|Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Str.].|
|<<Str. 12.2||Str. 12.3 (Greek English(2))||>>Str. 12.4|
MITHRIDATES Eupator was appointed King of Pontus. His kingdom consisted of the country bounded by the Halys, [Note] extending to the Tibareni, [Note] to Armenia, to the territory within the Halys, extending as far as Amastris, [Note] and to some parts of Paphlagonia. He annexed to (the kingdom of) Pontus the sea-coast towards the west as far as Heracleia, [Note] the birthplace of Heracleides the Platonic philosopher, and towards
the east, the country extending to Colchis, and the Lesser Armenia. Pompey, after the overthrow of Mithridates, found the kingdom comprised within these boundaries. He distributed the country towards Armenia and towards Colchis among the princes who had assisted him in the war; the remainder he divided into eleven governments, and annexed them to Bithynia, so that out of both there was formed one province. Some people in the inland parts he subjected to the kings descended from Pylæmenes, in the same manner as he delivered over the Galatians to be governed by tetrarchs of that nation.
In later times the Roman emperors made different divisions of the same country, appointing kings and rulers, making some cities free, and subjecting others to the authority of rulers, others again were left under the dominion of the Roman people.
As we proceed in our description according to the present state of things, we shall touch slightly on their former condition, whenever it may be useful.
I shall begin from Heracleia, [Note] which is the most westerly of these places.12.3.2
In sailing out of the Propontis into the Euxine Sea, on the left hand are the parts adjoining to Byzantium, (Constantinople,) and these belong to the Thracians. The parts on the left of the Pontus are called Aristera (or left) of Pontus; the parts on the right are contiguous to Chalcedon. Of these the first tract of country belongs to the Bithynians, the next to the Mariandyni, or, as some say, to the Caucones; next is that of the Paphlagonians, extending to the Halys, then that of the Cappadocians near the Pontus, and then a district reaching to Colchis. [Note] All this country has the name of the Dexia (or right) of Pontus. This whole coast, from Colchis to Heracleia, was subject to Mithridates Eupator. But the parts on the other side to the mouth of the Euxine and Chalcedon, remained under the government of the king of Bithynia. After the overthrow of the kings the Romans preserved the same boundaries of the kingdoms; Heracleia was
annexed to Pontus, and the country beyond assigned to the Bithynians.12.3.3
It is generally acknowledged by writers, that the Bithynians, who were formerly Mysians, received this name from Bithynians and Thyni, Thracian people, who came and settled among them. They advance as a proof of their statement, first as regards the Bithynians, that there still exists in Thrace a people called Bithynians, and then, as regards the Thyni, that the sea-shore, near Apollonia [Note] and Salmydessus, [Note] is called Thynias. The Bebryces, who preceded them as settlers in Mysia, were, as I conjecture, Thracians. We have said [Note] that the Mysians themselves were a colony of those Thracians who are now called Mæsi.
Such is the account given of these people.12.3.4
There is not, however, the same agreement among writers with regard to the Mariandyni, and the Caucones. For they say that Heracleia is situated among the Mariandyni, and was founded by Milesians. [Note] But who they are, or whence they came, nothing is said. There is no difference in language, nor any other apparent national distinction between them and the Bithynians, whom they resemble in all respects. It is probable therefore the Mariandyni were a Thracian tribe.
Theopompus says that Mariandynus, who governed a part of Paphlagonia, which was subject to many masters, invaded and obtained possession of the country of the Bebryces, and that he gave his own name to the territory which he had before occupied. It is also said that the Milesians who first founded Heracleia, compelled the Mariandyni, the former possessors of the place, to serve as Helots, and even sold them, but not beyond the boundaries of their country. For they were sold on the same conditions as the class of persons called Mnoans, who were slaves to the Cretans, and the Penestæ, [Note] who were slaves of the Thessalians.12.3.5
The Caucones, who, according to history, inhabited the line of sea-coast which extends from the Mariandyni as far as the river Parthenius, and to whom belonged the city Tieium, [Note]
are said by some writers to be Scythians, by others a tribe of
Macedonians, and by others a tribe of Pelasgi. We have
already spoken of these people elsewhere. [Note] Callisthenes in
his comment upon the enumeration of the ships inserts after
Cromna, ægialus, and the lofty Erythini, [Note]Il. ii. 855.
The brave son of Polycles led the Caucones,
for the territory extends from Heracleia, and the Mariandyni
as far as the Leucosyri, whom we call Cappadocians. But
the tribe of the Caucones about Tieium extends to the Parthenius; that of the Heneti, who occupy Cytorum, [Note] immediately follows the Parthenius, and even at present some
Caucones are living about the Parthenius.
Who inhabited the well-known dwellings about the river Parthenius,
Heracleia is a city with a good harbour, and of importance in other respects. It has sent out colonies, among which are the Cherronesus, [Note] and the Callatis. [Note] It was once independent, afterwards for some time it was under the power of tyrants; it again recovered its freedom; but at last, when subject to the Romans, it was governed by kings. It received a colony of Romans, which was settled in a portion of the city, and of its territory. A little before the battle of Actium, Adiatorix, the son of Domnecleius the tetrarch of Galatia, who had received from Antony that portion of the city of which the Heracleiotæ were in possession, attacked the Romans by night, and put them to death by the command, as he said, of Antony; but after the victory at Actium, he was led in triumph, and put to death together with his son. The city belongs to the province of Pontus, which was annexed to Bithynia.12.3.7
Between Chalcedon and Heracleia are several rivers, as the Psillis, [Note] the Calpas, and the Sangarius, of which last the poet makes mention. [Note] It has its source at the village Sangias, at the distance of 150 stadia from Pessinus. It flows through
the greater part of Phrygia Epictetus, and a part also of Bithynia, so that it is distant from Nicomedia a little more than 300 stadia, where the river Gallus unites with it. The latter river has its source at Modra in Phrygia on the Hellespont, which is the same country as the Epictetus, and was formerly occupied by the Bithynians.
The Sangarius thus increased in bulk, and navigable, although not so formerly, is the boundary of Bithynia at the part of the coast where it discharges itself. In front of this coast is the island Thynia.
