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This webpage reproduces a section of
The Geography


published in Vol. V
of the Loeb Classical Library edition,

The text is in the public domain.

This page has been carefully proofread
and I believe it to be free of errors.
If you find a mistake though,
please let me know!


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(Vol. V) Strabo

 p473  Book XII, Chapter 6

1 (568) Such, then, is Tatta. And the regions round Orcaorci and Pitnissus, as also the plateaus of the Lycaonians, are cold, bare of trees, and grazed by wild asses, though there is a great scarcity of water; and even where it is possible to find water, the  p475 wells are the deepest in the world, just as in Soatra, where the water is actually sold (this is a village-city near Garsaüra). But still, although the country is unwatered,​1 it is remarkably productive of sheep; but the wool is coarse, and yet some persons have acquired very great wealth from this alone. Amyntas had over three hundred flocks in this region. There are also two lakes in this region, the larger being Lake Coralis and the smaller Lake Trogitis. In this neighbourhood is also Iconium, a town that is well settled and has a more prosperous territory than the above-mentioned ass‑grazing country. This place was held by Polemon. Here the region in question is near the Taurus, which separates Cappadocia and Lycaonia from Cilicia Tracheia,​2 which last lies above that region. The boundary between the Lycaonians and the Cappadocians lies between Coropassus, a village of the Lycaonians, and Garsaüra, a town of the Cappadocians. The distance between these strongholds is about one hundred and twenty stadia.

2 To Lycaonia belongs also Isauricê, near the Taurus itself, which has the two Isauras, villages bearing the same name, one of which is called Old Isaura, and the other New Isaura, which is well-fortified. Numerous other villages were subject to these, and they were all settlements of robbers. They were a source of much trouble to the Romans and in particular to Publius Servilius, surnamed Isauricus, with whom I was acquainted; he subjected these places to the Romans 569 and also destroyed most of the strongholds of the pirates that were situated on the sea.

 p477  3 On the side of Isauricê lies Derbê, which lies closer to Cappadocia than to any other country and was the royal seat of the tyrant Antipater Derbetes. He also possessed Laranda. But in my time Derbê and also the two Isauras have been held by Amyntas,​3 who attacked and killed Derbetes, although he received Isaura from the Romans. And, indeed, after destroying the Old Isaura, he built for himself a royal residence there. And though he was building a new wall in the same place, he did not live to complete it, but was killed by the Cilicians, when he was invading the country of the Homonadeis and was captured by ambuscade.

4 For, being in possession of the Antiocheia near Pisidia and of the country as far as the Apollonias near Apameia Cibotus and of certain parts of the country alongside the mountain, and of Lycaonia, he was trying to exterminate the Cilicians and the Pisidians, who from the Taurus were overrunning this country, which belonged to the Phrygians and the Cilicians;​4 and he captured many places which previously had been impregnable, among which was Cremna. However, he did not even try to win Sandalium by force, which is situated between Cremna and Sagalassus.

5 Now Cremna is occupied by Roman colonists: and Sagalassus is subject to the same Roman governor to whom the whole kingdom of Amyntas was subject. It is a day's journey distant from Apameia, having a descent of about thirty stadia from the fortress. It  p479 is also called Selgessus; this city was also captured by Alexander. Now Amyntas captured Cremna, and, passing into the country of the Homonadeis, who were considered too strong to capture, and having now established himself as master of most of the places, having even slain their tyrant, was caught by treachery through the artifice of the tyrant's wife. And he was put to death by those people, but Cyrinius​5 overthrew the inhabitants by starving them, and captured alive four thousand men and settled them in the neighbouring cities, leaving the country destitute of all its men who were in the prime of life. In the midst of the heights of the Taurus, which are very steep and for the most part impassable, there is a hollow and fertile plain which is divided into several valleys. But though the people tilled this plain, they lived on the overhanging brows of the mountains or in caves. They were armed for the most part and were wont to overrun the country of others, having mountains that served as walls about their country.

The Editor's Notes:

1 i.e. by streams.

2 See 14.5.1.

3 The Galatian Amyntas who fought with Antony against Augustus at the battle of Actium (31 B.C.).

4 See critical note.

The critical note to the Greek text (Φρυγῶν οὖσαν καὶ Κιλίκων) reads:

καὶ Κιλίκων apparently is an error for καὶ Λυκαόνων, or else should be omitted from the text (so Meineke).

5 Sulpicius Quirinus, governor of Syria.

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Page updated: 18 Sep 12