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SYMAETHUS

SYMAETHUS (Σύμαιθος: Simeto), one of the most considerable rivers of Sicily, which rises in the chain of Mons Nebrodes, in the great forest now called the Bosco di Caronia, and flows from thence in a southerly direction, skirting the base of Aetna, till it turns to the E. and flows into the sea about 8 miles S. of Catania. In the lower part of its course it formed the boundary between the territory of Leontini and that of Catana. (Thuc. 6.65.) It receives in its course many tributaries, of which the most considerable are, the Fiume Salso, flowing from the neighborhood of Nicosia and Traina, probably the Cyamosorus of Polybius (1.9), which he describes as flowing near Centuripa (Centorbi), and the Dittaino, which rises in the hills near Asaro, the ancient Assorus. This is undoubtedly the stream called in ancient times CHRYSAS Stephanus of Byzantium apparently gives the name of Adranus to the upper part or main branch of the Symaethus itself, which flows under the walls of ADRANUM (Adernò). This part of the river is still called the Simeto; but in the lower part of its course, where it approaches the sea, it is now known as the Giarretta. Such differences of name are common in modern, as well as in ancient times. The Symuaethus [p. 2.1055]is much the most considerable river on the E. coast of Sicily, and is in consequence noticed by all the geographers (Scyl. p. 4.13; Strab. vi. p.272; Plin. Nat. 3.8. s. 14; Ptol. 3.4.9). It is also repeatedly alluded to by the Roman poets (Verg. A. 9.584; Ovid, Ov. Fast. 4.472; Sil. Ital. 14.232.)

[E.H.B]

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