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Leaving the latter aside, then, I shall speak of the king who came after them, whose name was SesostrisRameses II., called by the Greeks Sesostris; said to have ruled in the fourteenth century B.C.. This king, the priests said, set out with a fleet of long shipsShips of war. from the Arabian Gulf and subjugated all those living by the Red Sea, until he came to a sea which was too shallow for his vessels. After returning from there back to Egypt, he gathered a great army (according to the account of the priests) and marched over the mainland, subjugating every nation to which he came. When those that he met were valiant men and strove hard for freedom, he set up pillars in their land, the inscription on which showed his own name and his country's, and how he had overcome them with his own power; but when the cities had made no resistance and been easily taken, then he put an inscription on the pillars just as he had done where the nations were brave; but he also drew on them the priva
Necos, then, stopped work on the canal and engaged in preparations for war; some of his ships of war were built on the northern sea, and some in the Arabian Gulf, by the Red Sea coast: the winches for landing these can still be seen. He used these ships when needed, and with his land army met and defeated the Syrians at Magdolus,Magdolus appears to be the Mogdol of O.T. taking the great Syrian city of CadytisGaza. after the battle. He sent to Branchidae of Miletus and dedicated there to Apollo the garments in which he won these victories. Then he died after a reign of sixteen years, and his son Psammis reigned in his place.
This is the first peninsula. But the second, beginning with Persia, stretches to the Red Sea, and is Persian land; and next, the neighboring land of Assyria; and after Assyria, Arabia; this peninsula ends (not truly but only by common consent) at the Arabian Gulf, to which Darius brought a canal from the Nile. Now from the Persian country to Phoenicia there is a wide and vast tract of land; and from Phoenicia this peninsula runs beside our sea by way of the Syrian Palestine and Egypt, which is at the end of it; in this peninsula there are just three nations.
I wonder, then, at those who have mapped out and divided the world into Libya, Asia, and Europe; for the difference between them is great, seeing that in length Europe stretches along both the others together, and it appears to me to be wider beyond all comparison. For Libya shows clearly that it is bounded by the sea, except where it borders on Asia. Necos king of Egypt first discovered this and made it known. When he had finished digging the canal which leads from the Nile to the Arabian Gulf, he sent Phoenicians in ships, instructing them to sail on their return voyage past the Pillars of Heracles until they came into the northern sea and so to Egypt. So the Phoenicians set out from the Red Sea and sailed the southern sea; whenever autumn came they would put in and plant the land in whatever part of Libya they had reached, and there await the harvest; then, having gathered the crop, they sailed on, so that after two years had passed, it was in the third that they rounded the pilla
Henry Morton Stanley, Dorothy Stanley, The Autobiography of Sir Henry Morton Stanley, part 2.13, chapter 2.16 (search)