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Our part of the earth, of which I propose to give an account, floating as it were in the ocean which surrounds it (as I have mentioned above1), stretches out to the greatest extent from east to west, viz. from India to the Pillars consecrated to Hercules at Gades, being a distance of 8568 miles2, according to the statement of Artemidorus3, or ac- cording to that of Isidorus4, 9818 miles. Artemidorus adds to this 491 miles, from Gades, going round by the Sacred Promontory, to the promontory of Artabrum5, which is the most projecting part of Spain.

This measurement may be taken in two directions. From the Ganges, at its mouth, where it discharges itself into the Eastern ocean, passing through India and Parthyene, to Myriandrus6, a city of Syria, in the bay of Issus, is a distance of 5215 miles7. Thence, going directly by sea, by the island of Cyprus, Patara in Lycia, Rhodes, and Astypalæa, islands in the Carpathian sea, by Tænarum in Laconia, Lilybæum in Sicily and Calaris in Sardinia, is 2103 miles. Thence to Gades is 1250 miles, making the whole distance from the Eastern ocean 8568 miles8.

The other way, which is more certain, is chiefly by land. From the Ganges to the Euphrates is 5169 miles; thence to Mazaca, a town in Cappadocia, is 319 miles; thence, through Phrygia and Caria, to Ephesus is 415 miles; from Ephesus, across the Ægean sea to Delos, is 200 miles; to the Isthmus is 212 1/2 miles; thence, first by land and afterwards by the sea of Lechæum and the gulf of Corinth, to Patræ in Peloponnesus, 90 miles; to the promontory of Leucate 87 1/2 miles; as much more to Corcyra; to the Acroceraunian mountains 132 1/2, to Brundisium 87 1/2, and to Rome 360 miles. To the Alps, at the village of Scingomagum9, is 519 miles; through Gaul to Illiberis at the Pyrenees, 927; to the ocean and the coast of Spain, 331 miles; across the passage of Gades 7 1/2 miles; which distances, according to the estimate of Artemidorus, make altogether 8945 miles.

The breadth of the earth, from south to north, is commonly supposed to be about one-half only of its length, viz. 4490 miles; hence it is evident how much the heat has stolen from it on one side and the cold on the other: for I do not suppose that the land is actually wanting, or that the earth has not the form of a globe; but that, on each side, the uninhabitable parts have not been discovered. This measure then extends from the coast of the Æthiopian ocean, the most distant part which is habitable, to Meroë, 1000 miles10; thence to Alexandria 1250; to Rhodes 562; to Cnidos 87 1/2; to Cos 25; to Samos 100; to Chios 94; to Mitylene 65; to Tenedos 44; to the promontory of Sigæum 12 1/2; to the entrance of the Euxine 312 1/2; to the promontory of Carambis 350; to the entrance of the Palus Mæotis 312 1/2; and to the mouth of the Tanais 275 miles, which distance, if we went by sea, might be shortened 89 miles. Beyond the Tanais the most diligent authors have not been able to obtain any accurate measurement. Artemidorus supposes that everything beyond is undiscovered, since he confesses that, about the Tanais, the tribes of the Sarmatæ dwell, who extend towards the north pole. Isidorus adds 1250 miles, as the distance to Thule11; but this is mere conjecture. For my part, I believe that the boundaries of Sarmatia really extend to as great a distance as that mentioned above: for if it were not very extensive, how could it contain the innumerable tribes that are always changing their residence ? And indeed I consider the uninhabitable portion of the world to be still greater; for it is well known that there are innu- merable islands lying off the coast of Germany12, which have been only lately discovered.

The above is all that I consider worth relating about the length and the breadth of the earth13. But Eratosthenes14, a man who was peculiarly well skilled in all the more subtle parts of learning, and in this above everything else, and a person whom I perceive to be approved by every one, has stated the whole of this circuit to be 252,000 stadia, which, according to the Roman estimate, makes 31,500 miles. The attempt is presumptuous, but it is supported by such subtle arguments that we cannot refuse our assent. Hipparchus15, whom we must admire, both for the ability with which he controverts Eratosthenes, as well as for his diligence in everything else, has added to the above number not much less than 25,000 stadia.

(109.) Dionysodorus is certainly less worthy of confidence16; but I cannot omit this most remarkable instance of Grecian vanity. He was a native of Melos, and was celebrated for his knowledge of geometry; he died of old age in his native country. His female relations, who inherited his property, attended his funeral, and when they had for several successive days performed the usual rites, they are said to have found in his tomb an epistle written in his own name to those left above; it stated that he had descended from his tomb to the lowest part of the earth, and that it was a distance of 42,000 stadia. There were not wanting certain geometricians, who interpreted this epistle as if it had been sent from the middle of the globe, the point which is at the greatest distance from the surface, and which must necessarily be the centre of the sphere. Hence the estimate has been made that it is 252,000 stadia in circumference.

1 In the 66th chapter of this book.

2 In the estimate of distances I have given the numbers as they occur in the text of Lemaire, although, in many cases, there is considerable doubt as to their accuracy. See the observations of Hardouin and Alexandre in Lemaire, i. 460.

3 Artemidorus was an Ephesian, who wrote on geography; see Hardouin's Index Auct., Lemaire, i. 167.

4 Isidorus was a native of Nicæa; he appears to have been a writer on various topics in natural history, but not much estimated; see Hardouin's Index Auct., in Lemaire, i. 194.

5 The modern Cape St. Vincent and Cape Finisterre.

6 This was a city on the Sinus Issicus, the present Gulf of Aiasso, situated, according to Brotier, between the sites of the modern towns of Scanderoon and Rosos. See Lemaire, i. 461.

7 Respecting this and the other distances mentioned in this chapter, I may refer the reader to the remarks of Hardouin in Lemaire, i. 461.

8 It is scarcely necessary to remark, that the calculations of our author do not indicate the real distance between the extreme points of the habitable parts of the globe, as known to the ancients, but the number of miles which must be passed over by a traveller, in going from place to place; in the first instance, a considerable part of the way by sea, and, in the second, almost entirely by land.

9 It appears to be difficult to ascertain the identity of the place here mentioned; I may refer to the remarks of Hardouin and Brotier in Le- maire, i. 464.

10 The same remarks may be made upon this and the following numbers as upon those in the former paragraph; for further information I shall refer my readers to the notes of Hardouin, Brotier, and Alexandre, in Lemaire, i. 465–468.

11 There is great uncertainty respecting the locality of the Thule of the ancients; there was, in fact, nothing known respecting the locality or identity of any of the places approaching to the Arctic circle; the name appears to have been vaguely applied to some country lying to the north of the habitable parts of Europe. In note3, p. 109, I have already had occasion to offer some remarks on the locality of Thule. Our author speaks of Thule in two subsequent parts of his work, iv. 30 and vi. 39.

12 It is probable, that these supposed "immense islands," if they were not entirely imaginary, were the countries of Sweden and Norway, the southern extremities alone of which had been visited by the ancients.

13 Strabo, ii.; Vitruvius, i. 6; Macrobius, in Somn. Scip. ii. 20.

14 Our author has previously referred to Eratosthenes, in the 76th chapter of this book.

15 Our author has referred to Hipparchus, in the 9th chapter of this book.

16 "Aliter, inquit, et cautius multo Dionysodorus est audiendus, qui miraculo solo nititur, quam Hipparchus et Eratosthenes, qui geometricis nituntur principiis." Hardouin in Lemaire, i. 469. Nothing further is known of Dionysodorus; see Hardouin's Index Auct. in Lemaire, i. 123.

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