First of all, there were turnips; and Apellas in his treatise on the Cities in Peloponnesus, says that turnips are called γαστέρες by the Lacedæmonians: and Nicander the Colophonian, in his Dialects, says that among the Bœotians it is cabbages which are called γαστέρες, and that turnips are called in Bœotia ζεκελτίδες. But Amerias and Timachidas affirm that it is gourds which are called ζακελτίδες. And Speusippus, in the second book of his treatise on Things resembling one another, says—“The radish, the turnip, the rape, and the nasturtium all resemble each other.” But Glaucus, in his Cookery Book, spells the word ῥάφυς (rape) with the lene π,—ῥάπυς. But these vegetables have nothing else like them, unless, indeed, it be the plant which we call bounias: but Theophrastus does not use the name of bounias, but calls it a sort of male turnip; and perhaps the plant which he means is the bounias. And Nicander, in his Georgics, mentions the bounias—
Sow turnips on a well-roll'd field, that theyAnd the turnips which grow on the banks of the Cephisus are mentioned by Cratis, in his Orators, thus—
May grow as large as the flat dish that holds them,
* * * *
. . . . . For there are two kinds
Which from the radish spring: one long, one firm,
Both seen in well-till'd beds in kitchen gardens.
And wholly like the turnips of Cephisus.But Theophrastus says that there are two kinds of turnips, the male and the female, and that they both come from the same seed; but Posidonius the Stoic philosopher, in the twenty-seventh book of his Histories, concerning Dalmatia, says that there are some turnips which grow without any cultivation, and also some carrots that grow wild. But Diphilus the physician, of Siphnos, says—“The turnip has attenuating properties, and is harsh and indigestible, and moreover is apt to cause flatulence: but the vegetable called bounias is superior to that; for it is sweeter in taste and [p. 582] more digestible, in addition to being wholesome for the sto- mach and nutritious. But the turnip,” he says, “when roasted, is more easily digested, but in this state it attenuates the blood still more.” This vegetable is mentioned by Eubulus, in his Ancylion, where he says—
I bring this turnip to be roasted now.And Alexis, in his Enthusiast, says—
I speak to Ptolemy, roasting slices of turnip.But the turnip, when pickled, is more attenuating in its effects than when boiled, especially when it is pickled with mustard, as Diphilus says.