|Strabo, Geography (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Str.].|
|<<Str. 8||Str. 9 (Greek English(2))||>>Str. 10|
Continuation of the geography of Greece. A panegyrical account of Athens. A description of Bœotia and Thessaly, with the sea-coast.
HAVING completed the description of Peloponnesus, which we said was the first and least of the peninsulas of which Greece consists, we must next proceed to those which are continuous with it. [Note]9.1.1
We described the second to be that which joins Megaris to the Peloponnesus [so that Crommyon belongs to Megaris, and not to the Corinthians]; [Note] the third to be that which is situated near the former, comprising Attica and Bœotia, some part of Phocis, and of the Locri Epicnemidii. Of these we are now to speak.
Eudoxus says, that if we imagine a straight line to be drawn towards the east from the Ceraunian Mountains to Sunium, the promontory of Attica, it would leave, on the right hand, to the south, the whole of Peloponnesus, and on the left, to the north, the continuous coast from the Ceraunian
Mountains to the Crisæan Gulf, and the whole of Megaris and Attica. He is of opinion that the shore which extends from Sunium to the Isthmus, would not have so great a curvature, nor have so great a bend, if, to this shore, were not added the parts continuous with the Isthmus and extending to the Hermionic Bay and Acté; that in the same manner the shore, from the Ceraunian Mountains to the Gulf of Corinth, has a similar bend, so as to make a curvature, forming within it a sort of gulf, where Rhium and Antirrhium contracting together give it this figure. The same is the case with the shore about Crissa and the recess, where the Crissæan Sea terminates. [Note]9.1.2
As this is the description given by Eudoxus, a mathematician, skilled in the delineations of figures and the inclinations of places, acquainted also with the places themselves, we must consider the sides of Attica and Megaris, extending from Sunium as far as the Isthmus, to be curved, although slightly so. About the middle of the above-men- tioned line [Note] is the Piræus, the naval arsenal of the Athenians. It is distant from Schoenus, at the Isthmus, about 350 stadia; from Sunium 330. The distance from the Piræus to Pagæ [Note] and from the Piræus to Schœnus is nearly the same, yet the former is said to exceed the latter by 10 stadia. After having doubled Sunium, the navigation along the coast is to the north with a declination to the west.9.1.3
Acte (Attica) is washed by two seas; it is at first narrow, then it widens towards the middle, yet it, nevertheless, takes a lunated bend towards Oropus in Bœotia, having the convex side towards the sea. This is the second, the eastern side of Attica.
The remaining side is that to the north, extending from the territory of Oropus towards the west, as far as Megaris, and consists of the mountainous tract of Attica, having a variety of names, and dividing Bœotia from Attica; so that, as I have before remarked, Bœotia, by being connected with
two seas, becomes the Isthmus of the third peninsula, which we have mentioned before, and this Isthmus includes within it the Peloponnesus, Megaris, and Attica. For this reason therefore the present Attica was called by a play upon the words Acta and Actica, because the greatest part of it lies under the mountains, and borders on the sea; it is narrow, and stretches forwards a considerable length as far as Sunium. We shall therefore resume the description of these sides, beginning from the sea-coast, at the point where we left off.9.1.4
After Crommyon, rising above Attica, are the rocks called Scironides, which afford no passage along the sea-side. Over them, however, is a road which leads to Megara and Attica from the Isthmus. The road approaches so near the rocks that in many places it runs along the edge of precipices, for the overhanging mountain is of great height, and impassable.
Here is laid the scene of the fable of Sciron, and the Pityocamptes, or the pine-breaker, one of those who infested with their robberies the above-mentioned mountainous tract. They were slain by Theseus.
The wind Argestes, [Note] which blows from the left with violence, from these summits is called by the Athenians Sciron.
After the rocks Scironides there projects the promontory Minoa, forming the harbour of Nisæa. Nisæa is the arsenal of Megara, and distant 18 stadia from the city; it is joined to it by walls on each side. [Note] This also had the name of Minoa.9.1.5
In former times the Ionians occupied this country, and
were also in possession of Attica, before the time of the
building of Megara, wherefore the poet does not mention
these places by any appropriate name, but when he calls all
those dwelling in Attica, Athenians, he comprehends these
also in the common appellation, regarding them as Athenians;
so when, in the Catalogue of the Ships, he says,
And they who occupied Athens, a well-built city, [Note]Il. ii. 546.
we must understand the present Megarenses also, as having
taken a part in the expedition. The proof of this is, that
Attica was, in former times, called Ionia, and Ias, and when
the poet says,
There the Bœoti, and Iaones, [Note]Il. xiii. 685.
Besides, the Peloponnesians and Ionians having had frequent disputes respecting their boundaries, on which Crommyonia also was situated, assembled and agreed upon a spot
of the Isthmus itself, on which they erected a pillar having
an inscription on the part towards Peloponnesus,
THIS IS PELOPONNESUS, NOT IONIA;
and on the side towards Megara,
THIS IS NOT PELOPONNESUS, BUT IONIA.
Although those, who wrote on the history of Attica [Note] differ
in many respects, yet those of any note agree in this, that
when there were four Pandionidæ, ægeus, Lycus, Pallas,
and Nisus; and when Attica was divided into four portions, Nisus obtained, by lot, Megaris, and founded Nisæa.
Philochorus says, that his government extended from the
Isthmus to Pythium, [Note] but according to Andron, as far as
Eleusis and the Thriasian plain.
Since, then, different writers give different accounts of the
division of the country into four parts, it is enough to adduce
these lines from Sophocles where ægeus says,
My father determined that I should go away to Acte, having assigned
to me, as the elder, the best part of the land; to Lycus, the opposite garden of Eubœa; for Nisus he selects the irregular tract of the shore of
Sciron; and the rugged Pallas, breeder of giants, obtained by lot the part
to the south. [Note]
Such are the proofs which are adduced to show that Megaris was a part of Attica.
After the return of the Heraclidæ, and the partition of the country, many of the former possessors were banished from their own land by the Heraclidæ, and by the Dorians, who came with them, and migrated to Attica. Among these was Melanthus, the king of Messene. He was voluntarily ap-
pointed king of the Athenians, after having overcome in single combat, Xanthus, the king of the Bœotians. When Attica became populous by the accession of fugitives, the Heraclidæ were alarmed, and invaded Attica, chiefly at the instigation of the Corinthians and Messenians; the former of whom were influenced by proximity of situation, the latter by the circumstance that Codrus, the son of Melanthus, was at that time king of Attica. They were, however, defeated in battle and relinquished the whole of the country, except the territory of Megara, of which they kept possession, and founded the city Megara, where they introduced as inhabitants Dorians in place of Ionians. They destroyed the pillar also which was the boundary of the country of the Ionians and the Peloponnesians.9.1.8
The city of the Megarenses, after having experienced many changes, still subsists. It once had schools of philosophers, who had the name of the Megaric sect. They succeeded Euclides, the Socratic philosopher, who was by birth a Megarensian, in the same manner as the Eleiaci, among whom was Pyrrhon, who succeeded Phædon, the Eleian, who was also a Socratic philosopher, and as the Eretriaci succeeded Menedemus the Eretrean.
Megaris, like Attica, is very sterile, and the greater part of it is occupied by what are called the Oneii mountains, a kind of ridge, which, extending from the Scironides rocks to Bœotia and to Cithæron, separates the sea at Nisæa from that near Page, called the Alcyonian Sea.9.1.9
In sailing from Nisæa to Attica there lie, in the course
of the voyage, five small islands. Then succeeds Salamis,
which is about 70, and according to others, 80, stadia in
length. It has two cities of the same name. The ancient
city, which looked towards ægina, and to the south, as
æschylus has described it;
ægina lies towards the blasts of the south:
it is uninhabited. The other is situated in a bay on a spot of a
peninsular form contiguous to Attica. In former times it
had other names, for it was called Sciras, and Cychreia, from
certain heroes; from the former Minerva is called Sciras;
hence also Scira, a place in Attica; Episcirosis, a religions
rite; and Scirophorion, one of the months. From Cychreia
the serpent Cychrides had its name, which Hesiod says Cychreus bred, and Eurylochus ejected, because it infested the island, but that Ceres admitted it into Eleusis, and it became her attendant. Salamis was called also Pityussa from pitys, the pine tree. The island obtained its renown from the æacidæ, who were masters of it, particularly from Ajax, the son of Telamon, and from the defeat of Xerxes by the Greeks in a battle on the coast, and by his flight to his own country. The æginetæ participated in the glory of that engagement, both as neighbours, and as having furnished a considerable naval force. [In Salamis is the river Bocarus, now called Bocalia.] [Note]9.1.10
At present the Athenians possess the island Salamis.
In former times they disputed the possession of it with the
Megarians. Some allege, that Pisistratus, others that
Solon, inserted in the Catalogue of Ships immediately after
Ajax conducted from Salamis twelve vessels, [Note]Il. ii. 557.
And stationed them by the side of the Athenian forces;
and appealed to the poet as a witness, that the island originally belonged to the Athenians. But this is not admitted by
the critics, because many other lines testify the contrary.
For why does Ajax appear at the extremity of the line not
with the Athenians, but with the Thessalians under the command of Protesilaus;
There were the vessels of Ajax, and Protesilaus. [Note]Il. xiii. 681.
found the son of Peteus, Menestheus, the tamer of horses, standing,
and around were the Athenians skilful in war: near stood the wily
Ulysses, and around him and at his side, the ranks of the Cephalleni [Note]
and again, respecting Ajax and the Salaminii;
he came to the Ajaces, [Note]
and near them,
Idomeneus on the other side amidst the Cretans, [Note]Il. iii. 230.
some such evidence as this from Homer as a pretext, and the
Megarians to have replied in an opposite strain of this kind;
Ajax conducted ships from Salamis, from Polichna, from ægirussa,
from Nisæa, and from Tripodes, [Note]
which are places in Megaris, of which Tripodes has the name
of Tripodiscium, situated near the present forum of Megara.
Some say, that Salamis is unconnected with Attica, because the priestess of Minerva Polias, who may not eat the new cheese of Attica, but the produce only of a foreign land, yet uses the Salaminian cheese. But this is a mistake, for she uses that which is brought from other islands, that are confessedly near Attica, for the authors of this custom considered all produce as foreign which was brought over sea.
It seems as if anciently the present Salamis was a separate state, and that Megara was a part of Attica.
On the sea-coast, opposite to Salamis, the boundaries of Megara and Attica are two mountains called Cerata, or Horns. [Note]9.1.12
Next is the city Eleusis, [Note] in which is the temple of the Eleusinian Ceres, and the Mystic Enclosure (Secos), [Note] which Ictinus built, [Note] capable of containing the crowd of a theatre. It was this person that built [Note] the Parthenon in the Acropolis, in honour of Minerva, when Pericles was the superintendent of the public works. The city is enumerated among the demi, or burghs.9.1.13
Then follows the Thriasian plain, and the coast, a demus of the same name, [Note] then the promontory Amphiale, [Note] above which is a stone quarry; and then the passage across the sea to Salamis, of about 2 stadia, which Xerxes endeavoured to fill up with heaps of earth, but the sea-fight and the flight of the Persians occurred before he had ac- complished it.
There also are the Pharmacussæ, [Note] two small islands, in the larger of which is shown the tomb of Circe.9.1.14
Above this coast is a mountain called Corydallus, and the demus Corydalleis: then the harbour of Phoron, (Robbers,) and Psyttalia, a small rocky desert island, which, according to some writers, is the eye-sore of the Piræus.
Near it is Atalanta, of the same name as that between Eubœa and the Locri; and another small island similar to Psyttalia; then the Piræus, which is also reckoned among the demi, and the Munychia.9.1.15
The Munychia is a hill in the shape of a peninsula,
hollow, and a great part of it excavated both by nature and
art, so as to serve for dwellings, with an entrance by a nar-
row opening. Beneath it are three harbours. Formerly the
Munychia was surrounded by a wall, and occupied by dwellings, nearly in the same manner as the city of the Rhodians,
comprehending within the circuit of the walls the Piræus and
the harbours full of materials for ship-building; here also
was the armoury, the work of Philon. The naval station
was capable of receiving the four hundred vessels; which
was the smallest number the Athenians were in the habit of
keeping in readiness for sea. With this wall were connected
the legs, that stretched out from the Asty. These were the
long walls, 40 stadia in length, joining the Asty [Note] to the
Piræus. But in consequence of frequent wars, the wall and
the fortification of the Munychia were demolished; the
Piræus was contracted to a small town, extending round the
harbours and the temple of Jupiter Soter. The small porticoes of the temple contain admirable paintings, the work of
celebrated artists, and the hypæthrum, statues. The long
walls also were destroyed, first demolished by the Lacedæmonians, and afterwards by the Romans, when Sylla took the
Piræus and the Asty by siege. [Note]
What is properly the Asty is a rock, situated in a plain, with dwellings around it. Upon the rock is the temple
of Minerva, and the ancient shrine of Minerva Polias, in which is the never-extinguished lamp; and the Parthenon, built by Ictinus, in which is the Minerva, in ivory, the work of Pheidias.
When, however, I consider the multitude of objects, so
celebrated and far-famed, belonging to this city, I am reluctant to enlarge upon them, lest what I write should depart
too far from the proposed design of this work. [Note] For the
words of Hegesias [Note] occur to me;
I behold the acropolis, there is the symbol of the great trident; [Note] I see
Eleusis; I am initiated in the sacred mysteries; that is Leocorium; [Note] this
the Theseium. [Note] To describe all is beyond my power, for Attica is the
chosen residence of the gods; and the possession of heroes its progenitors.
