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DIA´NIUM (Διάνιον), or ARTEMI´SIUM (Ἀρτεμίσιον), a lofty promontory on the E. coast of Hispania Tarraconensis, named from a temple of Artemis which stood upon it, and having in its neighbourhood a town of the same name. Strabo tells us that between the river Sucro (Jucar) and Carthago Nova (Cartagena), and not far from the river, there were three small towns, founded by the Massaliots: of these the most celebrated was Hemeroscopeion (τὸ Ἡμεροσκοπεῖον), having upon the adjacent promontory a most esteemed temple of the Ephesian Artemis, which Sertorius used as his naval head-quarters; for its site is a natural stronghold, and fit for a pirates' station, and visible to a great distance out at sea. It is called Dianium or Artemisium, and has near it excellent iron mines and the islets of Planesia and Plumbaria: and above it lies a lake of the sea 400 stadia in circuit. (Strab. iii. p.159; comp. Cic. in Verr. 2.1, 5.36, Steph. B. sub voce Ἡμεροσκοπεῖον, and Avien. Or. Marit. 476).

Pliny mentions the people of Dianium (Dianenses) among the civitates stipendiariae of the conventus of New Carthage (Plin. Nat. 3.3. s. 4); and coins of the town are extant (Sestini, p. 154). It would seem, from these accounts, that the Massilians first chose the lofty promontory as a watch-station (ἡμεροσκοπεῖον), whence it derived its first name; that it became better known by the name of the temple of Artemis which they built upon it; and that this latter name was transferred to a town which grew up beside the temple. In the time of Avienus neither town nor temple existed; but the name is now preserved by the town of Denia (also called Artemus), lying a little to the NW. of the triple promontory (called C. S. Martin) which is the chief headland on the E. coast of Spain. The lake, of which Strabo speaks, is supposed by some to be that of Albufera de Valencia, N. of the river Jucar. (Ukert, vol. ii. pt. 1, p. 404.) On account of the iron mines mentioned by Strabo, Mela calls the promontory FERRARIA (2.6. 7).


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  • Cross-references from this page (2):
    • Cicero, Against Verres, 2.1
    • Pliny the Elder, Naturalis Historia, 3.3
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