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Thus, then, this wall was built; the city is divided into two parts; for it is cut in half by a river named Euphrates, a wide, deep, and swift river, flowing from Armenia and issuing into the Red Sea. The angles of the wall, then, on either side are built quite down to the river; here they turn, and from here a fence of baked bricks runs along each bank of the stream. The city itself is full of houses three and four stories high; and the ways that traverse it, those that run crosswise towards the river and the rest, are all straight. Further, at the end of each road there was a gate in the riverside fence, one gate for each alley; these gates also were of bronze, and these too opened on the river.
When Cyrus reached the Gyndes river on his march to Babylon,Modern Diala. which rises in the mountains of the Matieni and flows through the Dardanean country into another river, the Tigris, that again passes the city of Opis and empties into the Red Sea—when, I say, Cyrus tried to cross the Gyndes, which was navigable there, one of his sacred white horses dashed recklessly into the river trying to get through it, but the current overwhelmed him and swept him under and away. At this violence of the river Cyrus was very angry, and he threatened to make it so feeble that women could ever after cross it easily without wetting their knees. After uttering this threat, he paused in his march against Babylon, and, dividing his army into two parts, drew lines planning out a hundred and eighty canals running every way from either bank of the Gyndes; then he organized his army along the lines and made them dig. Since a great multitude was at work, it went quickly; but they spent the whole summe
Beyond and above Heliopolis, Egypt is a narrow land. For it is bounded on the one side by the mountains of Arabia, which run north to south, always running south towards the sea called the Red Sea. In these mountains are the quarries that were hewn out for making the pyramids at Memphis. This way, then, the mountains run, and end in the places of which I have spoken; their greatest width from east to west, as I learned by inquiry, is a two months' journey, and their easternmost boundaries yield frankincense. Such are these mountains. On the side of Libya, Egypt is bounded by another range of rocky mountains among which are the pyramids; these are all covered with sand, and run in the same direction as those Arabian hills that run southward. Beyond Heliopolis, there is no great distance—in Egypt, that is:w(s ei)=nai ai)gu/ptou; so much of the Nile valley being outside Egypt. But it is possible that the words may mean “no great distance, for Egypt,” i.e. no great distance relatively to<
Now in Arabia, not far from Egypt, there is a gulf extending inland from the sea called RedThe “sea called Red,” it will be remembered, is the sea south and east of Arabia: the gulf entering in from it is our Red Sea. Suppose the Delta to have been once a gulf too, then there would have been two gulfs, both running up into Egypt, their heads not far from each other. , whose length and width are such as I shall show: in length, from its inner end out to the wide sea, it is a forty days' voyage for a ship rowed by oars; and in breadth, it is half a day's voyage at the widest. Every day the tides ebb and flow in it. I believe that where Egypt is now, there was once another such gulf; this extended from the northern sea towards Aethiopia, and the other, the Arabian gulf of which I shall speak, extended from the south towards Syria; the ends of these gulfs penetrated into the country near each other, and but a little space of land separated them. Now, if the Nile inclined to direct its c
Leaving the latter aside, then, I shall speak of the king who came after them, whose name was SesostrisRameses II., called by the Greeks Sesostris; said to have ruled in the fourteenth century B.C.. This king, the priests said, set out with a fleet of long shipsShips of war. from the Arabian Gulf and subjugated all those living by the Red Sea, until he came to a sea which was too shallow for his vessels. After returning from there back to Egypt, he gathered a great army (according to the account of the priests) and marched over the mainland, subjugating every nation to which he came. When those that he met were valiant men and strove hard for freedom, he set up pillars in their land, the inscription on which showed his own name and his country's, and how he had overcome them with his own power; but when the cities had made no resistance and been easily taken, then he put an inscription on the pillars just as he had done where the nations were brave; but he also drew on them the priv
Psammetichus had a son, Necos, who became king of Egypt. It was he who began building the canal into the Red Sea,This canal ran from near Tel Basta (Bubastis) apparently to Suez. Inscriptions recording Darius' construction of it have been found in the neighborhood. which was finished by Darius the Persian. This is four days' voyag
or two triremes to move in it rowed abreast.
It is fed by the Nile, and is carried from a little above Bubastis by the Arabian town of Patumus; it issues into the Red Sea. Digging began in the part of the Egyptian plain nearest to Arabia; the mountains that extend to Memphis (the mountains where the stone quarries are) come close t into a ravine, it bears southward out of the hill country towards the Arabian Gulf.
Now the shortest and most direct passage from the northern to the southern or Red Sea is from the Casian promontory, the boundary between Egypt and Syria, to the Arabian Gulf, and this is a distance of one hundred and twenty five miles, neither mor
Necos, then, stopped work on the canal and engaged in preparations for war; some of his ships of war were built on the northern sea, and some in the Arabian Gulf, by the Red Sea coast: the winches for landing these can still be seen. He used these ships when needed, and with his land army met and defeated the Syrians at Magdolus,Magdolus appears to be the Mogdol of O.T. taking the great Syrian city of CadytisGaza. after the battle. He sent to Branchidae of Miletus and dedicated there to Apollo the garments in which he won these victories. Then he died after a reign of sixteen years, and his son Psammis reigned in his place.