Yet this very writer mentions only one of the remarkable
things to be seen in the Acropolis. Polemo Periegetes [Note] however composed four books on the subject of the sacred offerings which were there. Hegesias is similarly sparing of
remarks on other parts of the city, and of the territory: after
speaking of Eleusis, one of the hundred and seventy demi, to
which as they say four are to be added, he mentions no other
Many, if not all the demi, have various fabulous tales and histories connected with them: with Aphidna is connected the rape of Helen by Theseus, the sack of the place by the Dioscuri, and the recovery of their sister; with Mara-
thon, the battle with the Persians; at Rhamnus was the statue of Nemesis, which, according to some writers, is the work of Diodotus, according to others, of Agoracritus, the Parian, so well executed, both as to size and beauty, as to rival the art of Pheidias. Deceleia was the rendezvous of the Peloponnesians in the Decelic war. From Phyle Thrasybu- lus brought back the people to the Piræus, and thence to the Asty. Thus also much might be told respecting many other places; the Leocorium, the Theseium, and the Lyceum have their own fables, and the Olympicum, called also the Olympium, which the king, who dedicated it, left, at his death, half finished; so also much might be said of the Academia. of the gardens of the philosophers, of the Odeium, [Note] of the Stoa Pœcile, [or painted Portico,] and of the temples in tile city, all of which contain the works of illustrious artists.9.1.18
The account would be much longer if we were to in- quire who were the founders of the city from the time of Cecrops, for writers do not agree, as is evident from the names of persons and of places. For example, Attica, [Note] they say, was derived from Actæon; Atthis, and Attica, from Atthis, the daughter of Cranaus, from whom the inhabitants had the name Cranai; Mopsopia from Mopsopus; Ionia from Ion, the son of Xuthus; Poseidonia and Athenæ, from the deities of that name. We have said, that the nation of the Pelasgi seem to have come into this country in the course of their migrations, and were called from their wanderings, by the Attici, Pelargi, or storks.9.1.19
In proportion as an earnest desire is excited to ascertain the truth about remarkable places and events, and in proportion as writers, on these subjects, are more numerous, so much the more is an author exposed to censure, who does not make himself master of what has been written. For example, in the Collection of the Rivers, Callimachus says, that he should laugh at the person, who would venture to describe the Athenian virgins as
drinking of the pure waters of the Eridanus,
from which even the herds would turn away. There are
indeed fountains of water, pure and fit for drinking, it is said,
without the gate called Diochares, near the Lyceium; formerly
also a fountain was erected near it, which afforded a large supply of excellent water; but if it is not so at present, is it at
all strange, that a fountain supplying abundance of pure and
potable water at one period of time, should afterwards have
the property of its waters altered?
In subjects, however, which are so numerous, we cannot enter into detail; yet they are not so entirely to be passed over in silence as to abstain from giving a condensed account of some of them.9.1.20
It will suffice then to add, that, according to Philochorus, when the country was devastated on the side of the sea by the Carians, and by land by the Bœotians, whom they called Aones, Cecrops first settled a large body of people in twelve cities, the names of which were Cecropia, Tetrapolis, Epacria, Deceleia, Eleusis, Aplhidnæ, (although some persons write it in the plural number, Aphidnæ,) Thoricus, Brauron, Cytherus, Sphettus, Cephisia [Phalerus]. Again, at a subsequent period, Theseus is said to have collected the inhabitants of the twelve cities into one, the present city.
Formerly, the Athenians were governed by kings; they afterwards changed the government to a democracy; then tyrants were their masters, as Pisistratus and his sons; afterwards there was an oligarchy both of the four hundred and of the thirty tyrants, whom the Lacedæmonii set over them; these were expelled by the Athenians, who retained the form of a democracy, till the Romans established their empire. For, although they were somewhat oppressed by the Macedonian kings, so as to be compelled to obey them, yet they preserved entire the same form of government. Some say, that the government was very well administered during a period of ten years, at the time that Casander was king of the Macedonians. For this person, although in other respects he was disposed to be tyrannical, yet, when lie was master of the city, treated the Athenians with kindness and generosity. He placed at the head of the citizens Demetrius the Phalerean, a disciple of Theophrastus the philosopher, who, far from dissolving, restored the democracy. This appears from his
memoirs, which he composed concerning this mode of government. But so much hatred and dislike prevailed against
anything connected with oligarchy, that, after the death of
Casander, he was obliged to fly into Egypt. [Note]
Next to the Piræus is the demus Phalereis, on the succeeding line of coast, then Halimusii, æxoneis, Alæeis, the
æxonici, Anagyrasii; then Theoris, Lampesis; ægilieis,
Anaphlystii, Azenieis; these extend as far as the promontory
Sunium. Between the above-mentioned demi is a long
promontory, Zoster, [Note] the first after the æxoneis; then another promontory after Thoreis, Astypalæa; in the front of
the former of these is an island, Phabra, [Note] and of the latter an
island, Eleüssa, [Note] opposite the æxoneis is Hydrussa. About
Anaphlystum is the Paneum, and the temple of Venus Colias.
Here, they say, were thrown up by the waves the last portions of the wrecks of the vessels after the naval engagement
with the Persians near Salamis, of which remains Apollo predicted,
The women of Colias shall shudder at the sight of oars.
In front of these places lies off, at no great distance, the island
Belbina; and the rampart of Patroclus; but most of these
islands are uninhabited.
On doubling the promontory at Sunium, we meet with Sunium, a considerable demus; then Thoricus, next a demus called Potamus, from which the inhabitants are called Potamii; next Prasia, [Note] Steiria, Brauron, where is the temple of
Diana Brauronia, Halæ Araphenides, where is the temple of Diana Tauropola; then Myrrhinus, Probalinthus, Marathon, where Miltiades entirely destroyed the army of Datis the Persian, without waiting for the Lacedæmonians, who deferred setting out till the full moon. There is laid the scene of the fable of the Marathonian bull, which Theseus killed.
Next to Marathon is Tricorynthus, then Rhamnus, where is
the temple of Nemesis; then Psaphis, a city of the Oropii.
Somewhere about this spot is the Amphiaræum, an oracle
once in repute, to which Amphiareus fled, as Sophocles says,
The dusty Theban soil opened and received him with his armour, and
the four-horse chariot.
Oropus has frequently been a subject of contention, for it is situated on the confines of Attica and Bœotia.
In front of this coast, before Thoricum and Sunium, is
the island Helena; it is rocky and uninhabited, extending in
length about 60 stadia, which, they say, the poet mentions in
the words, in which Alexander addresses Helen,
Not when first I carried thee away from the pleasant Lacedæmon,
across the deep, and in the island Cranaë embraced thee. [Note]
For Cranaë, from the kind of intercourse which took place
there, is now called Helena. Next to Helena, [Note] Eulbœa [Note]
lies in front of the following tract of coast. It is long and
narrow, and stretching along the continent like Helena.
From Sunium to the southern point of Eubœa, which is called
Leuce Acte, [Note] [or, the white coast,] is a voyage of 300 stadia,
but we shall speak hereafter of Eubœa.
It would be tedious to recite the names of the Demi of Attica in the inland parts, on account of their number. [Note]9.1.23
Among the mountains which are most celebrated, are the Hymettus, Brilessus, Ly$cabettus, Parnes, and Corydallus. [Note] Near the city are excellent quarries of Hymettian and Pentelic marble. The Hymettus produces also the finest honey. The silver mines in Attica were at first of importance, but are now exhausted. The workmen, when the mines yielded
a bad return to their labour, committed to the furnace the old refuse and scoria, and hence obtained very pure silver, for the former workmen had carried on the process in the furnace unskilfully.
Although the Attic is the best of all the kinds of honey, yet by far the best of the Attic honey is that found in the country of the silver mines, [Note] which they call acapniston, or unsmoked, from the mode of its preparation.9.1.24
Among the rivers is the Cephissus, having its source from the Trinemeis, it flows through the plain (where are the Gephyra, and the Gephyrismi) between the legs or walls extending from the Asty to the Piræus, and empties itself into the Plalericum. Its character is chiefly that of a winter torrent, for in the summer time it fails altogether. Such also, for the most part, is the Ilissus, which flows from the other side of the Asty to the same coast, from the parts above Agra, and the Lyceium, and the fountain celebrated by Plato in the Phædrus. So much then respecting Attica.
NEXT in order is Bœotia. When I speak of this country, and of the contiguous nations, I must, for the sake of perspicuity, repeat what I have said before.
We have said, that the sea-coast stretches from Sunium to the north as far as Thessalonica, inclining a little toward the west, and having the sea on the east, that parts situated above this shore towards the west extend like belts [Note] parallel to one another through the whole country. The first of these belts is Attica with Megaris, the eastern side of which extends
from Sunium to Oropus, and Bœotia; on the western side is the isthmus, and the Alcyonian sea commencing at Pagæ and extending as far as the boundaries of Bœotia near Creusa, the remaining two sides are formed by the sea-shore from Sunium to the Isthmus, and the mountain tract nearly parallel with this, which separates Attica from Bœotia.
The second belt is Bœotia, stretching from east to west from the Eubœan sea to the Crisæan Gulf, nearly of equal length with Attica, or perhaps somewhat less; in quality of soil however it greatly surpasses Attica.9.2.2
Ephorus declares the superiority of Bœotia over the bordering nations not only in this respect, but also because it alone has three seas adjoining it, and a great number of harbours. At the Criss$ean and Corinthian Gulfs it received the commodities of Italy, Sicily, and Africa. Towards Eubœa the sea-coast branches off on each side of the Euripus; in one direction towards Aulis and Tanagrica, in the other, to Salganeus and Anthedon; on one side there is an open sea to Egypt, and Cyprus, and the islands; on the other to Macedonia, the Propontis, and the Hellespont. He adds also that Eubœa is almost a part of Bœotia, because the Euripus is very narrow, and the opposite shores are brought into communication by a bridge of two plethra in length. [Note]
For these reasons he praises the country, and says, that it has natural advantages for obtaining supreme command, but that from want of careful education and learning, even those who were from time to time at the head of affairs did not long maintain the ascendency they had acquired, as appears from the example of Epaminondas; at his death the Thebans immediately lost the supremacy they had just acquired. This is to be attributed, says Ephorus, to their neglect of learning, and of intercourse with mankind, and to their exclusive cultivation of military virtues. It must be added also, that learning and knowledge are peculiarly useful in dealing with Greeks, but in the case of Barbarians, force is preferable to reason. In fact the Romans in early times, when carrying on war with savage nations, did not require such accomplishments, but from the time that they began to be concerned in transactions with more civilized people, they applied themselves to learning, and so established universal dominion.
3. Bœotia was first occupied by Barbarians, Aones, and Temmices, a wandering people from Sunium, by Leleges, and Hyantes. Then the Phœnicians, who accompanied Cadmus, possessed it. He fortified the Cadmeian land, and transmitted the government to his descendants. The Phœnicians founded Thebes, and added it to the Cadmeian territory. They preserved their dominion, and exercised it over the greatest part of the Bœotians till the time of the expedition of the Epigoni. At this period they abandoned Thebes for a short time, but returned again. In the same manner when they were ejected by Thracians and Pelasgi, they established their rule in Thessaly together with the Arnœi for a long period, so that all the inhabitants obtained the name of Bœotians. They returned afterwards to their own country, at the time the æolian expedition was preparing at Aulis in Bœotia which the descendants of Orestes were equipping for Asia. After having united the Orchomenian tract to Bœotia (for formerly they did not form one community, nor has Homer enumerated these people with the Bœotians, but by themselves, calling them Minyæ) with the assistance of the Orchomenians they drove out the Pelasgi, who went to Athens, a part of which city is called from this people Pelasgic. The Pelasgi however settled below Hymettus. The Thracians retreated to Parnassus. The Hyantes founded Hyampolis in Phocis.9.2.4
Ephorus relates that the Thracians, after making treaty with the Bœotians, attacked them by night, when encamped in a careless manner during a time of peace. The Thracians when reproached, and accused of breaking the treaty, replied, that they had not broken it, for the conditions were by day, whereas they had made the attack by night, whence the common proverb, a Thracian shuffle.
The Pelasgi and the Bœotians also went during the war to consult the oracle. He cannot tell, he says, what answer was given to the Pelasgi, but the prophetess replied to the Bœotians that they would prosper by committing some act of impiety. The messengers sent to consult the oracle suspecting the prophetess of favouring the Pelasgi on account of their relationship, (for the temple had originally belonged to the Pelasgi,) seized the woman, and threw her upon a burning pile, considering, that whether her conduct bad been right or
wrong, in either case they were right; for if she had uttered a deceitful answer she was duly punished; but if not, they had only complied with the command of the oracle. Those in charge of the temple did not like to put to death, particularly in the temple, the perpetrators of this act without a formal judgment, and therefore subjected them to a trial. They were summoned before the priestesses, who were also the prophetesses, being the two survivors out of the three. The Bœotians alleged that there was no law permitting women to act as judges; an equal number of men were therefore chosen. The men acquitted; the women condemned. As the votes were equal, those for acquittal prevailed. Hence at Dodona it is to the Bœotians only that men deliver oracles. The prophetesses however give a different meaning to the answer of the oracle, and say, that the god enjoins the Bœotians to steal the tripods used at home, and to send them annually to Dodona. This they did, for they were in the habit of carrying away by night some of the dedicated tripods, which they concealed in their clothes, in order to convey them clandestinely as offerings to Dodona.9.2.5
After this they assisted Penthilus in sending out the æolian colony, and despatched a large body of their own people with him, so that it was called the Bœotian colony.
A long time afterwards the country was devastated during
the war with the Persians at Platææ. They afterwards so
far recovered their power, that the Thebans, having vanquished the Lacedæmonians in two battles, [Note] disputed the sovereignty of Greece. Epaminondas, however, was killed, and
they were disappointed in their hope of obtaining this supremacy. They, nevertheless, fought in defence of the Greeks
against the Phocæans, who had plundered their common temple. Reduced by this war, and by the Macedonians, at the
time they invaded Greece, they lost their city, which was
afterwards restored to them, and rebuilt by the Macedonians
themselves, who had razed it. [Note]
times their affairs have continued to decline, nor do they retain the appearance even of a considerable village. Other cities (of Bœotia) have experienced a similar fate, with the exception of Tanagra and Thespiæ, which in comparison with Thebes are in a tolerable condition.9.2.6
We are next to make a circuit of the country, beginning at the sea-coast, opposite Eubœa, which is continuous with that of Attica.
We begin this circuit from Oropus, and the Sacred Harbour, [Note] which is called Delphinium, opposite to which is the ancient Eretria in Eubœa, having a passage across of 60 stadia. After Delphinium, at the distance of 20 stadia, is Oropus, and opposite to this is the present Eretria. [Note] There is a passage over to it of 40 stadia.9.2.7
Next is Delium, [Note] a place sacred to Apollo, in imitation of that at Delos. It is a small town of the Tanagræans, at the distance of 30 stadia from Aulis.
