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Greek & Roman Geography (ed. William Smith)


Emporion or Emporiae (La Escala or Ampurias) Gerona, Spain.
A Greek trading settlement inhabited by the Phokaians from Massalia, at the end of the Gulf of Rosas on the Costa Brava; it is 3 km from the village of La Escala and 40 km NE of Gerona. It is first mentioned in the Periplus of the Pseudo-Skylax and in Skymnos. Its location has been known from the time of the Renaissance since it gave its name to an entire district, the Ampurdan, was an episcopal see in the Middle Ages, and one of the counties of the Marca Hispanica.
  The Greeks originally occupied the small islet of San Martin, now joined to the mainland, which was subsequently known as Palaiapolis (Strab. 3.4.8). They soon spread to the nearby coast and used the mouth of the Clodianus (Fluvia) as a trading port. The town was founded a little after 600 B.C. (date of the foundation of Massalia) and throughout the 6th c. was a mere trading settlement, a port of call on the trade route from Massalia (Marseille), two days' and one night's sail distant (Pseudo-Skylax 3), to Mainake and the other Phokaian foundations in S Iberia which traded with Tartessos. Because it was frankly a mart the Greek settlement grew rapidly, and probably received fugitives from the destruction of Phokaia by the Persians (540) and after the Battle of Alalia (537), also Greeks from Mainake and other cities in the S destroyed by the Carthaginians.
  In the 5th c. Massalia declined, and Emporion, which was already independent, became a polis ruled by magistrates; it developed a brisk trade with the Greek towns in S Italy, the Carthaginian towns, and the native settlements in the interior, on which it had a profound Hellenic influence. Emporion then minted its own coins, first imitating those of the towns with which it traded, including Athens and Syracuse, and later creating its own currency in fractions of the drachma. The types were copied from those of both Carthage and Syracuse, and the currency system continued to be separate from that of Massalia until Emporion was Romanized in the 2d c. The 5th-3d c. were those of its greatest wealth and splendor.
  The town built temples, foremost among which was that dedicated to Asklepios, for which a magnificent statue of Pentelic marble was imported. Outside the town a native settlement developed, which soon became hellenized. It was called Indika (Steph. Byz.), an eponym of the tribe of the Indiketes. In the course of time the two towns merged, although each kept its own legal status; this explains why, in Latin, Emporion is referred to in the plural as Emporiae. In the 3d c. commercial interests arising from its contacts with the Greek cities in Italy made it an ally of Rome. After the first Punic war the Roman ambassadors visited the Iberian tribes supported by the Emporitani, and in 218 B.C. Cn. Scipio landed the first Roman army in Hispania to begin the counteroffensive against Hannibal in the second Punic war.
  The war years were prosperous for the city's trade, but when the Romans finally settled in Hispania, difficulties arose between the Greeks and the native population, which were accentuated during the revolt of 197 B.C. In Emporion itself the Greek and native communities kept a constant watch on each other through guards permanently stationed at the gate in the wall separating the twin towns (Livy 34.9). In 195 B.C. M. Porcius Cato established a military camp near the town, rapidly subdued the native tribes in the neighborhood, and initiated the Roman organization of the country. As the result of the transfer to Tarraco of the Roman administrative and political sector, Emporion was eclipsed and became a residential town of little importance. The silting-up of its port and the increase in the tonnage of Roman vessels hastened its decline. The town became a municipium and during the time of C. Caesar received a colony of Roman veterans.
  The Roman town, which was surrounded by a wall, was ruined by the invasion of the Franks in 265 and Rhode became the economic center of the district. However, a few small Christian communities established themselves in Emporion and transformed the ruins of the town into a necropolis which extended beyond the walls. Mediaeval sources claim that St. Felix stayed in Emporion before his martyrdom in Gerona in the early 4th c.
  The enclosure of the Greek town has been completely excavated. To the S is a temple area (Asklepieion and temple of Serapis), a small agora, and a stoa dating from the Roman Republican period. It is surrounded by a cyclopean wall breached by a single gate, confirming Livy's description. On top of the Greek town and further inland is a Roman town, ten times larger and surrounded by a wall built no earlier than the time of Augustus. Inside is a forum, completely leveled, on which stood small votive chapels. To the E, facing the sea, are two large Hellenistic houses with cryptoportici, which contained remains of wall paintings and geometric mosaics. Many architectural remains are in the Barcelona Archaeological Museum and in the museum on the site. Among the finds are a statue of Asklepios, a Greek original; the mosaic of Iphigeneia, an archaic architectural relief with representations of sphinxes; Greek pottery (archaic Rhodian, Cypriot, and Ionian; 6th-4th c. Attic, Italic, and Roman). Several cemeteries near the town have also been excavated.

J.Maluquer De Motes, ed.
This text is from: The Princeton encyclopedia of classical sites, Princeton University Press 1976. Cited Jan 2006 from Perseus Project URL below, which contains 34 image(s), bibliography & interesting hyperlinks.

Augusta Emerita

  Augusta Emerita (Augousta Emerita: Merida, Ru.), the chief city of Lusitania in Spain, was built in B.C. 23, by Publius Carisius, the legate of Augustus, who colonized it with the veterans of the 5th and 10th legions whose term of service had expired (emeriti), at the close of the Cantabrian War. (Dion Cass. liii. 26; Strab. iii. pp. 151, 166.) It was, of course, a colonia from the first, and at a later period it is mentioned as having the jus Italicum. (Paullus, Dig. viii. de Cens.) It was the seat of one of the three juridical divisions of Lusitania, the conventus Emeritensis. (Plin. iv. 22. s. 35.) It speedily became the capital of Lusitania, and one of the greatest cities of Spain. (Mela, ii. 6.) Ausonius celebrates it in the following verses (Ordo Nobil. Urb. viii., Wernsdorf, Poet. Lat. Min. vol. v. p. 1329):
Clara mihi post has memorabere, nomen Iberum,
Emerita aequoreus quam praeterlabitur amnis,
Submittit cui tota suos Hispania fasces.
Corduba non, non arce potens tibi Tarraco certat,
Quaeque sinu pelagi jactat se Bracara dives.

   Emerita stood on the N. bank of the Anas (Guadiana), but a part of its territory lay on the S. side of the river, on which account Hyginus places it in Baeturia. (Hygin. Lim. Const. p. 154.) From its position on the borders of Lusitania and Baetica, we have various statements of the people and district to which it belonged. Strabo assigns it to the Turduli, a part of whom certainly dwelt at one time on the right bank of the Anas (comp. Plin. l. c.); Prudentius to the Vettones (Hymn. in Eulal. ix. 186). Ptolemy simply mentions it as an inland city of the Lusitani (ii. 5. § 8). It is one of his points of astronomical observation, having 14 hrs. 15 min. in its longest day, and being 3 1/2 hours W. of Alexandria (viii. 4. § 3).
  Emerita was the centre of a great number of roads branching out into the three provinces of Spain; the chief distances along which were, 162 M. P. to Hispalis; 144 to Corduba; 145, 161, and 220, by different routes, to Olisipo; 313 to the mouth of the Anas; 632 to Caesaraugusta, or 348 by a shorter route, or 458 by the route through Lusitania. (Itin. Ant. pp. 414, 415, 416, 418, 419, 420, 431, 432, 433, 438, 444.) Its territory was of great fertility, and produced the finest olives. (Plin. xv. 3. s. 4.) Pliny also mentions a kind of cochineal (coccus) as found in its neighbourhood and most highly esteemed (iv. 41. s. 65).
  The coins of Emerita are very numerous, most of them bearing the heads of the Augustan family, with epigraphs referring to the origin of the city, and celebrating its founder, in some cases with divine honours. A frequent type is a city gate, generally bearing the inscription Emerita Augusta a device which has been adopted as the cognizance of the modern city. (Florez, Med. vol. i. p. 384; Eckhel, Doctr. Num. Vet. vol. i. pp. 12, 13.)
  And well may Merida, though now but a poor neglected town of 4500 inhabitants, cling to the memory of her past glory; for few cities in the Roman empire have such magnificent ruins to attest their ancient splendour. It has been fitly called the Rome of Spain in respect of stupendous and well-preserved monuments of antiquity. (Ford, p. 258.) Remains of all the great buildings which adorned a Roman city of the first class are found within a circuit of about half a mile, on a hill which formed the nucleus of the city. The Goths preserved and even repaired the Roman edifices; and, at the Arab conquest, Merida called forth from the Moorish leader Musa the exclamation, that all the world must have been called together to build such a city. The conquerors, as usual, put its stability to the severest test, and the ruins of Merida consist of what was solid enough to withstand their violence and the more insidious encroachments of the citizens, who for ages have used the ancient city as a quarry. Within the circuit of the city, the ground is covered with traces of the ancient roads and pavements, remains of temples and other buildings, fragments of columns, statues, and bas-reliefs, with numerous inscriptions. A particular account of the antiquities, which are too numerous to describe here, is given by Laborde and Ford. The circus is still so perfect that it might be used for races as of old, and the theatre, the vomitaries of which are perfect, has been the scene of many a modern bull-fight. The great aqueduct is one of the grandest remains of antiquity in the world; and there are several other aqueducts of less consequence, and the remains of vast reservoirs for water. The Roman bridge over the Guadiana, of 81 arches, 2575 feet long, 26 broad, and 33 above the river, upheld by Goth and Moor, and repaired by Philip III. in 1610, remained uninjured till the Peninsular War of our own time, when some of the arches were blown up, in April 1812. (Florez, Esp. Sagr. vol. xiii. pp. 87, foll.; Laborde, Itineraire de l'Espagne, vol. iii. pp. 399, foll, 3rd ed.; Ford, Handbook of Spain, pp. 258, foll.)

