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 Historians, beginning with the voyage of Ophelas (Apellas ?),1 have invented a great number of fables respecting the sea-coast of Africa beyond the Pillars. We have mentioned them before, and mention them now, requesting our readers to pardon the introduction of marvellous stories, whenever we may be compelled to relate anything of the kind, being unwilling to pass them over entirely in silence, and so in a manner to mutilate our account of the country. It is said, that the Sinus Emporicus (or merchants' bay) has a cave which admits the sea at high tide to the distance even of seven stadia, and in front of this bay a low and level tract with an altar of Hercules upon it, which, they say, is not covered by the tide. This I, of course, consider to be one of the fictitious stories. Like this is the tale, that on other bays in the succeeding coast there were ancient settlements of Tyrians, now abandoned, which consisted of not less than three hundred cities, and were destroyed by the Pharusii2 and the Nigritæ. These people, they say, are distant thirty days' journey from Lynx.
1 Tyrwhitt reads Apellas, for Ophellas of the text. Apellas was a Cyrenæan navigator, whose Periplus is mentioned by Marcianus of Heracleia. There was an Ophellas of Cyrene, who advanced at the head of an army along the coast, to unite himself to Agathocles, who was then besieging Carthage, B. C. 310. He was put to death by Agathocles soon after his arrival, and no Periplus of his said to have existed; his course also to Carthage was by land.
2 A people on the west coast of N. Africa, about the situation of whom Strabo, Pliny, and Ptolemy are in perfect agreement with one another, if the thirty days' journey of Strabo between them and Lixus on the west coast of Morocco, to the south of Cape Spartel, be set aside, as an error either of his information or of the text; which latter is not improbable, as numbers in MSS. are so often corrupt. Nor is this mere conjecture, because Strabo contradicts himself, by asserting in another place (b. xvii. c. 3. § 7) that the Pharusii had a great desert between them and Mauretania. When Ezekiel prophesies the fall of Tyre, it is said, (xxvii. 10,) ‘The men of Pheres (the common version reads Persia) and Lud and Phut were in thine armies.’ These Pheres thus joined with Phut, or Mauretanians, and the Ludim, who were nomads of Africa (the Septuagint and the Vulgate understand the Lydians), may be reasonably supposed to belong to the same region. Without the vowel points, the name will represent the powerful and warlike tribe whom the Greeks call Pharusii. Smith, art, Pharusii.
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