Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [word count] [Str.].
<<Str. 8.6.20 Str. 8.6.23 (GreekEnglish) >>Str. 8.7.1

8.6.22The beginning of the seaboard on the two sides is, on the one side, Lechaeum, and, on the other, Cenchreae, a village and a harbor distant about seventy stadia from Corinth. Now this latter they use for the trade from Asia, but Lechaeum for that from Italy. Lechaeum lies beneath the city, and does not contain many residences; but long walls about twelve stadia in length have been built on both sides of the road that leads to Lechaeum. The shore that extends from here to Pagae in Megaris is washed by the Corinthian Gulf; it is concave, and with the shore on the other side, at Schoenus, which is near Cenchreae, it forms the "Diolcus." [Note] In the interval between Lechaeum and Pagae there used to be, in early times, the oracle of the Acraean Hera; and here, too, is Olmiae, the promontory that forms the gulf in which are situated Oenoe and Pagae, the latter a stronghold of the Megarians and Oenoe of the Corinthians. From Cenchreae one comes to Schoenus, where is the narrow part of the isthmus, I mean the "Diolcus"; and then one comes to Crommyonia. Off this shore lie the Saronic and Eleusinian Gulfs, which in a way are the same, and border on the Hermionic Gulf. On the Isthmus is also the temple of the Isthmian Poseidon, in the shade of a grove of pinetrees, where the Corinthians used to celebrate the Isthmian Games. Crommyon is a village in Corinthia, though in earlier times it was in Megaris; and in it is laid the scene of the myth of the Crommyonian sow, which, it is said, was the mother of the Caledonian boar; and, according to tradition, the destruction of this sow was one of the labors of Theseus. Tenea, also, is in Corinthia, and in it is a temple of the Teneatan Apollo; and it is said that most of the colonists who accompanied Archias, the leader of the colonists to Syracuse, set out from there, and that afterwards Tenea prospered more than the other settlements, and finally even had a government of its own, and, revolting from the Corinthians, joined the Romans, and endured after the destruction of Corinth. And mention is also made of an oracle that was given to a certain man from Asia, [Note] who enquired whether it was better to change his home to Corinth: "Blest is Corinth, but Tenea for me."
But in ignorance some pervert this as follows: "but Tegea for me!" And it is said that Polybus reared Oedipus here. And it seems, also, that there is a kinship between the peoples of Tenedos and Tenea, through Tennes [Note] the son of Cycnus, as Aristotle says; [Note] and the similarity in the worship of Apollo among the two peoples affords strong indications of such kinship.

8.6.23The Corinthians, when they were subject to Philip, not only sided with him in his quarrel with the Romans, but individually behaved so contemptuously towards the Romans that certain persons ventured to pour down filth upon the Roman ambassadors when passing by their house. For this and other offences, however, they soon paid the penalty, for a considerable army was sent thither, and the city itself was razed to the ground by Leucius Mummius; [Note] and the other countries as far as Macedonia became subject to the Romans, different commanders being sent into different countries; but the Sicyonians obtained most of the Corinthian country. Polybius, who speaks in a tone of pity of the events connected with the capture of Corinth, goes on to speak of the disregard shown by the army for the works of art and votive offerings; for he says that he was present and saw paintings that had been flung to the ground and saw the soldiers playing dice on these. Among the paintings he names that of Dionysus by Aristeides, [Note] to which, according to some writers, the saying, "Nothing in comparison with the Dionysus," referred; [Note] and also the painting of Heracles in torture in the robe of Deianeira. Now I have not seen the latter, but I saw the Dionysus, a most beautiful work, on the walls of the temple of Ceres in Rome; but when recently the temple was burned, [Note] the painting perished with it. And I may almost say that the most and best of the other dedicatory offerings at Rome came from there; and the cities in the neighborhood of Rome also obtained some; for Mummius, being magnanimous rather than fond of art, as they say, readily shared with those who asked. [Note] And when Leucullus built the Temple of Good Fortune and a portico, he asked Mummius for the use of the statues which he had, saying that he would adorn the temple with them until the dedication and then give them back. However, he did not give them back, but dedicated them to the goddess, and then bade Mummius to take them away if he wished. But Mummius took it lightly, for he cared nothing about them, so that he gained more repute than the man who dedicated them. Now after Corinth had remained deserted for a long time, [Note] it was restored again, because of its favorable position, by the deified Caesar, who colonized it with people that belonged for the most part to the freedmen class. And when these were removing the ruins and at the same time digging open the graves, they found numbers of terra-cotta reliefs, and also many bronze vessels. And since they admired the workmanship they left no grave unransacked; so that, well supplied with such things and disposing of them at a high price, they filled Rome with Corinthian "mortuaries," for thus they called the things taken from the graves, and in particular the earthenware. Now at the outset the earthenware was very highly prized, like the bronzes of Corinthian workmanship, but later they ceased to care much for them, since the supply of earthen vessels failed and most of them were not even well executed. The city of the Corinthians, then, was always great and wealthy, and it was well equipped with men skilled both in the affairs of state and in the craftsman's arts; for both here and in Sicyon the arts of painting and modelling and all such arts of the craftsman flourished most. The city had territory, however, that was not very fertile, but rifted and rough; and from this fact all have called Corinth "beetling," and use the proverb, "Corinth is both beetle-browed and full of hollows."Source unknown



Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [word count] [Str.].
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