This text is from: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD). Cited July 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


  Baleares (Balliareis, Diod. v. 17, Eustath. ad Dion. 457; Baliareis, Baliarides, Steph. B.; Balearides, Strab.; Balliarides, Ptol. ii. 6. § 78; Baleariai, Agathem.; Baleriai etoi hugieinai, the Iberian name, according to Dion Cass. ap. Tzetz. ad Lycoph. 633; Valeriae, Geog. Rav. v. 27: Eth. Baleareis, &c., Baleares, Balearici, sing. Balearis: Polybius expressly says that the islands and the people were called by the same name: the forms with e are generally used by the Romans, those with i by the Greeks, but Baliares also occurs on Latin inscriptions), or Gymnesiae (Gumnesiai: Eth. Gumnesios, fem. Gumnesia, Gumnesis, Steph. B.), a group of islands in the Mediterranean, lying off that part of the E. coast of Spain, which is between the rivers Sucro (Turia) and Iberus (Ebro), E. of the Pityusae and (roughly speaking) between 39° and 40° N. lat., and between 2 1/4° and 4 1/2° E. long. The number of islands in the group is stated differently: some make them seven (Eustath. l. c.); some mention only one (Steph. B. s. v.; Strab. ii. p. 123, he Gumnesia, where, however, Groskurd and Kramer read hai Gumnesiai), but nearly all the ancient writers used the term to include merely the two large islands called the Greater, Balearis Major (he meizon), and the Lesser, Balearis Minor (he elatton), or, as they were called in the Byzantine period, Majorica and Minorica (Maiorika te kai Minorika: Procop. B. V. i. 1, ii. 5; Zonar. Ann. ix. p. 435), whence the common modern names, Majorca and Minorca, or in Spanish Mallorca and Menorca.
  It should be remembered that the Balearic group, in the modern sense of the word, includes also the Pityusae of the ancients, namely Ebusus (Iviza), and Colubraria or Ophiusa (Formentera). Indeed, the passage in Strabo (iii. p. 167), tas men Rituoussas duo kai tas Gumnesias duo kalousi kai Baliapidas has been taken as if the words in the parenthesis referred to both groups: but that they only refer to the Gymnesiae is pretty clear, both from the consent of other writers, and from another passage of Strabo himself (xiv. p. 654). Lycophron calls the islands Choirades, from their rocky nature. (Cassand. 633; comp. Tzetz. ad loc.)
  There were various traditions respecting their population, some of a very fabulous complexion. The story, preserved by Lycophron (l. c., Eustath. ad Dion. Perieg. l. c.), that certain shipwrecked Boeotians were cast naked on the islands, which were therefore called Gymnesiae (dia to gumnous kai achlainous, ekei echenechthenai), is evidently invented to account for the name. There is also a tradition that the islands were colonized from Rhodes after the Trojan war (Strab. xiv. p. 654: the Rhodians, like the Baleares, were celebrated slingers: Sil. Ital. iii. 364, 365:
Jam cui Tlepolemus sator, et cui Lindus origo, Funda bella ferens Balearis et alite plumbo.)
At all events, they had a very mixed population, of whose habits several strange stories are told (Diod., Strab., Eustath.): that they went naked, or clothed only in sheep-skins (Tzetz. ad Lycophsr. l. c.) - whence the name of the islands (an instance of a fact made out of an etymology), - until the Phoenicians clothed them with broad-bordered tunics (Strab. p. 168: this seems the true sense of the passage; see Groskurd's note: it is usually understood to mean that the Baleares invented the latus clavus, and so it was understood by Eustathius, whose note is chiefly taken from Strabo; others make them naked only in the heat of summer, Tzetz. ad Lycophr. l. c.): that they lived in hollow rocks and artificial caves: that they were remarkable for their love of women, and, when any were taken captive by pirates, they would give three or four men as the ransom for one woman: that they had no gold or silver coin, and forbade the importation of the precious metals, so that those of them who served as mercenaries took their pay in wine and women instead of money. Their peculiar marriage and funeral customs are related by Diodorus (v. 18).
  The Baleares were, however, chiefly celebrated for their skill as slingers, in which capacity they served, as mercenaries, first under the Carthaginians, and afterwards under the Romans. They went into battle ungirt, with only a small buckler, and a javelin burnt at the end, and in some cases tipt with a small iron point; but their effective weapons were their slings, of which each man carried three, wound round his head (Strab. p. 168; Eustath. l. c.), or, as others tell us, one round the head, one round the body, and one in the hand. (Diod. l. c.; Tzetz. ad Lycophr. l. c.) The three slings were of different lengths, for stones of different sizes; the largest they hurled with as much force as if it were flung from a catapult; and they seldom missed their mark. To this exercise they were trained from infancy, in order to earn their livelihood as mercenary soldiers. It is said that the mothers only allowed their children to eat bread when they had struck it off a post with the sling. (Strab., Diod.,; Flor. iii. 8; Tzetz. ad Lycophr. l. c.)
  The Greek and Roman writers generally derive the name of the people from their skill as slingers (baleareis, from ballo); but Strabo assigns to the name a Phoenician origin, observing that it was the Phoenician equivalent for the Greek gumnetas, that is, light-armed soldiers. (Strab. xiv. p. 654.) Though his explanation be wrong, his main fact is probably right. The root Bal points to a Phoenician origin; perhaps the islands were sacred to the deity of that name; and the accidental resemblance to the Greek root BAL (in ballo), coupled with the occupation of the people, would be quite a sufficient foundation for the usual Greek practice of assimilating the name to their own language. That it was not, however, Greek at first, may be inferred with great probability from the fact that the common Greek name of the islands is not baleareis, but Gumnesiai, the former being the name used by the natives, as well as by the Carthaginians and Romans. (Plin.; Agathem.; Dion Cass. ap. Tzetz. ad Lycophr. 533; Eustath. l. c.) The latter name, of which two fancied etymologies have been already referred to, is probably derived from the light equipment of the Balearic troops (gumnetas). (Strab. xiv. p. 654; Plin. l. c.)
