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NATISO

NATISO (Νατίσων, Strab.: Natisone), a river of Venetia, which flowed under the walls of Aquileia, on the E. side of the city, and is noticed in connection with that city by all the geographers as well as by several other ancient writers. (Plin. Nat. 3.18. s. 22; Strab. v. p.214; Mela, 2.4.3; Ptol. 3.1.26; Amm. Marc. 21.12.8; Jornand. Get. 42.) Pliny speaks of the Natiso together with the Turrus (Natiso cum Turro), as flowing by the colony of Aquileia. At the present day the Natisone, a considerable stream which descends from the Alps near Cividale, falls into the Torre (evidently the Turrus of Pliny), and that again into the Isonzo; so that neither of them now flows by Aquileia; but it is probable that they have changed their course, which the low and marshy character of the country renders easy. A small stream, or rather canal, communicating from Aquileia with the sea, is still called Natisa; but it is clear that the Natissa of Jornandes, which he describes (l.c.) as flowing under the walls of Aquileia, must be the far more important stream, now called the Natisone, as he tells us it had its sources in the Mons Picis, and it would be vain to look for any mountains nearer than the Alps. Strabo (l.c.) also speaks of the Natiso as navigable for ships of burden as far as Aquileia, 60 stadia from the sea; a statement which renders it certain that a considerable river must have flowed under the walls of that city.

[E.H.B]

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