at Philippi, but still more by that facility prevalent among the Tarsians whereby he could instantly speak offhand and unceasingly on any given subject. Furthermore, Antony promised the Tarsians an office of gymnasiarch, but appointed Boethus instead of a gymnasiarch, and entrusted to him the expenditures. But Boethus was caught secreting, among other things, the olive-oil; and when he was being proven guilty by his accusers in the presence of Antony he deprecated Antony's wrath, saying, among other things, that Just as Homer had hymned the praises of Achilles and Agamemnon and Odysseus, so I have hymned thine. It is not right, therefore, that I should be brought before you on such slanderous charges. When, however, the accuser caught the statement, he said, Yes, but Homer did not steal Agamemnon's oil, nor yet that of Achilles, but you did; and therefore you shall be punished. However, he broke the wrath of Antony by courteous attentions, and no less than before kept on plundering the city until the overthrow of Antony. Finding the city in this plight, Athenodorus for a time tried to induce both Boethus and his partisans to change their course; but since they would abstain from no act of insolence, he used the authority given him by Caesar, condemned them to exile, and expelled them. These at first indicted him with the following inscription on the walls: Work for young men, counsels for the middle-aged, and flatulence for old men; and when he, taking the inscription as a joke, ordered the following words to be inscribed beside it, thunder for old men, someone, contemptuous of all decency and afflicted with looseness of the bowels, profusely bespattered the door and wall of Athenodorus' house as he was passing by it at night. Athenodorus, while bringing accusations in the assembly against the faction, said: One may see the sickly plight and the disaffection of the city in many ways, and in particular from its excrements. These men were Stoics; but the Nestor of my time, the teacher of Marcellus, son of Octavia the sister of Caesar, was an Academician. He too was at the head of the government of Tarsus, having succeeded Athenodorus; and he continued to be held in honor both by the prefects and in the city. 14.5.15. Among the other philosophers from Tarsus,whom I could well note and tell their names, are Plutiades and Diogenes, who were among those philosophers that went round from city to city and conducted schools in an able manner. Diogenes also composed poems, as if by inspiration, when a subject was given him — for the most part tragic poems; and as for grammarians whose writings are extant, there are Artemidorus and Diodorus; and the best tragic poet among those enumerated in the Pleias was Dionysides. But it is Rome that is best able to tell us the number of learned men from this city; for it is full of Tarsians and Alexandrians. Such is Tarsus. 15.3.2. Susis also is almost a part of Persis. It lies between Persis and Babylonia, and has a very considerable city, Susa. For the Persians and Cyrus, after the conquest of the Medes, perceiving that their own country was situated towards the extremities, but Susis more towards the interior, nearer also to Babylon and the other nations, there placed the royal seat of the empire. They were pleased with its situation on the confines of Persis, and with the importance of the city; besides the consideration that it had never of itself undertaken any great enterprise, had always been in subjection to other people, and constituted a part of a greater body, except, perhaps, anciently in the heroic times.It is said to have been founded by Tithonus, the father of Memnon. Its compass was 120 stadia. Its shape was oblong. The acropolis was called Memnonium. The Susians have the name also of Cissii. Aeschylus calls the mother of Memnon, Cissia. Memnon is said to be buried near Paltus in Syria, by the river Badas, as Simonides says in his Memnon, a dithyrambic poem among the Deliaca. The wall of the city, the temples and palaces, were constructed in the same manner as those of the Babylonians, of baked brick and asphaltus, as some writers relate. Polycletus however says, that its circumference was 200 stadia, and that it was without walls. 16.1.5. Babylon itself also is situated in a plain. The wall is 385 stadia in circumference, and 32 feet in thickness. The height of the space between the towers is 50, and of the towers 60 cubits. The roadway upon the walls will allow chariots with four horses when they meet to pass each other with ease. Whence, among the seven wonders of the world, are reckoned this wall and the hanging garden: the shape of the garden is a square, and each side of it measures four plethra. It consists of vaulted terraces, raised one above another, and resting upon cube-shaped pillars. These are hollow and filled with earth to allow trees of the largest size to be planted. The pillars, the vaults, and the terraces are constructed of baked brick and asphalt.The ascent to the highest story is by stairs, and at their side are water engines, by means of which persons, appointed expressly for the purpose, are continually employed in raising water from the Euphrates into the garden. For the river, which is a stadium in breadth, flows through the middle of the city, and the garden is on the side of the river. The tomb also of Belus is there. At present it is in ruins, having been demolished, as it is said, by Xerxes. It was a quadrangular pyramid of baked brick, a stadium in height, and each of the sides a stadium in length. Alexander intended to repair it. It was a great undertaking, and required a long time for its completion (for ten thousand men were occupied two months in clearing away the mound of earth), so that he was not able to execute what he had attempted, before disease hurried him rapidly to his end. None of the persons who succeeded him attended to this undertaking; other works also were neglected, and the city was dilapidated, partly by the Persians, partly by time, and, through the indifference of the Macedonians to things of this kind, particularly after Seleucus Nicator had fortified Seleucia on the Tigris near Babylon, at