previous next

The seaboard that comes next after Leucania, as far as the Sicilian Strait and for a distance of thirteen hundred and fifty stadia, is occupied by the Brettii. According to Antiochus, in his treatise On Italy, this territory (and this is the territory which he says he is describing) was once called Italy, although in earlier times it was called Oenotria. And he designates as its boundaries, first, on the Tyrrhenian Sea, the same boundary that I have assigned to the country of the Brettii—the River Laüs; and secondly, on the Sicilian Sea, Metapontium. But as for the country of the Tarantini, which borders on Metapontium, he names it as outside of Italy, and calls its inhabitants Iapyges. And at a time more remote, according to him, the names "Italians" and "Oenotrians" were applied only to the people who lived this side the isthmus in the country that slopes toward the Sicilian Strait. The isthmus itself, one hundred and sixty stadia in width, lies between two gulfs—the Hipponiate (which Antiochus has called Napetine) and the Scylletic. The coasting-voyage round the country comprised between the isthmus and the Strait is two thousand stadia. But after that, he says, the name of "Italy" and that of the "Oenotrians" was further extended as far as the territory of Metapontium and that of Seiris, for, he adds, the Chones, a well-regulated Oenotrian tribe, had taken up their abode in these regions and had called the land Chone. Now Antiochus had spoken only in a rather simple and antiquated way, without making any distinctions between the Leucani and the Brettii. In the first place, Leucania lies between the Tyrrhenian and Sicilian coastlines,1 the former coastline from the River Silaris as far as Laüs, and the latter, from Metapontium as far as Thurii; in the second place, on the mainland, from the country of the Samnitae as far as the isthmus which extends from Thurii to Cerilli (a city near Laüs), the isthmus is three hundred stadia in width. But the Brettii are situated beyond the Leucani; they live on a peninsula, but this peninsula includes another peninsula which has the isthmus that extends from Scylletium to the Hipponiate Gulf. The name of the tribe was given to it by the Leucani, for the Leucani call all revolters "brettii." The Brettii revolted, so it is said (at first they merely tended flocks for the Leucani, and then, by reason of the indulgence of their masters, began to act as free men), at the time when Rio made his expedition against Dionysius and aroused all peoples against all others. So much, then, for my general description of the Leucani and the Brettii.

1 Between the coastlines on the Tyrrhenian and Sicilian Seas.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus English (H.C. Hamilton, Esq., W. Falconer, M.A., 1903)
load focus Greek (1877)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Italy (Italy) (4)
Thurii (2)
Tyrrhenian Sea (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide References (1 total)
  • Cross-references in general dictionaries to this page (1):
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: