Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Str.].
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But this line seems to imply some contradiction; it lies in the sea both low, and very high, [Note]
Od. ix. 25.
for χθαμαλὴ is low, and depressed, but πανυπετάτη expresses great height, as he describes it in other passages, calling it Cranæ, (or rugged,) and the road leading from the harbour, as,

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a rocky way through a woody spot, [Note]
Od. xiv. l.
and again, for there is not any island in the sea exposed to the western sun, [Note] and with good pastures, least of all Ithaca. [Note]

The expression does imply contradictions, which admit how- ever of some explanation. They do not understand χθαμαλὴ to signify in that place low, but its contiguity to the continent, to which it approaches very close; nor by πανυπετάτη great elevation, but the farthest advance towards darkness, (πὸς ζόφον,) that is, placed towards the north more than all the other islands, for this is what the poet means by towards darkness, the contrary to which is towards the south, (πὸς νότον,) the rest far off (ἄνευφε) towards the morning, and the sun. [Note]
Od. ix. 26.
For the word ἄνευθε denotes at a distance, and apart, as if the other islands lay to the south, and more distant from the continent, but Ithaca near the continent and towards the north. That the poet designates the southern part (of the heavens) in this manner appears from these words, whether they go to the right hand, towards the morning and the sun, or to the left, towards cloudy darkness; [Note] and still more evidently in these lines, my friends, we know not where darkness nor where morning lie, nor where sets nor where rises the sun which brings light to man. [Note] We may here understand the four climates, [Note] and suppose the morning to denote the southern part (of the heavens), and this has some probability; but it is better to consider what is near to the path of the sun to be opposite to the northern part (of the heavens). For the speech in Homer is intended to indicate some great change in the celestial appearances, not a mere obscuration of the climates. For this must happen

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during every cloudy season either by day or by night. Now the celestial appearances alter very much as we advance more or less towards the south, or the contrary; but this alteration does not prevent our observing the setting and rising of the sun, for in fine weather these phenomena are always visible whether in the south or the north. For the pole is the most northerly point: when this moves, and is sometimes over our heads and sometimes below the earth, the arctic circles change their position with it. Sometimes they disappear during these movements, so that you cannot discern the position of the northern climate, nor where it commences; [Note] and if this is so, neither can you distinguish the contrary climate.

The circuit of Ithaca is about 80 [Note] stadia. So much then concerning Ithaca. 10.2.13

The poet does not mention Cephallenia, which contains four cities, by its present name, nor any of the cities except one, either Samé or Samos, which no longer exists, but traces of it are shown in the middle of the Strait near Ithaca. The inhabitants have the name of Samæ. The rest still exist at present, they are small cities, Paleis, Pronesus, and Cranii. In our time Caius Antonius, the uncle of Marcus Antonius, founded an additional city, when (being an exile after his consulship in which he was the colleague of Cicero the orator) he lived at Cephallenia, and was master of the whole island, as if it had been his own property. He returned from exile before he completed the foundation of the settlement, and died when engaged in more important affairs. 10.2.14

Some writers do not hesitate to affirm, that Cephallenia and Dulichium are the same; others identify it with Taphos, and the Cephallenians with Taphians, and these again with Teleboæ. They assert that Amphitryon, with the aid of Cephalus, the son of Deioneus, an exile from Athens, undertook an expedition against the island, and having got possession of it, delivered it up to Cephalus; hence this city bore his name, and the rest those of his children. But this is not in accordance with Homer, for the Cephallenians were subject to Ulysses and Lærtes, and Taphos to Mentes; I boast that I am Mentes, son of the valiant Anchialus,
And king of the Taphians, skilful rowers. [Note]
Od. i. 181.

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Taphos is now called Taphius. [Note] Nor does Hellanicus follow Homer when he calls Cephallenia, Dulichium, for Dulichium, and the other Echinades, are said to be under the command of Meges, and the inhabitants, Epeii, who came from Elis; wherefore he calls Otus the Cyllenian,

companion of Phyleides, chief of the magnanimous Epeii; [Note] but Ulysses led the magnanimous Cephallenes. [Note] Neither, as Andro asserts, is Cephallenia, according to Homer, Dulichium, nor does Dulichium belong to Cephallenia, for Epeii possessed Dulichium, and Cephallenians the whole of Cephallenia, the former of whom were under the command of Ulysses, the latter of Meges. Paleis is not called Dulichium by Homer, as Pherecydes says. But he who asserts that Cephallenia and Dulichium are the same contradicts most strongly the account of Homer; for as fifty-two of the suitors came from Dulichium, and twenty-four from Samé, would he not say, that from the whole island came such a number of suitors, and from a single city of the four came half the number within two? If any one should admit this, we shall inquire what the Samé could be, which is mentioned in this line, Dulichium and Samé, and the woody Zacynthus. [Note]
Od. i. 246.

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