the distance of about 300 stadia.Both this prince and all his successors directed their care to that city, and transferred to it the seat of empire. At present it is larger than Babylon; the other is in great part deserted, so that no one would hesitate to apply to it what one of the comic writers said of Megalopolis in Arcadia, The great city is a great desert. On account of the scarcity of timber, the beams and pillars of the houses were made of palm wood. They wind ropes of twisted reed round the pillars, paint them over with colours, and draw designs upon them; they cover the doors with a coat of asphaltus. These are lofty, and all the houses are vaulted on account of the want of timber. For the country is bare, a great part of it is covered with shrubs, and produces nothing but the palm. This tree grows in the greatest abundance in Babylonia. It is found in Susiana also in great quantity, on the Persian coast, and in Carmania.They do not use tiles for their houses, because there are no great rains. The case is the same in Susiana and in Sitacene. 16.1.6. In Babylon a residence was set apart for the native philosophers called Chaldaeans, who are chiefly devoted to the study of astronomy. Some, who are not approved of by the rest, profess to understand genethlialogy, or the casting of nativities. There is also a tribe of Chaldaeans, who inhabit a district of Babylonia, in the neighbourhood of the Arabians, and of the sea called the Persian Sea. There are several classes of the Chaldaean astronomers. Some have the name of Orcheni, some Borsippeni, and many others, as if divided into sects, who disseminate different tenets on the same subjects. The mathematicians make mention of some individuals among them, as Cidenas, Naburianus, and Sudinus. Seleucus also of Seleuceia is a Chaldaean, and many other remarkable men. 16.2.4. Seleucis is the best of the above-mentioned portions of Syria. It is called and is a Tetrapolis, and derives its name from the four distinguished cities which it contains; for there are more than four cities, but the four largest are Antioch Epidaphne, Seleuceia in Pieria, Apameia, and Laodiceia. They were called Sisters from the concord which existed between them. They were founded by Seleucus Nicator. The largest bore the name of his father, and the strongest his own. of the others, Apameia had its name from his wife Apama, and Laodiceia from his mother.In conformity with its character of Tetrapolis, Seleucis, according to Poseidonius, was divided into four satrapies; Coele-Syria into the same number, but [Commagene, like] Mesopotamia, consisted of one.Antioch also is a Tetrapolis, consisting (as the name implies) of four portions, each of which has its own, and all of them a common wall.[Seleucus] Nicator founded the first of these portions, transferring thither settlers from Antigonia, which a short time before Antigonus, son of Philip, had built near it. The second was built by the general body of settlers; the third by Seleucus, the son of Callinicus; the fourth by Antiochus, the son of Epiphanes. 16.2.5. Antioch is the metropolis of Syria. A palace was constructed there for the princes of the country. It is not much inferior in riches and magnitude to Seleuceia on the Tigris and Alexandreia in Egypt.[Seleucus] Nicator settled here the descendants of Triptolemus, whom we have mentioned a little before. On this account the people of Antioch regard him as a hero, and celebrate a festival to his honour on Mount Casius near Seleuceia. They say that when he was sent by the Argives in search of Io, who first disappeared at Tyre, he wandered through Cilicia; that some of his Argive companions separated from him and founded Tarsus; that the rest attended him along the sea-coast, and, relinquishing their search, settled with him on the banks of the Orontes; that Gordys the son of Triptolemus, with some of those who had accompanied his father, founded a colony in Gordyaea, and that the descendants of the rest became settlers among the inhabitants of Antioch. 16.2.13. Aradus is in front of a rocky coast without harbours, and situated nearly between its arsenal and Marathus. It is distant from the land 20 stadia. It is a rock, surrounded by the sea, of about seven stadia in circuit, and covered with dwellings. The population even at present is so large that the houses have many stories. It was colonized, it is said, by fugitives from Sidon. The inhabitants are supplied with water partly from cisterns containing rain water, and partly from the opposite coast. In war time they obtain water a little in front of the city, from the channel (between the island and the mainland), in which there is an abundant spring. The water is obtained by letting down from a boat, which serves for the purpose, and inverting over the spring (at the bottom of the sea), a wide-mouthed funnel of lead, the end of which is contracted to a moderate-sized opening; round this is fastened a (long) leathern pipe, which we may call the neck, and which receives the water, forced up from the spring through the funnel. The water first forced up is sea water, but the boatmen wait for the flow of pure and potable water, which is received into vessels ready for the purpose. in as large a quantity as may be required, and carry it to the city. 16.2.34. The western extremities of Judaea towards Casius are occupied by Idumaeans, and by the lake [Sirbonis]. The Idumaeans are Nabataeans. When driven from their country by sedition, they passed over to the Jews, and adopted their customs. The greater part of the country along the coast to Jerusalem is occupied by the Lake Sirbonis, and by the tract contiguous to it; for Jerusalem is near the sea, which, as we have said, may be seen from the arsenal of Joppa. These districts (of Jerusalem and Joppa) lie towards the north; they are inhabited generally, and each place in particular, by mixed tribes of Egyptians, Arabians, and Phoenicians. of this description are the inhabitants of Galilee, of the plain of Jericho, and of the territories of Philadelphia and Samaria, surnamed Sebaste by Herod; but although there is such a mixture of inhabitants, the report most