Now the Autariatae were once the largest and best tribe of the Illyrians. In earlier times they were continually at war with the Ardiaei over the salt-works on the common frontiers. The salt was made to crystallize out of water which in the spring-time flowed at the foot of a certain mountain-glen, for if they drew off the water and stowed it away for five days the salt would become thoroughly crystallized. They would agree to use the salt-works alternately, but would break the agreements and go to war. At one time when the Autariatae had subdued the Triballi, whose territory extended from that of the Agrianes as far as the Ister, a journey of fifteen days, they held sway also over the rest of the Thracians and the Illyrians; but they were overpowered, at first by the Scordisci, and later on by the Romans, who also subdued the Scordisci themselves, after these had been in power for a long time.