In the territory of Heracleia grows the aconite.
This city is distant from the temple at Chalcedon about
Tieium is now a small town and has nothing remarkable belonging to it, except that it was the birth-place of Philetærus, the founder of the family of the Attalic kings.
Next is the river Parthenius, flowing through a country
abounding with flowers; from these it obtained its name. [Note]
Its source is in Paphlagonia. Then succeeded Paphlagonia,
and the Heneti. It is a question what Heneti the poet
means, when he says,
the brave Pylæmenes led the Paphlagonians out of the country of the
Heneti, where they have a race of wild mules; [Note]
for at present, they say, no Heneti are to be found in Paphlagonia. Others say that it is a village on the shore distant
ten schœni from Amastris. But Zenodotus writes the verse
in this manner, From Heneta, and says that it means the
present Amisus. According to others it was a tribe bordering upon the Cappadocians, which engaged in an expedition
with the Cimmerians, and were afterwards driven away into
Adria. But the account most generally received is, that the
Heneti were the most considerable tribe of the Paphlagonians;
that Pylæmenes was descended from it; that a large body of
this people accompanied him to the Trojan war; that when
they had lost their leader they passed over to Thrace upon
the capture of Troy; and in the course of their wanderings
arrived at the present Henetic territory.
Some writers say that both Antenor and his sons participated in this expedition, and settled at the inner recess of the
gulf of Adria, as we have said in the description of Italy. [Note] It is probable that this was the cause of the extinction of the Heneti, and that they were no longer to be found in Paphlagonia.12.3.9
The boundary of the Paphlagonians to the east is the
river Halys, which flows from the south between the Syrians
and the Paphlagonians; and according to Herodotus, [Note] (who
means Cappadocians, when he is speaking of Syrians,) discharges itself into the Euxine Sea. Even at present they are
called Leuco-Syrians, (or White Syrians,) while those without
the Taurus are called Syrians. In comparison with the people within the Taurus, the latter have a burnt complexion;
but the former, not having it, received the appellation of Leuco-
Syrians (or White Syrians). Pindar says that
the Amazons commanded a Syrian band, armed with spears with broad
thus designating the people that lived at Themiscyra. [Note] Themiscyra belongs to the Amiseni, [Note] and the district of the
Amiseni to the Leuco-Syrians settled beyond the Halys.
The river Halys forms the boundary of the Paphlagonians to the east; Phrygians and the Galatians settled among that people, on the south; and on the west Bithynians and Mariandyni (for the race of the Caucones has everywhere entirely disappeared); on the north the Euxine. This country is divided into two parts, the inland, and the maritime, extending from the Halys as far as Bithynia. Mithridates Eupator possessed the maritime part as far as Heracleia, and of the inland country he had the district nearest to Heracleia, some parts of which extended even beyond the Halys. These are also the limits of the Roman province of Pontus. The remainder was subject to chiefs, even after the overthrow of Mithridates.
We shall afterwards speak of those Paphlagonians in the inland parts, who were not subject to Mithridates; we propose at present to describe the country which he governed, called Pontus.12.3.10
After the river Parthenius is Amastris, bearing the same name as the princess by whom it was founded. It is
situated upon a peninsula, with harbours on each side of the isthmus. Amastris was the wife of Dionysius, the tyrant of Heracleia, and daughter of Oxyathres, the brother of the Darius who fought against Alexander. She formed the settlement out of four cities, Sesamus, Cytorum, Cromna, (mentioned by Homer in his recital of the Paphlagonian forces, [Note]) and Tieium, which city however soon separated from the others, but the rest continued united. Of these, Sesamus is called the citadel of Amastris. Cytorum was formerly a mart of the people of Sinope. It had its name from Cytorus, the son of Phrixus, according to Ephorus. Box-wood of the best quality grows in great abundance in the territory of Amastris, and particularly about Cytorum.
ægialus is a line of sea-coast, in length more than 100 stadia.
On it is a village of the same name, [Note] which the poet mentions
in these lines,
Cromna, and ægialus, and the lofty Erythini; [Note]Il. i. 855.
Cromna and Cobialus.
The Erythini are said to be the present Erythrini, and to have
their name from their (red) colour. They are two rocks. [Note]
Next to ægialus is Carambis, a large promontory stretching towards the north, and the Scythian Chersonesus. We have frequently mentioned this promontory, and the Criu-metopon opposite it, which divides the Euxine into two seas. [Note]
Next to Carambis is Cinolis, [Note] and Anti-Cinolis, and Aboniteichos, [Note] a small city, and Armene, [Note] which gave rise to the
He who had nothing to do built a wall about Armene.
It is a village of the Sinopenses, with a harbour.
Next is Sinope itself, distant from Armene 50 stadia, the most considerable of all the cities in that quarter. It was founded by Milesians, and when the inhabitants had established a naval force they commanded the sea within the Cya-
nean rocks, and were allies of the Greeks in many naval battles beyond these limits. Although this city was independent for a long period, it did not preserve its liberty to the last, but was taken by siege, and became subject first to Pharnaces, then to his successors, to the time when the Romans put an end to the power of Mithridates Eupator. This prince was born and brought up in this city, on which he conferred distinguished honour, and made it a capital of the kingdom. It has received advantages from nature which have been improved by art. It is built upon the neck of a peninsula; on each side of the isthmus are harbours, stations for vessels, and fisheries worthy of admiration for the capture of the pelamydes. Of these fisheries we have said [Note] that the people of Sinope have the second, and the Byzantines the third, in point of excellence.
