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Thus far have I treated of the position and the wonders of the earth, of the waters, the stars, and the proportion of the universe and its dimensions. I shall now proceed to describe its individual parts; although indeed we may with reason look upon the task as of an infinite nature, and one not to be rashly commenced upon without incurring censure. And yet, on the other hand, there is nothing which ought less to require an apology, if it is only considered how far from surprising it is that a mere mortal cannot be acquainted with everything. I shall therefore not follow any single author, but shall employ, in relation to each subject, such writers as I shall look upon as most worthy of credit. For, indeed, it is the characteristic of nearly all of them, that they display the greatest care and accuracy in the description of the countries in which they respectively flourished; so that by doing this, I shall neither have to blame nor contradict any one.

The names of the different places will here be simply given, and as briefly as possible; the account of their celebrity, and the events which have given rise thereto, being deferred to a more appropriate occasion; for it must be remembered that I am here speaking of the earth as a whole, and I wish to be understood as using the names without any reference whatever to their celebrity, and as though the places themselves were in their infancy, and had not as yet acquired any fame through great events. The name is men- tioned, it is true, but only as forming a part of the world and the system of the universe.

The whole globe is divided into three parts, Europe, Asia, and Africa. Our description commences where the sun sets and at the Straits of Gades1, where the Atlantic ocean, bursting in, is poured forth into the inland seas. As it makes its entrance from that side, Africa is on the right hand and Europe on the left; Asia lies between them2; the boundaries being the rivers Tanais3 and Nile. The Straits of the ocean, of which I have just spoken, extend fifteen miles in length and five4 in breadth, measured from the village of Mellaria5 in Spain to the Album Promontorium6 or White Promontory in Africa, as we learn from Turranius Gracilis, who was born in that vicinity. Titus Livius and Cornelius Nepos however have stated the breadth, where it is least, to be seven miles, and where greatest, ten; from so small a mouth as this does so immense an expanse of water open upon us! Nor is our astonishment diminished by the fact of its being of great depth; for, instead of that, there are numerous breakers and shoals, white with foam, to strike the mariner with alarm. From this circumstance it is, that many have called this spot the threshold of The Inland Sea.

At the narrowest part of the Straits, there are mountains placed to form barriers to the entrance on either side, Abyla7 in Africa, and Calpe8 in Europe, the boundaries formerly of the labours of Hercules9. Hence it is that the inhabitants have called them the Columns of that god; they also believe that they were dug through by him; upon which the sea, which was before excluded, gained admission, and so changed the face of nature.


I shall first then speak of Europe, the foster-mother of that people which has conquered all other nations, and itself by far the most beauteous portion of the earth. Indeed, many persons have, not without reason10, considered it, not as a third part only of the earth, but as equal to all the rest, looking upon the whole of our globe as divided into two parts only, by a line drawn from the river Tanais to the Straits of Gades. The ocean, after pouring the waters of the Atlantic through the inlet which I have here described, and, in its eager progress, overwhelming all the lands which have had to dread its approach, skirts with its winding course the shores of those parts which offer a more effectual resistance, hollowing out the coast of Europe especially into numerous bays, among which there are four Gulfs that are more particularly remarkable. The first of these begins at Calpe, which I have previously mentioned, the most distant mountain of Spain; and bends, describing an immense curve, as far as Locri and the Promontory of Bruttium11.


The first land situate upon this Gulf is that which is called the Farther Spain or Bætica12; next to which, beginning at the frontier town of Urgi13, is the Nearer, or Tarraconensian14 Spain, extending as far as the chain of the Pyrenees. The Farther Spain is divided lengthwise into two provinces, Lusitania15 and Bætica, the former stretching along the northern side of the latter, and being divided from it by the river Ana16. The source of this river is in the district of Laminium17, in the Nearer Spain. It first spreads out into a number of small lakes, and then again contracts itself into a narrow channel, or entirely disappears under ground18, and after frequently disappearing and again coming to light, finally dis- charges itself into the Atlantic Ocean. Tarraconensian Spain lies on one side, contiguous to the Pyrenees, running down- wards along the sides of that chain, and, stretching across from the Iberian Sea to the Gallic ocean19, is separated from Bætica and Lusitania by Mount Solorius20, the chains of the Oretani21 and the Carpetani22, and that of the Astures23.


Bætica, so called from the river which divides it in the middle, excels all the other provinces in the richness of its cultivation and the peculiar fertility and beauty of its vegetation.

It consists of four jurisdictions, those of Gades24, of Corduba25, of Astigi26, and of Hispali27. The total number of its towns is 175; of these nine are colonies28, and eight muni- cipal towns29; twenty-nine have been long since presented with the old Latin rights30; six are free towns31, three federate32, and 120 tributary.