To this place the Athenians, after their defeat in battle, fled in disorder. [Note] In the flight, Socrates the philosopher (who having lost his horse, was serving on foot) observed Xenophon, the son of Gryllus, upon the ground, fallen from his horse; he raised him upon his shoulders and carried him away in safety, a distance of many stadia, until the rout was at an end.9.2.8
Then follows a great harbour, which is called Bathys (or deep harbour): then Aulis, [Note] a rocky spot, and a village of the Tanagræans, with a harbour capable of containing 50 small vessels. So that probably the naval station of the
Greeks was in the Great Harbour. Near it is the Chalcidic Euripus, to which, from Suniurn, are 70 stadia. On the Euripus, as I have already said, there is a bridge of two plethra in length; [Note] at each end is a tower, one on the side of Chalcis, the other on the side of Bœotia; and a passage (for the water) is constructed between them. [Note] With regard to the tide of the Euripus, it is sufficient to say thus much, that according to report, it changes seven times each day and night; the cause must be investigated elsewhere.9.2.9
Salganeus is a place situated near the Euripus, upon a height. It has its name from Salganeus, a Bœotian, who was buried there. He was guide to the Persians, when they sailed into this passage from the Maliac Gulf. It is said, that he was put to death before they reached the Euripus, by the commander of the fleet, Megabates, as a traitor, for conducting the fleet deceitfully into a narrow opening of the sea, having no outlet. The Barbarian, however, perceived his mistake, and regretting what he had done, thought him worthy of burial, because he had been unjustly put to death.9.2.10
Near Oropus [Note] is a place called Graia, the temple also of Amphiaraus, and the monument of Narcissus the Eretrian, surnamed Sigelus, (the Silent,) because passers-by keep silence. Some say that Graia and Tanagra [Note] are the same. The territory of Pœmandris, however, is the same as that of Tanagra. The Tanagræns are also called Gephyræans. The temple of Amphiaraus was transferred by command of an oracle to this place from the Thebaic Cnopia.9.2.11
Mycalessus is a village in the Tanagrian district. It lies upon the road from Thebes to Chalcis. It is called in the Bœotian dialect Mycalettus. Harma, also, an uninhabited village in the Tanagrian territory, derives its name from the
chariot (ἅμα) of Amphiaraus, and is a different place from
Harma in Attica, near Phyle, [Note] a demus of Attica bordering
upon Tanagra. There the proverb originated,
When it has lightened through Harma,
The Pythaïstæ, as they are called, signify, by the order of an
oracle, the occurrence of any lightning when they are looking in the direction of Harma, and despatch the sacrifice to
Delphi whenever it is observed. They were to keep watch
for three months, and for three days and nights in each month,
at the altar of Jupiter Astrapius, or Dispenser of lightning.
This altar is in the wall, between the Pythium and the Olympium. Respecting the Bœotian Harma, some say, that Amphiaraus fell in battle out of his chariot, [harma,] near the
spot where his temple now stands, and that the chariot was
drawn empty to the place, which bears the same name
[Harma]. [Note] Others say, that the chariot of Adrastus, in his
flight, was there dashed in pieces, but that lie himself escaped
on his horse Areion. According to Philochorus, his life was
preserved by the inhabitants of the village; in consequence
of which they obtained among the Argives the right of citizenship.
On going from Thebes to Argos, [Note] on the left hand is Tanagra; and [near the road] on the right lies Hyria. Hyria now belongs to the Tanagrian territory, but formerly to the Thebais. Here Hyrieus is fabled to have lived, and here is the scene of the birth of Orion, which Pindar mentions in the dithyrambics. It is situated near Aulis. Some persons say that Hysiæ is called Hyria, which belongs to Parasopia, situated below Cithæron, near Erythræ, in the inland parts; it is a colony of the Hyrienses, and was founded by Nycteus, the father of Antiope. There is also in the Argive territory a village, Hysiæ, the inhabitants of which are called Hysiatæ. Erythræ in Ionia is a colony of this Erythræ.
Heleon, a Tanagrian village, has its name from (Hele) the marshes there.9.2.13
After Salganeus is Anthedon, a city with a harbour,
the last on the Bœotian coast towards Eubœa, as the poet
Anthedon at the extremity. [Note]Il. ii. 508.
Near Anthedon is a place called Isus, and esteemed
sacred, belonging to Bœotia; it contains remains of a city, and
the first syllable of Isus is short. Some persons are of opinion,
that the verse ought to be written, ισόν τε ζαθέην ανθηδόνα
The sacred Isus, and the extreme Anthedon,
lengthening the first syllable by poetical licence for the sake
of the metre, instead of νῖσάν τε ζαθέην,
The sacred Nisa;
for Nisa is not to be found anywhere in Bœotia, as Apollodorus says in his observations on the Catalogue of the Ships;
so that Nisa could not stand in this passage, unless by Nisa
Homer meant Isus, for there was a city Nisa, in Megaris,
from whence Isus was colonized, situated at the base of
Cithæron, but it exists no longer. [Note] Some however write
κρεῦσιάν τε ζαθέην,
The sacred Creusa,
meaning the present Creusa, the arsenal of the Thespieans,
situated on the Crisæan Gulf. Others write the passage
φαάς τε ζαθέας,
The sacred Pharæ,
Pharæ is one of the four villages, (or Tetracomiæ,) near Tanagra, namely, Heleon, Harma, Mycalessus, Pharæ. Others
again write the passage thus, νῦσάν τρ ζαθέηα
The sacred Nysa.
Nysa is a village of Helicon.
Such then is the description of the sea-coast opposite Eubœa.9.2.15
The places next in order, in the inland parts, are hollow plains, surrounded everywhere on the east and west by mountains; on the south by the mountains of Attica, on the north by those of Phocis: on the west, Cithæron inclines, obliquely, a little above the Crisæan Sea; it begins contiguous to the mountains of Megaris and Attica, and then makes a bend towards the plains, and terminates near the Theban territory.9.2.16
Some of these plains become lakes, by rivers spreading over or falling into them and then flowing off. Some are dried up, and being very fertile, are cultivated in every possible way. But as the ground underneath is full of caverns and fissures, it has frequently happened, that violent earthquakes have obstructed some passages, and formed others under-ground, or on the surface, the water being carried off, either by subterranean channels, or by the formation of lakes and rivers on the surface. If the deep subterranean passages are stopped up, the waters of the lakes increase, so as to inundate and cover cities and whole districts, which become uncovered, if the same or other passages are again opened. The same regions are thus traversed in boats or on foot, according
to circumstances; and the same cities are, occasionally, on the borders of, or at a distance from, a lake.9.2.17
One of two things took place. The cities either retained their sites, when the rise of the water was insufficient to overflow the houses, or they were deserted and rebuilt in some other place, when the inhabitants, being frequently exposed to danger from their vicinity to the lake, released themselves from further apprehension, by changing to a more distant or higher situation. It followed that the cities thus rebuilt retained the same name. Formerly, they might have had a name derived from some accidental local circumstance, but now the site does not correspond with the derivation of the name. For example, it is probable that Platææ was so called, from πλάτη, or the flat part of the oar, and Platæans from gaining their livelihood by rowing; but at present, since they live at a distance from the lake, the name can no longer, with equal propriety, be derived from this local circumstance. Helos also, and Heleon, and Heilesium [Note] were so called from their situation close to ἕλη, (Hele,) or marshes; but at present the case is different with all these places; either they have been rebuilt, or the lake has been greatly reduced in height by a subsequent efflux of its waters; for this is possible.9.2.18
This is exemplified particularly in the Cephissus, [Note] which fills the lake Copais. [Note] When the increase of the water of that lake was so great, that Copæ was in danger of being swallowed up, (the city is mentioned by the poet, and from it the lake had its name,) [Note] a fissure in the ground, which took place not far from the lake, and near Copæ, opened a subterraneous channel, of about 30 stadia in length, and received the river, which reappeared on the surface, near Upper Larymna in Locris; for, as has been mentioned, there is another Larymna, in Bœotia, on the sea, surnamed the Upper by the Romans. The place where the river rises again is called Anchoë, as also the lake near it. It is from this point that the Cephissus begins its course [Note] to the sea. When the overflowing of the water ceased, there was also a cessation of danger to the inhabitants on the banks, but not before some cities had been
already swallowed up. When the outlets were again ob-
structed, Crates the Miner, a man of Chalcis, began to clear
away the obstructions, but desisted in consequence of the Bœotians being in a state of insurrection; although, as he himself
says, in the letter to Alexander, many places had been already
drained; among these, some writers supposed was the site of
the ancient Orchomenus; others, that of Eleusis, and of
Athens on the Triton. These cities are said to have been
founded by Cecrops, when he ruled over Bœotia, then called
Ogygia, but that they were afterwards destroyed by inundations. It is said, that there was a fissure in the earth near
Orchomenus, that admitted the river Melas, [Note] which flows
through the territory of Haliartus, and forms there a marsh,
where the reed grows of which the musical pipe is made. [Note]
But this river has entirely disappeared, being carried off by
the subterraneous channels of the chasm, or absorbed by the
lakes and marshes about Haliartus; whence the poet calls
And the grassy Haliartus. [Note]Il. ii. 503.
These rivers descend from the Phocian mountains, and
among them the Cephissus, [Note] having its source at Lilæa, a
Phocian city, as Homer describes it;
And they who occupied Lilæa, at the sources of Cephissus. [Note]Il. ii. 523.
except the chasm which receives the Cephissus, and the marshes.9.2.20
Among the neighbouring lakes are Trephea [Note] and Cephissis. Homer mentions it;
Who dwelt in Hyla, intent upon amassing wealth, close to the lake Cephissis; [Note]Il. v. 708.
He lived in Hyda,
for there is a place of this name in Lydia,
at the foot of the snowy Tmolus, in the fruitful country of Hyda; [Note]Il. xx. 385.
behind the lake Cephissis,
near dwelt other Bœotians.
For the Copais is of great extent, and not situated in the
Theban district, but the other is small, and filled from the
former by subterraneous channels; it is situated between
Thebes [Note] and Anthedon. Homer however makes use of the
word in the singular number, sometimes making the first
syllable long by poetical licence, as in the Catalogue, ἠδ' υλην
καὶ πετεῶνα [Note] and sometimes shortening it, as in this instance;
ος ἐν υλῃ ναίεσκε; and again, Tychius σκυτοτόμων ὄχ'
ἄιστος υλῃ ἔνι οἰκία ναίων [Note] Nor do some persons correctly
write in this passage, υδῃ ενι,
for Ajax was not to send for his shield from Lydia.
[Note]The lakes themselves would indicate the order in
which the places stand, and thence it would be easy to perceive that the poet, when naming them, whether they were places of importance or otherwise, has observed no order. Indeed it would be difficult in the enumeration of so many places, obscure for the most part, and situated in the interior, to preserve a regular order. The sea-coast affords more convenient means of doing this; the places there are better known, and the sea affords greater facilities for marking their position. We shall therefore endeavour to take our point of departure from the sea-coast, and without further discussion, shall follow the poet in his enumeration of places; at the same time, taking from other sources whatever may prove useful to us, but which has been omitted by him. He begins from Hyria and Aulis, of which we have already spoken.9.2.22
Schœnusis [Note] a district of the Theban territory on the road to Anthedon, distant from Thebes about 50 stadia. A river of the name of Schœnus flows through it.9.2.23
Scolus [Note] is a village belonging to the district of Parasopia situated at the foot of Cithæron; it is a rugged place, and
scarcely habitable, hence the proverbial saying,
Neither go yourself, nor follow any one going to Scolus.
It is said that Pentheus was brought from thence, and torn in
pieces. There was among the cities near Olynthus another of
the name of Scolus. We have said that in the Heracleian
Trachinia there was a village of the name of Parasopii, beside
which runs a river Asopus, and that there is another river
Asopus in Sicyonia, and that the country through which it
flows is called Asopia. There are however other rivers of
the same name.
The name of Eteonus was changed to that of Scarphe, which belongs to Parasopia. [Parasopia belongs to the Thebais,] for the Asopus and the Ismenus flow through the plain in front of Thebes. There is the fountain Dirce, and also Potniæ, where is laid the fable of Glaucus of Potniæ, who was torn in pieces near the city by Potnian mares. The Cithæron [Note] terminates not far from Thebes. The Asopus flows by it, and washes the foot of the mountain, and occasions the Parasopii to be distributed among several settle- ments, but all of these bodies of people are subject to the
Thebans. (Other writers say, that Scolus, Eteonus, and
Erythræ, are in the district of Platææ, for the Asopus flows
past Platææ, and discharges its waters into the sea near Tanagra.) In the Theban territory are Therapnæ and Teumessus,
which Antimachus has extolled in a long poem, enumerating excellencies which it had not;
There is a small hill exposed to the winds, &c.:
but the lines are well known.
He calls the present place Thespiæ [Note] by the name of
Thespia, for there are many names, of which some are used
both in the singular and in the plural number, in the
masculine and in the feminine gender, and some in either one
or the other only. It is a city close to Helicon, lying more
to the south. The city itself and Helicon are situated on the
Crisæan Gulf. Thespiæ has an arsenal Creusa, or, as it is
also named, Creusia. In the Thespian territory, in the part
lying towards Helicon, is Ascra, [Note]
He dwelt near Helicon in a wretched village, Ascra; bad in winter, in
summer intolerable, and worthless at any season. [Note]
Helicon is contiguous to Phocis on its northern, and partly
on its western side, as far as the last harbour of Phocis, which
is called from its characteristic situation, Mychus, or the
Just above this part of the Crisæan Gulf, Helicon, Ascra, Thespiæ, and its arsenal Creusa, are situated. This is considered as the part of the Crisæn and of the Corinthian Gulf which recedes most inland. The coast extends 90 stadia from the recess of the harbour to Creusa, and thence 120 as far as the promontory called Holmiæ. In the most retired part of the Crisæan Gulf, Pagæ and Œnoa, which I have already mentioned, are situated.
Helicon, not far distant from Parnassus, rivals it in height [Note] and circumference. Both mountains are covered with snow, and are rocky. They do not occupy a circuit of ground of great extent. There are, the fane of the Muses, the Horse-fountain Hippocrene, [Note] and the grottoes of the nymphs, the Leibethrides. Hence it might be conjectured, that Helicon was consecrated to the Muses, by Thracians, who dedicated also Pieris, the Leibethrum, and Pimpleia to the same goddesses. The Thracians were called Pieres, and since their expulsion, the Macedonians possess these places.