credited, [one] among many things believed respecting the temple [and the inhabitants] of Jerusalem, is, that the Egyptians were the ancestors of the present Jews. 16.2.35. An Egyptian priest named Moses, who possessed a portion of the country called the Lower [Egypt] * * * *, being dissatisfied with the established institutions there, left it and came to Judaea with a large body of people who worshipped the Divinity. He declared and taught that the Egyptians and Africans entertained erroneous sentiments, in representing the Divinity under the likeness of wild beasts and cattle of the field; that the Greeks also were in error in making images of their gods after the human form. For God [said he] may be this one thing which encompasses us all, land and sea, which we call heaven, or the universe, or the nature of things. Who then of any understanding would venture to form an image of this Deity, resembling anything with which we are conversant? on the contrary, we ought not to carve any images, but to set apart some sacred ground and a shrine worthy of the Deity, and to worship Him without any similitude. He taught that those who made fortunate dreams were to be permitted to sleep in the temple, where they might dream both for themselves and others; that those who practised temperance and justice, and none else, might expect good, or some gift or sign from the God, from time to time. 16.2.36. By such doctrine Moses persuaded a large body of right-minded persons to accompany him to the place where Jerusalem now stands. He easily obtained possession of it, as the spot was not such as to excite jealousy, nor for which there could be any fierce contention; for it is rocky, and, although well supplied with water, it is surrounded by a barren and waterless territory. The space within [the city] is 60 stadia [in circumference], with rock underneath the surface.Instead of arms, he taught that their defence was in their sacred things and the Divinity, for whom he was desirous of finding a settled place, promising to the people to deliver such a kind of worship and religion as should not burthen those who adopted it with great expense, nor molest them with [so-called] divine possessions, nor other absurd practices.Moses thus obtained their good opinion, and established no ordinary kind of government. All the nations around willingly united themselves to him, allured by his discourses and promises. 16.2.37. His successors continued for some time to observe the same conduct, doing justly, and worshipping God with sincerity. Afterwards superstitious persons were appointed to the priesthood, and then tyrants. From superstition arose abstinence from flesh, from the eating of which it is now the custom to refrain, circumcision, excision, and other practices which the people observe. The tyrannical government produced robbery; for the rebels plundered both their own and the neighbouring countries. Those also who shared in the government seized upon the property of others, and ravaged a large part of Syria and of Phoenicia.Respect, however, was paid to the acropolis; it was not abhorred as the seat of tyranny, but honoured and venerated as a temple. 16.2.38. This is according to nature, and common both to Greeks and barbarians. For, as members of a civil community, they live according to a common law; otherwise it would be impossible for the mass to execute any one thing in concert (in which consists a civil state), or to live in a social state at all. Law is twofold, divine and human. The ancients regarded and respected divine, in preference to human, law; in those times, therefore, the number of persons was very great who consulted oracles, and, being desirous of obtaining the advice of Jupiter, hurried to Dodona, to hear the answer of Jove from the lofty oak.The parent went to Delphi, anxious to learn whether the child which had been exposed (to die) was still living;while the child itself was gone to the temple of Apollo, with the hope of discovering its parents.And Minos among the Cretans, the king who in the ninth year enjoyed converse with Great Jupiter, every nine years, as Plato says, ascended to the cave of Jupiter, received ordices from him, and conveyed them to men. Lycurgus, his imitator, acted in a similar manner; for he was often accustomed, as it seemed, to leave his own country to inquire of the Pythian goddess what ordices he was to promulgate to the Lacedaemonians. 16.2.39. What truth there may be in these things I cannot say; they have at least been regarded and believed as true by mankind. Hence prophets received so much honour as to be thought worthy even of thrones, because they were supposed to communicate ordices and precepts from the gods, both during their lifetime and after their death; as for example Teiresias, to whom alone Proserpine gave wisdom and understanding after death: the others flit about as shadows.Such were Amphiaraus, Trophonius, Orpheus, and Musaeus: in former times there was Zamolxis, a Pythagorean, who was accounted a god among the Getae; and in our time, Decaeneus, the diviner of Byrebistas. Among the Bosporani, there was Achaicarus; among the Indians, were the Gymnosophists; among the Persians, the Magi and Necyomanteis, and besides these the Lecanomanteis and Hydromanteis; among the Assyrians, were the Chaldaeans; and among the Romans, the Tyrrhenian diviners of dreams.Such was Moses and his successors; their beginning was good, but they degenerated. 