The peninsula projects in a circular form; the shores are surrounded by a chain of rocks, and in some parts there are cavities, like rocky pits, which are called Chœnicides. These are filled when the sea is high. For the above reason, the place is not easily approached; besides which, along the whole surface of rock the road is covered with sharp-pointed stones, and persons cannot walk upon it with naked feet. The lands in the higher parts and above the city have a good soil, and are adorned with fields dressed as gardens, and this is the case in a still greater degree in the suburbs. The city itself is well secured with walls, and magnificently ornamented with a gymnasium, forum, and porticos. Notwithstanding these advantages for defence, it was twice taken; first by Pharnaces, who attacked it unexpectedly; afterwards by Lucullus, who besieged it while it was harassed by an insidious tyrant within the walls. For Bacchides, [Note] who was appointed by the king commander of the garrison, being always suspicious of treachery on the part of those within the city, had disgraced and put many to death. He thus prevented the citizens both from defending themselves with bravery, although capable of making a gallant defence, and from offering terms for a capitulation. The city was therefore captured. Lucullus took away
the Sphere of Billarus, [Note] and the Autolycus, [Note] the workmanship of Sthenis, whom the citizens regarded as a founder, and honoured as a god; he left the other ornaments of the city untouched. There was there an oracle of Sthenis. He seems to have been one of the companions of Jason in his voyage, and to have got possession of this place. In after times the Milesians, observing the natural advantages of the city, and the weakness of the inhabitants, appropriated it as their own, and sent out colonists. It has at present a Roman colony, and a part of the city and of the territory belongs to the Romans. It is distant from Hieron [Note] 3500, from Heracleia 2000, and from Carambis 700, stadia. It has produced men distinguished among philosophers, Diogenes the Cynic, and Timotheus surnamed Patrion; among poets, Diphilus, the writer of comedy; among historians, Baton, [Note] who wrote the history of Persia.12.3.12
Proceeding thence, next in order is the mouth of the river Halys. It has its name from the hales, or salt mines, [Note] near which it flows. It has its source in the Greater Cappadocia, near the territory of Pontus, in Camisene. It flows in a large stream towards the west, then turning to the north through the country of the Galatians and Paphlagonians, forms the boundary of their territory, and of that of the Leuco—Syrians. The tract of land belonging to Sinope and all the mountainous country as far as Bithynia, situated above the sea-coast, which has been described, furnishes timber of excellent quality for ship-building, and is easily conveyed away. The territory of
Sinope produces the maple, and the mountain nut tree, from which wood for tables is cut. The whole country is planted with the olive, and cultivation begins a little above the seacoast.12.3.13
Next to the mouth of the Halys is Gadilónitis, extending as far as the Saramene; it is a fertile country, wholly consisting of plains, and produces every kind of fruit. It affords also pasture for flocks of sheep which are covered [Note] with skins, and produce a soft wool; very little of this wool is to be found throughout Cappadocia and Pontus. There are also deer, [Note] which are rare in other parts.
The Amiseni possess one part of this country. Pompey gave another to Deïotarus, as well as the tract about Pharnacia and Trapezus as far as Colchis and the Lesser Armenia. Pompey appointed him king of these people and countries: he had already inherited the tetrarchy of the Galatians, called the Tolistobogii. Upon his death various persons succeeded to the different parts of his kingdom.12.3.14
Next to Gadilon [Note] are the Saramene, [Note] and Amisus, a considerable city distant from Sinope about 900 stadia. Theopompus says that the Milesians were the first founders, * * * * * [Note][then by] a chief of the Cappadocians; in the third place it received a colony of Atlenians under the conduct of Athenocles, and its name was changed to Piræus.
This city also was in the possession of the kings. Mithridates Eupator embellished it with temples, and added a part to it. Lucullus, and afterwards Pharnaces, who came from across the Bosporus, besieged it. Antony surrendered it to the kings of Pontus, after it had been declared free by Divus Cæsar. Then the Tyrant Strato oppressed the inhabitants, who again recovered their liberty under Cæsar Augustus after the battle of Actium. They are now in a prosperous condition. Among other fertile spots is Themiscyra, [Note] the abode of the Amazons, and Sidene. [Note]
15. Themiscyra is a plain, partly washed by the sea, and distant about 60 stadia from the city (Amisus); and partly situated at the foot of a mountainous country, which is well wooded, and intersected with rivers, which have their source among the mountains. A river, named Thermodon, which receives the water of all these rivers traverses the plain.
Another river very similar to this, of the name of Iris, [Note] flowing from a place called Phanarœa, [Note] traverses the same plain. It has its sources in Pontus. Flowing westward through the city of Pontic Comana, [Note] and through Dazimonitis, [Note] a fertile plain, it then turns to the north beside Gaziura, [Note] an ancient seat of the kings, but now deserted; it then again returns to the east, where, uniting with the Scylax [Note] and other rivers, and taking its course beside the walls of my native place, Amaseia, [Note] a very strongly fortified city, proceeds to Phanarœa. There when joined by the Lycus, [Note] which rises in Armenia, it becomes the Iris. It then enters Themiscyra, and discharges itself into the Euxine. This plain, therefore, is well watered with dews, is constantly covered with herbage, and is capable of affording food to herds of cattle as well as to horses. The largest crops there consist of panic and millet, or rather they never fail, for the supply of water more than counteracts the effect of all drought; these people, therefore, never on any occasion experience a famine. The country at the foot of the mountains produces so large an autumnal crop of spontaneous-grown wild fruits, of the vine, the pear, the apple, and hazel, that, in all seasons of the year, persons who go into the woods to cut timber gather them in large quantities; the fruit is found either yet hanging upon the trees or lying beneath a deep covering of fallen leaves thickly strewed upon the ground. Wild animals of all kinds, which resort here on account of the abundance of food, are frequently hunted.12.3.16
Next to Themiscyra is Sidene, a fertile plain, but not watered in the same manner by rivers as Themiscyra. It has strongholds on the sea-coast, as Side, [Note] from which Sidene has
its name, Chabaca and Phabda (Phauda). [Note] Amisene extends as far as this place.
Among the natives of Amisus [Note] distinguished for their learning were the mathematicians Demetrius, the son of Rathenus, and Dionysodorus, of the same name as the Ionian (Milesian?) geometrician, and Tyrannion the grammarian, whose lessons I attended.12.3.17
Next to Sidene is Pharnacia [Note] a small fortified city, and
then follows Trapezus, [Note] a Greek city, to which from Amisus
is a voyage of about 2200 stadia; thence to the Phasis
In sailing along this coast from Amisus we first come to the Heracleian promontory; [Note] then succeeds another promontory, Jasonium, [Note] and the Genetes; [Note] then Cytorus (Cotyorus) a small city, [Note] from which Pharnacia received a colony; then Ischopolis, which is in ruins. Next is a bay on which are situated Cerasus, and Hermonassa, [Note] small settlements. Near Hermonassa is Trapezus, then Colchis. Somewhere about this place is a settlement called Zygopolis.