It has been remarked, that the Thracians, (having expelled the Bœotians by force,) and the Pelasgi, and other barbarous people, settled in this part of Bœotia.
Thespiæ was formerly celebrated for a statue of Cupid by Praxiteles. Glycera the courtesan, a native of Thespiæ, received it as a present from the artist, and dedicated it as a public offering to her fellow-citizens.
Persons formerly used to repair thither to see the Cupid, where there was nothing else worth seeing. This city, and Tanagra, alone of the Bœotian cities exist at present, while of others there remain nothing but ruins and names.
After Thespiæ the poet enumerates Graia and Mycalessus, of which we have before spoken.
He proceeds as before,
They who lived near Harma, Eilesium, and Erythræ,
Il. ii. 499.
And they who occupied Eleon, Hyle, and Peteon. [Note]
Homer afterwards names,
Copæ, and Eutresis, and Thisbe, abounding with doves. [Note]Il. ii. 502.
We have spoken of Copæ. It lies towards the north on the lake Copais. The other cities around are, Acræphiæ, Phœnicis, Onchestus, Haliartus, Ocalea, Alalcomenæ, Tilphusium, Coroneia. Formerly, the lake had no one general name, but derived its appellation from every settlement on its banks, as Copais from Copæ, [Note] Haliartis from Haliartus, and other names from other places, but latterly the whole has been called Copaïs, for the lake is remarkable for forming at Copæ the deepest hollow. Pindar calls it Cephissis, and places near it, not far from Haliartus and Alalcomenæ, the fountain Tilphossa, which flows at the foot of Mount Tilphossius. At the fountain is the monument of Teiresias, and in the same place the temple of the Tilphossian Apollo.9.2.28
After Copæ, the poet mentions Eutresis, a small village of the Thespians. [Note] Here Zethus and Amphion lived before they became kings of Thebes.
Thisbē is now called Thisbē. The place is situated a little
above the sea-coast on the confines of the Thespienses, and
the territory of Coroneia; on the south it lies at the foot of
Cithæron. It has an arsenal in a rocky situation abounding
with doves, whence the poet terms it
Thisbe, with its flights of doves.
Thence to Sicyon is a voyage of 160 stadia.
He next recites the names of Coroneia, Haliartus, Pla- tææ, and Glissas.
flowing by it, Cuarius, the name of the Thessalian river.
Alcæus, however, calls it Coralius in these words,
Minerva, warrior queen, who o'er Coroneia keepest watch before thy
temple, on the banks of Coralius.
The festival Pambœotia was here celebrated. Hades is associated with Minerva, in the dedication of the temple, for some
mystical reason. The inhabitants of the Bœotian Coroneia
are called Coronii, those of the Messenian Coroneia, Coronenses.
Haliartus [Note] is no longer in existence, it was razed in the war against Perseus. The territory is occupied by the Athenians, to whom it was given by the Romans. It was situated in a narrow spot between an overhanging mountain and the lake Copais, near the Permessus, the Olmeius, and the marsh that produces the flute-reed.9.2.31
Platææ, which the poet uses in the singular number,
lies at the foot of Cithæron, between this mountain and Thebes,
on the road to Athens and Megara; it is on the borders of
Attica and Bœotia, for Eleutheræ is near, which some say belongs to Attica, others to Bœotia. We have said that the
Asopus flows beside Plateæ. There the army of the Greeks
entirely destroyed Mardonius and three hundred thousand
Persians. They dedicated there a temple to Jupiter Eleutherius, and instituted gymnastic games, called Eleutheria, in
which the victor was crowned. The tombs erected at the
public expense, in honour of those who died in the battle, are
to be seen there. In the Sicyonian district is a demus called
Platææ, where the poet Mnasalces was born:
the monument of Mnasalces of Platææ.
Glissas, [Note] Homer says, is a village on Mount Hypatus, which
is near Teumessus and Cadmeia, in the Theban territory.
* * * * * * * beneath is what is called the Aonian plain,
which extends from Mount Hypatus [to Cadmeia?]. [Note]
32. By these words of the poet,
those who occupied under Thebes, [Note]Il. ii. 505.
The Amphictyonic council usually assembled at Onchestus, in the territory of Haliartus, near the lake Copais,
and the Teneric plain. It is situated on a height, devoid of
trees, where is a temple of Neptune also without trees. For
the poets, for the sake of ornament, called all sacred places
groves, although they were without trees. Such is the language of Pindar, when speaking of Apollo:
He traversed in his onward way the earth and sea; he stood upon the
heights of the lofty mountains; he shook the caves in their deep recesses,
and overthrew the foundations of the sacred groves or temples.
As Alcæus is mistaken in the altering the name of the river
Cuarius, so he makes a great error in placing Onchestus at
the extremities of Helicon, whereas it is situated very far from
The Teneric plain has its name from Tenerus. According to mythology, he was the son of Apollo and Melia,
and declared the answers of the oracle at the mountain Ptoum, [Note]
which, the same poet says, had three peaks:
At one time he occupied the caves of the three-headed Ptoum;
and he calls Tenerus
the prophet, dwelling in the temple, and having the same name as the
soil on which it stands.
"The Ptoum is situated above the Teneric plain, and the lake
Copaïs, near Acræphium.
Both the oracle and the mountain belonged to the Thebans.
Acrsephium [Note] itself is situated upon a height. This, it is said, is the place called Arne by the poet, having the same name as the Thessalian Arnē.9.2.35
Some say that Arnē and Mideia were swallowed up by
the lake. Zenodotus, however, when he writes the verse thus,
they who occupied Ascra abounding with vines, [Note]Il. ii. 507.
abounding with vines?
Neither are those persons in the right, who substitute in this
passage Tarnē for Arnē, for there is not a place of the name
of Tarne to be found in Bœotia, although there is in Lydia.
Homer mentions it,
Idomeneus then slew Phæstus, the son of Borus, the artificer, who came
from the fruitful soil of Tarn. [Note]
Besides Alalcomenæ and Tilphossium, which are near the
lake, Chæroneia, Lebadia, and Leuctra, are worthy of notice.
The poet mentions Alalcomenæ, [Note] but not in the Cata
the Argive Juno and Minerva of Alalcomenæ. [Note]Il. iv. 8.
All in reverence to the goddess abstained from every act of violence; wherefore the Thebans, at the time of the expedition of the Epigoni, abandoning their own city, are said to have taken refuge here, and on the strong mountain above it, the Tilphossium. [Note] Below Tilphossium is the fountain Tilphossa, and the monument of Teiresias, who died there on the retreat.9.2.37
Chæroneia [Note] is near Orchomenus, [Note] where Philip, the son
of Amyntas, after having overcome, in a great battle, [Note]
At Lebadeia [Note] is the oracle of Jupiter Trophonius, having a descent through an opening, which leads underground. The person himself, who consults the oracle, descends into it. It is situated between Helicon and Chæroneia, near Coroneia.9.2.39
Leuctra [Note] is the place where Epaminondas overcame the Lacedæmonians in a great battle, and first weakened their power; for after that time they were never able to regain the supremacy over the Greeks, which they before possessed, and particularly after they were defeated in a second battle at Mantinea. Even after these reverses they preserved their independence until the establishment of the Roman dominion, and were always respected by that people on account of the excellency of their form of government. The field of battle is shown on the road which leads from Platææ to Thespiæ.9.2.40
The poet next mentions the Orchomenians in the Catalogue, and distinguishes them from the Bœotian nation. He gives to Orchomenus the epithet Minyeian from the nation of the Minyæ. They say that a colony of the Minyeians went hence to Iolcus, [Note] and from this circumstance the Argonauts were called Minyæ. It appears that, anciently, it was a rich
and very powerful city. Homer bears witness to its wealth, for in his enumeration of places of great opulence, he says, Not all that is brought to Orchomenus, or to ægyptian Thebes. [Note] Of its power there is this proof, that the Thebans always paid tribute to the Orchomenians, and to Erginus their king, who it is said was put to death by Hercules. Eteocles, one of the kings that reigned at Orchomenus, first displayed both wealth and power. He built a temple dedicated to the Graces, who were thus honoured by him, either because he had been fortunate in receiving or conferring favours, or perhaps for both these reasons.
[For one who was inclined thus to honour these goddesses, must have been naturally disposed to be a benefactor,
and he must have possessed the power. But for this purpose
wealth is required. For he who has not much cannot give
much, nor can he who does not receive much possess much;
but when giving and receiving unite, then there is a just exchange. For a vessel which is simultaneously emptied and
filled is always full; but he who gives and does not receive
cannot succeed in either giving or receiving, for the giver
must desist from giving from failure of means. Givers also
will desist from giving to him who receives only, and confers
no benefits, so that he must fail in receiving. The same may
be said of power. For independently of the common saying,
That money is the thing most highly valued,
Euripides, Phœn. 422
And has the greatest influence in human affairs, [Note]
The spot which the present lake Copaïs occupies, was formerly, it is said, dry ground, and was cultivated in various ways by the Orchomenians, who lived near it; and this is alleged as a proof of wealth.9.2.41
Some persons use the word Aspledon [Note] without the first syllable, Spledon. The name both of the city and of the territory was changed to Eudeielos, [Note] which expressed perhaps some peculiar advantage the inhabitants derived from their western position, and especially the mild winters. The extreme parts of the day are the coldest. Of these the evening is colder than the morning, for as night approaches the cold is more intense, and as night retires the cold abates. The severity of the cold is mitigated by the heat of the sun, and the part which during the coldest season has received most of the sun's heat, is mildest in winter.
It is distant from Orchomenus [Note] 20 stadia. The river Melas is between them.9.2.42
Panopeus, a Phocian city, and Hyampolis [Note] are situated above Orchomenus. Opus, the metropolis of the Locri Epicnemidii, borders upon these places. It is said, that Orchomenus was formerly situated on a plain, but, as the waters overflowed, the settlers removed to the mountain Acontium, which extends 60 stadia in length, as far as Parapotamii in Phocis. It is said, that those people, who are called Achæi in Pontus, are colonists from the Orchomenians, who, after the capture of Troy, wandered thither under the conduct of lalmenus. There was also an Orchomenus near Carystus.
The writers on the Catalogue of Ships [in Homer], have furnished us with these materials, and they have been followed, wherever they introduced anything adapted to the design of this work.
NEXT to Bœotia and Orchomenus is Phocis, lying along the side of Bœotia to the north, and, anciently, nearly from sea
to sea. For at that time Daphnus belonged to Phocis, dividing Locris into two parts, and situated midway between the Opuntian Gulf and the sea-coast of the Epicnemidii. At present, however, the district belongs to the Locri; but the town is in ruins, so that Phocis no longer extends to the sea opposite Eubœa; but it is close to the Crisæan Gulf. For Crisa itself belongs to Phocis, and is situated immediately upon the sea. Cirrha, Anticyra, [Note] and the places above them, in the interior near Parnassus in continuous succession, namely, Delphi, [Note] Cirphis, and Daulis, [Note] belong to Phocis, so also Parnassus itself, which is the boundary of the western side.
In the same manner as Phocis lies along the side of Bœotia, so are both the divisions of Locris situated with respect to Phocis, for Locris is composed of two parts, being divided by Parnassus. The western part lies along the side of Parnassus, occupies a portion of it, and extends to the Crisæan Gulf; the eastern part terminates at the sea near Eubœa. The inhabitants of the former are called Locri Hesperii, or Locri Ozolæs, and have engraven on their public seal the star Hesperus. The rest are again divided into two bodies: one, the Opuntii, who have their name from the chief city, and border upon the Phocæans and Bœotians; the other, the Epicnemidii, who have their name from the mountain Cnemis; [Note] and adjoin the Œtæi, and the Malienses. In the midst of the Hesperii, and the other Locri, is Parnassus, lying lengthwise towards the northern part, and extending from the neighbourhood of Delphi to the junction of the Œtæn, and the ætolian mountains, and to the Dorians, who are situated between them. For as both divisions of Locris extend along the side of Phocis, so also the region of æta with ætolia, and some of the places situated in the Doric Tetrapolis, extend along the sides of the two Locri, Parnassus and the Dorians. Immediately above these are situated the Thessalians, the northern ætolians, the Acarnanians, and some of the Epirotic and Macedonian nations, as I observed before, the above-mentioned tracts of country may be considered as a kind of parallel bands stretching from the west to the east.
