previous next

Of the three cities that were united under one metropolis by Minos, the third, which was Phaestus, was razed to the ground by the Gortynians; it is sixty stadia distant from Gortyn, twenty from the sea, and forty from the seaport Matalum; and the country is held by those who razed it. Rhytium, also, together with Phaestus, belongs to the Gortynians:“and Phaestus and Rhytium.
1 Epimenides,2 who performed the purifications by means of his verses, is said to have been from Phaestus. And Lissen also is in the Phaestian territory. Of Lyctus, which I have mentioned before,3 the seaport is Cherronesus, as it is called, where is the temple of Britomartis. But the Cities Miletus and Lycastus, which are catalogued along with Lyctus,4 no longer exist; and as for their territory, the Lyctians took one portion of it and the Cnossians the other, after they had razed the city to the ground.

1 Hom. Il. 2.648

2 Epimenides was a wizard, an ancient "Rip Van Winkle," who, according to Suidas, slept for sixty of his one hundred and fifty years. According to Diogenes Laertius 1.110, he went to Athens in "the forty sixth Olympiad" (596-593 B.C ) "and purified the city, and put a stop to the plague" (see Plutarch's account of his visit in Solon's time, Plut. Sol. 12). According to Plat. Laws 642d he went to Athens "ten years before the Persian war" (i.e., 500 B.C.), and uttered the prophecy that the Persians would not come for ten years, and would get the worst of it when they came. But see Pauly-Wissowa s.v. "Epimenides."

3 10. 4. 7.

4 Hom. Il. 2.647.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Greek (1877)
load focus English (H.C. Hamilton, Esq., W. Falconer, M.A., 1903)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
500 BC (1)
hide References (2 total)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: