CHAPTER I.SINCE Eubœa1 stretches along the whole of this coast from Sunium to Thessaly, except the extremity on each side,2 it may be convenient to connect the description of this island with that of Thessaly. We shall then pass on to Ætolia and Acarnania, parts of Europe of which it remains to give an account.  The island is oblong, and extends nearly 1200 stadia from Cenæum3 to Geræstus.4 Its greatest breadth is about 150 stadia, but it is irregular.5 Cenæum is opposite to Thermopylæ, and in a small decree to the parts beyond Thermopylæ: Geræstus6 and Petalia7 are opposite to Sunium. Eubœa then fronts8 Attica, Bœotia, Locris, and the Malienses. From its narrowness, and its length, which we have mentioned, it was called by the ancients Macris.9 It approaches nearest to the continent at Chalcis. It projects with a convex bend towards the places in Bœotia near Aulis, and forms the Euripus,10 of which we have before spoken at length. We have also mentioned nearly all the places on either side of the Euripus, opposite to each other across the strait, both on the continent and on the island. If anything is omitted we shall now give a further explanation. And first, the parts lying between Aulis (Chalcis?) and the places about Geræstus are called the Hollows of Eubœa, for the sea-coast swells into bays, and, as it approaches Chalcis, juts out again towards the continent.  The island had the name not of Macris only, but of Abantis also. The poet in speaking of Eubœa never calls the inhabitants from the name of the island, Eubœans, but always Abantes; “ they who possessed Eubœa, the resolute Abantes;11
in his train Abantes were following.
” Aristotle says that Thracians, taking their departure from Aba, the Phocian city, settled with the other inhabitants in the island, and gave the name of Abantes to those who already occupied it; other writers say that they had their name from a hero,12 as that of Eubœa was derived from a heroine.13 But perhaps as a certain cave on the sea-coast fronting the Ægean Sea is called Boos-Aule, (or the Cow's Stall.) where lo is said to have brought forth Epaphus, so the island may have had the name Eubœa14 on this account. It was also called Oché, which is the name of one of the largest mountains15 there. It had the name of Ellopia, from Ellops, the son of Ion; according to others, he was the brother of Æclus, and Cothus, who is said to have founded Ellopia,16 a small place situated in the district called Oria of the Histiæotis, near the mountain Telethrius.17 He also possessed Histiæa, Perias, Cerinthus, Ædepsus,18 and Orobie, where was an oracle very free from deception. There also was an oracle of Apollo Selinuntius. The Ellopians, after the battle of Leuctra, were compelled by the tyrant Philistides to remove to the city Histiea, and augmented the number of its inhabitants. Demosthenes19 says that Philistides was appointed by Philip tyrant of the Oreitæ also, for afterwards the Histiæans had that name, and the city, instead of Histiæa, was called Oreus. According to some writers, Histiæa was colonized by Athenians from the demus of the Histiæeis, as Eretria was from the demus of the Eretrieis. But Theopompus says, that when Pericles had reduced Eubœa, the Histiæans agreed to remove into Macedonia, and that two thousand Athenians, who formerly composed the demus of the Histiæans, came, and founded Oreus.20  It is situated below Mount Telethrius, at a place called Drymus, near the river Callas, on a lofty rock;21 whence perhaps because the Ellopians, the former inhabitants, were a mountain tribe,22 the city had the name of Oreus. Orion, who was brought up there, seems to have had his name from the place. But according to some writers, the Oreitæ, who had a city of their own, being attacked by the Ellopians, migrated, and settled with the Histiæans, and although it was a single city it had both appellations, as Lacedæmon and Sparta were the same city. We have said, that the Histiæotis in Thessaly had its name from the people who were carried away from this country by the Perrhæbi.  