17.1.6. As Alexandreia and its neighbourhood occupy the greatest and principal portion of the description, I shall begin with it.In sailing towards the west, the sea-coast from Pelusium to the Canobic mouth of the Nile is about 1300 stadia in extent, and constitutes, as we have said, the base of the Delta. Thence to the island Pharos are 150 stadia more.Pharos is a small oblong island, and lies quite close to the continent, forming towards it a harbour with a double entrance. For the coast abounds with bays, and has two promontories projecting into the sea. The island is situated between these, and shuts in the bay, lying lengthways in front of it.of the extremities of the Pharos, the eastern is nearest to the continent and to the promontory in that direction, called Lochias, which is the cause of the entrance to the port being narrow. Besides the narrowness of the passage, there are rocks, some under water, others rising above it, which at all times increase the violence of the waves rolling in upon them from the open sea. This extremity itself of the island is a rock, washed by the sea on all sides, with a tower upon it of the same name as the island, admirably constructed of white marble, with several stories. Sostratus of Cnidus, a friend of the kings, erected it for the safety of mariners, as the inscription imports. For as the coast on each side is low and without harbours, with reefs and shallows, an elevated and conspicuous mark was required to enable navigators coming in from the open sea to direct their course exactly to the entrance of the harbour.The western mouth does not afford an easy entrance, but it does not require the same degree of caution as the other. It forms also another port, which has the name of Eunostus, or Happy Return: it lies in front of the artificial and close harbour. That which has its entrance at the above-mentioned tower of Pharos is the great harbour. These (two) lie contiguous in the recess called Heptastadium, and are separated from it by a mound. This mound forms a bridge from the continent to the island, and extends along its western side, leaving two passages only through it to the harbour of Eunostus, which are bridged over. But this work served not only as a bridge, but as an aqueduct also, when the island was inhabited. Divus Caesar devastated the island, in his war against the people of Alexandreia, when they espoused the party of the kings. A few sailors live near the tower.The great harbour, in addition to its being well enclosed by the mound and by nature, is of sufficient depth near the shore to allow the largest vessel to anchor near the stairs. It is also divided into several ports.The former kings of Egypt, satisfied with what they possessed, and not desirous of foreign commerce, entertained a dislike to all mariners, especially the Greeks (who, on account of the poverty of their own country, ravaged and coveted the property of other nations), and stationed a guard here, who had orders to keep off all persons who approached. To the guard was assigned as a place of residence the spot called Rhacotis, which is now a part of the city of Alexandreia, situated above the arsenal. At that time, however, it was a village. The country about the village was given up to herdsmen, who were also able (from their numbers) to prevent strangers from entering the country.When Alexander arrived, and perceived the advantages of the situation, he determined to build the city on the (natural) harbour. The prosperity of the place, which ensued, was intimated, it is said, by a presage which occurred while the plan of the city was tracing. The architects were engaged in marking out the line of the wall with chalk, and had consumed it all, when the king arrived; upon which the dispensers of flour supplied the workmen with a part of the flour, which was provided for their own use; and this substance was used in tracing the greater part of the divisions of the streets. This, they said, was a good omen for the city. 17.1.7. The advantages of the city are of various kinds. The site is washed by two seas; on the north, by what is called the Egyptian Sea, and on the south, by the sea of the lake Mareia, which is also called Mareotis. This lake is filled by many canals from the Nile, both by those above and those at the sides, through which a greater quantity of merchandise is imported than by those communicating with the sea. Hence the harbour on the lake is richer than the maritime harbour. The exports by sea from Alexandreia exceed the imports. This any person may ascertain, either at Alexandreia or Dicaearchia, by watching the arrival and departure of the merchant vessels, and observing how much heavier or lighter their cargoes are when they depart or when they return.In addition to the wealth derived from merchandise landed at the harbours on each side, on the sea and on the lake, its fine air is worthy of remark: this results from the city being on two sides surrounded by water, and from the favourable effects of the rise of the Nile. For other cities, situated near lakes, have, during the heats of summer, a heavy and suffocating atmosphere, and lakes at their margins become swampy by the evaporation occasioned by the sun's heat. When a large quantity of moisture is exhaled from swamps, a noxious vapour rises, and is the cause of pestilential disorders. But at Alexandreia, at the beginning of summer, the Nile, being full, fills the lake also, and leaves no marshy matter which is likely to occasion maligt exhalations. At the same period, the Etesian winds blow from the north, over a large expanse of sea, and the Alexandrines in consequence pass their summer very pleasantly. 17.1.8. The shape of the site of the city is that of a chlamys or military cloak. The sides, which determine the length, are surrounded by water, and are about thirty stadia in extent; but the isthmuses, which determine the breadth of the sides, are each of seven or eight stadia, bounded on one side by the sea, and on the other by the lake. The whole city is intersected by roads for the passage of horsemen and chariots. Two of these are very broad, exceeding a plethrum in breadth, and cut one another at right angles. It contains also very beautiful public grounds and royal palaces, which occupy a fourth or even a third part of its whole extent. For as each of the kings was desirous of adding some embellishment to the places dedicated to the public use, so, besides the buildings already existing, each of them erected a building at his own expense; hence the expression of the poet may be here applied, one after the other springs. All the buildings are connected with one another and with the harbour, and those also which are beyond it.The Museum is a part of the palaces. It has a public walk and a place furnished with seats, and a large hall, in which the men of learning, who belong to the Museum, take their common