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BUCES

BUCES or BUGES LACUS (Plin. Nat. 4.12. s. 26), BYCE or BYCES ( Βύκη λίμνη, Ptol. 4.5. § § 9, 10), BICES (Val. Flacc. Arg. 6.68), an almost enclosed gulf at the end of the Palus Maeotis (Sea of Azov), from which it is separated, says Pliny, by a ridge of rock (petroso dorso, now called the Kosa Arabatskaia: it is, however, rather sandy than rocky). Ptolemy mentions it as the E. boundary of the isthmus of the Tauric Chersonesus (Crimea). Strabo (vii. p.308) gives a more particular description of it under the name of Σαπρὰ λίμνη, the Putrid Lake, by which it is still called; in Russian, Sibaché (or Sivaché) Moré. He describes it as 4000 stadia in length, and as the W. part of the Palus Maeotis, with which it is united by a large mouth (the strait is in fact only a furlong wide); it is very marshy, and scarcely navigable by boats made of hides sewn together, as the shallows are readily uncovered and covered again by the winds. (Strab. l.c.) It is in fact a great lagoon, covered with water when an E. wind blows the water of the Sea of Azov in at its narrow opening, but at other times a tract of pestilential mud. Mela (2.1), Pliny, and Ptolemy mention a river of the same name, the exact position of which is doubtful. (Ukert, vol. iii. pt. 2, pp. 170, 201, 356, 422, 462.)

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