As Ellopia induced us to commence our description with Histiæa and Oreus, we shall proceed with the places continuous with these. The promontory Cenæum is near Oreus, and on the promontory is situated Dium,23 and Athenæ Diades, a town founded by Athenians, and overlooks the passage across the strait to Cynus. Canæ in Æolia received colonists from Dium. These places are situated near Histiea, and besides these Cerinthus, a small city, close to the sea. Near it is a river Budorus, of the same name as the mountain in Salamis on the side of Attica,  Carystus24 lies at the foot of the mountain Oche, and near it are Styra25 and Marmarium,26 where is a quarry, from which are obtained the Carystian columns. It has a temple of Apollo Marmarinus, where there is a passage across to Hale-Araphenides. At Carystus there is found in the earth a stone,27 which is combed like wool, and woven, so that napkins are made of this substance, which, when soiled, are thrown into the fire, and cleaned, as in the washing of linen.28 These places are said to be inhabited by colonists from the Tetrapolis of Marathon, and by Steirieis. Styra was destroyed in the Maliac (Lamiac?) war by Phædrus, the general of the Athenians. But the Eretrians are in possession of the territory. There is also a Carystus in Laconia, a place belonging to Ægys, towards Arcadia; from whence comes the Carystian wine, spoken of by Alcman.  Geræstus29 is not mentioned by Homer in the Catalogue of the Ships; it is however mentioned by him elsewhere;
which shows, that the place being near Sunium lies conveniently for persons who cross from Asia to Attica. It has a temple of Neptune the most remarkable of any in that quarter, and a considerable number of inhabitants.  Next to Geræstus is Eretria, which, after Chalcis, is the largest city in Eubœa. Next follows Chalcis, the capital as it were of the island, situated immediately on the Euripus. Both these cities are said to have been founded by Athenians before the Trojan war; [but it is also said that] after the Trojan war, Æclus and Cothus took their departure from Athens; the former to found Eretria, and Cothus, Chalcis. A body of Æolians who belonged to the expedition of Penthilus remained in the island. Anciently, even Arabians31 settled there, who came over with Cadmus. These cities, Eretria and Chalcis, when their population was greatly augmented, sent out considerable colonies to Macedonia, for Eretria founded cities about Pallene and Mount Athos; Chalcis founded some near Olynthus, which Philip destroyed. There are also many settlements in Italy and Sicily, founded by Chalcidians. These colonies were sent out, according to Aristotle,32 when the government of the Hippobatæ, (or Knights,) as it is called, was established; it was an aristocratical government, the heads of which held their office by virtue of the amount of their property. At the time that Alexander passed over into Asia, they enlarged the compass of the walls of their city, including within them Canethus,33 and the Euripus, and erected towers upon the bridge, a wall, and gates.  Above the city of the Chalcidians is the plain called Lelantum, in which are hot springs, adapted to the cure of diseases, and which were used by Cornelius Sylla, the Roman general. There was also an extraordinary mine which produced both copper and iron; such, writers say, is not to be found elsewhere. At present, however, both are exhausted. The whole of Eubœa is subject to earthquakes, especially the part near the strait. It is also exposed to violent subterraneous blasts, like Bœotia, and other places of which I have before spoken at length.34 The city of the same name as the island is said to have been swallowed up by an earthquake.35 It is mentioned by Æschylus in his tragedy of Glaucus Pontius; “‘Euboïs near the bending shore of Jupiter Cenæus, close to the tomb of the wretched Lichas.’” There is also in Ætolia a town of the name of Chalcis,
“ The vessels came to Geræstus by night;30”Od. iii. 177.
and another in the present Eleian territory;
“ Chalcis on the sea-coast, and the rocky Calydon,36”Il. ii. 640.