meal. This community possesses also property in common; and a priest, formerly appointed by the kings, but at present by Caesar, presides over the Museum.A part belonging to the palaces consists of that called Sema, an enclosure, which contained the tombs of the kings and that of Alexander (the Great). For Ptolemy the son of Lagus took away the body of Alexander from Perdiccas, as he was conveying it down from Babylon; for Perdiccas had turned out of his road towards Egypt, incited by ambition and a desire of making himself master of the country. When Ptolemy had attacked [and made him prisoner], he intended to [spare his life and] confine him in a desert island, but he met with a miserable end at the hand of his own soldiers, who rushed upon and despatched him by transfixing him with the long Macedonian spears. The kings who were with him, Aridaeus, and the children of Alexander, and Roxana his wife, departed to Macedonia. Ptolemy carried away the body of Alexander, and deposited it at Alexandreia in the place where it now lies; not indeed in the same coffin, for the present one is of hyalus (alabaster ?) whereas Ptolemy had deposited it in one of gold: it was plundered by Ptolemy surnamed Cocce's son and Pareisactus, who came from Syria and was quickly deposed, so that his plunder was of no service to him. 17.1.9. In the great harbour at the entrance, on the right hand, are the island and the Pharos tower; on the left are the reef of rocks and the promontory Lochias, with a palace upon it: at the entrance, on the left hand, are the inner palaces, which are continuous with those on the Lochias, and contain numerous painted apartments and groves. Below lies the artificial and close harbour, appropriated to the use of the kings; and Antirrhodus a small island, facing the artificial harbour, with a palace on it, and a small port. It was called Antirrhodus, a rival as it were of Rhodes.Above this is the theatre, then the Poseidium, a kind of elbow projecting from the Emporium, as it is called, with a temple of Neptune upon it. To this Antony added a mound, projecting still further into the middle of the harbour, and built at the extremity a royal mansion, which he called Timonium. This was his last act, when, deserted by his partisans, he retired to Alexandreia after his defeat at Actium, and intended, being forsaken by so many friends, to lead the [solitary] life of Timon for the rest of his days.Next are the Caesarium, the Emporium, and the Apostaseis, or magazines: these are followed by docks, extending to the Heptastadium. This is the description of the great harbour. 17.1.10. Next after the Heptastadium is the harbour of Eunostus, and above this the artificial harbour, called Cibotus (or the Ark), which also has docks. At the bottom of this harbour is a navigable canal, extending to the lake Mareotis. Beyond the canal there still remains a small part of the city. Then follows the suburb Necropolis, in which are numerous gardens, burial-places, and buildings for carrying on the process of embalming the dead.On this side the canal is the Sarapium and other ancient sacred places, which are now abandoned on account of the erection of the temples at Nicopolis; for [there are situated] an amphitheatre and a stadium, and there are celebrated quinquennial games; but the ancient rites and customs are neglected.In short, the city of Alexandreia abounds with public and sacred buildings. The most beautiful of the former is the Gymnasium, with porticos exceeding a stadium in extent. In the middle of it are the court of justice and groves. Here also is a Paneium, an artificial mound of the shape of a fir-cone, resembling a pile of rock, to the top of which there is an ascent by a spiral path. From the summit may be seen the whole city lying all around and beneath it.The wide street extends in length along the Gymnasium from the Necropolis to the Canobic gate. Next is the Hippodromos (or race-course), as it is called, and other buildings near it, and reaching to the Canobic canal. After passing through the Hippodromos is the Nicopolis, which contains buildings fronting the sea not less numerous than a city. It is 30 stadia distant from Alexandreia. Augustus Caesar distinguished this place, because it was here that he defeated Antony and his party of adherents. He took the city at the first onset, and compelled Antony to put himself to death, but Cleopatra to surrender herself alive. A short time afterwards, however, she also put an end to her life secretly, in prison, by the bite of an asp, or (for there are two accounts) by the application of a poisonous ointment. Thus the empire of the Lagidae, which had subsisted many years, was dissolved. 17.1.11. Alexander was succeeded by Ptolemy the son of Lagus, the son of Lagus by Philadelphus, Philadelphus by Euergetes; next succeeded Philopator the lover of Agathocleia, then Epiphanes, afterwards Philometor, the son (thus far) always succeeding the father. But Philometor was succeeded by his brother, the second Euergetes, who was also called Physcon. He was succeeded by Ptolemy surnamed Lathurus, Lathurus by Auletes of our time, who was the father of Cleopatra. All these kings, after the third Ptolemy, were corrupted by luxury and effeminacy, and the affairs of government were very badly administered by them; but worst of all by the fourth, the seventh, and the last, Auletes (or the Piper), who, besides other deeds of shamelessness, acted the piper; indeed he gloried so much in the practice, that he scrupled not to appoint trials of skill in his palace; on which occasions he presented himself as a competitor with other rivals. He was deposed by the Alexandrines; and of his three daughters, one, the eldest, who was legitimate, they proclaimed queen; but his two sons, who were infants, were absolutely excluded from the succession.As a husband for the daughter established on the throne, the Alexandrines invited one Cybiosactes from Syria, who pretended to be descended from the Syrian kings. The queen after a few days, unable to endure his coarseness and vulgarity, rid herself of him by causing him to be strangled. She afterwards married Archelaus, who also