Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Str.].
<<Str. 3.4.4 Str. 3.4.7 (Greek English(2)) >>Str. 3.4.11


After Abdera [Note] is New Carthage, [Note] founded by Asdrubal, who succeeded Bareas, the father of Hannibal. It is by far the most powerful city of this country, being impregnable, and furnished with a noble wall, harbours, and a lake, besides the silver mines already mentioned. The places in the vicinity have an abundance of salted fish, and it is besides the great emporium of the sea merchandise for the interior, and likewise for the merchandise from the interior for exportation. About midway along the coast between this city and the Ebro, we meet with the outlet of the river Xucar, [Note] and a city bearing the same name. [Note] It rises in a mountain belonging to the chain which overlooks Malaca, [Note] and the regions around Carthage, and may be forded on foot; it is nearly parallel to the Ebro, but not quite so far distant from Carthage as from the Ebro. Between the Xucar and Carthage are three small towns of the people of Marseilles, not far from the river. Of these the best known is Hemeroscopium. [Note] On the promontory there is a temple to Diana of Ephesus, held in great veneration. Sertorius used it as an arsenal, convenient to the sea, both on account of its being fortified and fitted for piratical uses, and because it is visible from a great distance

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to vessels approaching. It is called Dianium, [Note] from Diana. Near to it are some fine iron-works, and two small islands, Planesia [Note] and Plumbaria, [Note] with a sea-water lake lying above, of 400 stadia in circumference. Next is the island of Hercules, near to Carthage, and called Scombraria, [Note] on account of the mackerel taken there, from which the finest garum [Note] is made. It is distant 24 stadia from Carthage. On the other side of the Xucar, going towards the outlet of the Ebro, is Saguntum, founded by the Zacynthians. The de- struction of this city by Hannibal, contrary to his treaties with the Romans, kindled the second Punic war. Near to it are the cities of Cherronesus, [Note] Oleastrum, and Cartalia, and the colony of Dertossa, [Note] on the very passage of the Ebro. The Ebro takes its source amongst the Cantabrians; it flows through an extended plain towards the south, running parallel with the Pyrenees. 3.4.7

The first city between the windings of the Ebro and the extremities of the Pyrenees, near to where the Trophies of Pompey are erected, is Tarraco; [Note] it has no harbour, but is situated on a bay, and possessed of many other advantages. At the present day it is as well peopled as Carthage; [Note] for it is admirably suited for the stay of the prefects, [Note] and is as it were the metropolis, not only of [the country lying] on this side the Ebro, but also of a great part of what lies beyond. The near vicinity of the Gymnesian Islands, [Note] and Ebusus, [Note] which are all of considerable importance, are sufficient to inform one of the felicitous position of the city. Eratosthenes tells us that it has a road-stead, but Artemidorus contradicts this, and affirms that it scarcely possesses an anchorage. 3.4.8

The whole coast from the Pillars up to this place wants harbours, but all the way from here to Emporium, [Note] the countries of the Leëtani, the Lartolæetæ, and others, are both furnished with excellent harbours and fertile. Emporium was founded by the people of Marseilles, and is about 4000 [Note] stadia

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distant from the Pyrenees, and the confines of Iberia and Keltica. This is a very fine region, and possesses good ports. Here also is Rhodope, [Note] a small town of the Emporitæ, but some say it was founded by the Rhodians. Both here and in Emporium they reverence the Ephesian Diana. The cause of this we will explain when we come to speak of Massalia. [Note] in former times the Emporitæ dwelt on a small island opposite, now called the old city, but at the present day they inhabit the mainland. The city is double, being divided by a wall, for in past times some of the Indiceti dwelt close by, who, although they had a separate polity to themselves, desired, for the sake of safety, to be shut in by a common enclosure with the Grecians; but at the same time that this enclosure should be two-fold, being divided through its middle by a wall. In time, however, they came to have but one government, a mixture of Barbarian and Grecian laws; a result which has taken place in many other [states]. 3.4.9

A river [Note] flows near to it, which has its sources in the Pyrenees; its outlet forms a port for the Emporitæ, who are skilful workers in flax. Of the interior of their country some parts are fertile, others covered with spartum, a rush which flourishes in marshes, and is entirely useless: they call this the June Plain. There are some who inhabit the Pyrenean mountains as far as the Trophies of Pompey, on the route which leads from Italy into Ulterior Iberia, [Note] and particularly into Bætica. This road runs sometimes close to the sea, sometimes at a distance therefrom, particularly in the western parts. From the Trophies of Pompey it leads to Tarraco, [Note] through the June Plain, the Betteres, [Note] and the plain called in the Latin tongue [the plain] of Marathon, on account

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of the quantity of fennel growing there. From Tarraco [the road runs] towards the passage of the Ebro at the city of Dertossa; [Note] from thence having traversed the city of Saguntum, [Note] and Setabis, [Note] it follows a course more and more distant from the sea, till it approaches the Plain of Spartarium, which signifies the Plain of Rushes. This is a vast arid plain, producing the species of rush from which cords are made, and which are exported to all parts, but particularly to Italy. [Note] Formerly the road passed on through the midst of the plain, and [the city of] Egelastæ, [Note] which was both difficult and long, but they have now constructed a new road close to the sea, which merely touches upon the Plain of Rushes, and leads to the same places as the former, [viz.] Castlon, [Note] and Obulco, [Note] through which runs the road to Corduba and Gades, [Note] the two greatest emporia [of Iberia]. Obulco is distant about 300 stadia from Corduba. Historians report that Cæsar came from Rome to Obulco, and to his army there, within the space of twenty-seven days, when about to fight the battle of Munda. [Note]

Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Str.].
<<Str. 3.4.4 Str. 3.4.7 (Greek English(2)) >>Str. 3.4.11

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