speaking of Telemachus and his companions, when they left Nestor to return to their own country.  Some say, that the Eretrians were a colony from Macistus in Triphylia, under the conduct of Eretrieus; others, that they came from Eretria, in Attica, where now a market is held. There is an Eretria also near Pharsalus. In the Eretrian district there was a city, Tamynæ, sacred to Apollo. The temple (which was near the strait) is said to have been built by Admetus, whom the god, according to report, served a year38 for hire. Eretria,39 formerly, had the names of Melaneïs and Arotria. The village Amarynthus, at the distance of 7 stadia from the walls, belongs to it. The Persians razed the ancient city, having enclosed with multitudes the inhabitants, according to the expression of Herodotus,40 in a net, by spreading the Barbarians around the walls. The foundations are still shown, and the place is called ancient Eretria. The present city is built near it. The power which the Eretrians once possessed, is evinced by a pillar which was placed in the temple of Diana Amarynthia. There is an inscription on it to this effect, that their processions upon their public festivals consisted of three thousand heavy-armed soldiers, six hundred horsemen, and sixty chariots. They were masters, besides other islands, of Andros, Tenos, and Ceos. They received colonists from Elis, whence their frequent use of the letter R, (οͅ,）41 not only at the end, but in the middle of words, which exposed them to the raillery of comic writers. Œchalia,42 a village, the remains of a city destroyed by Hercules, belongs to the district of Eretria. It has the same name as that in Trachinia, as that near Tricca,43 as that in Arcadia, (which later writers call Andania,) and as that in Ætolia near the Eurytanes.  At present Chalcis44 is allowed, without dispute, to hold the first rank, and is called the capital of the Eubœans. Eretria holds the second place. Even in former times these cities had great influence both in war and peace, so that they afforded to philosophers an agreeable and tranquil retreat. A proof of this is the establishment at Eretria of the school of Eretrian philosophers, disciples of Menedemus; and at an earlier period the residence of Aristotle45 at Chalcis, where he also died.  These cities generally lived in harmony with each other, and when a dispute arose between them respecting Lelantum, they did not even then suspend all intercourse so as to act in war entirely without regard to each other, but they agreed upon certain conditions, on which the war was to be conducted. This appears by a column standing in the Amarynthium, which interdicts the use of missiles. [For with respect to warlike usages and armour, there neither is nor was any common usage; for some nations employ soldiers who use missile weapons, such as bows, slings, and javelins; others employ men who engage in close fight, and use a sword, or charge with a spear.46 For there are two methods of using the spear; one is to retain it in the hand; the other, to hurl it like a dart; the pike47 answers both purposes, for it is used in close encounter and is hurled to a distance. The sarissa and the hyssus are similarly made use of.]48  The Eubœans excelled in standing49 fight, which was also called close fight,50 and fight hand to hand.51 They used spears extended at length according to the words of the poet; ‘warriors eager to break through breastplates with extended ashen spears.’52 The missile weapons were perhaps of different kinds, as, probably, was the ashen spear of Pelion, which, as the poet says,
“ they passed along Cruni, and the rocky Chalcis,37”Od. xv. 295.
When the poet says,
“ Achilles alone knew how to hurl.53”Il. xix. 389.
he means with a missile spear. They, too, who engage in single combat, are first introduced as using missile spears, and then having recourse to swords. But they who engage in single combat do not use the sword only, but a spear also held in the hand, as the poet describes it, “‘he wounded him with a polished spear, pointed with brass, and unbraced his limbs.’55” He represents the Eubœans as fighting in this manner; but he describes the Locrian mode as contrary to this; “‘It was not their practice to engage in close fight, but they followed him to Ilium with their bows, clothed in the pliant fleece of the sheep.’56” An answer of an oracle is commonly repeated, which was returned to the Ægienses; “‘a Thessalian horse, a Lacedæmonian woman, and the men who drink the water of the sacred Arethusa,’” meaning the Chalcideans as superior to all other people, for Arethusa belongs to them.  At present the rivers of Eubœa are the Cereus and Neleus. The cattle which drink of the water of the former become white, and those that drink of the water of the latter become black. We have said that a similar effect is produced by the water of the Crathis.57  As some of the Eubœans, on their return from Troy, were driven out of their course among the Illyrians; pursued their journey homewards through Macedonia, and stopped in the neighbourhood of Edessa; having assisted the people in a war, who had received them hospitably; they founded a city, Eubœa. There was a Eubœa in Sicily, founded by the Chalcideans, who were settled there. It was destroyed by Gelon, and became a strong-hold of the Syracusans. In Corcyra also, and at Lemnus, there was a place called Eubœa, and a hill of this name in the Argive territory.  We have said, that Ætolians, Acarnanians, and Athamanes are situated to the west of the Thessalians and Œtæans, if indeed we must call the Athamanes,58 Greeks. It remains, in order that we may complete the description of Greece, to give some account of these people, of the islands which lie nearest to Greece, and are inhabited by Greeks, which we have not yet mentioned.
“ I strike farther with a spear than any other person with an arrow,54”Od. viii. 229.