pretended to be the son of Mithridates Eupator, but he was really the son of that Archelaus who carried on war against Sulla, and was afterwards honourably treated by the Romans. He was grandfather of the last king of Cappadocia in our time, and priest of Comana in Pontus. He was then (at the time we are speaking of) the guest of Gabinius, and intended to accompany him in an expedition against the Parthians, but unknown to Gabinius, he was conducted away by some (friends) to the queen, and declared king.At this time Pompey the Great entertained Auletes as his guest on his arrival at Rome, and recommended him to the senate, negotiated his return, and contrived the execution of most of the deputies, in number a hundred, who had undertaken to appear against him: at their head was Dion the academic philosopher.Ptolemy (Auletes) on being restored by Gabinius, put to death both Archelaus and his daughter; but not long after he was reinstated in his kingdom, he died a natural death, leaving two sons and two daughters, the eldest of whom was Cleopatra.The Alexandrines declared as sovereigns the eldest son and Cleopatra. But the adherents of the son excited a sedition, and banished Cleopatra, who retired with her sister into Syria.It was about this time that Pompey the Great, in his flight from Palaepharsalus, came to Pelusium and Mount Casium. He was treacherously slain by the king's party. When Caesar arrived, he put the young prince to death, and sending for Cleopatra from her place of exile, appointed her queen of Egypt, declaring also her surviving brother, who was very young, and herself joint sovereigns.After the death of Caesar and the battle at Pharsalia, Antony passed over into Asia; he raised Cleopatra to the highest dignity, made her his wife, and had children by her. He was present with her at the battle of Actium, and accompanied her in her flight. Augustus Caesar pursued them, put an end to their power, and rescued Egypt from misgovernment and revelry. 17.1.12. At present Egypt is a (Roman) province, pays considerable tribute, and is well governed by prudent persons, who are sent there in succession. The governor thus sent out has the rank of king. Subordinate to him is the administrator of justice, who is the supreme judge in many causes. There is another officer, who is called Idiologus, whose business it is to inquire into property for which there is no claimant, and which of right falls to Caesar. These are accompanied by Caesar's freedmen and stewards, who are entrusted with affairs of more or less importance.Three legions are stationed in Egypt, one in the city, the rest in the country. Besides these there are also nine Roman cohorts, three quartered in the city, three on the borders of Ethiopia in Syene, as a guard to that tract, and three in other parts of the country. There are also three bodies of cavalry distributed in convenient posts.of the native magistrates in the cities, the first is the expounder of the law, who is dressed in scarlet; he receives the customary honours of the country, and has the care of providing what is necessary for the city. The second is the writer of records, the third is the chief judge. The fourth is the commander of the night guard. These magistrates existed in the time of the kings, but in consequence of the bad administration of affairs by the latter, the prosperity of the city was ruined by licentiousness. Polybius expresses his indignation at the state of things when lie was there: he describes the inhabitants of the city to be composed of three classes; the (first) Egyptians and natives, acute but indifferent citizens, and meddling with civil affairs. Tile second, the mercenaries, a numerous and undisciplined body ; for it was an ancient custom to maintain foreign soldiers, who, from the worthlessness of their sovereigns, knew better how to govern than to obey. The third were the Alexandrines, who, for the same reason, were not orderly citizens; but still they were better than the mercenaries, for although they were a mixed race, yet being of Greek origin, they retained the customs common to the Greeks. But this class was extinct nearly about the time of Euergetes Physcon, in whose reign Polybius came to Alexandreia. For Physcon, being distressed by factions, frequently exposed the multitude to the attacks of the soldiery, and thus destroyed them. By such a state of things in the city the words of the poet (says Polybius) were verified: The way to Egypt is long and vexatious. 17.1.13. Such then, if not worse, was the condition of the city under the last kings. The Romans, as far as they were able, corrected, as I have said, many abuses, and established an orderly government, by appointing vice-governors, nomarchs, and ethnarchs, whose business it was to superintend affairs of minor importance.The greatest advantage which the city possesses arises from its being the only place in all Egypt well situated by nature for communication with the sea by its excellent harbour, and with the land by the river, by means of which everything is easily transported and collected together into this city, which is the greatest mart in the habitable world.These may be said to be the superior excellencies of the city. Cicero, in one of his orations, in speaking of the revenues of Egypt, states that an annual tribute of 12,000 talents was paid to Auletes, the father of Cleopatra. If then a king, who administered his government in the worst possible manner, and with the greatest negligence, obtained so large a revenue, what must we suppose it to be at present, when affairs are administered with great care, and when the commerce with India and with Troglodytica has been so greatly increased ? For formerly not even twenty vessels ventured to navigate the Arabian Gulf, or advance to the smallest distance beyond the straits at its mouth; but now large fleets are despatched as far as India and the extremities of Ethiopia, from which places the most valuable freights are brought to Egypt, and are thence exported to other parts, so that a double amount of custom is collected, arising from imports on the one hand, and from exports on the other. The most expensive description of goods is charged with the heaviest impost; for in fact Alexandreia has a monopoly of trade, and is almost the only receptacle for this kind of merchandise and place of supply for foreigners. The natural convenience of the situation is still more apparent to persons travelling through the country, and particularly along the coast which commences at the Catabathmus; for to this place Egypt extends.Next to it is Cyrenaea, and the neighboring barbarians, the Marmaridae. 