I have already spoken of Colchis, and of the sea-coast beyond. [Note]12.3.18
Above Trapezus and Pharnacia are situated Tibareni, Chaldæi, Sanni, (who were formerly called Macrones, [Note]) and the Lesser Armenia. The Appaitæ also, formerly called Cercitæ, are not far from these places. Through the country belonging to these people stretches the Scydises, [Note] a very rugged mountain, contiguous to the Moschic mountains [Note] above Colchis. The heights of the Scydises are occupied by the Heptacometæ. [Note] This country is likewise traversed by the Paryadres, [Note] which extends from the neighbourhood of Sidene and Themiscyra to the Lesser Armenia, and forms the eastern side of the Pontus.
All the inhabitants of these mountains are quite savage, but the Heptacometæ are more so than all the others. Some of them live among trees, or in small towers, whence the ancients called them Mosynceci, [Note] because the towers were called mosȳnes. Their food consists of the flesh of wild animals and the fruits of trees. They attack travellers, leaping down from the floors of their dwellings among the trees. The Heptacometæ cut off three of Pompey's cohorts, as they were passing through the mountains, by placing on their road vessels filled with maddening honey, which is procured from the branches of trees. The men who had tasted the honey and lost their senses were attacked and easily despatched. Some of these barbarians were called Byzeres.12.3.19
The present Chaldæi were anciently called Chalybes. It is in their territory chiefly that Pharnacia is situated. On the sea-coast it has natural advantages for the capture of the pelamydes. For this fish is first caught at this place. On the mainland there are at present mines of iron; formerly there were also mines of silver. The sea-shore along all these places is very narrow, for directly above it are hills, which abound with mines and forests; much, however, of the country is not cultivated. The miners derive their subsistence from the mines, and the fishermen from the fisheries, especially from the capture of pelamydes and dolphins. The dolphins pursue shoals of fish, the cordyla, the tunny, and even the pelamys; they grow fat on them, and as they approach the land incautiously, are easily taken. They are caught with a bait and then cut into pieces; large quantities of the fat are used for all purposes.12.3.20
These I suppose are the people who are called by
Homer Halizoni, who in his Catalogue follow the Paphlagonians.
But Odius and Epistrophus led the Halizoni
Il. ii. 856.
Far from Alybe, where there are silver mines; [Note]
cially when we know that names are subject to many changes,
more especially among barbarians. For example, a tribe of
Thracians were called Sinties, then Sinti, then Saii, in whose
country Archilochus is said to have thrown away his shield:
one of the Saii exults in having a shield, which, without blame, I involuntarily left behind in a thicket.
This same people have now the name of Sapæi. For all
these people were settled about Abdera, they also held Lemnos and the islands about Lemnos. Thus also Brygi, Briges,
and Phryges are the same people; and Mysi, Mæones, and
Meones are the same people. But it is unnecessary to multiply instances of this kind.
The Scepsian (Demetrius) throws some doubt on the alteration of the name from Alybes to Chalybes, but not understanding what follows, nor what accords with it, nor, in particular, why the poet calls the Chalybes Alizoni, he rejects the opinion that there has been an alteration of name. In comparing his opinion with my own I shall consider also the hypotheses entertained by others.12.3.21
Some persons alter the word to Alazones, others to Amazons, and Alybe to Alope, or Alobe, calling the Scythians above the Borysthenes Alazones and Callipidæ, and by other names, about which Hellanicus, Herodotus, and Eudoxus have talked very absurdly; some say that the Amazons were situated between Mysia, Caria, and Lydia near Cyme, which is the opinion also of Ephorus, who was a native of the latter place. And this opinion may not be unreasonable, for he may mean the country which in later times was inhabited by the æolians and Ionians, but formerly by Amazons. There are some cities, it is said, which have their names from the Amazons; as Ephesus, Smyrna, Cyme, and Myrina. But would any one think of inquiring in these places after Alybe, or, according to some writers, Alope, or Alobe; what would be the meaning of from afar, or where is the silver mine?12.3.22
These objections he solves by an alteration in the text,
for he writes the verses in this manner,
But Odius and Epistrophus led the Amazons,
But by this solution he has invented another fiction. For
Who came from Alope, whence the tribe of the Amazonides.
Alope is nowhere to be found in that situation, and the alteration in the text, itself a great change, and contrary to the authority of ancient copies, looks like an adaptation formed for the occasion.
The Scepsian (Demetrius) does not adopt the opinion of Ephorus, nor does he agree with those who suppose them to be the Halizoni about Pallene, whom we mentioned in the description of Macedonia. He is at a loss also to understand how any one could suppose that auxiliaries could come to the Trojans from the Nomades situated above the Borysthenes. He much approves of the opinion of Hecateus the Milesian, and of Menecrates of Elea, disciples of Xenocrates, and that of Palæphatus. The first of these says in his work entitled the Circuit of the Earth, near the city Alazia is the river Odrysses, which after flowing through the plain of Mygdonia from the west, out of the lake Dascylitis, empties itself into the Rhyndacus. He further relates that Alazia is now deserted, but that many villages of the Alazones through which the Odrysses flows are inhabited. In these villages Apollo is worsihpped with peculiar honours, and especially on the confines of the Cyziceni.
Menecrates, in his work the Circuit of the Hellespont, says that above the places near Myrleia there is a continuous mountain tract occupied by the nation of the Halizoni. The name, he says, ought to be written with two l's, Hallizoni, but the poet uses one only on account of the metre.
Palæphatus says that Odius and Epistrophus levied their army from among the Amazons then living in Alope, but at present in Zeleia. [Note]
Do the opinions of these persons deserve approbation? For besides their alteration of the ancient text, and the position of this people, they neither point out the silver mines, nor where in Myrleatis Alope is situated, nor how they, who came thence to Troy, came from afar, although it should be granted that there existed an Alope, or an Alazia. For these are much nearer Troy than the places about Ephesus. Those, however, are triflers, in the opinion of Demetrius, who speak of the existence of Amazons near Pygela, between Ephesus, Magnesia, and Priene, for the words from afar do not agree with the spot; much less will they agree with a situation about Mysia, and Teuthrania.