The whole of Parnassus is esteemed sacred, it contains caves, and other places, which are regarded with honour and
reverence. Of these the most celebrated and the most beautiful is Corycium, a cave of the nymphs, having the same name as that in Cilicia. Of the sides of Parnassus, the western is occupied by the Locri Ozolæ, and by some of the Dorians, and by the ætoli, situated near Corax, an ætolian mountain. The eastern side is occupied by Phocians and by the greater part of the Dorians, who hold the Tetrapolis, situated as it were round the side of Parnassus, but spreading out in the largest extent towards the east. The sides of the above-mentioned tracts and each of the bands are parallel, one side being northern, and the other southern. The western sides, however, are not parallel to the eastern, for the sea-coast from the Crisæan Gulf to Actium [Note] is not parallel to the coast opposite Eubœa, and extending to Thessalonica. It is on these shores the above-mentioned nations terminate. For the figure of these countries is to be understood from the notion of lines drawn parallel to the base of a triangle, where the separate parts lie parallel to one another, and have their sides in latitude parallel, but not their sides in longitude. This is a rough sketch of the country which remains to be examined. We shall examine each separate part in order, beginning with Phocis.9.3.2
The two most celebrated cities of this country are Delphi and Elateia. Delphi is renowned for the temple of the
Pythian Apollo, and the antiquity of its oracle; since Agamemnon is said by the poet to have consulted it; for the minstrel is introduced singing of the
fierce contest of Ulysses, and Achilles, the son of Peleus, how once they
contended together, and Agamemnon king of men was pleased, for so
Phœbus Apollo had foretold by the oracle in the illustrious Pytho. [Note]
Delphi then was celebrated on this account. Elateia was
famous as being the largest of the cities in that quarter, and
for its very convenient position upon the straits; for he, who
is the master of this city, commands the entrances into Phocis
and Bœotia. First, there are the Œtæan mountains, next the
mountains of the Locri, and the Phocians; they are not every
where passable for invading armies, coming from Thessaly,
but having narrow passes distinct from each other, which the
adjacent cities guard. Those, who take the cities, are masters
of the passes also. But since from its celebrity the temple at Delphi possesses a pre-eminence, this, together with the position of the places, (for they are the most westerly parts of Phocis,) suggest a natural commencement of our description, and we shall begin from thence.9.3.3
We have remarked, that Parnassus itself is situated on the western boundaries of Phocis. The western side of this mountain is occupied by the Locri Ozolæ; on the southern is Delphi, a rocky spot, resembling in shape a theatre; on its summit is the oracle, and also the city, which comprehends a circle of 16 stadia. Above it lies Lycoreia; here the Delphians were formerly settled above the temple. At present they live close to it around the Castalian fountain. In front of the city, on the southern part, is Cirphis, a precipitous hill, leaving in the intermediate space a wooded ravine, through which the river Pleistus flows. Below Cirphis near the sea is Cirrha, an ancient city, from which there is an ascent to Delphi of about 80 stadia. It is situated opposite to Sicyon. Adjoining to Cirrha is the fertile Crisæan plain. Again, next in order follows another city Crisa, from which the Crissæan Gulf has its name; then Anticyra, [Note] of the same name as the city, on the Maliac Gulf, and near æta. The best hellebore is said to grow in the Maliac Anticyra, [Note] but here it is prepared in a better manner; on this account many persons resort hither for the purpose of experiencing its purgative qualities, and of being cured of their maladies. In the Phocian territory there is found a medicinal plant, resembling Sesamum, (Sesamoides,) with which the Œtæan hellebore is prepared.9.3.4
Anticyra still remains, but Cirrha and Crisa [Note] are in ruins; Cirrha was destroyed by the Criseeans; and Crisa, afterwards, by Eurylochus the Thessalian, in the Crisæan war; for the Crisæi enriched themselves by duties levied on merchandise brought from Sicily and Italy, and laid grievous imposts on those who resorted to the temple, contrary to the decrees of the Amphictyons. The same was the case with the Amphissenses, who belong to the Locri Ozolæ. This people made an irruption into the country, and took possession of Crisa, and restored it. The plain, which had been consecrated
by the Amphictyons, was diligently cultivated, but strangers were more harshly treated than by the Crisæans before them. The Amphictyons punished them and restored the territory to the god. The temple at Delphi is now much neglected, although formerly it was held in the greatest veneration. Proofs of the respect which was paid to it are, the treasuries constructed at the expense of communities and princes, where was deposited the wealth dedicated to sacred uses, the works of the most eminent artists, the Pythian games, and a multitude of celebrated oracles.9.3.5
The place where the oracle is delivered, is said to be a deep hollow cavern, the entrance to which is not very wide. From it rises up an exhalation which inspires a divine frenzy: over the mouth is placed a lofty tripod on which the Pythian priestess ascends to receive the exhalation, after which she gives the prophetic response in verse or prose. The prose is adapted to measure by poets who are in the service of the temple. Phemonoë is said to have been the first Pythian prophetess, and both the prophetess and the city obtained their appellation from the word Pythesthai, to inquire, (πυθέσθαι). The first syllable was lengthened, as in the words ἀθάνατος ἀκάματος διάκονος.
[Note][The establishment of cities, and the honour paid to common temples, are due to the same feelings and causes. Men were collected together into cities and nations, from a natural disposition to society, and for the purpose of mutual assistance. Hence common temples were resorted to, festivals celebrated, and meetings held of the general body of the people. For friendship commences from and is promoted by attending the same feasts, uniting in the same worship, and dwelling under the same roof. The advantages derived from these meetings were naturally estimated from the number of persons who attended them, as also from the number of places from whence they came.]9.3.6
Although the highest honour was paid to this temple on account of the oracle, (for it was the most exempt of any from deception,) yet its reputation was owing in part to its situation in the centre of all Greece, both within and without the isthmus. It was also supposed to be the centre of the habitable
earth, and was called the Navel of the earth. A fable, referred to by Pindar, was invented, according to which two eagles, (or, as others say, two crows,) set free by Jupiter, one from the east, the other from the west, alighted together at Delphi. In the temple is seen a sort of navel wrapped in bands, and surmounted by figures representing the birds of the fable.9.3.7
As the situation of Delphi is convenient, persons easily assembled there, particularly those from the neighbourhood, of whom the Amphictyonic body is composed. It is the business of this body to deliberate on public affairs, and to it is more particularly intrusted the guardianship of the temple for the common good; for large sums of money were deposited there, and votive offerings, which required great vigilance and religious care. The early history of this body is unknown, but among the names which are recorded, Acrisius appears to have been the first who regulated its constitution, to have determined what cities were to have votes in the council, and to have assigned the number of votes and mode of voting. To some cities he gave a single vote each, or a vote to two cities, or to several cities conjointly. He also defined the class of questions which might arise between the different cities, which were to be submitted to the decision of the Amphictyonic tribunal; and subsequently many other regulations were made, but this body, like that of the Achæans, was finally dissolved.
At first twelve cities are said to have assembled, each of which sent a Pylagoras. The convention was held twice a year, in spring and autumn. But latterly a greater number of cities assembled. They called both the vernal and the autumnal convention Pylæan, because it was held at Pyle, which has the name also of Thermopylæ. The Pylagoræ sacrificed to Ceres.
In the beginning, the persons in the neighbourhood only assembled, or consulted the oracle, but afterwards people repaired thither from a distance for this purpose, sent gifts, and constructed treasuries, as Crœsus, and his father Alyattes, some of the Italians also, and the Siceli (Sicilians).9.3.8
But the wealth, being an object of cupidity, was guarded with difficulty, although dedicated to sacred uses. At present, however, whatever it might have been, the temple at
Delphi is exceedingly poor. Some of the offerings have
been taken away for the sake of the money, but the greater
part remain there. It is true that the temple was once very
opulent, as Homer testifies;
Nor all the wealth, which the marble threshold of Phœbus Apollo, the
Archer, (Aphetor,) [Note] contains in the rocky Pytho. [Note]
The treasuries indicate its riches, and the plunder committed
by the Phocians, which gave rise to the Phocic or Sacred
war, as it was called. It is however supposed that a spoliation of the temple must have taken place at some more remote period, when the wealth mentioned by Homer disappeared; for no vestige of it whatever was preserved to later
times, when Onomarchus and Phayllus pillaged the temple, as
the property [then] removed was of a more recent date than
that referred to by the poet. For there were once deposited
in the treasuries, offerings from spoils, bearing inscriptions
with the names of the donors, as of Gyges, of Crœsus, of the
Sybaritæ, of the Spinetæ on the Adriatic, and of others also.
It would be unbecoming to suppose [Note] that modern and ancient
treasures were confounded together: other places pillaged by
these people confirm this view.
Some persons, however, understanding the word Aphetor to signify treasure, and the threshold of the aphetor the repository of the treasure under-ground, say, that this wealth was buried beneath the temple, and that Onomarchus and his companions attempted to dig it up by night; violent shocks of an earthquake caused them to fly out of the temple, and desist from their excavation; thus others were impressed with a dread of making similar attempts.9.3.9
Of the shrines, the winged shrine [Note] is to be placed among fabulous stories. The second is said to have been the workmanship of Trophonius and Agamedes, but the present shrine [Note] was built by the Amphictyons. A tomb of Neoptolemus is shown in the sacred enclosure. It was built according
to the injunction of an oracle. Neoptolemus was killed by Machæreus, a Delphian, when, as the fable goes, he was seeking redress from the god for the murder of his father, but, probably, he was preparing to pillage the temple. Branchus, who presided over the temple at Didyma, is said to have been a descendant of Machæreus.9.3.10
There was anciently a contest held at Delphi, of players on the cithara, who executed a pæan in honour of the god. It was instituted by Delphians. But after the Crisæan war the Amphictyons, in the time of Eurylochus, established contests for horses, and gymnastic sports, in which the victor was crowned. These were called Pythian games. The players [Note] on the cithara were accompanied by players on the flute, and by citharists, [Note] who performed without singing. They performed a strain (Melos), [Note] called the Pythian mood (Nomos). [Note] It consisted of five parts; the anacrusis, the ampeira, cataceleusmus, iambics and dactyls, and pipes. [Note] Timosthenes, the commander of the fleet of the Second Ptolemy, and who was the author of a work in ten books on Harbours, composed a melos. His object was to celebrate in this melos the contest of Apollo with the serpent Python. The anacrusis was intended to express the prelude; the ampeira, the first onset of the contest; the cataceleusmus, the contest itself; the iambics and dactyls denoted the triumphal strain on obtaining the victory, together with musical measures, of which the dactyl is peculiarly appropriated to praise, and the use of the iambic to insult and reproach; the syringes or pipes described the death, the players imitating the hissings of the expiring monster. [Note]9.3.11
Ephorus, whom we generally follow, on account of his exactness in these matters, (as Polybius, a writer of repute, testifies,) seems to proceed contrary to his proposed plan, and to the promise which he made at the beginning of his work. For after having censured those writers who are fond of intermixing fable with history, and after having spoken in praise of truth, he introduces, with reference to this oracle, a grave declaration, that he considers truth preferable at all
times, but especially in treating subjects of this kind. For it is absurd, he says, if, in other things, we constantly follow this practice, but that when we come to speak of the oracle, which of all others is the most exempt from deception, we should introduce tales so incredible and false. Yet immediately afterwards he says, that it is the received opinion that Apollo, by the aid of Themis, established this oracle with a view to benefit the human race. He then explains these benefits, by saying, that men were invited to pursue a more civilized mode of life, and were taught maxims of wisdom by oracles; by injunctions to perform or to abstain, or by positive refusal to attend to the prayers of petitioners. Some, he says, suppose, that the god himself in a bodily form directs these things; others, that he communicates an intimation of his will to men [by words].9.3.12
And lower down, when speaking of the Delphians and their origin, he says, that certain persons, called Parnassii, an indigenous tribe, anciently inhabited Parnassus, about which time Apollo, traversing the country, reclaimed men from their savage state, by inducing them to adopt a more civilized mode of life and subsistence; that, setting out from Athens on his way to Delphi, he took the same road along which the Athenians at present conduct the procession of the Pythias; that when he arrived at the Panopeis, he put to death Tityus, who was master of the district, a violent and lawless man; that the Parnassii having joined him informed him of Python, another desperate man, surnamed the Dragon. Whilst he was despatching this man with his arrows, they shouted, Hie Paian; [Note] whence has been transmitted the custom of singing the Pæan before the onset of a battle; that after the death of the Python the Delphians burnt even his tent, as they still continue to burn a tent in memorial of these events. Now what can be more fabulous than Apollo discharging his arrows, chastising Tityi and Pythons, his journey from Athens to Delphi, and his travels over the whole country? If he did not consider these as fables, why did he call the fabulous Themis a woman, and the fabulous dragon a man, unless he intended to confound the provinces of history and fable. His account of the ætolians is similar to this. After having
asserted that their country was never ravaged at any period, he says, that at one time it was inhabited by ætolians, who had expelled the Barbarians; that at another time, ætolus, together with the Epeii from Elis, inhabited it; [that ætolus was overthrown by the Epeii,] and these again by Alcmæon and Diomedes.
I now return to the Phocians.9.3.13
Immediately on the sea-coast, next after Anticyra, [Note] and behind [Note] it, is the small city Marathus; then a promontory, Pharygium, which has a shelter for vessels; then the harbour at the farthest end, called Mychus, [Note] from the accident of its situation between Helicon [Note] and Ascra.
In the inland parts, next after Delphi, towards the east is
Daulis, [Note] a small town, where, it is said, Tereus, the Thracian,
was prince; and there they say is the scene of the fable of
Philomela and Procne; Thucydides lays it there; but other
writers refer it to Megara. The name of the place is derived
from the thickets there, for they call thickets Dauli. Homer
calls it Daulis, but subsequent writers Daulia, and the words
they who occupied Cyparissus, [Note]
are understood in a double sense; some persons supposing it
to have its name from the tree of the country, but others from
a village situated below the Lycoreian territory.
Panopeus, the present Phanoteus, the country of Epeius,
is on the confines of the district of Lebadeia. Here the fable
places the abode of Tityus. But Homer says, that the Phæacians conducted Rhadamanthus to Eubœa,
in order to see Tityus, son of the earth; [Note]Od. vii. 324.
they show also in the island a cave called Elarium, from Elara the mother of Tityus, and an Heroum of Tityus, and some kind of honours are spoken of, which are paid to him.
Near Lebadeia is Trachin, having the same name as that in Œtæ; it is a small Phocian town. The inhabitants are called Trachinii.9.3.15
Anemoreia [Note] has its name from a physical accident, to which it is liable. It is exposed to violent gusts of wind from a place called Catopterius, [Note] a precipitous mountain, extending from Parnassus. It was a boundary between Delphi and the Phocians, when the Lacedæmonians made the Delphians separate themselves from the common body of the Phocians, [Note] and permitted them to form an independent state.
Some call the place Anemoleia; it was afterwards called by others Hyampolis, [Note] (and also Hya,) whither we said the Hyintes were banished from Bœotia. It is situated quite in the interior, near Parapotamii, and is a different place from Hyampea on Parnassus.
Elateia [Note] is the largest of the Phocian cities, but Homer was
not acquainted with it, for it is later than his times. It is
conveniently situated to repel incursions on the side of Thessaly. Demosthenes [Note]
Parapotamii is a settlement on the Cephissus, in the neighbourhood of Phanoteus, Chæroneia, and Elateia. This place, according to Theopompus, is distant from Chæroneia about 40 stadia, and is the boundary between the Ambryseis, Panopeis, and Daulieis. It is situated at the entrance from Bœotia to the Phocians, upon an eminence of moderate height, between Parnassus and the mountain [Hadylium, where there is an open space] of 5 stadia in extent, through which runs the Cephissus, affording on each side a narrow pass. This river has its source at Lila, a Phocian city, as Homer testifies;
they who occupied Lilæa, near the source of the Cephissus; [Note]Il. ii. 523.
which, like a serpent, winds along Panopeus and the strong Glechon, and
through Orchomenus. [Note]
The narrow pass near Parapotamii, or Parapotamia, (for the name is written both ways,) was disputed in [the Phocian war,] for this is the only entrance [into Phocis]. [Note]
There is a Cephissus in Phocis, another at Athens, and another at Salamis. There is a fourth and a fifth at Sicyon and at Scyrus; [a sixth at Argos, having its source in the Lyrceium]. [Note] At Apollonia, [Note] also, near Epidamnus, [Note] there is near the Gymnasium a spring, which is called Cephissus.9.3.17
Daphnus [Note] is at present in ruins. It was at one time a city of Phocis, and lay close to the Eubœan Sea; it divided the Locri Epicnemidii into two bodies, namely, the Locri on the side of Bœotia, [Note] and the Locri on the side of Phocis, which then extended from sea to sea. A proof of this is the Schedieum, [in Daphnus,] called the tomb of Schedius. [Note] [It has been already said] that Daphnus [divides] Locris into two parts, [in such a manner as to prevent] the Epicnemidii and Opuntii from touching upon each other in any part. In aftertimes Daphnus was included within the boundaries of the [Opuntii].