  The islands were taken possession of in very early times by the Phoenicians (Strab. iii. pp. 167, 168); a remarkable trace of whose colonization is preserved in the town of Mago (Mahon in Minorca), which still gives the name of a princely family of Carthage to a noble house of England. After the fall of Carthage, the islands seem to have been virtually independent. Notwithstanding their celebrity in war, the people were generally very quiet and inoffensive. (Strab.; but Florus gives them a worse character, iii. 8.) The Romans, however, easily found a pretext for charging them with complicity with the Mediterranean pirates, and they were conquered by Q. Caecilius Metellus, thence surnamed Balearicus, B.C. 123. (Liv. Epit. Ix.; Freinsh. Supp. lx. 37; Florus, Strab. ll. cc.) Metellus settled 3,000 Roman and Spanish colonists on the larger island, and founded the cities of Palma and Pollentia. (Strab., Mel., Plin.) The islands belonged, under the empire, to the conventus of Carthago Nova, in the province of Hispania Tarraconensis, of which province they formed, with the Pityusae, the fourth district, under the government of a praefectus pro legato. An inscription of the time of Nero mentions the Praef. Prae Legato Insular. Baliarum. (Orelli, No. 732, who, with Muratori, reads pro for prae.) They were afterwards made a separate province, probably in the division of the empire under Constantine. (Not. Dig. Occid. c. xx. vol. ii. p. 466, Bocking.)
  The ancient writers describe the Balearic islands sometimes as off the coast of Tyrrhenia (peri ten Tursenida, Steph. B.), sometimes as the first islands, except the Pityusae, to one entering the Mediterranean from Gades. (Plin. l. c.) The larger island, Balearis Major (Mallorca), or Columba (Itin. Ant. p. 511) was a day's sail from the coast of Spain: it is, in fact, 43 miles NE. of Iviza, which is 50 miles E. of C. St. Martin. Pliny makes the distance from Dianium Pr. (C. S. Martin), on the coast of Spain to the Pityusae (Iviza, &c.), 700 stadia, and the Baleares the same distance further out at sea. The Antonine Itinerary places the Baleares 300 stadia from Ebusus (Iviza). The smaller island, Balearis Minor (Menorca), or Nura (Itin. Ant. p. 512), lies to the E. of the larger, from which it is separated by a strait 22 miles wide. The little island of Cabrera, S. of Mallorca, is the Capraria of the ancients. In magnitude the islands were described by Timaeus (ap. Diod. l. c.; Strab. xiv. p. 654) as the largest in the world, except seven - namely, Sardinia, Sicily, Cyprus, Crete, Euboea, Corsica, and Lesbos; but Strabo rightly observes that there are others larger. Strabo makes the larger island nearly 600 stadia long by 200 wide (iii. p. 167); Artemidorus gave it twice that size (Agathem. i. 5); and Pliny makes its length 100 M. P. and its circuit 375: its area is 1,430 square miles. Besides the colonies of Palma (Palma) and Pollentia (Pollenza), already mentioned, of which the former lay on the SW., and the latter on the NE., it had the smaller towns of Cinium (Sineu), near the centre of the island, with the Jus Latii (Plin. l. c.); Cunici (Alcudia?), also a civitas Latina (Plin. l. c., where Sillig now reads Tucim); and Gujunta (Inscr. ap. Gruter. p. 378. No. 1.)
  The smaller island Minor (Menorca) is described by Strabo as lying 270 stadia E. of Pollentia on the larger: the Antonine Itinerary assigns 600 stadia for the interval between the islands, which is more than twice the real space: Pliny makes the distance 30 M. P. (240 stadia), the length of the island 40 M. P, and its circuit 150. Its true length is 32 miles, average breadth 8, area about 260 square miles. Besides Mago (Port Mahon), and Jamno or Jamna (Ciudadela), at the E. and W. ends respectively, both Phoenician settlements, it had the inland town of Sanisera (Alajor, Plin. l. c.).
  Both islands had numerous excellent harbours, though rocky at their mouth, and requiring care in entering them (Strab., Eustath. ll. cc.: Port Mahon is one of the finest harbours in the world). Both were extremely fertile in all produce, except wine and olive oil. (Aristot. de Mir. Ausc. 89; Diod., but Pliny praises their wine as well as their corn, xiv. 6. s. 8, xviii. 7. s. 12: the two writers are speaking, in fact, of different periods.) They were celebrated for their cattle, especially for the mules of the lesser island; they had an immense number of rabbits, and were free from all venomous reptiles. (Strab., Mel., l.c.; Plin. l. c., viii. 58. s. 83, xxxv. 19. s. 59; Varro, R. R. iii. 12; Aelian, H. A. xiii. 15; Solin. 26.) Among the snails valued by the Romans as a diet, was a species from the Balearic isles, called cavaticae, from their being bred in caves. (Plin. xxx. 6. s. 15.) Their chief mineral product was the red earth, called sinope, which was used by painters. (Plin. xxxv. 6. s. 13; Vitruv. vii. 7.) Their resin and pitch are mentioned by Dioscorides (Mat. Med. i. 92). The population of the two islands is stated by Diodorus at 30,000.
  Twelve Roman miles S. of the larger island (9 miles English) in the open sea (xii. M. P. in altum) lay the little island of Capraria (Cabrera), a treacherous cause of shipwrecks (insidiosa naufragiis, Plin. l. c. naufragalis, Mart. Cap. de Nupt. Phil. vi.); and opposite to Palma the islets called Marmariae, Tiquadra, and parva Hannibalis. (Plin.).
  The part of the Mediterranean E. of Spain, around the Balearic isles, was called Mare Balearicum (to Ballearikon pelagos, Ptol. ii 4. § 3), or Sinus Balearicus. (Flor. iii. 6. § 9.)
  The islands still contain some monuments of their original inhabitants, in the shape of tumuli, such as those which Diodorus describes them as raising over their dead. These tumuli consist of large unhewn stones, and are surrounded by a fence of flat stones set up on end; and a spiral path on the outside leads to the summit of the mound. From this arrangement, and from their being generally erected on elevated spots, they are supposed to have been used as watch-towers. The Roman remains have been almost destroyed by the Vandal conquerors; the principal ruin is that of an aqueduct near Pollentia. (Wernsdorf, Antiq. Balear.; Dameto, Hist. of the Balearic Kingdom; Armstrong's Minorca.)

