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CASUS (Κάσος: Eth. Κάσιος), an island between [p. 1.566]Carpathus and Crete, is, according to Strabo, 70 stadia from Carpathus, 250 from Cape Sammonium in Crete, and is itself 80 stadia in circumference. (Strab. x. p.489.) Pliny (4.12. s. 23) makes it 7 M. P. from Carpathus, and 30 M. P. from Sammonium. It is mentioned by Homer (Hom. Il. 2.676). It is said to have been formerly called Amphe (Achne) and Astrabe; and it was supposed in antiquity that the name of Mt. Casium in Syria was derived from this island. (Steph. B. sub voce s. vv. Κασος, Κάσιον Plin. Nat. 5.31. s. 36.)

Casus has been visited by Ross, who describes it as consisting of a single ridge of mountains of considerable height. On the N. and W. sides there are several rocks and small islands, which Strabo calls (l.c.) at Κασίων νῆσοι. Ross found the remains of the ancient town, which was also called Casus, in the interior of the island, at the village of Polin (a diminutive instead of Πόλιον or Πολίδιον). The ancient port-town was at Emporeion, where Ross also discovered some ancient remains: among others, ruins of sepulchral chambers, partly built in the earth. He found no autonomous coins, since the island was probably always dependent either upon Cos or Rhodes. In the southern part of the island there is a small and fertile plain surrounded by mountains, called Argos, a name which it has retained from the most ancient times. We find also an Argos in Calymna and Nisyrus. Before the Greek revolution, Casus contained a population of 7500 souls; and though during the war with the Turks it was at one time almost deserted, its population now amounts to 5000. Its inhabitants possessed, in 1843, as many as 75 large merchant vessels, and a great part of the commerce of the Christian subjects in Turkey was in their hands. (Ross, Reisen in den Griech. Inseln, vol. iii. p. 32, seq.)

hide References (3 total)
  • Cross-references from this page (3):
    • Homer, Iliad, 2.676
    • Pliny the Elder, Naturalis Historia, 4.12
    • Pliny the Elder, Naturalis Historia, 5.31
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