23. This may be true, says he, but some expressions are to
be understood as loosely applied, such as these,
Far from Ascania, [Note]Il. ii. 863.
His name was Arnæus, given to him by his honoured mother, [Note]Od. xviii. 5.
Penelope seized the well-turned key with her firm hand. [Note]Od. xxi. 6.
But Demetrius does not altogether agree with those whose opinions he espouses. For when he is describing the neighbourhood of Scepsis his own birth-place, he mentions Enea, a village, Argyria, and Alazonia, as near Scepsis, and the æsepus; [Note] but if these places exist at all, they must be near the sources of the æsepus. Hecatæus places them beyond the mouths of that river. Palsæphatus, who says that the Amazons formerly occupied Alope, and at present Zeleia, does not advance anything in agreement with these statements. But if Menecrates agrees with Demetrius, neither does Menecrates say what this Alope, or Alobe, is, (or, in whatever manner they please to write the name,) nor yet does Demetrius himself.12.3.24
With regard to Apollodorus, who mentions these places in his discourse on the array of the Trojan forces, we have
said much before in reply to him, and we must now speak of
him again. [Note] He is of opinion that we ought not to understand
the Halizoni without the Halys, for no auxiliaries came to
Troy from the country on the other side of the Halys.
First, then, we will inquire of him who are the Halizoni
within the Halys, and situated
far from Alybe, where are silver mines?
He will not be able to reply. Next we will ask the reason
why he does not admit that some auxiliaries came from the
country on the other side of the Halys. For if it was the
case, that all the rest were living on this side the Halys, except the Thracians, nothing prevented this one body of allies
from coming from afar, from the country beyond the Leuco-
Syrians? Or, was it possible for the persons immediately
engaged in the war to pass over from those places, and from
the country beyond them, as the Amazons, Treres, and Cimmerians, but impossible for allies to do so?
The Amazons were not allies, because Priam had fought in
alliance with the Phrygians against them:
at that time, says Priam, I was among their auxiliaries on that day,
when the Amazons came to attack them. [Note]
The people also who were living on the borders of the country of the Amazons were not situated at so great a distance that it was difficult to send for them from thence, nor did any animosity exist, I suppose, at that time to prevent them from affording assistance.12.3.25
Nor is there any foundation for the opinion, that all the ancients agree that no people from the country beyond the Halys took part in the Trojan war. Testimony may be found to the contrary. Mæandrius at least says that Heneti came from the country of the Leuco-Syrians to assist the Tro- jans in the war; that they set sail thence with the Thracians, and settled about the recess of the Adriatic; and that the Heneti, who had no place in the expedition, were Cappadocians. This account seems to agree with the circumstance, that the people inhabiting the whole of that part of Cappadocia near the Halys, which extends along Paphlagonia, speak two dialects, and that their language abounds with Paphlagonian names, as
Bagas, Biasas, æniates, Rhatotes, Zardoces, Tibius, Gasys,
Oligasys, and Manes. For these names are frequently to be
found in the Bamonitis, the Pimolitis, the Gazaluitis, and
Gazacene, and in most of the other districts. Apollodorus
himself quotes the words of Homer, altered by Zenodotus;
from Henete, whence comes a race of wild mules,
and says, that Hecatæus the Milesian understands Henete to
mean Amisus. But we have shown that Amisus belongs to
the Leuco-Syrians, and is situated beyond the Halys.
He also somewhere says that the poet obtained his knowledge of the Paphlagonians, situated in the interior, from persons who had travelled through the country on foot, but that he was not acquainted with the sea-coast any more than with the rest of the territory of Pontus; for otherwise he would have mentioned it by name. We may, on the contrary, after the description which has just been given of the country, retort and say that he has traversed the whole of the sea-coast, and has omitted nothing worthy of record which existed at that time. It is not surprising that he does not mention Heracleia, Amastris, or Sinope, for they were not founded; nor is it strange that he should omit to speak of the interior of the country; nor is it a proof of ignorance not to specify by name many places which were well known, as we have shown in a preceding part of this work.
He says that Homer was ignorant of much that was remarkable in Pontus, as rivers and nations, otherwise he would have mentioned their names. This may be admitted with respect to some very remarkable nations and rivers, as the Scythians, the Palus Mæotis, and the Danube. For he would not have described the Nomades, by characteristic signs, as living on milk, Abii, a people without certain means of subsistence, most just and renowned Hippemolgi, (milkers of mares,) and not distinguished them as Scythians, or Sauromatæ, or Sarmatæ, if, indeed, they had these names among the Greeks (at that time). Nor in mentioning the Thracians and Mysians, who live near the Danube, would he have passed over in silence the Danube itself, one of the largest rivers, particularly as, in other instances, he is inclined to mark the boundaries of places by rivers; nor in speaking of the Cimmerians would he have omitted the Bosporus, or the Mæotis.
27. With respect then to places not so remarkable, or not famous at that time, or not illustrating the subject of his poem, who can blame the poet for omitting them? As, for example, omitting to mention the Don, famed only as it is for being the boundary of Asia and Europe. The persons however of that time were not accustomed to use the name either of Asia or Europe, nor was the habitable earth divided into three continents; otherwise he would have mentioned them by name on account of their strong characteristic marks, as he mentioned by name Libya (Africa), and the Libs (the south-west wind), blowing from the western parts of Africa. But as the continents were not yet distinguished, it was not necessary that he should mention the Don. There were many things worthy of record, which did not occur to him. For both in actions and in discourse much is done and said without any cause or motive, by merely spontaneously presenting itself to the mind.
It is evident from all these circumstances that every person who concludes that because a certain thing is not mentioned by the poet he was therefore ignorant of it, uses a bad argument; and we must prove by several examples that it is bad, for many persons employ this kind of evidence to a great extent. We must refute them therefore by producing such instances as these which follow, although we shall repeat what has been already said.