This text is from: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD). Cited July 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


  Gades (-ium; also Gadis, and Gaddis), the Latin form of the name which, in the original Phoenician, was Gadir (or Gaddir), and in the Greek Gadeira (ta Gadeipa; Ion. Gedeira, Herod.; and, rarely, he Gadeira, Eratosth. ap. Steph. B. s. v.), and which is preserved in the form Cadiz or Cadix, denotes a celebrated city, as well as the island on which it stood (or rather the islands, and hence the plural form), upon the SW. coast of Hispania Baetica, between the straits and the mouth of the Baetis. (Eth. Gadeireus, fem. Gadeiris, also, rarely, Gadeirites, Gadeiraios and Gadeiranos, Steph. B.; Adj. Gadeirikos, e. g. with chora, Plat. Crit. p. 114, b: Lat. Adj. and Eth. Gaditanus). The fanciful etymologies of the name invented by the Greek and Roman writers, are barely worthy of a passing mention. (Plat. Critias, p. 114, Steph. B. s. v.; Etym. M.; Suid.; Hesych.; Eustath. ad Dion. Perieg. 64.) The later geographers rightly stated that it was a Phoenician word (Dion. Per. 456; Avien. Ora Marit. 267-269: Gaddir hic est oppidum: Nam Punicorum lingua conseptum locum Gaddir vocabat.
  It was the chief Phoenician colony outside the Pillars of Hercules, having been established by them long before the beginning of classical history. (Strab. iii. pp. 148, 168; Diod. Sic. v. 20; Scymn. Ch. 160; Mela, iii. 6. § 1; Plin. v. 19. s. 17; Vell. Paterc. i. 2; Arrian. and Aelian. ap. Eustath. ad Dion. Perieg. 454.) To the Greeks and Romans it was long the westernmost point of the known world; and the island on which it stood (Isla de Leon) was identified with that of Erytheia, where king; Geryon fed the oxen which were carried off by Hercules; or, according to some, Erytheia was near Gadeira. (Hesiod. Theog. 287, et seq., 979, et seq.; Herod. iv. 8; Strab. iii. pp. 118, 169; Plin. iv. 21. s. 36; and many others: for a full discussion of the question, see Ukert, vol. ii. pt. 1, pp. 240, 241.) The island was also called Aphrodisias, and Cotinussa, and by some both the city and the island were identified with the celebrated Tartessus.
  The early writers give us brief notices of Gades. Herodotus (l. c.) places Gadeira on the ocean, beyond the Pillars of Hercules, and near it the island of Erytheia. Scylax states that, among the Iberi, the first people of Europe (on the W.), there are two islands, named Gadeira, of which the one has a city, a day's journey from the Pillars of Hercules. (Scylax, pp. 5, 120, ed. Gronov., pp. 1, 51, ed. Hudson.) Eratosthenes mentioned the city of Gadeira (ap. Steph. B. s. v.), and the happy island of Erytheia, in the land of Tartessis, near Calpe (ap. Strab. iii. p. 148, who refers also to the views of Artemidorus). In the period of the Carthaginian empire, therefore, the situation of the place was tolerably well known to the Greeks; but it is not till after the Punic Wars had given Spain to the Romans, that we find it more particularly described. The fullest description is that of Strabo (iii. pp. 140, 168), who places it at a distance of less than 2000 stadia from the Sacred Headland (C. S. Vincent), and 70 from the mouth of the Baetis (Guadalquivir) on the one side, and about 750 from Calpe (Gibraltar) on the other, or, as some said, 800. Mela (ii. 7) transfers it to the entrance of the Straits, which he makes to begin at Junonis Pr. (C. Trafalgar). Pliny, who makes the entrance of the Straits at Mellaria, places Gades 45 M. P. outside (iv. 22. s. 36, with Ukert's emendation: the MSS. vary between 25 and 75). The island is described as divided from the mainland of Baetica by a narrow strait, like a river (Mela, iii. 6), the least breadth of which is given by Strabo as only 1 stadium (606 ft.), and as barely 700 ft. by Pliny, who makes the greatest breadth 7 1/2 M. P. (ii. 108. s. 112): it is now called the River of St. Peter, and the bridge which spanned it (Itin. Ant. p. 409) is called the Puente de Zuazo, from Juan Sanchez de Zuazo, who restored it in the 15th century. The length of the island was estimated at about 100 stadia (Strab. l. c.), or 12 M. P. (Polyb. ap. Plin. l. c.: Pliny himself says 15): its breadth varied from one stadium to 3 Roman miles (Strab., Plin., ll. cc.). The city stood on the W. side of the island, and was from the first very small in comparison with its maritime importance. Even after it was enlarged by the building of the New City, under the Romans, by its wealthy and celebrated citizen, the younger Balbus, the Double City (he Didume), as it was called, was still of very moderate dimensions, not exceeding 20 stadia in circuit: and even this space was not densely peopled, since a large part of the citizens were always absent at sea. In fact, the city proper seems to have consisted merely of the public buildings and the habitations of those immediately connected with the business of the port, while the upper classes dwelt in villas outside the city, chiefly on the shore of the mainland, and on a smaller island opposite to the city, which was a very favourite resort (Trocadero or S. Sebastian). The territory of the city on the mainland was very small; its wealth being derived entirely from its commerce, as the great western emporium of the known world. Of the wealth and consequence of its citizens Strabo records it as a striking proof, that in the census taken under Augustus, the number of Equites was found to be 500, a number greater than in any town, even in Italy, except Patavium; while the citizens were second in: number only to those of Rome. Their first alliance with Rome was said to have been formed through the centurion L. Marcius, in the very crisis of the war in Spain, after the deaths of the two Scipios (B.C. 212): another instance of the disaffection of the old Phoenician cities towards Carthage; a feeling all the stronger in the case of Gades, as she had only submitted to Carthage during Hamilcar's conquest of Spain after the First Punic War. The alliance was confirmed (or, as some said, first made) in the consulship of M. Lepidus and Q. Catulus, B.C. 78. (Cic. pro Balbo, 15; comp. Liv. xxxii. 2.) C. Julius Caesar, on his visit to the city during the Civil War in Spain, B.C. 49, conferred the civitas of Rome on all the citizens of Gades. (Dion Cass. xli. 24; Columella, viii. 16.) Under the empire, as settled by Augusta, Gades was a municipium, with the title of Augusta Urbs Julia Gaditana, and the seat of one of the four conventus juridici of Baetica. (Plin. iii. 1. s. 3, iv. 22. s. 36; Inscr. ap. Gruter, p. 358, no. 4; Coins ap. Florez, Med. vol. ii. p. 430, vol. iii. p. 68, who contends that the city was a colony; Mionnet, vol. i. p. 12, Suppl. vol. i. p. 25; Sestini, p. 49; Eckhel, vol. i. pp. 19-22.) There are extant coins of the old Phoenician period, as well as of the Roman city; the former are, with one exception, of copper, and generally bear the head of the Tyrian Hercules (Melcarth), the tutelary deity of the city, on the obverse, and on the reverse one or two fish, with a Phoenician epigraph, in two lines, of which the upper has not been satisfactorily explained, while the lower consists of the four letters which answer to the Hebrew characters HEBREW or HEBREW, Agadir or Hagadir, that is, the genuine Phoenician form of the city's name, with the prosthetic breathing or article, the omission of which gives GADIR, the form recognised by the Greek and Roman writers. (Eckhel, l. c. and vol. iii. p. 422.) The coins of the Roman period are very remarkable for the absence of the name of the city, which occurs only on one of them, a very ancient medal, having an ear of corn, with the epigraph MUN (i. e. Municipium) on the obverse, and on the reverse GADES with a fish. The remaining medals bear, for the most part, the insignia of Hercules, and naval symbols, with the names of the successive patrons of the city, namely, Balbus, Augustus, M. Agrippa, and his sons Caius and Lucius, and the emperor Tiberius. (Eckhel, vol. i. pp. 20-22.)
  The first of these names refers to two eminent citizens of Gades, who are distinguished by the names of Major and Minor. L. Cornelius Balbus Major, who is generally surnamed Gaditanus, or, as Cicero writes jestingly, Tartesius (ad Att. vii. 3), served against Sertorius, first under Q. Metellus, and then under Pompey, whom he accompanied to Rome, B.C. 71, and who conferred upon him the Roman citizenship, his right to which was defended by Cicero in an extant oration. With both he lived in terms of intimacy, as well as with Crassus and Caesar, and afterwards with Octavian. He was the first native of any country out of Italy who attained to the consulship. But his nephew, L. Cornelius Balbus Minor, who, as proconsul of Africa, triumphed over the Garamantes in B.C. 19, and who attained to the dignity of Pontifex (Veil. Paterc. ii. 51, and coins), is probably the one to whom the coins refer, as he was the builder of the New City of Gades. He undertook this work when he was quaestor to Asinius Pollio in Further Spain, B.C. 43. (Dion Cass. xlviii. 32.) Balbus also constructed the harbour of Gades,-Portus Gaditanus,-on the mainland (Strab., Mela, ll. cc.; Itin. Ant. p. 409; Ptol. ii. 4: now Puerto Real), and the bridge already mentioned, which was so constructed as to form also an aqueduct. The Antonine Itinerary places the bridge 12 M. P. from Gades, and the harbour 14 M. P. further, on the road to Corduba. Of the other public buildings the most remarkable were the temples of the deities whom the Romans identified with Saturn and Hercules. The former was in the city itself, opposite to the little island already mentioned; the latter stood some distance S. of the city, 12 M. P. on the road to Malaca, in the Itinerary, and still further according to Strabo, who has a long discussion of a theory by which this temple was identified with the Columns of Hercules (iii. pp. 169, 170, 172, 174, 175; Plin ii. 39. s. 100; Liv. xxi. 21; Dion Cass. xliii. 40, lxxvii. 20). The temple had a famous oracle connected with it, and was immensely rich. It was also remarkable for a spring, which rose and fell with the tide. Its site is supposed to have been on the I. S. Petri or S. Pedro (St. Peter's Isle), a little islet lying off the S. point of the main island of Leon. The city had one drawback to its unrivalled advantages as a port: the water was very bad. (Strab. iii. p. 173.) Besides the general articles of its commerce, its salt-fish was particularly esteemed. (Athen. vii. p. 315; Pollux, vi. 49; Hesych. s. v. Gadeira.) The immense wealth which its inhabitants enjoyed led naturally to luxury, and luxury to great immorality. (Juv. xi. 162; Mart. i. 61, foil., v. 78, vi. 71, xiv. 203.) The modern city of Cadiz stands just upon the site of Gades, that is, on the NW. point of the island of Leon, together with the island of Trocadero. (The following are the authorities for the antiquities of Cadiz cited by Ford, Handbook of Spain, p. 6: J. B. Suarez de Salazar, Grandezas, &c., Cadiz, 1610, 4to.; Geronimo de la Concepcion, Emporio de el Orbe, Amst. 1690, folio; Ms. de Mondejar, Cadiz Phenicia, Madrid, 1805, 3 vols. 4to.; Historia de Cadiz, Orosco, 1845, 4to.)

