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CHAP. 17. (19.)—PUŒNICE.

We must now return to the coast and to Phœnice. There was formerly a town here known as Crocodilon; there is still a river1 of that name: Dorum2 and Sycaminon3 are the names of cities of which the remembrance only exists. We then come to the Promontory of Carmelus4, and, upon the mountain, a town5 of that name, formerly called Acbatana. Next to this are Getta6, Jeba, and the river Pacida, or Belus7, which throws up on its narrow banks a kind of sand from which glass8 is made: this river flows from the marshes of Cendebia, at the foot of Mount Carmelus. Close to this river is Ptolemais, formerly called Ace9, a colony of Claudius Cæsar; and then the town of Ecdippa10, and the promontory known as the White Promontory11. We next come to the city of Tyre12, formerly an island, separated from the mainland by a channel of the sea, of great depth, 700 paces in width, but now joined to it by the works which were thrown up by Alexander when besieging it,—the Tyre so famous in ancient times for its offspring, the cities to which it gave birth, Leptis, Utica, and Carthage13,— that rival of the Roman sway, that thirsted so eagerly for the conquest of the whole earth; Gades, too, which she founded beyond the limits of the world. At the present day, all her fame is confined to the production of the murex and the purple14. Its circumference, including therein Palætyrus15, is nineteen miles, the place itself extending twenty-two stadia. The next towns are Sarepta16 and Ornithon17, and then Sidon18, famous for its manufacture of glass, and the parent of Thebes19 in Bœotia.

(20.) In the rear of this spot begins the chain of Libanus, which extends 1500 stadia, as far as Simyra; this district has the name of Cœle Syria. Opposite to this chain, and separated from it by an intervening valley, stretches away the range of Antilibanus, which was formerly connected with Libanus20 by a wall. Beyond it, and lying in the interior, is the region of Decapolis, and, with it, the Tetrarchies already mentioned, and the whole expanse of Palæstina. On the coast, again, and lying beneath Libanus, is the river Magoras21, the colony of Berytus22, which bears the name of Felix Julia, the town of Leontos23, the river Lycos24, Palæbyblos25, the river Adonis26, and the towns of Byblos27, Botrys28, Gigarta29, Trieris30, Calamos31, Tripolis32, inhabited by the Tyrians, Sidonians, and Aradians; Orthosia33, the river Eleutheros34 the towns of Simyra and Marathos35; and opposite, Arados36, a town seven stadia long, on an island, distant 200 paces from the mainland. After passing through the country in which the before-named mountains end and the plains that lie between, Mount Bargylus37 is seen to rise.

1 The town was situate between Cæsarea and Ptolemais. The river has been identified with the modern Nahl-el-Zerka, in which, according to Pococke, crocodiles have been found.

2 Called Dor, before the conquest of Canaan by the Israelites. See Joshua xvii. 11, and Judges i. 27. It afterwards belonged to the half-tribe of Manasseh. Its site is now called Tortura.

3 Its site is now called Atlik, according to D'Anville. Parisot suggests that it is the modern Keufah; others that it is Hepha, near Mount Carmel.

4 Insignificant in height and extent, but celebrated in Scripture history. It still bears the name of Cape Carmel.

5 It is not improbable that he means the town of Porphyrium, now Khaifa, at the foot of the mountain.

6 Probably the Gitta of Polybius. Of it and Jeba, nothing is known.

7 The Nahr-Naman, or Abou, on which Ptolemais was situate.

8 Employed in the extensive manufacture of that article at Tyre and Sidon, to the north of this district.

9 A corruption of Acco, the native name; from which the English name Acre, and the French St. Jean d'Acre. The earliest mention of it is in the Book of Judges, i. 31. It is supposed that it was Ptolemy I., the son of Lagus, who enlarged it and gave it the name of Ptolemais. Its citadel, however, still retained the name of Ace. Under the Romans, Ptolemais, as mentioned by Pliny, was a colony, and belonged to Galilee. The modern city of Acre occupies its site.