If any one should maintain that the poet was not acquainted with a river which he has not mentioned, we should say that his argument is absurd, for he has not mentioned by name even the river Meles, which runs by Smyrna, his birth-place according to many writers, while he has mentioned the rivers Hermus and Hyllus by name, but yet not the Pactolus, [Note] which discharges itself into the same channel as these rivers, and rises in the mountain Tmolus. [Note] He does not mention either Smyrna itself, or the other cities of the Ionians, or most of those of the æolians, although he specifies Miletus, Samos, Lesbos, and Tenedos. He does not mention the Lethæus, which flows beside Magnesia, [Note] nor the Marsyas, which rivers empty themselves into the Mæander, [Note] which he mentions by name, as well as
the Rhesus, Heptapous, Caresus, and Rhodius, [Note]Il. xii. 20.
The argument drawn from this is false; the true argument would have been to show that the poet has asserted what is not true. Apollodorus has not succeeded in this attempt, and he has more particularly failed when he ventures to call by the name of fiction the renowned Hippemolgi and Galactophagi. So much then in reply to Apollodorus. I now return to the part of my description which follows next in order.12.3.28
Above the places about Pharnacia and Trapezus are the Tibareni, and Chaldæi, extending as far as the Lesser Armenia.
The Lesser Armenia is sufficiently fertile. Like Sophene it was always governed by princes who were sometimes in alliance with the other Armenians, and sometimes acting independently. They held in subjection the Chaldæi and Tibareni. Their dominion extended as far as Trapezus and Pharnacia. When Mithridates Eupator became powerful, he made himself master of Colchis, and of all those places which were ceded to him by Antipater the son of Sisis. He bestowed however so much care upon them, that he built seventy-five strongholds, in which he deposited the greatest part of his treasure. The most considerable of these were Hydara, Basgedariza, and [Note]
Sinoria, a fortress situated on the borders of the Greater Armenia, whence Theophanes parodied the name, and called it Synoria.
All the mountainous range of the Paryadres has many such convenient situations for fortresses, being well supplied with water and timber, it is intersected in many places by abrupt ravines and precipices. Here he built most of the strongholds for keeping his treasure. At last on the invasion of the country by Pompey he took refuge in these extreme parts of the kingdom of Pontus, and occupied a mountain near Dasteira in Acilisene, which was well supplied with water. The Euphrates also was near, which is the boundary between Acilisene and the Lesser Armenia. Mithridates remained there till he was besieged and compelled to fly across the mountains into Colchis, and thence to Bosporus. Pompey built near this same place in the Lesser Armenia Nicopolis, a city which yet subsists, and is well inhabited.12.3.29
The Lesser Armenia, which was in the possession of different persons at different times, according to the pleasure of the Romans, was at last subject to Archelaus. The Tibareni, however, and Chaldæi, extending as far as Colchis, Pharnacia, and Trapezus, are under the government of Pythodoris, a prudent woman, and capable of presiding over the management of public affairs. She is the daughter of Pythodorus of Tralles. She was the wife of Polemo, and reigned conjointly with him for some time. She succeeded, after his death, to the throne. He died in the country of the Aspurgiani, a tribe of barbarians living about Sindica. She had two sons by Polemo, and a daughter who was married to Cotys the Sapæan. He was treacherously murdered, and she became a widow. She had children by him, the eldest of whom is now king. Of the sons of Pythodoris, one as a private person, administers, together with his mother, the affairs of the kingdom, the other has been lately made king of the Greater Armenia. Pythodoris however married Archelaus, and remained with him till his death. At present she is a widow, and in possession of the countries before mentioned, and of others still more beautiful, of which we shall next speak.12.3.30
Sidene, and Themiseyra are contiguous to Pharnacia. Above these countries is situated Phanarœa, containing the best portion of the Pontus, for it produces excellent oil and
wine, and possesses every other property of a good soil. On the eastern side it lies in front of the Paryadres which runs parallel to it; on the western side it has the Lithrus, and the Ophlimus. It forms a valley of considerable length and breadth. The Lycus, coming out of Armenia, flows through this valley, and the Iris, which issues from the passes near Amaseia. Both these rivers unite about the middle of the valley. A city stands at their confluence which the first founder called Eupatoria, after his own name. Pompey found it half-finished, and added to it a territory, furnished it with inhabitants, and called it Magnopolis. It lies in the middle of the plain. Close to the foot of the Paryadres is situated Cabeira, about 150 stadia further to the south than Magnopolis, about which distance likewise, but towards the west, is Amaseia. At Cabeira was the palace of Mithridates, the water-mill, the park for keeping wild animals, the hunting-ground in the neighbourhood, and the mines.12.3.31
There also is the Cainochorion, (New Castle,) as it is called, a fortified and precipitous rock, distant from Cabeira less than 200 stadia. On its summit is a spring, which throws up abundance of water, and at its foot a river, and a deep ravine. The ridge of rocks on which it stands is of very great height, so that it cannot be taken by siege. It is enclosed with an excellent wall, except the part where it has been demolished by the Romans. The whole country around is so covered with wood, so mountainous, and destitute of water, that an enemy cannot encamp within the distance of 120 stadia. There Mithridates had deposited his most valuable effects, which are now in the Capitol, as offerings dedicated by Pompey.
Pythodoris is in possession of all this country; (for it is contiguous to that of the barbarians, which she holds as a conquered country;) she also holds the Zelitis and the Megalopolitis. After Pompey had raised Cabeira to the rank of a city, and called it Diospolis, Pythodoris improved it still more, changed its name to Sebaste, (or Augusta,) and considers it a royal city.
