Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Str.].
<<Str. 5.1.6 Str. 5.1.9 (Greek English(2)) >>Str. 5.1.12


Opitergium, [Note] Concordia, Atria, [Note] Vicetia, [Note] as well as some smaller cities, are less annoyed by the marshes: they communicate by small navigable canals with the sea. They say that Atria was formerly a famous city, from which the Adriatic Gulf, with a slight variation, received its name. Aquileia, which is the nearest to the head [of the gulf], was founded by the Romans, [Note] to keep in check the barbarians dwelling higher up. You may navigate transport ships to it up the river Natisone for more than sixty stadia. This is the trading city with the nations of Illyrians who dwell round the Danube. Some deal in marine merchandise, and carry in waggons wine in wooden casks and oil, and others exchange slaves, cattle, and hides. Aquileia is without the limits of the Heneti, their country being bounded by a river which flows from the mountains of the Alps, and is navigable for a distance of 1200 stadia, as far as the city of Noreia, [Note] near to where Cnæus Carbo was defeated in his attack upon the Kimbrians. [Note] This place contains fine stations for gold washing and iron-works. At the very head of the Adriatic is the Timavum, [Note] a temple consecrated to Diomede, worthy of notice. For it contains a harbour and a fine grove, with seven springs of fresh water, which fall into the sea in a broad, deep river. [Note] Polybius, however, says that, with the exception of one, they are all salt springs, and that it is on this account the place is called by the inhabitants—the source and mother of the sea. Posidonius, on the other hand, tells us that the river Timavo, after flowing from the mountains, precipitates itself into a chasm,

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and after flowing under ground about 130 stadia, discharges itself into the sea. 5.1.9

That Diomedes did hold sovereignty over the country around this sea, [Note] is proved both by the Diomedean islands, [Note] and the traditions concerning the Daunii and Argos-Hippium. [Note] Of these we shall narrate as much as may be serviceable to history, and shall leave alone the numerous falsehoods and myths; such, for instance, as those concerning Phaethon and the Heliades [Note] changed into alders near the [river] Eridanus, which exists no where, although said to be near the Po; [Note] of the islands Electrides, opposite the mouths of the Po, and the Meleagrides, [Note] found in them; none of which things exist in these localities. [Note] However, some have narrated that honours are paid to Diomedes amongst the Heneti, and that they sacrifice to him a white horse; two groves are likewise pointed out, one [sacred] to the Argian Juno, and the other to the ætolian Diana. They have too, as we might expect, fictions concerning these groves; for instance, that the wild beasts in them grow tame, that the deer herd with wolves, and they suffer men to approach and stroke them; and that when pursued by dogs, as soon as they have reached these groves,

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the dogs no longer pursue them. They say, too, that a certain person, well known for the facility with which he offered himself as a pledge for others, being bantered on this subject by some hunters who came up with him having a wolf in leash, they said in jest, that if he would become pledge for the wolf and pay for the damage he might do, they would loose the bonds. To this the man consented, and they let loose the wolf, who gave chase to a herd of horses unbranded, and drove them into the stable of the person who had become pledge for him. The man accepted the gift, branded the horses with [the representation of] a wolf, and named them Lucophori. They were distinguished rather for their swiftness than gracefulness. His heirs kept the same brand and the same name for this race of horses, and made it a rule never to part with a single mare, in order that they might remain sole possessors of the race, which became famous. At the present day, however, as we have before remarked, this [rage for] horse-breeding has entirely ceased.

After the Timavum [Note] comes the sea-coast of Istria as far as Pola, which appertains to Italy. Between [the two] is the fortress of Tergeste, distant from Aquileia 180 stadia. Pola is situated in a gulf forming a kind of port, and containing some small islands, [Note] fruitful, and with good harbours. This city was anciently founded by the Colchians sent after Medea, who not being able to fulfil their mission, condemned themselves to exile. As Callimachus says, It a Greek would call
The town of Fugitives, but in their tongue
'Tis Pola named.
The different parts of Transpadana are inhabited by the Heneti and the Istrii as far as Pola; above the Heneti, by the Carni, the Cenomani, the Medoaci, and the Symbri. [Note] These nations were formerly at enmity with the Romans, but the Cenomani and Heneti allied themselves with that nation, both prior to the expedition of Hannibal, when they waged war with the Boii and Symbrii, [Note] and also after that time. 5.1.10

Cispadana comprehends all that country enclosed be-

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tween the Apennines and the Alps as far as Genoa and the Vada-Sabbatorum. [Note] The greater part was inhabited by the Boii, the Ligurians, the Senones, and Gæsatæ; but after the depopulation of the Boii, and the destruction of the Gæsatæ and Senones, the Ligurian tribes and the Roman colonies alone remained. The nation of the Ombrici [Note] and certain of the Tyrrheni are also mixed amongst the Romans. These two nations, before the aggrandizement of the Romans, had some disputes with each other concerning precedence. Having only the river Tiber between, it was easy to commence war upon each other; and if the one sent out an expedition against any nation, it was the ambition of the other to enter the same country with an equal force. Thus, the Tyrrheni, having organized a successful expedition against the barbarians [dwelling in the countries] about the Po, but having speedily lost again through their luxury [all they had acquired], the Ombrici made war upon those who had driven them out. Disputes arose between the Tyrrheni and Ombrici concerning the right of possessing these places, and both nations founded many colonies; those, however, of the Ombrici were most numerous, as they were nearest to the spot. When the Romans gained the dominion, they sent out colonies to different parts, but preserved those which had been formerly planted by their predecessors. And although now they are all Romans, they are not the less distinguished, some by the names of Ombri and Tyrrheni, others by those of Heneti, Ligurians, and Insubri.

Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Str.].
<<Str. 5.1.6 Str. 5.1.9 (Greek English(2)) >>Str. 5.1.12

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