17.1.27. There also are the city Bubastus and the Bubastite Nome, and above it the Heliopolite Nome. There too is Heliopolis, situated upon a large mound. It contains a temple of the sun, and the ox Mneyis, which is kept in a sanctuary, and is regarded by the inhabitants as a god, as Apis is regarded by the people of Memphis. In front of the mound are lakes, into which the neighbouring canal discharges itself. At present the city is entirely deserted. It has an ancient temple constructed after the Egyptian manner, bearing many proofs of the madness and sacrilegious acts of Cambyses, who did very great injury to the temples, partly by fire, partly by violence, mutilating [in some] cases, and applying fire [in others]. In this manner he injured the obelisks, two of which, that were not entirely spoilt, were transported to Rome. There are others both here and at Thebes, the present Diospolis, some of which are standing, much corroded by fire, and others lying on the ground. 17.1.28. The plan of the temples is as follows.At the entrance into the temenus is a paved floor, in breadth about a plethrum, or even less; its length is three or four times as great, and in some instances even more. This part is called Dromos, and is mentioned by Callimachus, this is the Dromos, sacred to Anubis. Throughout the whole length on each side are placed stone sphinxes, at the distance of 20 cubits or a little more from each other, so that there is one row of sphinxes on the right hand, and another on the left. Next after the sphinxes is a large propylon, then on proceeding further, another propylon, and then another. Neither the number of the propyla nor of the sphinxes is determined by any rule. They are different in different temples, as well as the length and breadth of the Dromi.Next to the propyla is the naos, which has a large and considerable pronaos; the sanctuary in proportion; there is no statue, at least not in human shape, but a representation of some of the brute animals. On each side of the pronaos project what are called the wings. These are two walls of equal height with the naos. At first the distance between them is a little more than the breadth of the foundation of the naos. As you proceed onwards, the [base] lines incline towards one another till they approach within 50 or 60 cubits. These walls have large sculptured figures, very much like the Tyrrhenian (Etruscan) and very ancient works among the Greeks.There is also a building with a great number of pillars, as at Memphis, in the barbaric style; for, except the magnitude and number and rows of pillars, there is nothing pleasing nor easily described, but rather a display of labour wasted. 17.3.1. WE shall next describe Africa, which is the remaining portion of the whole description of the earth.We have before said much respecting it; but at present I shall further describe what suits my purpose, and add what has not been previously mentioned.The writers who have divided the habitable world according to continents, divide it unequally. But a threefold division denotes a division into three equal parts. Africa, however, wants so much of being a third part of the habitable world, that, even if it were united to Europe, it would not be equal to Asia; perhaps it is even less than Europe; in resources it is very much inferior, for a great part of the inland and maritime country is desert. It is spotted over with small habitable parts, which are scattered about, and mostly belonging to nomad tribes. Besides the desert state of the country, its being a nursery of wild beasts is a hindrance to settlement in parts which could be inhabited. It comprises also a large part of the torrid zone.All the sea-coast in our quarter, situated between the Nile and the Pillars, particularly that which belonged to the Carthaginians, is fertile and inhabited. And even in this tract, some spots destitute of water intervene, as those about the Syrtes, the Marmaridae, and the Catabathmus.The shape of Africa is that of a right-angled triangle, if we imagine its figure to be drawn on a plane surface. Its base is the coast opposite to us, extending from Egypt and the Nile to Mauretania and the Pillars; at right angles to this is a side formed by the Nile to Ethiopia, which side we continue to the ocean; the hypothenuse of the right angle is the whole tract of sea-coast lying between Ethiopia and Mauretania.As the part situated at the vertex of the above-mentioned figure, and lying almost entirely under the torrid zone, is inaccessible, we speak of it from conjecture, and therefore cannot say what is the greatest breadth of the country. In a former part of this work we have said, that the distance proceeding from Alexandreia southwards to Meroe, the royal seat of the Ethiopians, is about 10,000 stadia; thence in a straight line to the borders of the torrid zone and the habitable country, 3000 stadia. The sum, therefore, may be assumed as the greatest breadth of Africa, which is 13,000 or 14,000 stadia: its length may be a little less than double this sum. So much then on the subject of Africa in general. I am now to describe its several parts, beginning from the most celebrated on the west. 17.3.15. Carthage was founded by Dido, who brought her people from Tyre. Both this colony and the settlements in Spain and beyond the Pillars proved so successful to the Phoenicians, that even to the present day they occupy the best parts on the continent of Europe and the neighbouring islands. They obtained possession of the whole of Africa, with the exception of such parts as could only be held by nomad tribes. From the power they acquired they raised a city to rival Rome, and waged three great wars against