She has also the temple of Men surnamed of Pharnaces, at Ameria, a village city, inhabited by a large body of sacred menials, and having annexed to it a sacred territory, the produce of which is always enjoyed by the priest. The kings held this temple in such exceeding veneration, that this was the Royal oath, by the fortune of the king, and by Mēn of
Pharnaces. This is also the temple of the moon, like that among the Albani, and those in Phrygia, namely the temple of Mēn in a place of the same name, the temple of Ascæus at Antioch in Pisidia, and another in the territory of Antioch.12.3.32
Above Phanarœa is Comana [Note] in Pontus, of the same name as that in the Greater Cappadocia, and dedicated to the same goddess. The temple is a copy of that in Cappadocia, and nearly the same course of religious rites is practised there; the mode of delivering the oracles is the same; the same respect is paid to the priests, as was more particularly the case in the time of the first kings, when twice a year, at what is called the Exodi of the goddess, (when her image is carried in procession,) the priest wore the diadem of the goddess and received the chief honours after the king.12.3.33
We have formerly mentioned Dorylaus the Tactician, who was my mother's great grandfather; and another Dorylaus, who was the nephew of the former, and the son of Philetærus; I said that, although he had obtained from Mithridates the highest dignities and even the priesthood of Comana, he was detected in the fact of attempting the revolt of the kingdom to the Romans. Upon his fall the family also was disgraced. At a later period however Moaphernes, my mother's uncle, rose to distinction near upon the dissolution of the kingdom. But a second time he and his friends shared in the misfortunes of the king, except those persons who had anticipated the calamity and deserted him early. This was the case with my maternal grandfather, who, perceiving the unfortunate progress of the affairs of the king in the war with Lucullus, and at the same time being alienated from him by resentment for having lately put to death his nephew Tibius, and his son Theophilus. undertook to avenge their wrongs and his own. He obtained pledges of security from Lucullus, and caused fifteen fortresses to revolt; in return he received magnificent promises. On the arrival of Pompey, who succeeded Lucullus in the conduct of the war, he regarded as enemies (in consequence of the enmity which subsisted between himself and that general) all those persons who had performed any services that were acceptable to Lucullus. On his return home at the conclusion of the war he prevailed upon the senate not to confirm those honours which Lucullus had promised to some persons of
Pontus, maintaining it to be unjust towards a general who had brought the war to a successful issue, that the rewards and distribution of honours should be placed in the hands of another.12.3.34
The affairs of Comana were administered as has been described in the time of the kings. Pompey, when he had obtained the power, appointed Archelaus priest, and assigned to him a district of two schoeni, or 60 stadia in circuit, in addition to the sacred territory, and gave orders to the inhabitants to obey Archelaus. He was their governor, and master of the sacred slaves who inhabited the city, but had not the power of selling them. The slaves amounted to no less than six thousand.
This Archelaus was the son of that Archelaus who received honours from Sylla and the senate; he was the friend of Gabinius, a person of consular rank. When the former was sent into Syria, he came with the expectation of accompanying in, when he was making preparations for the Parthian war, out the senate would not permit him to do so, and he abandoned this, and conceived a greater design.
Ptolemy, the father of Cleopatra, happened at this time to be ejected from his kingdom by the ægyptians. His daughter however, the elder sister of Cleopatra, was in possession of the throne. When inquiries were making in order to marry her to a husband of royal descent, Archelaus presented himself to those who were negotiating the affair, and pretended to be the son of Mithridates Eupator. He was accepted, but reigned only six months. He was killed by Gabinius in a pitched battle, in his attempt to restore Ptolemy.12.3.35
His son however succeeded to the priesthood, and Lycomedes succeeded him, to whom was assigned an additional district of four schœni (or 120 stadia) in extent. When Lycomedes was dispossessed he was succeeded by Dyteutus, the son of Adiatorix, who still occupies the post, and appears to have obtained this honour from Cæsar Augustus on account of his good conduct on the following occasion.
Cæsar, after leading in triumph Adiatorix, with his wife and children, had resolved to put him to death together with the eldest of his sons. Dyteutus was the eldest; but when the second of his brothers told the soldiers who were leading them away to execution that he was the eldest, there was a contest between the two brothers, which continued for some time, till
the parents prevailed upon Dyteutus to yield to the younger, assigning as a reason, that the eldest would be a better person to protect his mother and his remaining brother. The younger was put to death together with his father; the elder was saved, and obtained this office. When Cæsar was informed of the execution of these persons, he regretted it, and, considering the survivors worthy of his favour and protection, bestowed upon them this honourable appointment.12.3.36
Comana is populous, and is a considerable mart, frequented by persons coming from Armenia. Men and women assemble there from all quarters from the cities and the country to celebrate the festival at the time of the exodi or processions of the goddess. Some persons under the obligation of a vow are always residing there, and perform sacrifices in honour of the goddess.
The inhabitants are voluptuous in their mode of life. All their property is planted with vines, and there is a multitude of women, who make a gain of their persons, most of whom are dedicated to the goddess. The city is almost a little Corinth. On account of the multitude of harlots at Corinth, who are dedicated to Venus, and attracted by the festivities of the place, strangers resorted thither in great numbers. Merchants and soldiers were quite ruined, so that hence the proverb originated, every man cannot go to Corinth. Such is the character of Comana.12.3.37
All the country around is subject to Pythodoris, a .d she possesses also Phanarœa, the Zelitis, and the Megalopolitis.
We have already spoken of Phanarœa.
In the district Zelitis is the city Zela, [Note] built upon the mound of Semiramis. It contains the temple of Anaitis, whom the Armenians also worship. Sacrifices are performed with more pomp than in other places, and all the people of Pontus take oaths here in affairs of highest concern. The multitude of the sacred menials, and the honours conferred upon the priests, were in the time of the kings, upon the plan which I have before described. At present, however, everything is under the power of Pythodoris, but many persons had previously reduced the number of the sacred attendants, injured the property and diminished the revenue belonging to the
temple. The adjacent district of Zelitis, (in which is the
city Zela, on the mound of Semiramis,) was reduced by being
divided into several governments. Anciently, the kings did
not govern Zela as a city, but regarded it as a temple of the
Persian gods; the priest was the director of everything relating to its administration. It was inhabited by a multitude
of sacred menials, by the priest, who possessed great wealth,
and by his numerous attendants; the sacred territory was
under the authority of the priest, and it was his own property.
Pompey added many provinces to Zelitis, and gave the name
of city to Zela, as well as to Megalopolis. He formed Zelitis,
Culupene, and Camisene, into one district. The two latter
bordered upon the Lesser Armenia, and upon Laviansene.