10 The Ach-Zib of Scripture, mentioned in Joshua xix. 29, and Judges I. 31. Its ruins are to be seen near the sea-shore, about three hours' journey north of Acre. The spot is still called Es-Zib.

11 Still called the Ras-el-Abiad, or White Promontory.

12 A colony of the Sidonians: its scanty ruins are still to be seen at the poor village of Sur. The wars of the Crusades completed its downfall. The island is still joined to the mainland by the mole which was erected by Alexander the Great during the siege of the place; or, according to some, by the Syrians themselves.

13 Carthage is supposed to have been colonized immediately by the people of Utica.

14 From which was made the famous Tyrian purple.

15 Or "ancient Tyre," which was built on the mainland.

16 The Zarephath of 1 Kings xvii. 9, 10, whither Elijah was sent to the widow, whose son he afterwards raised from the dead. Its site is now known as Sarfand.

17 Probably meaning "City of the Birds," perhaps from the quantities of game in its vicinity. Its site now bears the name of Adlan.

18 Its site is now called Saïda. In the time of David and Solomon, it was probably subject to the kings of Tyre.

19 Cadmus, the founder of Thebes, was said to have been the son of its king Agenor.

20 The Lebanon of Scripture. This intervening space, the ancient Cœle-Syria, is now inhabited by the Druses.

21 Perhaps the modern Nahr-el-Damur.

22 Now Beyrout. By some it has been identified with the Berotha, or Berothai, of the Hebrew Scriptures. Its full name as a Roman colony was, "Colonia Julia Augusta Felix Berytus." It was colonized by the veterans of the Fifth, or Macedonian, and the Eighth, or Augustan, Legions. Beyrout, or Berut, is now, in a commercial point of view, the most important place in Syria.

23 Nothing is known of this place. The name seems to mean, the "Town of the Lion."

24 Now the Nahr-el-Kelb, or "Dog's River."

25 The site of this place seems not to be known.

26 Now the Nahr-el-Ibrahim.

27 The modern town which stands on its site is called Jebeil. It is situate at the foot of Lebanon. The ancient name seems to have been Gebal, and the Geblites are mentioned in Joshua, xiii. 5; 1 Kings, v. 18; and Ezek. xxvii. 9. The ruins of the ancient city are very extensive. Astarte and Isis seem to have been worshipped here.

28 Now Batrun, a small town about twelve miles north of Byblus, said to have been founded by Ithobal, king of Tyre.

29 Now Gazir, according to D'Anville.

30 Twelve miles from Tripolis. Its name would seem to bear reference to a trireme, or galley. It has been said that this is the place referred to in the Book of Daniel, xi. 30.

31 Polybius speaks of this place as being burnt by Antiochus. Its site still bears the name of Calamon, according to D'Anville.

32 This properly consisted of three distinct cities, 600 feet apart, each with its own walls, but all connected in a common constitution; having one place of assembly, and forming in reality one city only. They were colonies, as here suggested by Pliny, of Tyre, Sidon, and Arados respectively. It is still a considerable place, called Tarabolos, or Tarablis, by the Turks.

33 Its site is still known as Ortosa, or Tortosa.

34 Probably the same as the Nahr-el-Kebir, or "Great River," to the north of Tripolis. It may have derived its Greek name, which signifies "free," from its similarity to that given to it by the people of the country.

35 This was an important city, near Antarados. Its ruins are spoken of as very extensive. Simyra is still called Sumira.

36 Now called Ruad; an island off the northern coast of Phœnicia, at a distance of twenty stadia from the mainland, Pliny falling short here in his measurement. The city of Arados was very populous, though built on a mere rock; and, contrary to Eastern custom, the houses contained many stories. It is spoken of by the prophet Ezekiel under the name of Arvad: see c. xxvii. 8, 11. In importance, it ranked next to the cities of Tyre and Sidon.

37 Its modern name does not appear to be known.

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