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CARTENNA (Καρτένναι Κάρτιννα, Ptol. 4.2.4; Cartinna, Mela, 1.6.1: Tenez), a considerable city on the coast of Numidia, or, according to the later division, of Mauretania Caesariensis; under Augustus, a colony and the station of the second legion. (Plin. Nat. 5.2. s. 1: VR. Carcenna.) The Antonine Itinerary (p. 14) places it 18 M. P., by sea, east of Arsenaria (Arzeu), and 70 M. P. west of Caesarea (Zershell). These numbers led Shaw to identify it with Mostaghanem; but an inscription found by the French places it without doubt at Tenez, much further to the E., and furnishes a striking proof of the danger of trusting implicitly to the numbers of the ancient ge ographers. In fact, the distances of the Itinerary and the longitudes of Ptolemy would have made the positions on this coast one mass of confusion, but for the remarkable clue furnished by the resemblance between the ancient and the modern names; the results deduced from which have been, for the most part, confirmed by the discoveries made since the French occupation. Of this we have a striking proof in the position of Caesarea Iol [IOL], which Shaw identified with Zershell on the evidence of the name only; the whole “weight of evidence” being against the site; and ins criptions have proved that he was right and all the ancient authorities wrong. Just so is it with Tenez and Cartenna; but in this case Shaw also is wrong. (Pellissier, in the Esxploration Scientifique de l'Algerie, vol. vi. p. 330.) Ptolemy (l.c.) mentions a river Cartennus a little W. of Cartenna. He makes the longest day at Cartenna 14 1/3 hours, and its distance above 3 1/2 hours W. of Alexandreia. (Ptol. 8.13.7.)


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  • Cross-references from this page (2):
    • Pliny the Elder, Naturalis Historia, 5.2
    • Claudius Ptolemy, Tetrabiblos, 4.2
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