Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Str.].
<<Str. 12.2.11 Str. 12.3.4 (Greek English(2)) >>Str. 12.3.9


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

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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]

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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 this verse, Cromna, ægialus, and the lofty Erythini, [Note]
Il. ii. 855.
these lines, The brave son of Polycles led the Caucones,
Who inhabited the well-known dwellings about the river Parthenius,
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. 12.3.6

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

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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 1500, and from the Sangarius 500, stadia.

Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Str.].
<<Str. 12.2.11 Str. 12.3.4 (Greek English(2)) >>Str. 12.3.9

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