Fossile salt was found in them, and there was an ancient
fortress called Camisa, at present in ruins. The Roman governors who next succeeded assigned one portion of these two
governments to the priests of Comana, another to the priest of
Zela, and another to Ateporix, a chief of the family of the
tetrarchs of Galatia; upon his death, this portion, which was
not large, became subject to the Romans under the name of a
province. This little state is a political body of itself, Carana [Note]
There remain to be described the parts of Pontus, situated between this country and the districts of Amisus, and Sinope, extending towards Cappadocia, the Galatians, and the Paphlagonians.
Next to the territory of the Amiseni is Phazemonitis, [Note]
which extends as far as the Halys, and which Pompey called Neapolitis. He raised the village Phazemon to the rank of a city, and increasing its extent gave to it the name of Nea, polls. [Note] The northern side of this tract is bounded by the Gazelonitis, and by the country of the Amiseni; the western side by the Halys; the eastern by Phanarœa; the remainder by the territory of Amasis, my native country, which surpasses all the rest in extent and fertility.
The part of Phazemonitis towards Phanarœa is occupied by a lake, sea-like in magnitude, called Stiphane, [Note] which abounds with fish, and has around it a large range of pasture adapted to all kinds of animals. Close upon it is a strong fortress, Cizari, [Icizari,] at present deserted, and near it a royal seat in ruins. The rest of the country in general is bare, but produces corn.
Above the district of Amasis are the hot springs [Note] of the Phazemonitee, highly salubrious, and the Sagylium, [Note] a strong- hold situated on a lofty perpendicular hill, stretching upwards and terminating in a sharp peak. In this fortress is a reservoir well supplied with water, which is at present neglected, but was useful, on many occasions, to the kings. Here the sons of Pharnaces the king captured and put to death Arsaces, who was governing without the authority of the Roman generals, and endeavouring to produce a revolution in the state. The fortress was taken by Polemo and Lycomedes, both of them kings, by famine and not by storm. Arsaces, being prevented from escaping into the plains, fled to the mountains without provisions. There he found the wells choked up with large pieces of rock. This had been done by order of Pompey, who had directed the fortresses to be demolished, and to leave nothing in them that could be serviceable to robbers, who might use them as places of refuge. Such was the settlement of the Phazemonitis made by Pompey. Those who came afterwards divided this district among various kings.12.3.39
My native city, Amaseia, lies in a deep and extensive valley, through which runs the river Iris. [Note] It is indebted to nature and art for its admirable position and construction. It
answers the double purpose of a city and a fortress. It is a high rock, precipitous on all sides, descending rapidly down to the river: on the margin of the river, where the city stands, is a wall, and a wall also which ascends on each side of the city to the peaks, of which there are two, united by nature, and completely fortified with towers. In this circuit of the wall are the palace, and the monuments of the kings. The peaks are connected together by a very narrow ridge, in height five or six stadia on each side, as you ascend from the banks of the river, and from the suburbs. From the ridge to the peaks there remains another sharp ascent of a stadium in length, which defies the attacks of an enemy. Within the rock are reservoirs of water, the supply from which the inhabitants cannot be deprived of, as two channels are cut, one in the direction of the river, the other of the ridge. Two bridges are built over the river, one leading from the city to the suburbs, the other from the suburbs to the country beyond; for near this bridge the mountain, which overhangs the rock, terminates.
A valley extends from the river; it is not very wide at its commencement, but afterwards increases in breadth, and forms the plain called the Chiliocomon (The Thousand Villages). Next is the Diacopene, and the Pimolisene, the whole of which is a fertile district extending to the Halys.
These are the northern parts of the country of the Amasenses, and are in length about 500 stadia. Then follows the remainder, which is much longer, extending as far as Babanomus, and the Ximene, [Note] which itself reaches to the Halys. The breadth is reckoned from north to south, to the Zelitis and the Greater Cappadocia, as far as the Trocmi. [Note] In Ximene there is found fossile salt, (ἄλες, Hales,) from which it is supposed the river had the name of Halys. There are many ruined fortresses in my native country, and large tracts of land made a desert by the Mithridatic war. The whole of it, however, abounds with trees. It affords pasture for horses, and is adapted to the subsistence of other animals; the whole of it is very habitable. Amaseia was given to the kings, but at present it is a (Roman) province.
40. There remains to be described the country within the
Halys, belonging to the province of Pontus, and situated about
the Olgassys, [Note] and contiguous to the Sinopic district. The Ol-
gassys is a very lofty mountain, and difficult to be passed. The
Paphlagonians have erected temples in every part of this
mountain. The country around, the Blæne, and the Domanitis, through which the river Amnias [Note] runs, is sufficiently
fertile. Here it was that Mithridates Eupator entirely destroyed [Note]
So much respecting Pontus.12.3.41
Next to Pompeiopolis is the remainder of the inland parts of Paphlagonia as far as Bithynia towards the west. This tract, although small in extent, was governed, a little before our time, by several princes, but their race is extinct; at present it is in possession of the Romans. The parts bordering upon Bithynia are called Timonitis; the country of Geza-
torix, Marmolitis, Sanisene, and Potamia. There was also a Cimiatene, in which was Cimiata, a strong fortress situated at the foot of the mountainous range of the Olgassys. Mithridates, surnamed Ctistes, (or the Founder,) made it his head-quarters when engaged in the conquest of Pontus, and his successors kept possession of it to the time of Mithridates Eupator. The last king of Paphlagonia was Deïotarus, [Note] son of Castor, and surnamed Philadelphus, who possessed Gangra, [Note] containing the palace of Morzeus, a small town, and a fortress.12.3.42
Eudoxus, without defining the spot, says, that fossil fish [Note] are found in Paphlagonia in dry ground, and in marshy ground also about the lake Ascanius, [Note] which is below Cius, but he gives no clear information on the subject.
We have described Paphlagonia bordering upon Pontus; and as the Bithynians border upon the Paphlagonians towards the west, we shall endeavour to describe this region also. We shall then set out again from the Bithynians and the Paphlagonians, and describe the parts of the country next to these nations lying towards the south; they extend as far as the Taurus, and are parallel to Pontus and Cappadocia; for some order and division of this kind are suggested by the nature of the places.
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