This text is from: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD). Cited September 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


  Cantabria (Kantabria), the country of the Cantabri (Kantabroi; sing. Kantabros, Cantaber, Adj. Cantabricus), a people of Hispania Tarraconensis, about the middle of the N. side of the peninsula, in the mountains that run parallel to the coast, and from them extending to the coast itself, in the E. of Asturias, and the N. of Burgos, Palencia, and Toro. They and their neighbours on the W., the Astures, were the last peoples of the peninsula that submitted to the Roman yoke, being only subdued under Augustus. Before this, their name is loosely applied to the inhabitants of the whole mountain district along the N. coast (Caes. B. G. iii. 26, B.C. i. 38). and so, too, even by later writers (Liv. Epit. xlviii.; Juv. xv. 108 compared with 93). But the geographers who wrote after their conquest give their position more exactly, as E. of the Astures, the boundary being the river Salia (Mela, iii. 1), and W. of the Autrigones, Varduli, and Vascones. (Strab. iii. p. 167, et alib.; Plin. iii. 3. s. 4, iv. 20. s. 34; Ptol. ii. 6. § § 6, 51.) They were regarded as the fiercest and rudest of all the peoples of the peninsula, savage as wild beasts, says Strabo, who describes their manners at some length (iii. pp. 155, 166; comp. Sil. Ital. iii. 329, 361; Hor. Carm. iii. 4.) They were subjugated by Augustus, after a most obstinate resistance, in B.C. 25; but they soon revolted, and had to be reconquered by Agrippa, B.C. 19. In this second war, the greater part of the people perished by the sword, and the remainder were compelled to quit their mountains, and reside in the lower valleys. (Dion Cass. liii. 25, 29, liv. 5, 11, 20; Strab. iii. pp. 156, 164, 287, 821; Horat. Carm. ii. 6. 2, 11. 1, iii. 8. 22; Flor. iv. 12, 51; Liv. xxviii. 12; Suet. Octav. 20, et seq., 29, 81, 85; Oros. vi. 21.) But still their subjugation was imperfect; Tiberius found it necessary to keep them in restraint by strong garrisons (Strab. p. 156); their mountains have afforded a refuge to Spanish independence, and the cradle of its regeneration; and their unconquerable spirit survives in the Basques, who are supposed to be their genuine descendants. (Ford, Handbook of Spain, p. 554, foll.)
  The ethnical affinities, however, both of the ancient and the modern people, have always presented a most difficult problem; the most probable opinion is that which makes them a remnant. of the most ancient Iberian population. (W. von Humboldt, Urbewohner von Hispanien, Berlin, 1821, 4to.) Strabo (iii. p. 157) mentions a tradition which derived them from Laconian settlers, of the period of the Trojan war.
  Under the Roman empire, Cantabria belonged to the province of Hispania Tarraconensis, and contained seven tribes. (Plin. iii. 3. s. 4.) Of these tribes the ancient geographers apologise for possessing only imperfect information, on the ground of the barbarian sound of their names. (Strab. iii. pp. 155, 162; Mela, iii. 1.) Among them were the Pleutauri (Pleutauroi); the Bardyetae or Bardyali (Barduetai, Bardualoi), probably the Varduli of Pliny (iii. 3. s.4, iv.20. s.34); the Allotriges(Allotriges, probably the same as the Autrigones; the Conisci (Koniskoi), probably the same as the Coniaci (Koniakoi) or Concani (Konkanoi), who are particularly mentioned in the Cantabrian War (Mela, iii. 1; Horat. Carm. iii. 4. 34; Sil. Ital. iii. 360, 361); and the Tuisi (Touisoi), about the sources of the lberus. These are all mentioned by Strabo (iii. pp. 155, 156, 162). Mela names also the Origenomesci or Argenomesci (iii. 1), and some minor tribes are mentioned by Ptolemy and other writers.
  Of the nine cities of Cantabria, according to Pliny, Juliobrica alone was worthy of mention. (Plin. iii. 3. s. 4, iv. 20. s. 34.) Ptolemy mentions these nine cities as follows: near the sea-coast, Noegaucesia (Noigaoukesia), a little above the mouth of a river of the same name (ii. 6. § 6); and, in the interior, Concana (Knkana), Ottaviolca (Ottaouiolka), Argenomescum (Argenomeskon), Vadinia (Ouadinia), Vellica (Ouellika), Camarica (Kamarika), Juliobriga (Iouliobriga), and Moroeca (Moroika, ii. 6. § 51). Pliny also mentions Blendium (prob. Santander); and a few places of less importance are named by other writers, (Ukert, vol. ii. pt. i. pp. 443, 444.)
  Strabo places among the Cantabri the sources of the rivers Iberus (Ebro) and Minius (Minho), and the commencement of Mt. Idubeda, the great chain which runs from NW. to SE. between the central table-land of Spain and the basin of the Ebro; (Strab. iii. pp. 153, 159, 161.)

This text is from: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD). Cited August 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


