Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Str.].
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4.2.3

The Arverni are situated along the Loire. Nemossus, their metropolis, is built on the same river. [Note] This river having flowed past Genabum, [Note] an emporium of the Carnutes, [Note] situated about the middle of its course, discharges itself into the ocean. A great proof of the former power of the Arverni, is the fact of the frequent wars which they sustained against the Romans,

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sometimes with armies of 200,000 men, and sometimes with double that number, which was the amount of their force when they fought against divus Cæsar under the command of Vercingetorix. [Note] Before this they had brought 200,000 men against Maximus æmilianus, and the same number against Domitius ænobarbus. Their battles with Cæsar took place, one in Gergovia, [Note] a city of the Arverni situated on a lofty mountain, the birth-place of Vercingetorix; the other, near to Alesia, [Note] a city of the Mandubii, who border on the Arverni; this city is likewise situated on a high hill, surrounded by mountains, and between two rivers. Here the war was terminated by the capture of their leader. The battle with Maximus æmilianus was fought near the confluence of the Isère and the Rhone, at the point where the mountains of the Cevennes approach the latter river. That with Domitius was fought lower down at the confluence of the Sulgas [Note] and the Rhone. The Arverni extended their dominion as far as Narbonne and the borders of Marseilles, and exercised authority over the nations as far as the Pyrenees, the ocean, and the Rhine. Luerius, [Note] the father of Bituitus who fought against Maximus and Domitius, is said to have been so distinguished by his riches and luxury, that to give a proof of his opulence to his friends, he caused himself to be dragged across a plain in a car, whilst he scattered gold and silver coin in every direction for those who followed him to gather up.

CHAPTER III. 4.3.1

NEXT in order after Aquitaine and the Narbonnaise, is that portion [of Gaul] extending as far as the Rhine from

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the river Loire, and the Rhone, where it passes by Lugdunum: [Note] in its descent from its source. The upper regions of this district from the sources of the Rhine and Rhone, nearly to the middle of the plains, pertain to Lugdunum; the remainder, with the regions next the ocean, is comprised in another division which belongs to the Belgæ. We will describe the two together. 4.3.2

Lugdunum itself, situated on [Note] a hill, at the confluence of the Saone [Note] and the Rhone, belongs to the Romans. It is the most populous city after Narbonne. It carries on a great commerce, and the Roman prefects here coin both gold and silver money. Before this city, at the confluence of the rivers, is situated the temple dedicated by all the Galatæ in common to Cæsar Augustus. The altar is splendid, and has inscribed on it the names of sixty people, and images of them, one for each, and also another great altar. [Note]

This is the principal city of the nation of the Segusiani who lie between the Rhone and the Doubs. [Note] The other nations who extend to the Rhine, are bounded in part by the Doubs, and in part by the Saone. These two rivers, as said before, descend from the Alps, and, falling into one stream, flow into the Rhone. There is likewise another river which has its sources in the Alps, and is named the Seine. [Note] It flows parallel with the Rhine, through a nation bearing the same name as itself, [Note] and so into the ocean. The Sequani are bounded on the east by the Rhine, and on the opposite side by the Saone. It is from them that the Romans procure the finest salted-pork. Between the Doubs and Saone dwells the nation of the ædui, who possess the city of Cabyllinum, [Note] situated on the Saone and the fortress of Bibracte. [Note] The

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ædui [Note] are said to be related to the Romans, and they were the first to enter into friendship and alliance with them. On the other side of the Saone dwell the Sequani, who have for long been at enmity with the Romans and ædui, having frequently allied themselves with the Germans in their incursions into Italy. It was then that they proved their strength, for united to them the Germans were powerful, but when separated, weak. As for the ædui, their alliance with the Romans naturally rendered them the enemies of the Sequani, [Note] but the enmity was increased by their contests concerning the river which divides them, each nation claiming the Saone exclusively for themselves, and likewise the tolls on vessels passing. However, at the present time, the whole of it is under the dominion of the Romans. 4.3.3

The first of all the nations dwelling on the Rhine are the Helvetii, amongst whom are the sources of that river in Mount Adula, [Note] which forms part of the Alps. From this mountain, but in an opposite direction, likewise proceeds the Adda, which flows towards Cisalpine Gaul, and fills lake Larius, [Note] near to which stands [the city of] Como; thence it discharges itself into the Po, of which we shall speak afterwards. The Rhine also flows into vast marshes and a great lake, [Note] which borders on the Rhæti and Vindelici, [Note] who dwell partly in the Alps, and partly beyond the Alps. Asinius says that the length of this river is 6000 stadia, but such is not the case, for taken in a straight line it does not much exceed half that length, and 1000 stadia is quite sufficient to allow for its sinuosities. In fact this river is so rapid that it is difficult to throw bridges across it, although after its descent from the mountains it is borne the remainder of the way through level plains; now how could it maintain its rapidity and vehemence, if in addition to this level channel, we suppose it also to have long and frequent tortuosities? Asinius like-

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wise asserts that this river has two mouths, and blames those who say that it has more. [Note] This river and the Seine embrace within their tortuosities a certain extent of country, which however is not considerable. They both flow from south to north. Britain lies opposite to them; but nearest to the Rhine, from which you may see Kent, which is the most easterly part of the island. The Seine is a little further. It was here that divus Cæsar established a dock-yard when he sailed to Britain. The navigable portion of the Seine, commencing from the point where they receive the merchandise from the Saone, is of greater extent than the [navigable portions] of the Loire and Garonne. From Lugdunum [Note] to the Seine is [a distance of] 1000 stadia, and not twice this distance from the outlets of the Rhone to Lugdunum. They say that the Helvetii, [Note] though rich in gold, nevertheless devoted themselves to pillage on beholding the wealth of the Cimbri, [Note] [accumulated by that means;] and that two out of their three tribes perished entirely in their military expeditions. However, the multitude of descendants who sprang from this remainder was proved in their war with divus Cæsar, in which about 400,000 of their number were destroyed; the 8000 who survived the war, being spared by the conqueror, that their country might not be left desert, a prey to the neighbouring Germans. [Note]



Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Str.].
<<Str. 4.2.2 Str. 4.3.1 (Greek English(2)) >>Str. 4.3.5

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