her. Their power became most conspicuous in the last war, in which they were vanquished by Scipio Aemilianus, and their city was totally destroyed. For at the commencement of this war, they possessed 300 cities in Africa, and the population of Carthage amounted to 700,000 inhabitants. After being besieged and compelled to surrender, they delivered up 200,000 complete suits of armour and 3000 engines for throwing projectiles, apparently with the intention of abandoning all hostilities; but having resolved to recommence the war, they at once began to manufacture arms, and daily deposited in store 140 finished shields, 300 swords, 500 lances, and 1000 projectiles for the engines, for the use of which the women-servants contributed their hair. In addition to this, although at this moment they were in possession of only twelve ships, according to the terms of the treaty concluded in the second war, and had already taken refuge in a body at the Byrsa, yet in two months they equipped 120 decked vessels; and, as the mouth of the Cothon was closed against them, cut another outlet (to the sea) through which the fleet suddenly made its appearance. For wood had been collected for a long time, and a multitude of workmen were constantly employed, who were maintained at the public expense.Carthage, though so great, was yet taken and levelled to the ground.The Romans made a province of that part of the country which had been subject to Carthage, and appointed ruler of the rest Masanasses and his descendants, beginning with Micipsa. For the Romans paid particular attention to Masanasses on account of his great abilities and friendship for them. For he it was who formed the nomads to civil life, and directed their attention to husbandry. Instead of robbers he taught them to be soldiers. A peculiarity existed among these people; they inhabited a country favoured in everything except that it abounded with wild beasts; these they neglected to destroy, and so to cultivate the soil in security; but turning their arms against each other, abandoned the country to the beasts of prey. Hence their life was that of wanderers and of continual change, quite as much as that of those who are compelled to it by want and barrenness of soil or severity of climate. An appropriate name was therefore given to the Masaesylii, for they were called Nomads. Such persons must necessarily be sparing livers, eaters of roots more than of flesh, and supported by milk and cheese. Carthage remained a desolate place for a long time, for nearly the same period, indeed, as Corinth, until it was restored about the same time (as the latter city) by divus Caesar, who sent thither such Romans to colonize it as elected to go there, and also some soldiers. At present it is the most populous city in Africa.
3. Pliny The Elder, Natural History, 5.62 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)



Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
alexander the great Konig, The Folds of Olympus: Mountains in Ancient Greek and Roman Culture (2022) 366
caspian gates Bianchetti et al., Brill’s Companion to Ancient Geography: The Inhabited World in Greek and Roman Tradition (2015) 245
caucasus Konig, The Folds of Olympus: Mountains in Ancient Greek and Roman Culture (2022) 366
caves Konig, The Folds of Olympus: Mountains in Ancient Greek and Roman Culture (2022) 366
cilician gate Bianchetti et al., Brill’s Companion to Ancient Geography: The Inhabited World in Greek and Roman Tradition (2015) 245
city of alexandria, great harbor Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 10
city of alexandria, island of pharos Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 10
eratosthenes Konig, The Folds of Olympus: Mountains in Ancient Greek and Roman Culture (2022) 366
eratosthenes of cyrene Bianchetti et al., Brill’s Companion to Ancient Geography: The Inhabited World in Greek and Roman Tradition (2015) 245
intratextual reading Konig, The Folds of Olympus: Mountains in Ancient Greek and Roman Culture (2022) 366
istros (modern danube) Bianchetti et al., Brill’s Companion to Ancient Geography: The Inhabited World in Greek and Roman Tradition (2015) 244
maeotis, lake (see also sea of azov) Bianchetti et al., Brill’s Companion to Ancient Geography: The Inhabited World in Greek and Roman Tradition (2015) 244
mining Konig, The Folds of Olympus: Mountains in Ancient Greek and Roman Culture (2022) 366
mount haimos (haemus) Konig, The Folds of Olympus: Mountains in Ancient Greek and Roman Culture (2022) 366
mount rhipaia Konig, The Folds of Olympus: Mountains in Ancient Greek and Roman Culture (2022) 366
pliny the elder Bianchetti et al., Brill’s Companion to Ancient Geography: The Inhabited World in Greek and Roman Tradition (2015) 245
polybius Konig, The Folds of Olympus: Mountains in Ancient Greek and Roman Culture (2022) 366
pomponius mela Bianchetti et al., Brill’s Companion to Ancient Geography: The Inhabited World in Greek and Roman Tradition (2015) 245
posidonius Konig, The Folds of Olympus: Mountains in Ancient Greek and Roman Culture (2022) 366
ptolemy, claudius (geographer) Bianchetti et al., Brill’s Companion to Ancient Geography: The Inhabited World in Greek and Roman Tradition (2015) 245
rome, hills Konig, The Folds of Olympus: Mountains in Ancient Greek and Roman Culture (2022) 366
strabo, description of cities Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 10
strabo, heuristics Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 10
strabo, topography of alexandria' Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 10
strabo Bianchetti et al., Brill’s Companion to Ancient Geography: The Inhabited World in Greek and Roman Tradition (2015) 244, 245
tanaïs (modern don) Bianchetti et al., Brill’s Companion to Ancient Geography: The Inhabited World in Greek and Roman Tradition (2015) 244
taurus Bianchetti et al., Brill’s Companion to Ancient Geography: The Inhabited World in Greek and Roman Tradition (2015) 245; Konig, The Folds of Olympus: Mountains in Ancient Greek and Roman Culture (2022) 366
theophrastus Bianchetti et al., Brill’s Companion to Ancient Geography: The Inhabited World in Greek and Roman Tradition (2015) 244