CELTIBERIA (Ancient country) SPAIN
Celtiberia (Keltiberia, Polyb., Strab., Caes., Liv. &c.: Eth. Celtiber, pl. Celtiberi, Keltiberes), was the name of a large inland district of Spain, comprising the central plateau (media inter duo maria, Liv. xxviii. 1), which divides the basin of the Iberus (Ebro) from the rivers flowing to the W., and corresponding to the SW. half of Aragon, nearly the whole of Cuenca and Soria, and a great part of Burgos. These were about the limits of Celtiberia Proper; but, the name was used in a much wider sense, through the power which the Celtiberians obtained over the surrounding tribes so that, for example, Polybius made it extend beyond the sources of the Anas (Guadiana) even to those of the Baetis (Guadalquivir: Strab. iii.), and he mentions the mountain range which reaches the sea above Saguntum, as the boundary of Iberia and Celtiberia (Polyb. iii. 17.2). So we find both Hemeroscopium on the Pr. Dianium (C. S. Martin, and Castulo on the Baetis, named as in Celtiberia (Artemidor. ap. Steph. B. s. v. Hemeroskopeion; Plut. Sertor. 3). In fact, it would seem that, under the Romans, Celtiberia was often used as a term equivalent to Hispania Citerior (excepting, perhaps, the NE. part, between the Pyrenees and the Ebro), and that, as the boundaries of the latter were extended, so was the signification of the former (Plin. iv. 21. s. 36; Solin. 23).
The Celtiberians were believed to have originated in a union of the indigenous Iberians with Celts from Gaul, who were the earliest foreign invaders of the peninsula, and whose union gave rise to a nation distinguished by the best qualities of both peoples, and which speedily became great and powerful (Diod. v. 33; Strab. i., iii.; Appian. Hisp. 2; Lucan. iv, 9).
Strabo (iii.) describes their country as commencing on the SW. side of M. Idubeda which divided it from the basin of the Ebro. It was large and irregular, the greater part of it being rugged and intersected with rivers; for it contained the sources of all the great rivers which flow W. across the peninsula, the Anas, Tagus, and Durius except the Baetis and this too, as we have seen, is assigned by Polybius to Celtiberia. The Celtiberi were bounded on the N. by the Berones and the Bardyitae or Varduli; on the W. by some of the Aastures Callaici, Vaccaei, Vettones, and Carpetani; on the S. by the Oretani and by those of the Bastetani and Edetani who inhabit M. Oospeda; and on the E. by M. Idubeda. This description applies to the Celtiberi in the widest sense of the name. They were divided, he adds, into four tribes, of whom he only mentions two, the Arevacae, who were the most powerful, and the Lusones Pliny (iii. 3. s. 4) mentions, as Celtiberians, first the Arevacae (Celtiberi Arevacae), and afterwards the Pelendones (Pelendones Celtiberorum, quatuor populis, quorum Numantini clari: where it is doubtful whether the IV. populis refers to Pelendones or Celtiberorum: if to the former, he disagrees with Strabo and others, who assign Numantia to the Arevacae). The Belli and the Titti (or Dittani) are also mentioned as Celtiberian peoples (Polyb. xxxv. 2; Appian. Hisp. 44). Ptolemy uses the name in a narrower sense: his Celtiberi are bounded on the N. by the Arevacae (whom he places S. of the Pelendones and Berones), on the W. by the Carpetani, on the S. by the Oretani, and on the E. by the Lobetani and Edetani.
  The nature of the country and the habits of the people combined to prevent their having many considerable cities; and on this ground Strabo charges Polybius with gross exaggeration in stating that Tiberius Gracchus destroyed 300 cities of the Celtiberians (xxvi. 4), a number which could only be made up by counting every petty fort taken in the war (Strab. iii.). The chief cities, besides Numantia, Segeda, and Pallandia and others which belonged to the Arevace, Berones, and Pelendones were the following: The capital was Segobriga which some identify with the Segeda just named, and with the Segestica of Livy (xxxiv. 17).
  On the great road which ran W. from Caesaraugusta (Zaragoza) to Asturica (Itin. Ant.), were: 37 M. P. Caravis; 18 M. P. Turiaso (Touriaso, Ptol., Tarazona); and, on a branch road from Turiaso to Caesaraugusta were: 20 M. P. from the former Balsio or Belliso and, 20 M. P. from Balsio, and 16 from Caesaraugusta, Allobon or Alavona (Alauona: Alagon, Ptol. ii. 6.67), which Ptolemy assigns to the Vascones. On the road leading SW. from Caesaraugusta to Toletum and Emerita were: 16 M. P. from Caesaraugusta, Segontia (at or near Epila), apparently the Segontia which belonged to the Arevacae, and to be distinguished from the other Segontia, to be mentioned directly): 14 M. P. further, Nertobriga (Itin. ll. cc. Nertobriga, Ptol. l. c.: Almunia); then 21 M. P., Bilbilis and, 24 M. P., Aquae Bilbitanorum; then, 16 M. P., Arcobrica; then, 23 M. P., Secondia (Siguenza), apparently the Seguntia Celtiberum of Livy (xxxiv. 19); then 23 M. P. Caesada (Kesada e Kaisada, Ptol. l. c.), at or near Brihuega on the Tajuna, 24 M. P. from Arriaca of the Carpetani.
  Another road ran south through M. Idubeda from Caesaraugusta to Laminium near the source of the Anas, on which were: 28 M. P. Sermo (Muel?); Carae (Carinena); 10 M. P., Agiria (Daroca); 6 M. P. Albonica (probably Puerta de Daroca); 25 M. P. Urbiaca seemingly the Urbicua of Livy (xi. 16; but the reading is uncertain, see Drakenborch, ad loc.: now Molina, Lapie; others identify it with Alcaroches or Checa); 20 M. P. Valebonga or Valeponga (Valsolebre, Lapie; Val de Meca, Cortes); 40 M. P. Ad Putea (Cuenca, Lapie); 32 M.P. Saltici (S. Maria del Campo, Lapie; Jorquera, Cortes); 16 M.P., Parietinis (S. Clemrente, Lapie; Chinchilla, Cortes); 22 M. P. Libisosia (Lezuza), 14 M. P. from the source of the Anas: but the last place very likely belonged to the Oretani.
  Among the cities not mentioned in the Itinerary were: Ergavica (Plin. iii. 3. s. 4: Ergaouika, Ptol. l. c.) or Ergavia (Liv. xi. 50), a municipium belonging to the conventus of Caesaraugusta, the considerable ruins of which, at the confluence of the Guadiela and the Tagus, are called Santaver; Bursada, (Boursada, Ptol.), near the last place; Centobriga near Nertobriga, if not the same place: Attacum: Contrebia: Complega: Valeria, a Roman colony, belonging to the conventus of New Carthage (Plin. iii. 3. s. 4: Florez, Esp. S. viii.); Egelasta the (Lachta, Ptol.); Ocilis (Okilis), the Roman headquarters in the Celtiberian war, probably in the SE. of the country (Appian. Hisp. 47, foll.); Belsinum: Mediolum (Mediolon) in the N., and Condabora (Kondabora), Istonium (Istonion), Alaba (Alaba), Libana (Libana), and Urcesa (Ourkesa), in the S. are mentioned only by Ptolemy; Munda and Certima on the borders of Carpetania, near Alces, only by Livy (xl. 46), and Belgeda (Belgede) or Belgida, only by Appian (Hisp. 44) and Orosius (v. 23). There are also a number of localities in the neighbourhood of Bilbilis, only named by Martial; such as the mountains Calvus and Badavero, and the towns or villages of Boterdum, Platea on the Salo, Tutela, chores Rixamarum, Cardua, Peteron, Rigae, Petusiae, and others, for the barbarous sound of which to Roman ears he feels it necessary to apologize Celtiberis haec sunt nomina crassiora terris.
  Of the manners and customs of the Celtiberians, besides the notices in Strabo and other writers, we have an elaborate account by Diodorus (v. 33, 34). As warriors they attained the highest renown by their long and obstinate resistance to the Romans. They were equally distinguished as excellent cavalry, and as powerful and steady infantry, so that, when their cavalry had defeated that of the enemy, they dismounted and engaged the hostile infantry (comp. Polyb. Fr. Hist. 13). Their favourite order of battle was the wedge-shaped column, in which they were almost irresistible (Liv. xl. 40). They sang as they joined battle (Liv. xxiii. 16). Their weapons were a two-edged sword of the finest temper, and the still national dagger (comp. Polyb. Fr. Hist. 14: Strab. iii. p. 154); their defensive armour consisted of a bronze helmet, with a purple crest, of greaves made of plaited hair, and a round wicker buckler (kurtia), or the light but large Gallic targe. A rough black blanket, of wool not unlike goats' hair, formed their sole dress by day, and at night they slept, wrapped up in it, upon the bare ground. They were particularly attentive to cleanliness. with the exception of the strange custom, which is ascribed also to the Cantabri, of washing with urine instead of water. Though cruel to criminals and enemies (comp. Strab. iii.), they are gentle and humane to strangers; and those of them whose invitations are accepted are deemed favourites of the gods. Their food consists in abundance of various meats; and they drink must (oinomelitos pomati) their country supplying plenty of honey, and wine being imported by merchants. Though the country was generally mountainous and sterile, it contained some fertile valleys, and the prosperity of some few of the cities is exemplified by the cases of Bilbilis and especially Numantia It is thus that we must explain the statement of Diodorus respecting the excellence of their country, and the large tribute of 600 talents which, according to Poseidonius, M. Marcellus exacted from the country (Strab. iii.). As to their religion, Strabo says that the Celtiberians and some of their neighbours on the N. celebrated a festival to some nameless deity at the time of the full moon, assembling together in their families, and dancing all night long (iii.). Several other points in Strabo's description of the manners of the mountaineers of the N. may be regarded as applying to Celtiberians among the rest.
  The Celtiberians are renowned in history for their long and obstinate resistance to the Romans. They had been subdued by Hannibal with great difficulty. In the Second Punic War, after giving important aid to the Carthaginians, they were induced by the generosity of Scipio to accept the alliance of Rome; but yet we find a body of them serving the Carthaginians as mercenaries in Africa (Liv. xxv. 33, xxvi. 50; Polyb. xiv. 7, 8). But the cruelty and avarice of later governors drove them, in B.C. 181, into a revolt, which was appeased by the military prowess and the generous policy of the elder Tiberius Gracchus, B.C. 179. The resistance of the city of Segeda to the demands of Rome led to a fresh war (B.C. 153), which was conducted on the part of the Romans with varying success by M. Marcellus, who would have made peace with the Celtiberians; but the Senate required their unconditional surrender. The diversion created in Lusitania by Viriathus caused the Celtiberian war to languish till B.C. 143, when the great war with Numantia began, and was not concluded till B.C. 133. In spite of this great blow, the Celtiberians renewed the war under Sertorius; and it was only after his fall that they began to adopt the Roman language, dress and manners.

