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In Thessaly is Orchomenus, formerly called the Minyan1, and the towns of Almon, by some called Salmon, Atrax2, and Pelinna; the Fountain of Hyperia; the towns also of Pheræ3, at the back of which is Pieria4, extending to Macedonia, Larisa5, Gomphi6, Thebes7 of Thessaly, the grove of Pteleon, the Gulf of Pagasa, the town of Pagasa8, which was afterwards called Demetrias9, the Plains of Pharsalia, with a free city of similar name10, Crannon11, and Iletia. The mountains of Phthiotis are Nymphæus, once so beautiful for its garden scenery, the work of nature; Busygæus, Donacesa, Bermius12, Daphusa, Chimerion, Athamas, and Stephane. In Thessaly there are thirty-four, of which the most famous are Cercetii, Olympus13, Pierus, and Ossa, opposite to which last are Pindus and Othrys, the abodes of the Lapithæ. These mountains look towards the west, Pelion14 towards the east, all of them forming a curve like an amphitheatre, in the interior of which, lying before them, are no less than seventy-five cities. The rivers of Thessaly are the Apidanus15, the Phœnix16, the Enipeus17, the Onochonus18, and the Pamisus. There is also the Fountain of Messeis, and the lake Bœbeis19. The river Peneus20 too, superior to all others in celebrity, takes its rise near Gomphi, and flows down a well-wooded valley between Ossa and Olympus, a distance of five hundred stadia, being navigable half that distance. The vale, for a distance of five miles through which this river runs, is called by the name of Tempe; being a jugerum21 and a half nearly in breadth, while on the right and left, the mountain chain slopes away with a gentle elevation, beyond the range of human vision, the foliage imparting its colour to the light within. Along this vale glides the Peneus, reflecting the green tints as it rolls along its pebbly bed, its banks covered with tufts of verdant herbage, and enlivened by the melodious warblings of the birds. The Peneus receives the river Orcus, or rather, I should say, does not receive it, but merely carries its waters, which swim on its surface like oil, as Homer says22; and then, after a short time, rejects them, refusing to allow the waters of a river devoted to penal sufferings and engendered for the Furies to mingle with his silvery streams.

1 So called from the people called Minyæ, who derived their name from Minyas, the father of Orchomenus. In the time of Strabo, this city, the capital of the Minyan empire, was in ruins. Its site is now called Seripu.

2 Leake places its site on the left bank of the Peneius, opposite the village of Gunitza.

3 The residence of Admetus, and in later times of the tyrants of Thessaly. The modern Valestina occupies its site.

4 Spoken of in C. 17 of the present book.

5 The ancient capital of the Pelasgi. It is now called Larissa, Larza, or Ienitchen.

6 Leake places Gomphi on the heights now called Episkopi, on the left bank of the Bliuri.

7 Its ruins are said to be seen about eight miles from the modern city of Volo.

8 The city of Volo stands on its site. The Gulf is called the Bay of Volo.

9 This is not strictly correct. Demetrias was founded by Demetrius Poliorcetes, about two or three miles to the west of Pagasa, the inhabit- ants of which were removed to that place. Its remains are to be seen, according to Leake, on the face of a maritime height called Goritza.

10 Pharsalus, now Farsa or Fersala, in Thessaliotis. On its plain Pompey was defeated by Cæsar, B.C. 48.

11 Or Cranon; said to have been anciently called Ephyre. Leake places its site at some ruins called Palea Larissa, distant two hours and twenty-seven minutes' journey from Larissa. It was the residence of the powerful family of the Scopadæ.

12 This range in Macedonia is now called Verria. Herodotus states that it was impassable for cold, and that beyond were the gardens of Midas, where roses grew spontaneously.

13 The name of the eastern part of the great mountain chain extending west and east from the Promontory of Acroceraunia on the Adriatic to the Thermaic Gulf. It is now called by the Greeks Elymbo, and by the Turks Semavat-Evi, the "Abode of the Celestials." A portion of this range was called Pierus; and Ossa, now Kissavo, the "ivy-clad," was divided from Olympus on the N.W. by the Vale of Tempe. Othrys extended from the south of Mount Pindus, to the eastern coast and the Promontory between the Gulf of Pagasa and the northern point of Eubœa.

14 Now called Plessedhi or Zagora; situate in the district of Magnesia in Thessaly, between lake Bœbeis and the Pagasæan Gulf.

15 Now the Gouropotamo.

16 Flowing into the Asopus near Thermopylæ.

17 In Pieria. Supposed to be the modern Litokhoro.

18 The modern Rajani.

19 This lake received the rivers Onchestus, Amyrus, and others. It is now called Karla, from an adjoining village which has ceased to exist. The town of Bœbe was in its vicinity.

20 Now the Salambria or Salamria.

21 The jugerum was properly 240 feet long and 120 broad, but Pliny uses it here solely as a measure of length; corresponding probably to the Greek πλέθρον, 100 Grecian or 104 Roman feet long. Tempe is the only channel through which the waters of the Thessalian plain flow into the sea.

22 Il. B. ii. c. 262. He alludes to the poetical legend that the Orcus or Titaresius was a river of the infernal regions. Its waters were impregnated with an oily substance, whence probably originated the story of the unwillingness of the Peneus to mingle with it. It is now called the Elasonitiko or Xeraghi.

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