On the subject of Phocis, this may suffice.
LOCRIS, which we are now to describe, follows next in order.
It is divided into two parts, one of which is occupied by the Locri opposite Eubœa, and, as we have already said, formerly consisted of two bodies, situated one on each side of Daphnus. The Locri Opuntii had their surname from Opus, [Note] the capital; the Epicnemidii from a mountain called Cnemis. [Note] The rest are the Locri Hesperii, who are called also Locri Ozolæ. These are separated from the Locri Opuntii and Epicnemidii by Parnassus, which lies between them, and by the Tetrapolis of the Dorians. We shall first speak of the Opuntii.9.4.2
Immediately after Halæ, where the Bœotian coast opposite Eubœa terminates, is the Opuntian bay. Opus is the capital, as the inscription intimates, which is engraved on the first of the five pillars at Thermopylæ, near the Polyandrium: [Note] Opoeis, the capital of the Locri, hides in its bosom those who died in defence of Greece against the Medes. It is distant from the sea about 15 stadia, and 60 from the naval arsenal. The arsenal is Cynus, [Note] a promontory, which forms the boundary of the Opuntian bay. The latter is 40 stadia in extent. Between Opus and Cynus is a fertile plain, opposite to ædepsus in Eubœa, where are the warm baths [Note] of Hercules, and is separated by a strait of 160 stadia. Deucalion is said to have lived at Cynus. There also is shown the tomb of Pyrrha; but that of Deucalion is at Athens. Cynus is distant from Mount Cnemis about 50 stadia. The island Atalanta [Note] is opposite to Opus, having the
same name as the island in front of Attica. It is said, that some Opuntii are to be found in the Eleian territory, whom it is not worth while to notice, except that they pretend to trace some affinity subsisting between themselves and the Locri Opuntii. Homer [Note] says that Patroclus was from Opus, and that having committed murder undesignedly, he fled to Peleus, but that the father Menœtius remained in his native country; for it is to Opus that Achilles promised Menœtius that he would bring back Patroclus on his return from the Trojan expedition. [Note] Not that Menœtius was king of the Opuntii, but Ajax the Locrian, who, according to report, was born at Narycus. The name of the person killed by Patroclus was æanes; a grove, called after him æaneium, and a fountain, æanis, are shown.9.4.3
Next after Cynus is Alopē [Note] and Daphnus, which last, we have said, is in ruins. At Alopē is a harbour, distant from Cynus about 90 stadia, and 120 from Elateia, in the interior of the country. But these belong to the Maliac, which is continuous with the Opuntian Gulf.9.4.4
Next to Daphnus, at the distance of about 20 stadia by sea, is Cnemides, a strong place, opposite to which in Eubœa is Cenæum, a promontory, looking towards the west and the Maliac Gulf, and separated by a strait of nearly 20 stadia.
At Cnemides we are in the territory of the Locri Epicnemidii. Here are the Lichades, as they are called, three islands, having their name from Lichas; they lie in front of Cnemides. Other islands also are met with in sailing along this coast, which we purposely pass over.
At the distance of 20 stadia from Cnemides is a harbour, above which at the same distance, in the interior, is situated Thronium. [Note] Then the Boagrius, which flows beside Thronium, empties itself into the sea. It has another name also, that of Manes. It is a winter torrent; whence its bed may be crossed at times dry-shod, and at another it is two plethra in width.
Then after these is Scarpheia, at a distance of 10 stadia
from the sea, and of 30 from Thronium, but at a little [less from its harbour.] [Note] Next are Nicæa and Thermopylæ.9.4.5
It is not worth while to speak of any of the other cities. Of those mentioned by Homer, Calliarus is no longer inhabited, it is now a well-cultivated plain. Bessa, a sort of plain, does not now exist. It has its name from an accidental quality, for it abounds with woods. χώαν ἔχουσι σκαρφιεῖς, &c. It ought to be written with a double s, for it has its name from Bessa, a wooded valley, like Napē, [Note] in the plain of Methymna, [Note] which Hellanicus, through ignorance of the local circumstances, improperly calls Lapē; but the demus in Attica, from which the burghers are called Besæenses, is written with a single s.9.4.6
Tarphe is situated upon a height, at the distance of 20 stadia from [Thronium]. It has a territory, productive and well wooded; for this place also has its name from its being thickly wooded. It is now called Pharygæ. A temple of Juno Pharygæa is there, called so from the Argive Juno at Pharygæ; and the inhabitants assert that they are of Argive origin.9.4.7
Homer does not mention, at least not in express words
the Locri Hesperii, but only seems to distinguish them from
the people of whom we have spoken;
Locri, who dwell beyond the sacred Eubœa; [Note]Il. ii. 535.
There also is Chalcis, mentioned by the poet [Note] in the ætolian Catalogue. It is below Calydon. There also is the hill Taphiassus, on which is the monument of Nessus, and of the other Centaurs. From the putrefaction of the bodies of these people there flows, it is said, from beneath the foot of that hill a stream of water, which exhales a fœtid odour, and
Amphissa is situated at the extremity of the Crissæan plain. It was razed, as we have said before, by the Amphictyons. Œanthia and Eupalium belong to the Locri. The whole voyage along the coast of the Locri is a little more than 200 stadia.9.4.9
There is an Alopē [Note] both here among the Locri Ozole, as also among the Epicnemidii, and in the Phthiotis. These are a colony of the Epicnemidii, and the Epizephyrii a colony of the Ozolæ.9.4.10
ætolians are continuous with the Locri Hesperii, and the ænianes, who occupy Œta with the Epicnemidii, and between them Dorians. These last are the people who inhabited the Tetrapolis, which is called the capital of all the Dorians. They possessed the cities Erineus, Bœum, Pindus, Cytinium. Pindus is situated above Erineus. A river of the same name flows beside it, and empties itself into the Cephissus, not far from Lilæa. Some writers call Pindus, Acyphas.
ægimius, king of these Dorians, when an exile from his kingdom, was restored, as they relate, by Hercules. He requited this favour after the death of Hercules at Œta by adopting Hyllus, the eldest of the sons of Hercules, and both he and his descendants succeeded him in the kingdom. It was from this place that the Heracleidæ set out on their return to Peloponnesus.9.4.11
These cities were for some time of importance, although they were small, and their territory not fruitful. They were afterwards neglected. After what they suffered in the Phocian war and under the dominion of the Macedonians, ætolians, and Athamanes, it is surprising that even a vestige of them should have remained to the time of the Romans.
It was the same with the ænianes, who were exterminated by ætolians and Athamanes. The ætolians were a very powerful people, and carried on war together with the Acarnanians. The Athamanes were the last of the Epeirotæ, who attained distinction when the rest were declining, and acquired power by the assistance of their king Amynander. The ænianes, however, kept possession of Œta.
12. This mountain extends from Thermopylæ and the east, to the Ambracian Gulf and the west; it may be said to cut at right angles the mountainous tract, extending from Parnassus as far as Pindus, and to the Barbarians who live beyond. The portion of this mountain verging towards Thermopylæ [Note] is called Œta; it is 200 stadia in length, rocky and elevated, but the highest part is at Thermopylæ, for there it forms a peak, and terminates with acute and abrupt rocks, continued to the sea. It leaves a narrow passage for those who are going from Thessaly to Locris.9.4.13
This passage is called Pylæ, or gates, straits, and Thermopylæ, because near the straits are hot springs, which are held in honour as sacred to Hercules. The mountain above is called Callidromus; but some writers call by the name of Callidromus the remaining part of the range extending through ætolia and Acarnania to the Ambracian Gulf.
At Thermopylæ within the straits are strongholds, as Nicæa, on the sea of the Locri, Teichius and Heracleia above it, formerly called Trachin, founded by the Lacedæmonians. Heracleia is distant from the ancient Trachin about 6 stadia. Next follows Rhoduntia, strong by its position.9.4.14
These places are rendered difficult of access by a rocky country, and by bodies of water, forming ravines through which they pass. For besides the Spercheius, [Note] which flows past Anticyra, there is the Dyras, which, it is said, endeavoured to extinguish the funeral pile of Hercules, and another river, the Melas, distant about 5 stadia from Trachin. Herodotus says, [Note] that to the south of Trachin there is a deep fissure, through which the Asopus, (which has the same name as other rivers that we have mentioned,) empties itself into the sea without the Pylæ, having received the river Phoenix which flows from the south, and unites with it. The latter river bears the name of the hero, whose tomb is shown near it. From the Asopus (Phoenix?) to Thermopylæ are 15 stadia.9.4.15
These places were of the greatest celebrity when they formed the keys of the straits. There were frequent contests for the ascendency between the inhabitants without and those within the straits. Philip used to call Chalcis and Corinth the fetters of Greece with reference to the opportunity which they afforded for invasions from Macedonia; and persons in
later times called both these places and Demetrias the fetters, for Demetrias commanding Pelion and Ossa, commanded also the passes at Tempe. Afterwards, however, when the whole country was subject to one power, the passes were freely open to all. [Note]9.4.16
It was at these straits that Leonidas and his companions, together with a small body of persons from the neighbourhood, resisted the numerous forces of the Persians, until the Barbarians, making a circuit of the mountains along narrow paths, surrounded and cut them to pieces. Their place of burial, the Polyandrium, is still to be seen there, and the celebrated inscription sculptured on the Lacedæmonian pillar; Stranger, go tell Lacedæmon that we lie here in obedience to her laws.9.4.17
There is also a large harbour here and a temple of Ceres, in which the Amphictyons at the time of every Pylæan assembly offered sacrifice. From the harbour to the Heracleian Trachin are 40 stadia by land, but by sea to Cenæum [Note] it is 70 stadia. The Spercheius empties itself immediately without the Pylæ. To Pylæ from the Euripus are 530 stadia. And here Locris terminates. The parts without the Pylæ towards the east, and the Maliac Gulf, belong to the Thessalians; those towards the west, to the ætolians and Acarnanians. The Athamanes are extinct.9.4.18
The Thessalians form the largest and most ancient community. One part of them has been mentioned by Homer, and the rest by many other writers. Homer constantly mentions the ætolians under one name; he places cities, and not nations dependent upon them, if we except the Curetes, whom we must place in the division of ætolians.
We must begin our account with the Thessalians, omitting very ancient and fabulous stories, and what is not generally admitted, (as we have done in other instances,) but propose to mention what appears suited to our purpose.
THE sea-coast, extending from Thermopylæ to the mouths of the Peneius, [Note] and the extremities of Pelion, looking towards the east, and the northern extremities of Eubœa, is that of Thessaly. The parts opposite Eubœa and Thermopylæ are occupied by Malienses, and by Achæan Phthiotæ; those towards Pelion by the Magnetes. This may be called the eastern and maritime side of Thessaly. From either side from Pelion, and the Peneius, towards the inland parts are Macedonians, who extend as far as Pæonia, (Pindus?) and the Epeirotic nations. From Thermopylæ, the ætæan and ætolian mountains, which approach close to the Dorians, and Parnassus, are parallel to the Macedonians. The side towards the Macedonians may be called the northern side; the other, the southern. There remains the western side, enclosed by ætolians and Acarnanians, by Amphilochians and Athamanes, who are Epirotæ; by the territory of the Molotti, formerly said to be that of the æthices, and, in short, by the country about Pindus. Thessaly, [Note] in the interior, is a plain country for the most part, and has no mountains, except Pelion and Ossa. These mountains rise to a considerable height, but do not encompass a large tract of country, but terminate in the plains.9.5.2
These are the middle parts of Thessaly, a district of very fertile country, except that part of it which is overflowed by rivers. The Peneius flows through the middle of the country, and receiving many rivers, frequently overflows. Formerly, according to report, the plain was a lake; it is enclosed on all sides inland by mountains, and the sea-coast is more elevated than the plains. When a chasm was formed, at the place now called Tempe, by shocks of an earthquake, and Ossa was riven from Olympus, the Peneius flowed out through it to the sea, and drained this tract of country. Still there remained the large lake Nessonis, and the lake Bœbeis; which is of less extent than the Nessonis, and nearer to the sea-coast.
3. Such then is Thessaly, which is divided into four parts, Phthiotis, Hestiæotis, Thessaliotis, and Pelasgiotis.
Phthiotis comprises the southern parts, extending along Œta from the Maliac and (or) Pylaïc Gulf [Note] as far as Dolopia and Pindus, increasing in breadth to Pharsalia and the Thessalian plains.
Hestiæotis comprises the western parts and those between Pindus and Upper Macedonia; the rest is occupied by the inhabitants of the plains below Hestiæotis, who are called Pelasgiotæ, and approach close to the Lower Macedonians; by the [Thessalians] also, who possess the country next in order, as far as the coast of Magnesia.
The names of many cities might here be enumerated, which are celebrated on other accounts, but particularly as being mentioned by Homer; few of them, however, but most of all Larisa, preserve their ancient importance.9.5.4
The poet having divided the whole of the country, which we call Thessaly, into ten [Note] parts and dynasties, and having taken in addition some portion of the Œtæan and Locrian territory, and of that also which is now assigned to the Macedonians, shows (what commonly happened to every country) the changes which, entirely or in part, they undergo according to the power possessed by their respective governors.9.5.5
The poet first enumerates the Thessalians subject to
Achilles, who occupied the southern side, and adjoined Œta,
and the Locri Epicnemidii;
All who dwelt in Pelasgic Argos; they who occupied Alus, Alope, and
Trachin; they who possessed Phthia, and Hellas, abounding with beautiful women, were called Myrmidones, Hellenes, and Achæi. [Note]
He joins together with these the people under the command of
Phoenix, and makes them compose one common expedition.
