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Comrade of Phyleides and ruler of the great-souled Epeans.
”Hom. Il. 15.518In Cyllene is a sanctuary of Asclepius, and one of Aphrodite. But the image of Hermes, most devoutly worshipped by the inhabitants, is merely the male member upright on the pedestal.  The land of Elis is fruitful, being especially suited to the growth of fine flax. Now while hemp and flax, both the ordinary and the fine variety, are sown by those whose soil is suited to grow it, the threads from which the Seres make the dresses are produced from no bark, but in a different way as follows. There is in the land of the Seres an insect which the Greeks call ser, though the Seres themselves give it another name.  Its size is twice that of the largest beetle, but in other respects it is like the spiders that spin under trees, and furthermore it has, like the spider, eight feet. These creatures are reared by the Seres, who build them houses adapted for winter and for summer. The product of the creatures, a clue of fine thread, is found rolled round their feet.  They keep them for four years, feeding them on millet, but in the fifth year, knowing that they have no longer to live, they give them green reed to eat. This of all foods the creature likes best; so it stuffs itself with the reed till it bursts with surfeit, and after it has thus died they find inside it the greater part of the thread. Seria is known to be an island lying in a recess of the Red Sea.  But I have heard that it is not the Red Sea, but a river called Ser, that makes this island, just as in Egypt the Delta is surrounded by the Nile and by no sea. Such another island is Seria said to be. These Seres themselves are of Aethiopian race, as are the inhabitants of the neighboring islands, Abasa and Sacaea. Some say, however, that they are not Ethiopians but a mongrel race of Scythians and Indians.  Such are the accounts that are given. As you go from Elis to Achaia you come after one hundred and fifty-seven stades to the river Larisus, and in modern days this river forms the boundary between Elis and Achaia, though of old the boundary was Cape Araxus on the coast.
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