This text is from: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD). Cited Nov 2005 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


  Corduba (Korduba, Kordube, Kordouba: Eth. and Adj. Cordubensis: Cordoba or Cordova), one of the chief cities of Hispania, in the territory of the Turduli. It stood on the right bank of the Baetis (Guadalquivir), a little below the spot where the navigation of the river commenced, at the distance of 1200 stadia from the sea. Its foundation was ascribed to Marcellus, whom we find making it his headquarters in the Celtiberian War. (Strab. iii. p. 141; Polyb. xxxv. 2.) It was occupied from the first by a chosen mixt population of Romans and natives of the surrounding country; and it was the first colony of the Romans in those parts. Strabo's language implies that it was a colony from its very foundation, that is, from B.C. 152. It was regarded as the capital of the extensive and fertile district of Baeturia, comprising the country between the Anas and the Baetis, the richness of which combined with its position on a great navigable river, and on the great high road connecting the E. and NE. parts of the peninsula with the S., to raise it to a position only second to Gades as a commercial city. (Strab. l. c., and p. 160 )
  In the great Civil War Corduba suffered severely on several occasions, and was at last taken by Caesar, soon after the battle of Munda, when 22,000 of its inhabitants were put to the sword, B.C. 45. (Caes. B.C. ii. 19; Hirt. Bell. Alex. 49, 57, 59, 60, Bell. Hisp. 32-34; Appian, B.C. ii. 104, 105; Dion Cass. xliii. 32.)
  Corduba was the seat of one of the four convents juridici of the province of Baetica, and the usual residence of the praetor; hence it was generally regarded as the capital of the province. (Plin. iii. 1. s. 3; Appian, Hisp. 65.) It bore the surname of Patricia (Plin. l. c.; Mela, ii. 6. § 4), on account, as is said, of the number of patricians who were among the colonists; and, to the present day, Cordova is so conspicuous, even among Spanish cities, for the pride of its nobles in their azure blood that the Great Captain, Gonzalo de Cordova, used to say that other towns might be better to live in, but none was better to be born in. (Ford, Handbook, p. 73.)
  In the annals of Roman literature Corduba is conspicuous as the birthplace of Lucan and the two Senecas, besides others, whose works justified the epithet of facunda, applied to it by Martial (Ep. i. 62. 8):
Duosque Senecas, unicumque Lucanum Facunda loquitur Corduba. (Comp. ix. 61, and the beautiful epigram of Seneca, ap. Wernsdorf, Poet. Lat. Min. vol. v. pt. 3, p. 1364.)
  Numerous coins of the city are extant, bearing the names of Corduba, Patricia, and Colonia Patricia. (Florez, Med. de Esp. vol. i. p. 373, vol. ii. p. 536; Mionnet, vol. i. p. 11, Suppl. vol. i. p. 23; Sestini, p. 46; Eckhel, vol, i. p. 18.) There are now scarcely any remains of the Roman city, except a ruined building, which the people dignify with the title of Seneca's House. (Florez, Esp. Sagr. vol. x. p. 132; Minano, Diccion. vol. iii. p. 170.) The city is one of Ptolemy's places of recorded astronomical observations, having 14 hrs. 25 min. for its longest day, and being distant 3 2/5 hrs. W. of Alexandria. (Ptol. ii. 4. § 11, viii. 4. § 4.)

This text is from: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD). Cited September 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


Illiberis (Ptol. ii. 4.11), or Illiberi Liberini (Plin. iii. 1. s. 3), one of the chief cities of the Turduli, in Hispania Baetica, between the Baetis and the coast, is identified by inscriptions with Granada. It is probably the Elibyrge (Eliburge) of Stephanus Byzantinus.

Pyrenaei Montes

PYRENEES (Mountain chain) SPAIN


RODOS (Ancient city) SPAIN
Rhoda or Rhodus (Rhode, Steph. B. s. v.; Rhoda, Mela, ii. 6; Liv. xxxiv. 8; Rhodos, Strab. xiv. p. 654; Eustath. ad Dion. Per. 504; called by Ptol. ii. 6. § 20, Rhodipolis, where we should probably read Rhode polis), a Greek emporium on the coast of the Indigetae in Hispania Tarraconensis, founded according to Strabo (l. c.) by the Rhodians, and subsequently taken possession of by the Massiliots. It is the modern Rosas; but tradition says that the old town lay towards the headland at San Pedro de Roda. (Ford, Handbook of Spain, p. 249; comp. Meurs. Rhod. i. 28; Marca, Hisp. ii. 18; Martin, Hist. des Gaules, p. 218; Florez, Med. iii. p. 114; Mionnet, i. p. 148.)

This text is from: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD). Cited August 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


TARTISSOS (Ancient city) SPAIN
  Tartessus (Tartessos, Herod. i. 163; Tartessos and Tartesos, Diodor. Siculus, Frag. lib. xxv.), a district in the south of Spain, lying to the west of the Columns of Hercules. It is now the prevailing opinion among biblical critics that the Tarshish of Scripture indicates certain localities in the south of Spain, and that its name is equivalent to the Tartessus of the Greek and Roman writers. The connection in which the name of Tarshish occurs in the Old Testament with those of other places, points to the most western limits of the world, as known to the Hebrews (Genes. x. 4; 1 Chron. i. 7; Psalms, lxxii. 10; Isaiah, lxvi. 19); [p. 1107] and in like manner the word Tartessus, and its derlivative adjectives, are employed by Latin writers as synonymous with the West (Ovid, Met. xiv. 416; Sil. Ital. iii. 399; Claud. Epist. iii. v. 14). Tarshish appears in Scripture as a celebrated emporium, rich in iron, tin, lead, silver, and other commodities; and the Phoenicians are represented as sailing thither in large ships (Ezek. xxvii. 12, xxviii 13; Jerem. x. 9). Isaiah speaks of it as one of the finest colonies of Tyre, and describes the Tyrians as bringing its products to their market (xxiii. 1, 6, 10). Among profane writers the antiquity of Tartessus is indicated by the myths connected with it (Strab. iii. p. 149; Justin, xliv. 4). But the name is used by them in a very loose and indefinite way. Sometimes it stands for the whole of Spain, and the Tagus is represented as belonging to it (Rutilius, Itin. i. 356; Claud. in Rufin. i. 101; Sil. Ital. xiii. 674, &c.). But in general it appears, either as the name of the river Baetis, or of a town situated near its mouth, or thirdly of the country south of the middle and lower course of the Baetis, which, in the time of Strabo, was inhabited by the Turduli. The Baetis is called Tartessus by Stesichorus, quoted by Strabo (iii. p. 148) and by Avienus (Ora Marit. i. 224), as well as the town situated between two of its mouths; and Miot (ad Herod. iv. 152) is of opinion that the modern town of S. Lucar de Barameda stands on its site. The country near the lower course of the Baetis was called Tartessis or Tartesia, either from the river or from the town; and this district, as well as others in Spain, was occupied by Phoenician settlements, which in Strabo's time, and even later, preserved their national customs. (Strab. iii. p. 149, vii. p. 832; Arr. Exp. Alex. ii. 16; App. Hisp. 2; Const. Porphyrog. de Them. i. p. 107, ed. Bonn.) There was a temple of Hercules, the Phoenician Melcarth, at Tartessus, whose worship was also spread amongst the neighbouring Iberians. (Arr. l.c.) About the middle of the seventh century B.C. some Samiot sailors were driven thither by stress of weather; and this is the first account we have of the intercourse of the Greeks with this distant Phoenician colony (Herod. iv. 152). About a century later, some Greeks from Phocaea likewise visited it, and formed an alliance with Arganthonius, king of the Tartessians, renowned in antiquity for the great age which he attained. (Herod. i. 163; Strab. iii. p. 151.) These connections and the vast commerce of Tartessus, raised it to a great pitch of prosperity. It traded not only with the mother country, but also with Africa and the distant Cassiterides, and bartered the manufactures of Phoenicia for the productions of these countries (Strab. i. p. 33; Herod. iv. 196; cf. Heeren, Ideen, i. 2. § § 2, 3). Its riches and prosperity had become proverbial, and we find them alluded to in the verses of Anacreon (ap. Strab. iii. p. 151). The neighbouring sea (Fretum Tartessium, Avien. Or. Mar. 64) yielded the lamprey, one of the delicacies of the Roman table (Gell. vii. 16); and on a coin of Tartessus are represented a fish and an ear of grain (Mionnet. Med. Ant. i. p. 26). We are unacquainted with the circumstances which led to the fall of Tartessus; but it may probably have been by the hand of Hamilcar, the Carthaginian general. It must at all events have disappeared at an early period, since Strabo (iii. pp. 148, 151), Pliny (iii. I, iv. 22, vii. 48), Mela (ii. 6), Sallust (Hist. Fr. ii.), and others, confounded it with more recent Phoenician colonies, or took its name to be an ancient appellation of them.