The poet nowhere mentions the Dolopian forces in the battles
near Ilium, neither does he introduce their leader Phoenix, as
undertaking, like Nestor, dangerous enterprises. But Phoenix
is mentioned by others, as by Pindar,
Who led a brave band of Dolopian slingers,
The words of the poet are to be understood according to the
figure of the grammarians, by which something is suppressed,
for it would be ridiculous for the king to engage in the expe-
Who were to aid the javelins of the Danai, tamers of horses.
(I live at the extremity of Phthia, chief of the Dolopians, [Note])
Il. ix. 480.
From this it appears that Homer considered the forces under Achilles and Phœnix as constituting one body; but the places mentioned as being under the authority of Achilles, are subjects of controversy.
Some have understood Pelasgic Argos to be a Thessalian city, formerly situated near Larisa, but now no longer in existence. Others do not understand a city to be meant by this name, but the Thessalian plain, and to have been so called by Abas, who established a colony there from Argos.9.5.6
With respect to Phthia, some suppose it to be the same
as Hellas and Achaia, and that these countries form the southern portion in the division of Thessaly into two parts. But
others distinguish Phthia and Hellas. The poet seems to distinguish them in these verses;
they who occupied Phthia and Hellas, [Note]Il. ii. 683.
Then far away through wide Greece I fled and came to Phthia, [Note]Il. ix. 498.
There are many Achæan women in Hellas and Phthia. [Note]Il. ix. 395.
dium that the country, in which it is situated, was a part of that under the command of Achilles. Others, who regard it as a city, allege that the Pharsalii show at the distance of 60 stadia from their own city, a city in ruins, which they believe to be Hellas, and two springs near it, Messeis and Hypereia. But the Melitæenses say, that at the distance of about 10 stadia from their city, was situated Hellas on the other side of the Enipeus, [Note] when their own city had the name of Pyrrha, and that the Hellenes migrated from Hellas, which was built in a low situation, to theirs. They adduce in proof of this the tomb of Hellen, son of Deucalion and Pyrrha, which is in their market-place. For according to historians, Deucalion was king of Phthiotis and of all Thessaly. The Enipeus flows from Othrys [Note] beside Pharsalus, [Note] and empties itself into the Apidanus, [Note] and the latter into the Peneius.
Thus much, then, respecting the Hellenes.9.5.7
The people under the command of Achilles, Protesilaus,
and Philoctetes, are called Phthii. The poet furnishes evidence of this. Having recited in the Catalogue of those
under the command of Achilles,
the people of Phthia, [Note]Il. ii. 683.
there were Bœoti and Iaones wearing long robes, Locri, Phthii, and
illustrious Epeii. [Note]
But here he particularizes them;
at the head of the Phthii fought Medon and Podarces, firm in battle.
These armed with breastplates fought together with Bœoti, at the head of
the magnanimous Phthii, keeping away the enemy from the ships. [Note]
Perhaps the people with Eurypylus were called Phthii, as they bordered upon the country of the latter. At present, however, historians assign to Magnesia the country about Ormenium, which was subject to Eurypylus, and the whole of that subject to Philoctetes; but they regard the country un-
der the command of Protesilaus as belonging to Phthia, from Dolopia and Pindus to the sea of Magnesia; but as far as the city Antron, (now written in the plural number,) which was subject to Protesilaus, beginning from Trachinia and Œta, is the width of the territory belonging to Peleus and Achilles. But this is nearly the whole length of the Maliac Gulf.9.5.8
They entertain doubts respecting Halus and Alope,
whether Homer means the places which are now comprised
in the Phthiotic government, or those among the Locri, since
the dominion of Achilles extended hither as well as to Trachin and the Œtæan territory. For Halus and Halius, as
well as Alope, are on the coast of the Locri. But some substitute Halius for Alope, and write the verse in this manner;
they who inhabited Halus, and Halius, and Trachin. [Note]Il. ii. 682.
I have already spoken of Trachin, and described the nature of the place. The poet mentions it by name.9.5.9
As Homer frequently mentions the Spercheius as a river of the country, having its source in the Typhrestus, a Dryopian mountain, formerly called [Tymphrestus], and emptying itself near Thermopylæ, between Trachin and Lamia, [Note] he might imply that whatever parts of the Maliac Gulf were either within or without the Pylæ, were subject to Achilles.
The Spercheius is distant about 30 stadia from Lamia, which lies above a plain, extending to the Maliac Gulf. That the Spercheius is a river of the country [subject to Achilles], appears from the words of Achilles, who says, that he had devoted his hair to the Spercheius; and from the circumstance, that Menesthius, one of his commanders, was said to be the son of Spercheius and the sister of Achilles.
It is probable that all the people under the command of Achilles and Patroclus, and who had accompanied Peleus in his banishment from ægina, had the name of Myrmidons, but all the Phthiotæ were called Achæcans.9.5.10
They reckon in the Phthiotic district, which was subject to Achilles, beginning from the Malienses, a considerable number of towns, and among them Thebæ Phthiotides, Echinus, Lamia, near which the war was carried on between the Macedonians and Antipater, against the Athenians. In this war Leosthenes, the Athenian general, was killed, [and Leonnatus,] one of the companions of Alexander the king. Besides the above-mentioned towns, we must add [Narthac]ium, Erineus, Coroneia, of the same name as the town in Bœotia, Melitæa, Thaumaci, Proerna, Pharsalus, Eretria, of the same name as the Euboic town, Paracheloïtæ, of the same name as those in ætolia; for here also, near Lamia, is a river Achelous, on the banks of which live the Paracheloïtæ.
This district, lying to the north, extended to the northwestern territory of the Asclepiadæ, and to the territory of Eurypylus and Protesilaus, inclining to the east; on the south it adjoined the Œtæan territory, which was divided into fourteen demi, and contained Heracleia and Dryopis, which was once a community of four cities, (a Tetrapolis,) like Doris, and accounted the capital of the Dryopes in Peloponnesus. To the Œtæan district belong also the Acyphas, Parasopias,
$Oeneiadæ, and Anticyra, of the same name as the town among the Locri Hesperii. I do not mean that these divisions always continued the same, for they underwent various changes. The most remarkable, however, are worthy of notice.9.5.11
The poet with sufficient clearness describes the situation
of the Dolopes, as at the extremity of Phthia, and says that
both they and the Phthiotæ were under the command of the
same chief, Peleus;
I lived, he says, at the farthest part of Phthia, king of the Dolopes. [Note]Il. ix. 484.
This region is close to Pindus, and the places about it, most of which belong to the Thessalians. For in consequence of the renown and ascendency of the Thessalians and Macedonians, those Epeirotæ, who bordered nearest upon them, became, some voluntarily, others by force, incorporated among the Macedonians and Thessalians. In this manner the Athamanes, æthices, and Talares were joined to the Thessalians, and the Orestæ, Pelagones, and Elimiotæ to the Macedonians.9.5.12
Pindus is a large mountain, having on the north Macedonia, on the west Perrhæbi, settlers from another country, on the south Dolopes, [and on the east Hestiæotis] which belongs to Thessaly. Close upon Pindus dwelt Talares, a tribe of Molotti, detached from the Molotti about Mount Tomarus, and æthices, among whom the poet says the Centaurs took refuge when expelled by Peirithous. [Note] They are at present, it is said, extinct. But this extinction is to be understood in two senses; either the inhabitants have been exterminated, and the country deserted, or the name of the nation exists no longer, or the community does not preserve its ancient form. Whenever the community, which continues, is insignificant, we do not think it worth while to record either its existence or its change of name. But when it has any just pretensions to notice, it is necessary to remark the change which it has undergone.9.5.13
It remains for us to describe the tract of sea-coast subject to Achilles: we begin from Thermopylæ, for we have spoken of the coast of Locris, and of the interior.
Thermopylæ is separated from the Cenæum by a strait 70 stadia across. Coasting beyond the Pylæ, it is at a distance from the Spercheius of about 10, (60?) and thence to Phalara
of 20 stadia. Above Phalara, 50 stadia from the sea, lies the city of the [Lamians]. Then coasting along the shore 100 stadia, we find above it, Echinus. At the distance of 20 stadia from the following tract of coast, in the interior, is Larisa Cremaste, which has the name also of Larisa Pelasgia.9.5.14
Then follows a small island, Myonnesus; next Antron; which was subject to Protesilaus. Thus much concerning the territory subject to Achilles.
As the poet, in naming the chiefs, and cities under their rule, has divided the country into numerous well-known parts, and has given an accurate account of the whole circuit of Thessaly, we shall follow him, as before, in completing the description of this region.
Next to the people under the command of Achilles, he enumerates those under the command of Protesilaus. They were situated, next, along the sea-coast which was subject to Achilles, as far as Antron. The boundary of the country under the command of Protesilaus, is determined by its being situated without the Maliac Gulf, yet still in Phthiotis, though not within Phthiotis subject to Achilles.
Phylacē [Note] is near Thebæ Phthiotides, which was subject to Protesilaus, as were also Halus, Larisa Cremaste, and Demetrium, all of which lie to the east of Mount Othrys.
The Demetrium he speaks of [Note] as an enclosure sacred to Ceres, and calls it Pyrasus. Pyrasus was a city with a good harbour, having at the distance of 2 stadia from it a grove, and a temple consecrated to Ceres. It is distant from Thebæ 20 stadia. The latter is situated above Pyrasus. Above Thebæ in the inland parts is the Crocian plain at the extremity of the mountain Othrys. Through this plain flows the river Amphrysus. Above it is the Itonus, where is the temple of the Itonian Minerva, from which that in Bœotia has its name, also the river Cuarius. [Of this river and] of Arnē we have spoken in our account of Bœotia.
These places are in Thessaliotis, one of the four divisions of all Thessaly, in which were the possessions of Eurypylus. Phyllus, where is a temple of the Phyllæan Apollo, Ichnæ, where the Ichnæan Themis is worshipped, Cierus, and [all the places as far as] Athamania, are included in Thessaliotis.
At Antron, in the strait near Eubœa, is a sunk rock, called
the Ass of Antron. Next are Pteleum and Halus; next the temple of Ceres, and Pyrasus in ruins; above these, Thebæ; then Pyrrha, a promontory, and two small islands near, one of which is called Pyrrha, the other Deucalion. Somewhere here ends the territory of Phthiotis.9.5.15
The poet next mentions the people under Eumelus, and the continuous tract of coast which now belongs to Magnesia, and the Pelasgiotis.
Pheræ is the termination of the Pelasgic plains towards Magnesia, which plains extend as far as Pelion, a distance of 160 stadia. Pagasæ is the naval arsenal of Pheræ, from which it is distant 90 stadia, and 20 from Iolcus. Iolcus has been razed from ancient times. It was from this place that Pelias despatched Jason and the ship Argo. Pagasæ had its name, [Note] according to mythologists, from the building of the ship Argo at this place. Others, with more probability, suppose that the name of the place was derived from the springs, (πηγαί,) which are very numerous and copious. Near it is Aphetæ, (so named) as the starting-place [Note] from which the Argonauts set off. Iolcus is situated 7 stadia from Demetrias, overlooking the sea. Demetrias was founded by Demetrius Poliorcetes, who called it after his own name. It is situated between Nelia and Pagasæ on the sea. He collected there the inhabitants of the neighbouring small cities, Nelia, Pagasæ, Ormenium, and besides these, Rhizus, Sepias, Olizon, Bœbe, and Iolcus, which are at present villages belonging to Demetrias. For a long time it was a station for vessels, and a royal seat of the Macedonian kings. It had the command of Tempe, and of both the mountains Pelion and Ossa. At present its extent of power is diminished, yet it still surpasses all the cities in Magnesia.
As civil dissensions and usurpations reduced the flourishing condition of Iolcus, formerly so powerful, so they affected Pheræ in the same manner, which was raised to prosperity, and was destroyed by tyrants.
Near Demetrias flows the Anaurus. The continuous line
of coast is called also Iolcus. Here was held the Pylaic (Peliac?) assembly and festival.
Artemidorus places the Gulf of Pagasæ farther from Demetrias, near the places subject to Philoctetes. In the gulf he says is the island Cicynethus, [Note] and a small town of the same name.9.5.16
The poet next enumerates the cities subject to Philoctetes.
Methone is not the Thracian Methone razed by Philip. We have already noticed the change of name these places and others in the Peloponnesus have undergone. Other places enumerated as subject to Philoctetes, are Thaumacia, Olizon, and Melibœa, all along the shore next adjacent.
In front of the Magnetes lie clusters of islands; the most celebrated are Sciathus, [Note] Peparethus, [Note] Icus, [Note] Halonnesus, and Scyrus, [Note] which contain cities of the same name. Scyrus however is the most famous of any for the friendship which subsisted between Lycomedes and Achilles, and for the birth and education of Neoptolemus, the son of Achilles. In after times, when Philip became powerful, perceiving that the Athenians were masters of the sea, and sovereigns both of these and other islands, he made those islands which lay near his own country more celebrated than any of the rest. For as his object in waging war was the sovereignty of Greece, he attacked those places first which were near him; and as he attached to Macedonia many parts of Magnesia itself, of Thrace, and of the rest of the surrounding country, so also he seized upon the islands in front of Magnesia, and made the possession of islands which were before entirely unknown, a subject of warlike contention, and brought them into notice.
Scyrus however is particularly celebrated in ancient histories. It is also highly reputed for the excellence of its goats, and the quarries of variegated marble, such as the Carystian, the Deucallian, (Docimæan?) the Synnadic, and the Hierapolitic kinds. For there may be seen at Rome columns, consisting of a single stone, and large slabs of variegated marble, (from Scyrus,) with which the city is embellished both at the public charge and at the expense of individuals, which has caused works of white marble to be little esteemed.
17. The poet having proceeded so far along the Magnesian
coast, returns to Upper Thessaly, for beginning from Dolopia
and Pindus he goes through the region extending along
Phthiotis to Lower Thessaly.
They who occupy Tricca and rocky Ithome. [Note]Il. ii. 729.
Tricca, [Note] where there is a very ancient and famous temple of æsculapius, borders upon the Dolopes, and the parts about Pindus.