In this district, the things that more especially deserve notice, or are more easily explained in the Latin tongue, are the following, beginning at the river Ana, along the line of the seashore; the town of Onoba, surnamed Æstuaria33; the rivers Luxia and Urium34, flowing through this territory between the Ana and the Bætis; the Marian35 Mountains; the river Bætis; the coast of Corum36, with its winding bay; opposite to which is Gades, of which we shall have occasion to speak among the islands37. Next comes the Promontory of Juno38, and the port of Bæsippo39; the towns of Bœlo40 and Mellaria41, at which latter begin the Straits of the Atlantic; Carteia42, called by the Greeks Tartessos43; and the mountain of Calpe.

Along the coast of the inland sea44 is the town of Barbesula45 with its river; also Salduba46; the town of Suel47; and then Malaca48, with its river, one of the federate towns. Next to this comes Mænoba49, with its river; then Sexifirmum50, surnamed Julium; Selambina51; Abdera52; and Murci53, which is at the boundary of Bætica. M. Agrippa supposed that all this coast was peopled by colonists of Punic origin. Beyond the Anas, and facing the Atlantic, is the country of the Bastuli54 and the Turditani. M. Varro informs us, that the Iberians, the Persians, the Phœnicians, the Celts, and the Carthaginians spread themselves over the whole of Spain; that the name "Lusitania" is derived from the games (lusus) of Father Bacchus, or the fury (lyssa55) of his frantic attendants, and that Pan56 was the governor of the whole of it. But the traditions respecting Hercules57 and Pyrene, as well as Saturn, I conceive to be fabulous in the highest degree.

The Bætis does not rise, as some writers have asserted, near the town of Mentisa58, in the province of Tarraco, but in the Tugiensian Forest59; and near it rises the river Tader60, which waters the territory of Carthage61. At Ilorcum62 it turns away from the Funeral Pile63 of Scipio; then taking a sweep to the left, it falls into the Atlantic Ocean, giving its name to this province: at its source it is but small, though during its course it receives many other streams, which it deprives as well of their waters as their renown. It first enters Bætica in Ossigita-nia64, and glides gently, with a smooth current, past many towns situate on either side of its banks.

Between this river and the sea-shore the most celebrated places inland are Segida65, also surnamed Augurina; Julia66, called Fidentia; Urgao67 or Alba, Ebora68 or Cerealis, Iliberri69 or Liberini, Ilipula70 or Laus, Artigi71 or Julienses, Vesci72 or Faventia, Singili73, Attegua74, Arialdunum, Agla Minor75, Bæbro76, Castra Vinaria77, Cisimbrium78, Hippo Nova or New Hippo79, Ilurco80, Osca81, Escua82, Sucubo83, Nuditanum, Old Tuati84; all which towns are in that part of Bastitania which extends towards the sea, but in the jurisdiction85 of Corduba. In the neighbourhood of the river itself is Ossigi86, also surnamed Laconicum, Iliturgi87 or Forum Julium, Ipasturgi88 or Triumphale, Setia, and, fourteen miles inland, Obulco89, which is also called Pontificense.

Next to these comes Epora90, a federate town, Sacili91 Martialium, and Onoba92. On the right bank is Corduba, a Roman colony, surnamed Patricia93; here the Bætis first becomes navigable. There are also the towns of Carbula and Detunda94, and the river Singulis95, which falls into the Bætis on the same side.

The towns in the jurisdiction of Hispalis are the following: Celti, Arua96, Canama97, Evia, Ilipa98, surnamed Illa, and Italica99. On the left of the river is the colony of Hispalis100 named Romuliensis, and, on the opposite side101, the town of Osset102, surnamed Julia Constantia, Vergentum, or Juli Genius103, Orippo, Caura104, Siarum, and the river Menoba105, which enters the Bætis on its right bank. Between the æstuaries of the Bætis lie the towns of Nebrissa106, surnamed Veneria, and of Colobona107. The colonies are, Asta108, which is also called Regia, and, more inland, that of Asido109, surnamed Cæsariana.

The river Singulis, discharging itself into the Bætis at the place already mentioned, washes the colony of Astigi110, sur- named Augusta Firma, at which place it becomes navigable. The other colonies in this jurisdiction which are exempt from tribute are Tucci, surnamed Augusta Gemella111, Itucci called Virtus Julia112, Attubi or Claritas Julia113, Urso114 or Genua Urbanorum; and among them in former times Munda115, which was taken with the son of Pompey. The free towns are Old Astigi116 and Ostippo117; the tributary towns are Callet, Callecula, Castra Gemina, the Lesser Ilipula, Merucra, Sacrana, Obulcula118, and Oningis. As you move away from the sea-coast, near where the river Menoba is navigable, you find, at no great distance, the Alontigiceli and the Alostigi119.

