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[24]

For instance, in the case of Acarnania, Laertes and the Cephallenians acquired possession of it, as I have said;1 but as to what people held it before that time, many writers have indeed given an opinion, but since they do not agree in their statements, which have, however, a wide currency, there is left for me a word of arbitration concerning them. They say that the people who were called both Taphians and Teleboans lived in Acarnania in earlier times, and that their leader Cephalus, who had been set up by Amphitryon as master over the islands about Taphos, gained the mastery over this country too. And from this fact they go on to add the myth that Cephalus was the first to take the leap from Leucatas which became the custom, as I have said before.2 But the poet does not say that the Taphians were ruling the Acarnanians before the Cephallenians and Laertes came over, but only that they were friends to the Ithacans, and therefore, according to the poet, they either had not ruled over the region at all, or had yielded Acarnania to the Ithacans voluntarily, or had become joint occupants with them. It appears that also a colony from Lacedaemon settled in Acarnania, I mean Icarius, father of Penelope, and his followers; for in the Odyssey the poet represents both Icarius and the brothers of Penelope as living:“who3 shrink from going to the house of her father, Icarius, that he himself may exact the bride-gifts for his daughter,
4and, concerning her brothers,“for already her father and her brothers bid her marry Eurymachus;
5for, in the first place, it is improbable that they were living in Lacedaemon, since in that case Telemachus would not have lodged at the home of Menelaüs when he went to Lacedaemon, and, secondly, we have no tradition of their having lived elsewhere. But they say that Tyndareus and his brother Icarius, after being banished by Hippocoön from their homeland, went to Thestius, the ruler of the Pleuronians, and helped him to acquire possession of much of the country on the far side of the Acheloüs on condition that they should receive a share of it; that Tyndareus, however, went back home, having married Leda, the daughter of Thestius, whereas Icarius stayed on, keeping a portion of Acarnania, and by Polycaste, the daughter of Lygaeus, begot both Penelope and her brothers. Now I have already set forth that the Acarnanians were enumerated in the Catalogue of Ships,6 that they took part in the expedition to Ilium, and that among these were named "those who lived on the 'shore,'"7 and also“those who held the mainland and dwelt in parts opposite.
8 But as yet neither had the mainland been named "Acarnania" nor the shore "Leucas."

1 10. 2. 8, 10.

2 Cf. 10. 2. 9.

3 The suitors.

4 Hom. Od. 2.52

5 Hom. Od. 15.16

6 10. 2. 25; but Homer nowhere specifically mentions the "Acarnanians."

7 "Shore of the mainland," Hom. Od. 24.378.

8 See 10. 2. 8.

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load focus English (H.C. Hamilton, Esq., W. Falconer, M.A., 1903)
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