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 The voyage round the island Sarnos is 600 stadia.1 Formerly, when the Carians inhabited it, it was called Parthenia, then Anthemus, then Melamphylus,2 then Samos, either from the name of some native hero, or from some one who conducted a colony thither from Ithaca and Cephallenia. In it is a promontory looking towards Drepanum in Icaria, which has the name of Ampelos, (the Vine,) but the whole mountain, which spreads over the island, has the same name. The island is not remarkable for good wine,3 although the islands around, as Chios, Lesbos, Cos, and almost all the adjacent continent, produce wines of the best kind. The Ephesian and the Metropolites are good wines, but the Mesogis, the Tmolus, the Catacecaumene, Cnidos, Smyrna, and other more obscure places, are distinguished for the excellence of their wines, whether for gratification or dietetic purposes. Samos is not very fortunate as regards the production of wine, but in general it is fertile, as appears from its possession being a subject of warlike contention, and from the language of its panegyrists, who do not hesitate to apply to it the proverb, “‘It produces even birds' milk,’” as Menander somewhere says. This was the cause also of the tyrannies established there, and of the enmity of the Athenians.
1 According to Pliny, it is 716 stadia.
2 In b. x. ch. ii. §17, Strabo informs us that Samos was first called Melamphylus, then Anthemis, and afterwards Parthenia. These names appear in this passage in a reversed but, as appears from Pliny, b. v. 31, in their true chronological order.
3 Either an error of our author, or he speaks of its wine in comparison with that of other islands.
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