The country which extends from the Bætis to the river Anas, beyond the districts already described, is called Bæturia, and is divided into two parts and the same number of nations; the Celtici120, who border upon Lusitania, in the ju- risdiction of Hispalis, and the Turduli, who dwell on the verge121 of Lusitania and Tarraconensis, and are under the protection of the laws of Corduba. It is evident that the Celtici have sprung from the Celtiberi, and have come from Lusitania, from their religious rites, their language, and the names of their towns, which in Bætica are distinguished by the following epithets122, which have been given to them. Seria has received the surname of Fama Julia123, Nertobriga that of Concordia Julia124, Segida that of Restituta Julia125, and Contributa126 that of Julia. What is now Curiga was formerly Ucultuniacum, Constantia Julia127 was Laconimurgis, the present Fortunales were the Tereses128, and the Emanici were the Callenses129. Besides these, there are in Celtica the towns of Acinippo130, Arunda131, Aruci132, Turobriga, Lastigi, Salpesa, Sæpone, and Serippo.

The other Bæturia, which we have mentioned, is inhabited by the Turduli, and, in the jurisdiction of Corduba, has some towns which are by no means inconsiderable; Arsa133, Mellaria134, Mirobriga135, and Sisapo136, in the district of Osintias.

To the jurisdiction of Gades belongs Regina, with Roman citizens; and Læpia, Ulia137, Carisa138 surnamed Aurelia, Urgia139 or Castrum Julium, likewise called Cæsaris Salutariensis, all of which enjoy the Latian rights. The tributary towns are Besaro, Belippo140, Barbesula, Lacippo, Bæsippo, Callet, Cappacum, Oleastro, Ituci, Brana, Lacibi, Saguntia141, and Audorisæ.

M. Agrippa has also stated the whole length of this province to be 475 miles142, and its breadth 257; but this was at a time when its boundaries extended to Carthage143, a circumstance which has often caused great errors in calculations; which are generally the result either of changes effected in the limits of provinces, or of the fact that in the reckoning of distances the length of the miles has been arbitrarily increased or diminished. In some parts too the sea has been long making encroachments upon the land, and in others again the shores have advanced; while the course of rivers in this place has become more serpentine, in that more direct. And then, besides, some writers begin their measurements at one place, and some at another, and so proceed in different directions; and hence the result is, that no two accounts agree.

(2.) At the present day the length of Bætica, from the town of Castulo144, on its frontier, to Gades is 250 miles, and from Murci, which lies on the sea-coast, twenty-five miles more. The breadth, measured from the coast of Carteia, is 234 miles. Who is there that can entertain the belief that Agrippa, a man of such extraordinary diligence, and one who bestowed so much care on his subject, when he proposed to place before the eyes of the world a survey of that world, could be guilty of such a mistake as this, and that too when seconded by the late emperor the divine Augustus ? For it was that emperor who completed the Portico145 which had been begun by his sister, and in which the survey was to be kept, in conformity with the plan and descriptions of M. Agrippa.


The ancient form of the Nearer Spain, like that of many other provinces, is somewhat changed, since the time when Pompey the Great, upon the trophies which he erected in the Pyrenees, testified that 877 towns, from the Alps to the borders of the Farther Spain, had been reduced to subjection by him. The whole province is now divided into seven jurisdictions, those of Carthage146, of Tarraco, of Cæsar Augusta147, of Clunia148, of Asturica149, of Lucus150, and of the Bracari151. To these are to be added the islands, which will be described on another occasion, as also 293 states which are dependent on others; besides which the province contains 179 towns. Of these, twelve are colonies, thirteen, towns with the rights of Roman citizens, eighteen with the old Latian rights, one confederate, and 135 tributary.

The first people that we come to on the coast are the Bastuli; after whom, proceeding according to the order which I shall follow, as we go inland, there are the Mentesani, the Oretani, and the Carpetani on the Tagus, and next to them the Vaccæi, the Vectones, and the Celtiberian Arevaci. The towns nearest to the coast are Urci, and Barea152 included in Bætica, the district of Mavitania, next to it Deitania, and then Contestania, and the colony of Carthago Nova; from the Promontory of which, known as the Promontorium Saturni153, to the city of Cæsarea154 in Mauritania, the passage is a distance of 187 miles. The remaining objects worthy of mention on the coast are the river Tader155, and the free colony of Ilici156, whence the Ilicitanian Gulf157 derives its name; to this colony the Icositani are subordinate.

We next have Lucentum158, holding Latian rights; Dianium159, a tributary town; the river Sucro160, and in former times a town of the same name, forming the frontier of Contestania. Next is the district of Edetania, with the delightful expanse of a lake161 before it, and extending backward to Celtiberia. Valentia162, a colony, is situate three miles from the sea, after which comes the river Turium

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