Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Str.].
<<Str. 11.2.1 Str. 11.2.8 (Greek English(2)) >>Str. 11.2.13


In the voyage along the coast, the first object which presents itself to those who have proceeded to the distance of 800 stadia from the Tanaïs, is the Great Rhombites, as it is called, where large quantities of fish are captured for the purpose of being salted. Then at the distance of 800 stadia more is the Lesser Rhombites, [Note] and a promontory, which has smaller fisheries. The [nomades] at the former have small islands as stations for their vessels, those at the Lesser Rhombites are the Mæotæ who cultivate the ground. For along the whole of this coasting voyage live Mæotæ, who are husbandmen, but not less addicted to war than the nomades. They are divided into several tribes; those near the Tanaïs are more savage, those contiguous to the Bosporus are more gentle in their manners.

From the Lesser Rhombites to Tyrambe, and the river Anticeites, are 600 stadia; then 120 to the Cimmerian village, whence vessels set out on their voyage along the lake. In this coasting voyage we meet with some look-out places, (for observing the fish,) said to belong to the Clazomenians. 11.2.5

Cimmericum was formerly a city built upon a peninsula, the isthmus of which it enclosed with a ditch and mound. The Cimmerii once possessed great power in the Bosporus, whence it was called the Cimmerian Bosporus. These are the people who overran the territory of the inhabitants of the inland parts, on the right of the Euxine, as far as Ionia. They were dislodged from these places by Scythians, and the Scythians by Greeks, who founded Panticapæum, [Note] and the other cities on the Bosporus.

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6. Next to the village Achilleium, [Note] where is the temple of Achilles, are 20 stadia. Here is the narrowest passage, 20 stadia or more, across the mouth of the Mæotis; on the opposite continent is Myrmecium, a village. Near are Heracleium and Parthenium. 11.2.7

Thence to the monument of Satyrus are 90 stadia; this is a mound raised on a promontory, [Note] in memory of one of the illustrious princes of the Bosporus. 11.2.8

Near it is Patræus, [Note] a village, from which to Corocondame, [Note] a village, are 130 stadia. This is the termination of the Cimmerian Bosporus, as it is called. The narrow passage at the mouth of the Mœotis derives its name from the straits opposite the Achilleium, and the Myrmecium; it extends as far as Corocondame and a small village opposite to it in the territory of the Panticapæans, called Acra, [Note] and separated by a channel of 70 stadia in width. The ice reaches even to this place, for the Mæotis is frozen during severe frost so as to become passable on foot. The whole of this narrow passage has good harbours. 11.2.9

Beyond Corocondame is a large lake [Note] which is called from the place Corocondametis. It discharges itself into the sea at the distance of 10 stadia from the village. A branch [Note] of the river Anticeites empties itself into the lake, and forms an island, which is surrounded by the waters of the lake, of the Mæotis, and of the river. Some persons give this river the name of Hypanis, [Note] as well as to that [Note] near the Borysthenes. [Note] 11.2.10

Upon sailing [Note] into the Corocondametis, we meet with

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Phanagoria, a considerable city, Cepi, Hermonassa, and Apa turum, the temple of Venus (Apatura). Of these cities Phanagoria and Cepi are situated in the above-mentioned island on the left hand at the entrance of the lake; the others are on the right hand in Sindica beyond the Hypanis. There is Gorgipia, [Note] but the royal seat of the Sindi is in Sindica near the sea, and Aborace.

All those who are subject to the princes of the Bosporus are called Bosporani. The capital of the European Bosporani is Panticapæum, and of the Asian Bosporani, the city of Phanagorium, [Note] for this is the name given to it. Phanagoria seems to be the mart for those commodities which are brought down from the Mæotis, and from the barbarous country lying above it; and Panticapæum, the mart for the commodities which are transported thither from the sea. There is also in Phanagoria a magnificent temple of Venus Apatura, the Deceitful. This epithet of the goddess is derived from a fable, according to which the giants assaulted her in this place. Having obtained the assistance of Hercules she hid him in a cave, and then admitted the giants one by one into her presence, and delivered them over to Hercules, thus craftily [Note] to be put to death. 11.2.11

The Sindi, Dandarii, Toreatæ, Agri, Arrhechi, and besides these, the Tarpetes, Obidiaceni, Sittaceni, Dosci, and many others, belong to the Mæotæ; to this people belong the Aspurgiani also, who live between Phanagoria and Gorgipia, at the distance of 500 stadia [from the Mæotis?]. Polemon, the king, entered the country of these people under a

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show of friendship, but his design was discovered, and they on their part attacked him unawares. He was taken prisoner, and put to death.

With respect to the Asian Mæotæ in general, some of them were the subjects of those who possessed the mart on the Tanaïs; others, of the Bosporani; and different bodies have revolted at different times. The princes of the Bosporani were frequently masters of the country as far as the Tanaïs, and particularly the last princes, Pharnaces, Asander, and Polemon.

Pharnaces is said to have once brought even the river Hypanis over the territory of the Dandarii through some ancient canal, which he had caused to be cleared, and inundated the country.

Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Str.].
<<Str. 11.2.1 Str. 11.2.8 (Greek English(2)) >>Str. 11.2.13

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