Ithome, which has the same name as the Messenian Ithome,
ought not, they say, to be pronounced in this manner, but
should be pronounced without the first syllable, Thome, for
this was its former name. At present, it is changed to
[Thumæum]. It is a spot strong by nature, and in reality
rocky. It lies between four strong-holds, which form a square,
Tricca, Metropolis, Pelinnæum, and Gomphi. [Note] Ithome belongs to the district of the Metropolitæ. Metropolis was
formed at first out of three small obscure cities, and afterwards more were included, and among these Ithome. Callimachus says in his Iambics,
among the Venuses, (for the goddess bears several titles,) Venus Castnietis surpasses all others in wisdom,
for she alone accepts the sacrifice of swine. Certainly Callimachus, if any person could be said to possess information,
was well informed, and it was his object, as he himself says,
all his life to relate these fables. Later writers, however,
have proved that there was not one Venus only, but several,
who accepted that sacrifice, from among whom the goddess
worshipped at Metropolis came, and that this [foreign] rite
was delivered down by one of the cities which contributed to
form that settlement.
Pharcadon also is situated in the Hestiœotis. The Peneius and the Curalius flow through it. The Curalius, after flowing beside the temple of the Itonian Minerva, empties itself into the Peneius.
The Peneius itself rises in Mount Pindus, as I have before said. It leaves Tricca, Pelinnæum, and Pharcadon on the left hand, and takes its course beside Atrax and Larisa. After having received the rivers of the Thessaliotis it flows onwards through Tempe, and it empties itself into the sea.
Historians speak of Œchalia, the city of Eurytus, as existing in these parts, in Eubœa also, and in Arcadia; but some give it one name, others another, as I have said in the description of Peloponnesus.
They inquire particularly, which of these was the city taken by Hercules, and which was the city intended by the author of the poem, The Capture of Œchalia?
The places, however, were subject to the Asclepiadæ.9.5.18
The poet next mentions the country which was under
the dominion of Eurypylus;
They who possessed Ormenium and the spring Hypereia,
Il. ii. 734.
And they who occupied Asterium and the white peaks of Titanus. [Note]
Ormenium is now called Orminium. It is a village situated below Pelion, near the Pagasitic Gulf, but was one of the cities which contributed to form the settlement of Demetrias, as I have before said.
The lake Bœbeis must be near, because both Bœbe and Ormenium belonged to the cities lying around Demetrias.
Ormenium is distant by land 27 stadia from Demetrias. The site of Iolcus, which is on the road, is distant 7 stadia from Demetrias, and the remaining 20 from Ormenium.
Demetrius of Scepsis says, that Phoenix came from Ormenium, and that he fled thence from his father Amyntor, the son of Ormenus, to Phthia, to king Peleus. For this place was founded by Ormenus, the son of Cercaphus, the son of æolus. The sons of Ormenus were Amyntor and Eumæmon; the son of the former was Phœnix, and of the latter, Eurypylus. The succession to his possessions was preserved secure for Eurypylus, after the departure of Phœnix from his home, and we ought to write the verse of the poet in this manner:
as when I first left Ormenium, abounding with flocks, [Note]Il. ix. 447.
left Hellas, abounding with beautiful women.
But Crates makes Phœnix a Phocæan, conjecturing this
from the helmet of Meges, which Ulysses wore on the night
expedition; of which helmet the poet says,
Autolycus brought it away from Eleon, out of the house of Amyntor,
the son of Ormenus, having broken through the thick walls. [Note]
Now Eleon was a small city on Parnassus, and by Amyntor, the son of Ormenus, he could not mean any other person
than the father of Phœnix, and that Autolycus, who lived on
Parnassus, was in the habit of digging through the houses of
his neighbours, which is the common practice of every housebreaker, and not of persons living at a distance. But Demetrius the Scepsian says, that there is no such place on Parnassus as Eleon, but Neon, which was built after the Trojan
war, and that digging through houses was not confined to
robbers of the neighbourhood. Other things might be advanced, but I am unwilling to insist long on this subject.
Others write the words
but this is a Tanagrian town; and the words
Then far away I fled through Hellas and came to Phthia, [Note]Il. ix. 424.
Hypereia is a spring in the middle of the city of the Pheræi [subject to Eumelus]. It would therefore be absurd [to assign it to Eurypylus].
Titanus [Note] had its name from the accident of its colour, for the soil of the country near Arne and [Aphe]tæ is white, and Asterium is not far from these places.9.5.19
Continuous with this portion of Thessaly are the people subject to Polypœtes.
They who possessed Argissa; those who inhabited Gyrtone, [Note]
Il. ii. 738
Orthe, Elone, and the white city Oloosson. [Note]
possessed the part towards the sea and the Peneius, as far as [Note]
its mouth and the city Gyrton, belonging to the district Perrhæbis. Afterwards the Lapithæ, Ixion and his son Peirithous, having reduced the Perrhæbi, [Note] got possession of these
places. Peirithous took possession also of Pelion, having expelled by force the Centaurs, a savage tribe, who inhabited
he drove from Pelion to the neighbourhood of the æthices, [Note]Il. ii. 744.
Argissa, the present Argura, is situated upon the banks of the Peneius. Atrax lies above it at the distance of 40 stadia, close to the river. The intermediate country along the side of the river was occupied by Perrhæbi.
Some call Orthe the citadel of the Phalannæi. Phalanna is a Perrhæbic city on the Peneius, near Tempe.
The Perrhæbi, oppressed by the Lapithæ, retreated in great numbers to the mountainous country about Pindus, and to the Athamanes and Dolopes; but the Larisæi became masters of the country and of the Perrhæbi who remained there. The Larisæi lived near the Peneius, but in the neighbourhood of the Perrhæbi. They occupied the most fertile portion of the plains, except some of the very deep valleys near the lake Nessonis, into which the river, when it overflowed, usually carried away a portion of the arable ground belonging to the Larisæ, who afterwards remedied this by making embankments.
These people were in possession of Perrhæbia, and levied imposts until Philip became master of the country.
Larisa is a place situated on Ossa, and there is Larisa Cremaste, by some called Pelasgia. In Crete also is a city Larisa, the inhabitants of which were embodied with those of Hierapytna; and from this place the plain below is called the Larisian plain. In Peloponnesus the citadel of the Argives is
called Larisa, and there is a river Larisus, which separates Eleia from Dyme. Theopompus mentions a city Larisa, situated on the immediate confines of this country. In Asia is Larisa Phriconis near Cume, and another Larisa near Hamaxitus, in the Troad. There is also an Ephesian Larisa, and a Larisa in Syria. At 50 stadia from Mitylene are the Larisæn rocks, on the road to Methymne. There is a Larisa in Attica; and a village of this name at the distance of 30 stadia from Tralleis, situated above the city, on the road to the plain of the Cayster, passing by Mesogis towards the temple of Mater Isodroma. This Larisa has a similar position, and possesses similar advantages to those of Larisa Cremaste; for it has abundance of water and vineyards. Perhaps Jupiter had the appellation of Larisæus from this place. There is also on the left side of the Pontus (Euxine) a village called Larisa, near the extremities of Mount Hæmus, between Naulochus [and Odessus]. [Note]
Oloosson, called the White, from its chalky soil, Elone, and Gonnus are Perrhæbic cities. The name of Elone was changed to that of Leimone. It is now in ruins. Both lie at the foot of Olympus, not very far from the river Eurotas, which the poet calls Titaresius.9.5.20
The poet speaks both of this river and of the Perrhæbi in the subsequent verses, when he says,
Guneus brought from Cyphus two and twenty vessels. His followers
were Enienes and Peræbi, firm in battle. They dwelt near the wintry
Dodona, and tilled the fields about the lovely Titaresius. [Note]
He mentions therefore these places as belonging to the Perrhæbi, which comprised a part of the Hestiæotis. [Note] They were in part Perrhæbic towns, which were subject to Polypcetes. He assigned them however to the Lapithæ, because these people and the Perrhæbi lived intermixed together, and the Lapithæ occupied the plains. The country, which belonged to the Perrhæbi, was, for the most part, subject to the Lapithæ, but the Perrhæbi possessed the more mountainous tracts towards Olympus and Tempe, such as Cyphus, Dodonē, and the country about the river Titaresius. This river rises
in the mountain Titarius, which is part of Olympus. It flows into the plain near Tempe belonging to Perrhæbia, and somewhere there enters the Peneius.
The water of the Peneius is clear, that of the Titaresius
is unctuous; a property arising from some matter, which
prevents the streams mingling with each other,
but runs over the surface like oil. [Note]Il. ii. 754
Because the Perrhæbi and Lapithæ lived intermingled together, Simonides calls all those people Pelasgiotæ, who occupy the eastern parts about Gyrton and the mouths of the Peneius, Ossa, Pelion, and the country about Demetrias, and the places in the plain, Larisa, Crannon, Scotussa, Mopsium, Atrax, and the parts near the lakes Nessonis and Bœbeis. The poet mentions a few only of these places, either because they were not inhabited at all, or badly inhabited on account of the inundations which had happened at various times. For the poet does not mention even the lake Nessonis, but the Bœbeis only, which is much smaller, for its water remained constant, and this alone remains, while the former probably was at one time filled irregularly to excess, and at another contained no water.
We have mentioned Scotussa in our accounts of Dodona, and of the oracle, in Thessaly, when we observed that it was near Scotussa. Near Scotussa is a tract called Cynoscephalæ. It was here that the Romans with their allies the ætolians, and their general Titus Quintius, defeated in a great battle Philip, son of Demetrius, king of Macedon.9.5.21
Something of the same kind has happened in the territory of Magnetis. For Homer having enumerated many
places of this country, calls none of them Magnetes, but those
only whom he indicates in terms obscure, and not easily understood;
They who dwelt about Peneius and Pelion with waving woods. [Note]Il. ii. 756.
writers, on account of the continual removals from one settle ment to another, alterations in the forms of government, and intermixture of races, seem to confound both names and nations, which sometimes perplexes persons in these times, as is first to be observed in the instances of Crannon and Gyrton.
Formerly they called the Gyrtonians Phlegyæ, from Phlegyas, the brother of Ixion; and the Crannonii, Ephyri, so that there is a doubt, when the poet says, These two from Thrace appeared with breastplates armed against Ephyri, or haughty Phlegyæ, [Note] what people he meant.9.5.22
The same is the case with the Perrhæbi and ænianes,
for Homer joins them together, as if they dwelt near each
other; and it is said by later writers, that, for a long period,
the settlement of the ænianes was in the Dotian plain. Now
this plain is near Perrhæbia, which we have just mentioned,
Ossa, and the lake Bœbeis: it is situated about the middle of
Thessaly, but enclosed by itself within hills. Hesiod speaks of
it in this manner;
Or, as a pure virgin, who dwells on the sacred heights of the Twin hills,
comes to the Dotian plain, in front of Amyrus, abounding with vines, to
bathe her feet in the lake Bœbias.
The greater part of the ænianes were expelled by the Lapithæ,
and took refuge in Œta, where they established their power,
having deprived the Dorians and the Malienses of some portions of country, extending as far as Heracleia and Echinus.
Some of them however remained about Cyphus, a Perrhæbic
mountain, where is a settlement of the same name. As to the
Perrhæbi, some of them collected about the western parts of
Olympus and settled there, on the borders of the Macedonians.
But a large body took shelter among the mountains near
Athamania, and Pindus. But at present few, if any, traces
of them are to be found.
The Magnetes, who are mentioned last in the Thessalian catalogue of the poet, must be understood to be those situated within Tempe, extending from the Peneius and Ossa to Pelion, and bordering upon the Pieriotæ in Macedonia, who occupy the country on the other side the Peneius as far as the sea.
Homolium, or Homolē, (for both words are in use,) must
be assigned to the Magnetes. I have said in the description of Macedonia, that Homolium is near Ossa at the beginning of the course which the Peneius takes through Tempe.
If we are to extend their possessions as far as the sea-coast, which is very near Homolium, there is reason for assigning to them Rhizus, and Erymnæ, which lies on the sea-coast in the tract subject to Philoctetes and Eumelus. Let this however remain unsettled. For the order in which the places as far as the Peneius follow one another, is not clearly expressed, and as the places are not of any note, we need not consider that uncertainty as very important. The coast of Sepias, however, is mentioned by tragic writers, and was chaunted in songs on account of the destruction of the Persian fleet. It consists of a chain of rocks.
Between Sepias and Casthanæa, a village situated below Pelion, is the sea-shore, where the fleet of Xerxes was lying, when an east wind began to blow violently; some of the vessels were forced on shore, and immediately went to pieces; others were driven on Hipnus, a rocky spot near Pelion, others were lost at Melibœa, others at Casthanæa.
The whole of the coasting voyage along Pelion, to the extent of about 80 stadia, is among rocks. That along Ossa is of the same kind and to the same extent.
Between them is a bay of more than 200 stadia in extent, upon which is situated Melibœa.
The whole voyage from Demetrias, including the winding of the bays, to the Peneius is more than 1000 stadia, from the Spercheius 800 stadia more, and from the Euripus 2350 stadia.
Hieronymus assigns a circuit of 3000 stadia to the plain country in Thessaly and Magnesia, and says, that it was inhabited by Pelasgi, but that these people were driven into Italy by Lapithæ, and that the present Pelasgic plain is that in which are situated Larisa, Gyrton, Pheræ, Mopsium, Bœbeis, Ossa, Homole, Pelion, and Magnetis. Mopsium has not its name from Mopsus, the son of Manto the daughter of Teiresias, but from Mopsus, one of the Lapithæ, who sailed with the Argonauts. Mopsopus, from whom Attica is called Mopsopia, is a different person.9.5.23
This then is the account of the several parts of Thes- saly.
In general we say, that it was formerly called Pyrrhæa, from Pyrrha, the wife of Deucalion; Hæmonia, from Hæmon; and Thettalia, from Thettalus, the son of Hæmon. But some writers, after dividing it into two portions, say, that Deucalion obtained by lot the southern part, and called it Pandora, from his mother; that the other fell to the share of Hæmon, from whom it was called Hæmonia; that the name of one part was changed to Hellas, from Hellen, the son of Deucalion, and of the other to Thettalia, from Thettalus, the son of Hæmon. But, according to some writers, it was the descendants of Antiphus and Pheidippus, sons of Thettalus, descended from Hercules, who invaded the country from Ephyra in Thesprotia, and called it after the name of Thettalus their progenitor. It has been already said that once it had the name of Nessonis, as well as the lake, from Nesson, the son of Thettalus.
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