This text is from: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD). Cited September 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


   Valentia (Oualentia, Ptol. ii. 6. § 62), a considerable town of the Edetani in Hispania Tarraconensis, situated on the river Turium, at a distance of 3 miles from its mouth, and on the road from Carthago Nova to Castulo. (Plin. iii. 3. s. 4; Vib. Seq. p. 18; Itin. Ant. p. 400.) Ptolemy (l. c.) erroneously attributes it to the Contestani. It became at a later period a Roman colony (Plin. l. c.), in which apparently the consul Junius Brutus settled the soldiers of Viriathus. (Liv. Epit. lv.) Pompey destroyed it. (Epist. Pomp. ap. Sallust, ed. Corte, p. 965; cf. Plut. Pomp. 18.) It must, however, have been restored soon afterwards, since Mela mentions it as being still an important place (ii. 6), and coins of it of a late period are preserved. (Cf. Florez, Med. ii. p. 610, iii. p. 125; Mionnet, i. p. 55, Suppl. i. p. 110; Sestini, p. 209; Eckhel, i p. 60.) The town still bears the same name, but has few antiquities to show.

This text is from: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD). Cited September 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks


  Caesaraugusta (Kaisaraugousta, Strab. iii. pp. 151, 161, 162 ; Mela, ii. 6; Plin. iii. 3. s. 4; Itin. Ant.), or Caesarea Augusta (Kaisareia Augousta, Ptol. ii. 6. § 63; Auson. Epist. xxiv. 84; Inscr. ap. Golz. Thesaur. p. 238: coins generally have C. A., Caes. Augusta, or Caesar. Augusta, whence it may perhaps be inferred that the common shorter form has arisen from running together the two parts of the last-mentioned abbreviation: now Zaragoza, merely a corruption of the ancient name; in English works often Saragossa), one of the chief inland cities of Hispania Tarraconensis, stood on the right bank of the river Iberus (Ebro), in the country of the Edetani (Plin., Ptol.), on the borders of Celtiberia (Strab.). Its original name was Salduba which was changed in honour of Augustus, who colonized it after the Cantabrian War, B.C. 25. (Plin. l. c. Isid. Orig. xv. 1). It was a colonia immunis, and the seat of a conventus juridicus, including 152 communities (populos clii., Plin.) It was the centre of nearly all the great roads leading to the Pyrenees and all parts of Spain. (Itin. Ant. pp. 392, 433, 438, 439, 443, 444, 446, 448, 451, 452). Its coins, which are more numerous than those of almost any other Spanish city, range from Augustus to Caligula. (Florez, Esp. S. vol. iv. p. 254; Med. de Esp. vol. i. p. 186, vol. ii. p. 636, vol. iii. p. 18; Eckhel, vol. i. pp. 36-39 ; Sestini, Med. Isp. p. 114 ; Rasche, s. v.). There are no ruins of the ancient city, its materials having been entirely used up by the Moors and Spaniards. (Ford, Handbook of Spain, p. 580.)
  The first Christian poet, Aurelius Prudentius, is said to have been born at Caesaraugusta (A.D. 348); but some assign the honour to Calagurnis (Calahorra). The place is one of Ptolemy's points of recorded astronomical observations, having 15 1/12) hours in its longest day, and being distant 3 1115 hours W. of Alexandria (Ptol. viii. 4. § 5)

This text is from: Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography (1854) (ed. William Smith, LLD). Cited August 2004 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks

Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities


The largest of the cluster of islands called by the ancients Beatae and Fortunatae Insulae, and now the Canary Islands. Pliny says that this island derived its name from the number of very large-sized dogs (canes) which it contained.


(Ogugia). The mythical island inhabited by the enchantress Calypso, placed by Homer as lying in the very centre of the sea, away from all lands.


The modern Cordova; one of the largest cities in Spain, and the capital of Baetica, on the right bank of the Baetis. It became a Roman colony B.C. 152, and was the birthplace of the two Senecas and of Lucan.


GALLAECI (Ancient country) SPAIN
Gallaecia (Kallaikia). The country of the Gallaeci or Callaeci in the north of Spain, between the Astures and the Durius (Dio Cass. xxxvii. 53). Its inhabitants were some of the most uncivilized in Spain. They were defeated with great slaughter by D. Brutus, consul B.C. 138, who obtained in consequence the surname of Gallaecus.


The modern Iviza; the largest of the Pityusae Insulae, off the east coast of Spain.


ITALIKA (Ancient city) SPAIN
Now Sevilla la Vieja in Spain. A municipium in Hispania Baetica on the west bank of the Baetis, founded by Scipio Africanus in the Second Punic War. It was the birthplace of both Trajan and Hadrian.

Pyrene or Pyrenaei Montes

PYRENEES (Mountain chain) SPAIN


   more rarely Hispal. The modern Seville, a town of the Turdetani in Hispania Baetica, founded by the Ph?nicians, and situated on the left bank of the Baetis, and in reality a seaport, for, although 500 stadia from the sea, the river is navigable for the largest vessels up to the town. Under the Romans it was an important place, with the name Iulia Romula or Romulensis, and was surpassed in size by Corduba (Cordova) and Gades alone. Under the Goths and Vandals it was the chief town in the south of Spain; and under the Arabs the capital of a separate kingdom.

This text is cited Oct 2002 from The Perseus Project URL below, which contains interesting hyperlinks

Tartessus, Tartessos

TARTISSOS (Ancient city) SPAIN
An ancient town in Spain, and one of the chief settlements of the Ph?nicians, probably the samearshish of Scripture. The whole country west of Gibraltar was called Tartessis.



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Alange (Castrum Colubri) Badajoz, Spain. Roman town 15 km SE of Merida, built over a pre-Roman settlement and now covered by the mediaeval castle. Traditionally it was Castrum Colubri, but this name appears in none of the sources of the Roman period. The baths, the basic structure of which is still recognizable despite later restorations, are still in use. They consist of a rectangular enclosure (28 x 13 m) inside which are two round rooms with separate entrances. Each room, 11.3 m in diameter, is flanked by four exedras and has a round pool in the center.

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